Thursday, June 25, 2015

Mae West: Johnny Mercer

MAE WEST did not discuss her husbands in her memoir "Goodness Had Nothing to Do with It" — — even though she was legally married twice.  However, she did portray the oft-married blushing bride Marlo Manners, who enters a posh London hotel lobby on the arm of her sixth husband in "Sextette" [1978].
• • There is an impressive rendition of "Hooray for Hollywood" by a large cast of performers. The iconic song was written by Johnny Mercer, who died in the month of June — — on Friday, 25 June 1976 — — from a brain tumor at age 66.
• • Unlike Mae West, the singer—songwriter has been honored by the United States Postal Service with his portrait placed on a stamp in 1996. Amazing who gets on an American postage stamp and who does not, eh?
• • Born in Savannah, Georgia, Johnny Mercer [18 November 1909 — 25 June 1976] was an American lyricist, songwriter, and singer. Though he is best known as a lyricist, he composed music, too. He was also a popular singer who recorded his own songs as well as those written by others. From the mid-1930s through the mid-1950s, many of the songs Mercer wrote and performed were among the most popular hits of the time. The prolific musician wrote the lyrics to more than fifteen hundred songs, including compositions for movies and Broadway shows. He received nineteen Academy Award nominations, and won four. Mercer was also a co-founder of Capitol Records.
• • "Hooray for Hollywood" • •
• • "Hooray for Hollywood" is a film song first featured in the motion picture "Hollywood Hotel" [1937], a number that has since become the staple soundtrack element of any Academy Awards ceremony. Curiously enough, "Hooray for Hollywood" is even frequently played during non-American movie ceremonies, e.g. the French César Awards. The popularity of the song is notably due to the lyrics by Johnny Mercer, which reference the American movie industry and satirize the illusory desire of many people to become famous as actors. 
• • Richard A. Whiting [1891 — 1938] composed the music, then had a heart attack at the height of his fame. Very sad.
• • On Friday, 25 June 1926 • •
• • It was on Friday, 25 June 1926 that Mae West appeared with Al Jolson — — as well as Houdini and other entertainers (such as George M. Cohan, Fanny Brice, the Marx Brothers, Ann Pennington, Hazel Dawn, Eddie Foy, etc.) — — at the Polo Grounds on West 155th Street in Manhattan's Washington Heights area. The fundraiser was for the benefit of the United Jewish Campaign.
• • On Monday, 25 June 1956 at Idlewild Airport • •
• • When Mae West took a TWA flight from Los Angeles to New York City, her plane landed at Idlewild Airport on Monday, 25 June 1956.  She waved to fans, who were thrilled to greet her as she disembarked with Charles Krauser.  The fight in her dressing room in Washington, DC had suddenly brought "Mr. California" into focus.
• • On Thursday, 25 June 1970 in The N.Y. Times • •
• • "Myra Breckinridge" opened in wide release on June 24th.
• •  An article written by Howard Thompson was printed in The N.Y. Times on page 54 on Thursday, 25 June 1970:  "Mae West, 76, Still Finding New Generations of Fans." A wonderful piece by Mr. Thompson.
• • Overheard in Hollywood • •
• • By this time we needn't worry about Mae West's progress. 
• • In Her Own Words • •
• • Mae West said: "I have had to do my share of outsmarting men through necessity."
• • Quote, Unquote • •
• • An article on Asprey mentioned Mae West.
• • According to Jenny Johnston for the Daily Mail: A bona fide British institution, Asprey can trace its history back to 1781 and has been a presence on upmarket New Bond Street since 1847. It's held a Royal Warrant from every British monarch since Queen Victoria awarded it one in 1862, and everyone from Mae West to the Beckham family has been a customer.  . . .
 • • Source: Article written by Jenny Johnston for the Daily Mail (England); published on Friday, 27 June 2014
• • The Mae West Blog celebrates its 10th anniversary • •    
• • Thank you for reading, sending questions, and posting comments during this past decade. The other day we entertained 3,497 visitors. And we reached a milestone recently when we completed 3,200 blog posts. Wow! 
• • By the Numbers • • 
• • The Mae West Blog was started ten years ago in July 2004. You are reading the 3208th blog post. Unlike many blogs, which draw upon reprinted content from a newspaper or a magazine and/ or summaries, links, or photos, the mainstay of this blog is its fresh material focused on the life and career of Mae West, herself an American original.

• • Come up and see Mae every day online:

Source: to Google

• • Photo:
• • Mae West • in 1956

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