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My Heart Cries for Mitch Miller

My Heart Cries for Mitch Miller

Mitch Miller, the musical maven of middle-of-the-road pop who died in Manhattan Saturday at 99, became a household name via his early-'60s TV show Sing Along With Mitch. Long before that, he -- along with Frank Sinatra and a guy named Al Cernick -- provided my dad, songwriter Carl Sigman, with the flukiest hit of his career. in 1950, Carl and composer/orchestra leader Percy Faith -- perhaps most famous for his1960 recording of Theme From a Summer Place -- were good friends and often went to the racetrack ("the trotters") at Long Island's Roosevelt Field to blow off some steam. An old French tune that played repeatedly on the track's Pa haunted Percy. One day, he jokingly asked Carl if he thought they could write a hit song in 10 minutes using that melodic phrase. They did just that, and...

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