Approved | | Musical
The relationship between an aspiring dancer and a popular songstress provides a retrospective of the great African American entertainers of the early 1900s.
Two musical numbers were deleted from the release print: "Good-for-Nothin' Joe" (music by Rube Bloom, lyrics by Ted Koehler), sung by Lena Horne, who already was identified with this torch song via her 1941 Victor recording as the vocalist with Charlie Barnet and His Orchestra; and "Alfred the Moocher," a parody by Cab Calloway of his trademark "Minnie the Moocher" (music and lyrics by Calloway, Irving Mills and Clarence Gaskill). The Alfred being spoofed likely is renowned film composer and music director Alfred Newman. Only a voice track of the send-up remains. On a V-Disc of selections from the film made by Miss Horne with the Calloway band, "Good-for-Nothin' Joe" was included.
Clem never told me you could sing like that, Selina.
Selina Rogers: I couldn't when Clem went away... but I practiced, and I studied. I've always been ambitious. Haven't you, Bill?
Bill Williamson: Never have been, except to get three square meals a day, regular. But I'm beginning...
The first time Selena says "Bill Williamson" (in the first scene, before her character has met him) her mouth quite clearly says "Bill Robinson. Bill Robinson played Bill Williamson.
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