In the Still of the Night

Reviewed by mojo

This is an "okay" song. It's got a nice sort of cha-cha beat going, and some nice--but not sheer genius--word play going on. I think my favorite part of the song is the chock-fulla-rhymes windup at the very end: "Like the moon growing dim on the rim of the hill in the chill still of the night". That's from memory, so I might have a word or two wrong, but there's the general idea. It doesn't look that great in print, okay, but I like how it goes in the song. Guess you have to be there, huh?

Some of the "eh" factor here is, quite simply, Mojo has never been much of a fan of torchy tortured whinyness when it comes to love. Someone's maybe been wronged, or they're not sure if their loved one is reciprocating properly, and quite frankly if it sounds whiny and doesn't have any sort of humor involved (like Miss Otis Regrets or Sam and Delilah) Mojo really doesn't want to hear it. I mean, what do you expect ME to do about it? I'm the LAST person you want to ask for advice regarding your love life. I'm a TOTAL NOOB, okay? I've never had my heart broken, I've never had a nasty breakup. I met my Favorite Husband at eighteen and never really looked back. As much as people go on and on about what hard work marriage is, for the most part we've just been sort of laughing and skipping our way through it for the past twenty years or so. How do we make it work? I DON'T KNOW!!! I'm TOTALLY CLUELESS!!! My advice will be USELESS CONJECTURE!!! Unless you want someone to just listen to you whine and occasionally say helpful things like, "Wow, hey, that sounds like it really sucks." I can do that, I suppose, but your troubles are just gonna bring me down.

Despite my shruggy tepid response, clearly you can't trust Mojo's opinion on anything because if you look this song up on Amazon there's no less than six collections that have it. Granted, most of the collections are "best of the Songbooks" collections, but I sort of think you could do a lot better, really. This is NOT to say I hate the song, or anything, it's just not the sort of song I'm going to stop what I'm doing and just listen rapturously to the entire thing. It's okay. I like the lower register work. Um, according to Wikipedia it was written for an MGM film called Rosalie, which, ironically, apparently started off in life as a Gershwin musical. Mojo has never heard of the film, which came out in 1937, but with Nelson Eddy, Eleanor Powell, Frank Morgan, Ray Bolger, etc., etc., etc., it sounds like a good cast. But then Wikipedia notes, "In order to capitalize upon Powell's renown as a dancer, the story was retooled to allow her several showcase musical numbers, the best-remembered of which involves her dancing on top of giant drum." Oh, dear. Sounds like what they did with Ann Miller in Kiss Me, Kate, when they turned all her songs into tap dances. You haven't lived until you've seen Too Darn Hot interpreted as a tap dance. Again, don't get me wrong, Mojo actually LIKES it, but even SHE has to admit, it's probably not the direction *I* would have taken the song....

In the Still of the Night (1956)

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Click below to hear a sample--or scroll down for associated media: 
Disc Number: 
1
Composer: 
Cole Porter
Lyricist: 
Cole Porter
Time: 
2:38

From Wikipedia:

 

 

"In the Still of the Night" is a popular song written by Cole Porter for the MGM film Rosalie and published in 1937.

Two popular early recordings were by Tommy Dorsey and Leo Reisman. The Dorsey charted on October 16, 1937 and peaked at #3. The Reisman charted on December 25, 1937 and peaked at #9. [1]

 Notable recordings