dick lapalm dlpjazz at thegrid.net
Fri Apr 4 17:05:30 EDT 2008

In 1927 at a class reunion at the University of Indiana, Hoagy 
Carmichael originally composed
Star Dust as a fast-tempo piano instrumental.  A fellow alumnus titled 
it for him.  The song didn't
catch on with the public until 1930 when the Isham Jones orchestra 
recorded  Victor Young's
slower-tempo arrangement (Brunswick).  Mitchell Parish then wrote a 
lyric for it, which version
was first recorded by Bing Crosby in 1931.  Artie Shaw's recording 
(Victor) in 1941 sold over two
million copies!   It remains the 2nd most recorded American song; right 
behind Body and Soul.

The true story regarding the song's credits, and the composer's comment 
is as follows. 

In the early-50's, Robert Q. Lewis hosted a very popular radio program 
on WCBS in New York.
During an interview with Carmichael, Lewis off-handedly remarked, "I 
wonder why it is that
whenever Star Dust is mentioned, it's usually referrred to as 'Hoagy 
Carmichael's Star Dust'?
Mitchell Parish wrote a marvelous lyric, and his name is rarely, if 
ever, associated with the song. 
Why do you think that's so?"  Hoagy replied, "Probably because folks 
seem to have a hard time
whistling, or even humming Mitchell's great lyric."

Parish, by the way, told Mike Rapchak during a 1981 interview on WGN 
Chicago that his very
favorite reading and recording of Star Dust was by Nat Cole. 

Dick LaPalm

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