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  • Writer's pictureCharles Cherney

150: Bobby Short

As Wikipedia notes, Bobby Short (1924 – 2005) was an American cabaret singer and pianist, who interpreted songs by popular composers from the first half of the 20th century such as Rodgers and Hart, Cole Porter, Jerome Kern, Harold Arlen, Richard A. Whiting, Vernon Duke, Noël Coward and George and Ira Gershwin. Before we go any further, let's listen to Bobby Short sing "Sand In My Shoes":

Okay! Are you hooked on Bobby now?

Bobby Short began his adult musical career in clubs in the 1940s. In 1968 he was offered a two-week stint at the Café Carlyle in New York City, to fill in for George Feyer. Short (accompanied by Beverly Peer on bass and Dick Sheridan on drums) became an institution at the Carlyle, as Feyer had been before him, and remained there as a featured performer for more than 35 years.

It was my great good fortune to see Bobby Short perform live two times – once at the Café Carlyle in New York City in the 1990s, and once at Scullers Jazz Club on the Charles River in Boston in the 2000s as I recall, with Bobby performing that night with a big band.

I absolutely love Bobby Short. His irrepressible energy. His ability to smile (a rare thing in a man). His New York sensibility. The sheer joy that infuses his performances. I'd say more but I think the best way to appreciate Bobby Short is to listen to him sing. Take in this wonderful version of "And Her Mother Came Too."

Really, I don't think one can get too much of Bobby Short. Here's one more for good measure:

Bobby Short is gone but his music is with us forever. I will always treasure his joyful gift.


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