She writes the songs – Willow Weep For Me

It can be so hard to find information online about women in music. Unless it’s made explicit, cultural assumptions have tended to credited the creation of music to men. Women were more likely to be given credit performing music than creating it. If you look hard enough there are hidden gems in the popular catalogs.

This is the case with the jazz standard Willow Weep for Me written by Ann Ronell. It was covered by everyone who was anyone, and still is.  I’ve included as many of their versions below as I can find.

Ann Ronell; photo by Walter Albertin.

Rosemary Clooney (with Count Basie) and Dinah Shore both also sang this song but I can’t find links to share with you. Sam Cooke did a version I really like. 

Willow Weep For Me wasn’t a one hit wonder. Ann was an early successful female writer for Hollywood films and theatre. She wrote Rain on the Roof (sung here by Al Bowlly), and Baby’s Birthday Party   (performed here by Nat Shilkret). She co-wrote the song Linda from The Story of G. I. Joe, and Who’s Afraid of the Big Bad Wolf for Disney. 

Ann was born Ann Rosenblatt, but changed her name. I assume the change was due to the potential double jeopardy of being a woman and a Jew making a living in American popular music.

Find more info on Ann here, at IMDB, the Internet Broadway Database, and in her 1993 obituaries in the LATimes and NYTimes. She also comes up in iTunes searches. 




Where have I heard that before..?

When I see a movie I come away with the story line and the dialogue stuck in my head. I am word focused. My son, on the other hand, comes away with the background music stuck in his head. It is because of him that I have developed an appreciation for music written for film, TV and other media.

As an autumnal musical treat, perhaps small consolation for the falling leaves and shorter days, I’ve pulled together some music by these modern media composers.

CharroHugo Mario Montenegro’s best known work is from Spaghetti Westerns. He composed the score for Charro! – and yes that’s Elvis singing.

little rascalsLeroy Shield wrote the theme song for The Little Rascals.

Steve Jablonsky has composed for film, TV and video games.

Michael Giacchino has composed scores for film, TV and video games.

Howard Leslie Shore is a Canadian composer who composed film scores, notably for The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit.

UntouchablesTheEnnio Morricone is one of the most influential film composers of all time. He’s composed over 500 scores for film and TV.

thegreenmileThomas Newman has scored a lot of Oscar nominated films. The Green Mile is one of them.

Sir Malcolm Arnold produced scores for about 80 films going way back.

Manos Hatzidakis received an Oscar for Best Original Song for Never on Sunday.

batman1960Neal Hefti composed the themes for TV and film, most famously for Batman.

Dustin J. O’Halloran composes scores for film and TV.

flintstonesHoyt Curtin was primary musical director for Hanna-Barbera and wrote the theme for The Flintstones.

Éric Serra  is a French musician and composer. He has worked on films by Luc Besson.

Norrie Paramor was a composer of studio albums, theatrical productions and film scores.

Raymond Scott never actually wrote for cartoons but his music is familiar because it was adapted for Warner wizard-of-oz13Bros., Looney Tunes and Merrie Melodies.

Herbert P. Stothart was nominated for twelve Oscars, and won Best Original Score for The Wizard of Oz.

Hans Zimmer composed music for over 150 films, including The Lion King.

howtotrainyourdragonMilt Franklyn was a musical composer and arranger with Warner Bros. and Looney Tunes.

Michael Hennagin wrote television soundtracks.

draculahasrisenfromthe-graveJohn Powell is particularly known for scores for animated films.

James Bernard scored many classic horror films.

John Harle wrote the score for Prick Up Your Ears with co-writer Stanley Myers.

Richard Harvey is known for film and television soundtracks.

hellboy-33016Randy Kerber is a composer and keyboard player for film.

Mike Post is best known for TV theme songs like The Rockford Files.

Marco Edward Beltrami is known for his work scoring horror films like Hellboy.