Smoke Gets in Your Eyes

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Smoke Gets in Your Eyes (Jerome Kern, Otto Harbach) was written for the Broadway musical Roberta (1933). It was performed by Irene Dunne for the 1935 film adaptation, costarring Fred Astaire, Ginger Rogers and Randolph Scott.

Smoke Gets in Your Eyes is a very popular standard which has been covered by numerous artists. In 1934, popular recordings were made by

  • Paul Whiteman and His Orchestra
  • Leo Reisman and his Orchestra
  • Emil Coleman and His Riviera Orchestra
  • Ruth Etting

Later hit recordings include those by

  • Artie Shaw and the Gramercy Five (1941, #24)
  • The Platters (1959, million-seller #1)
  • Blue Haze (1973, #27)

The song also featured in the film Lovely to Look At, a 1952 remake of Roberta, where it was sung by Kathryn Grayson. Possibly the most famous version was recorded in 1958 by the doo wop group The Platters, which became a number one hit on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 and reached number three on the R&B charts in 1959 [1]. –  text adapted from Wikipedia, except for the chart lists and positions which are from jazzstandards.com

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Paul Whiteman and his Orchestra, vocal by Bob Lawrence – released 1933

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Leo Reisman and his Orchestra, vocal: Tamara– recorded on 28 November 1933; issued on the 78 RPM single Brunswick 6715, c/w “The Touch of Your Hand”

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Ruth Etting – 1934; video provider gramophoneshane identifies the record as Regal Zonophone no.G22394

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Irene Dunne

Irene Dunne – in the musical film Roberta (1935)

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Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers dance to an instrumental version of Smoke Gets in Your Eyes in Roberta; but the videos I’ve seen in recent searches are all of low quality.

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Artie Shaw and his Gramercy 5 – dj SwingMan1937 identifies the recording as Victor 2733 and also provides the following info:

Personnel for this December 5, 1940 session:
Artie Shaw – clarinet, Billy Butterfield – trumpet, Al Hendrickson – amplified guitar, Johnny Guarnieri – harpsichord, Jud DeNaut – bass, Nick Fatool – drums

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Teddy Wilson and his Orchestra – recorded on 7 April 1941; issued on the 78 rpm single Columbia 46631, c/w “Them There Eyes”

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Gladys Swarthout – recorded July 1942

Gladys Swarthout was an American mezzo-soprano born in 1900 in Deepwater, Missouri. She sang at the Metropolitan Opera for 13 seasons, debuting in 1929 as Cieca in La Gioconda. Appearances on several radio shows singing popular songs from operetta and Broadway musicals brought her to the wider American audience; and with her beautiful voice and lovely looks she appeared in a number of 1930s Hollywood movies. She starred in the first ever full-length televised opera production, Carmen. She died in 1969. –  info provided by racheleleeba

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The Platters – 1958

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(below) live performance on the Ed Sullivan Show

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