Avant de Mourir / My Prayer


My Prayer (m. Georges Boulanger, w. Jimmy Kennedy)

The song was originally written as an instrumental piece with the title “Avant de Mourir” by Boulanger and first recorded by Orchester Georges Boulanger in 1924. English lyrics were added by Irish songwriter and lyricist Jimmy Kennedy* in 1939. Glenn Miller and the Ink Spots had large hits with their 1939 recordings, but the most commercially successful cover was that by The Platters, recorded in 1956.


Avant de Mourir

Georges Boulanger — While many date the composition 1926, Second Hand Songs gives the date of the first known recording as April 1924, a recording by Orchester Georges Boulanger. Second Hand Songs appears to indicate that it was released on the single (Germany) Vox 01530 as the B-side of “Natascha (Russische Weise).”

(below) This may be a copy of the 1924 recording, but the Youtube provider calls it “the original,” yet gives no recording date, performer credits, etc.


(below) The image used by the video creator suggests that the recording is an undated Telefunken issue. However, the recording is not precisely identified by the provider, who leaves it undated. It’s significantly different from, though similar to, the recording in the video above.


Tanz-Orchester Géza Komor – 1929


Eddie Tower & Sa Grande Formation – 1942


(below) The provider of the following video notes that

In France “Avant de mourir” was featured in the Casino de Paris spectacle “Amours de Paris” [1938] starring Maurice Chevalier. The title was changed to “Tout nous parle d’amour” (lit. Everything speaks to us of love) although another set of lyrics with the title “Ma prière” was written as well….

This version of Tout nous parle d’amour is performed by Orchestre A.J. Pesenti, a popular French tango orchestra during the late 1930s, according to the provider, recorded in 1939.


Tudor Pană – date unknown


My Prayer / Ma Prière

Ink Spots – 1939


Glenn Miller and his Orchestra, vocal: Ray Eberle 1939


Chick Henderson with Joe Loss and his Orchestra

Presently unavailable


André Dassary-disques pathe-poster-1André Dassary-1-f12

André Dassary – Ma Prière – 1941

Gerda Neumann with Jens Dennow’s Soft-Band (according to the label) – 1942

1944 My Prayer-featured by Vera Lynn in One Exciting Night-sheet music-1aOne Exciting Night (1944) Vera Lynn film collection

Vera Lynn – in the film One Exciting Night (1944)


Platters 1a

The Platters – 1956

Roy Orbison – from the album In Dreams – 1963


* The words are incorrectly credited to “Jerry Kennedy” at poparchives.com.au.


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