Green Dolphin Street was a novel by Elizabeth Goudge that was made into a movie by MGM and released in late 1947. Here’s the original trailer. At about 1:20, you’ll hear the theme song, written by Bronislaw Kaper, with lyrics written by Ned Washington.
The movie won an Academy Award for Best Visual Effects and was nominated for four others, in Cinematography, Film Editing, Sound Recording, and Special Effects. The theme song became a jazz standard, done countless times, including the four performances I’ve chosen.
First is a vocal version by Sarah Vaughan, done on a radio broadcast sometime in the 1950’s. I have no idea who the backing musicians are.
Miles Davis included his version on his seminal album ’58 Sessions featuring Stella By Starlight. On the recording with Miles are John Coltrane on tenor sax, “Cannonball” Adderley on alto sax, Bill Evans on piano, Paul Chambers on bass, and Jimmy Cobb on drums.
Barney Kessel is one of my favorite jazz guitarists, and his version included Ray Brown on bass and Shelly Manne on drums. This is from the album The Poll Winners.
Finally, a slightly more up-to-date version by the Chick Corea Akoustic Band, featuring John Pattitucci on bass and Dave Weckl on drums.
Once again, YouTube has many, many more versions of the song. It was hard for me to pick just four, and even there I might be overdoing it.
Anyway, it’s time to vote. Which of these is your favorite version of “On Green Dolphin Street”? And why?
After you’ve voted, how about visiting some of the other participants of the Battle of the Bands? They’d certainly appreciate it!
I’ll announce the winner of this Battle next Monday.