Everything Happens to Me


Everything Happens to Me (m. Matt Dennis, w. Thomas Adair) – 1941

Biographical sketch of Matt Dennis by Joslyn Lane for allmusic.com:

Songwriter, pianist, and singer Matt Dennis composed hit pop songs for Tommy Dorsey’s band and Frank Sinatra during the 1940s and 1950s. Born into a vaudeville family in Seattle, in 1914, Dennis learned how to play the piano at a young age, leading to a job with Horace Heidt while Dennis was still in his teens. He eventually moved to Hollywood, where he worked in clubs accompanying singers such as Martha Tilton, Merry Macs, and the Pied Pipers. Dennis was still with the Pipers when they joined up with Tommy Dorsey, and served as arranger, composer, and coach for Dorsey. During his service in WWII, Dennis did radio work and arranged music for Glenn Miller’s AAF Orchestra, among others. Dennis’ chief collaborator was lyricist Tom Adair, and his best-known tunes include “Will You Still Be Mine?,” “Let’s Get Away from It All,” “Everything Happens to Me” (1941), and “Angel Eyes” (1953), but he also penned “We Belong Together,” “We’ve Reached the Point of No Return,” and “You Can Believe Me.” Dennis also did a series of recordings for the Glendale, RCA, Jubilee, and Kapp labels. He later worked on television, radio, and as a nightclub entertainer into the 1960s.

Jazstandards.com says:

One evening, while playing a nightclub gig in Los Angeles, Dennis was approached by Tom Adair, who asked if he could write a song with him. Adair was answering phones for the power company in Los Angeles and writing poems in his spare time for the Saturday Evening Post but had already written lyrics to one of Dennis’ numbers, “Will You Still Be Mine?” Dennis was elated with Adair’s sophisticated lyrics and asked him to write words for his other compositions, “Everything Happens to Me” and “Let’s Get Away from It All.” Dorsey recorded all of them in February, 1941.

Tommy Dorsey and his Orchestra, vocal: Frank Sinatra – recorded 7 February 1941, arranged by Axel Stordahl


Charlie Parker-with Strings-Buddy Rich and Ray Brown-1a

Charlie Parker with Strings, recorded 30 November 1949 — released as Mercury MG-35010

Charlie Parker – alto saxophone; Mitch Miller – oboe; Bronislaw Gimpel, Max Hollander, Milton Lomask – violins; Frank Brieff – viola; Frank Miller – cello; Myor Rosen – harp; Stan Freeman – piano; Ray Brown – double bass; Buddy Rich – drums; Jimmy Carroll – arranger and conductor


Art Pepper Quartet — Art Pepper (alto saxophone), Russ Freeman (piano), Bob Whitelock (bass), Bobby White (drums), recorded in Los Angeles, CA, 29 March 1953


Shelly Manne and Russ Freeman — recorded in  Hollywood, CA, on 14 September 1954, and released on the album “The Three” and “The Two”



Chet Baker – from the 1958 album It Could Happen to You (Chet Baker Sings)

  • Chet Baker – trumpet, vocals
  • Kenny Drew – piano
  • Sam Jones – bass
  • George Morrow – bass
  • Phillie Joe Jones – drums
  • Dannie Richmond – drums


Harold “Tina” Brooks — from Minor Move, recorded: Rudy Van Gelder Studio, Hackensack, New Jersey 16 March 1958

Tina Brooks – Tenor Sax
Lee Morgan – Trumpet
Sonny Clark – Piano
Doug Watkins – Bass
Art Blakey – Drums



Stan Getz — from Stan Getz in Stockholm, 1955


Thelonious Monk

From Thelonious Alone in San Francisco, recorded live at Fugazi Hall, San Francisco, California on 21 and 22 October 1959


Monk-65-Solo Monk

From Solo Monk, 1965


Joe Pass – recorded 17 February 1979 at Group IV, Hollywood, CA — released on I Remember Charlie Parker




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