Tuesday 10 May 2016

Fred and Ginger

We can't let the birthday of Fred Astaire - born Frederick Austerlitz on this day in 1899 - go unmarked. Astaire's dancing genius alone would have been enough to secure his lasting fame, but he was also one of the great singers of the 20th century, perhaps unsurpassed in his phrasing and diction, in his ability to capture the soul of a song and convey it with absolute precision and artistry. No wonder he was the favourite of so many great songwriters. Here he is showing how it's done, singing Jerome Kern's most beautiful song, with lyrics to fit by Dorothy Fields - and doesn't Ginger Rogers look gorgeous with her hair covered in shampoo?