“There is a Sucker Born Ev’ry Minute” – Barnum
Music: Cy Coleman Lyrics: Michael Stewart
At the 25th Academy Awards ceremony held on this day in 1953, The Greatest Show On Earth won Best Picture in a surprise upset. Set in the merged Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus, the film must have charmed critics with its extravagant production value and spectacle, but now it is regarded as one of the worst movies to win the prestigious award. Seems there truly is a sucker born ev’ry minute just as P.T. Barnum sings in this wry number from a musical about the showman who co-founded Barnum & Bailey Circus.
“Dimples” – Little Me
Music: Cy Coleman Lyrics: Carolyn Leigh
Shirley Temple, a child star best known for her curly hair and dimples (having appeared in such classic films as Curly Top and Dimples), announced her retirement from films on this day in 1950. A woman named Belle narrates her hilarious story in this fictional musical autobiography, telling of how she had a vaudeville act as a Shirley Temple-like character named Dimples in this number.
“You Can Always Count On Me” – City of Angels
Music: Cy Coleman Lyrics: David Zippel
Count Von Count made his first appearance on children’s television series Sesame Street on this day in 1972, and ever since we could count on the Count to count for us. You can also count on this torch song for a good time, a lament about men sung by a woman and her alter-ego in this musical tribute to film noir which takes place in the real world as well as a screenwriter’s fantasy.
“Babette” – On the Twentieth Century
Music: Cy Coleman Lyrics: Betty Comden & Adolph Green
This musical comedy set on a luxury train during the 1920’s concerns an actress named Lily Garland and the desperate theatre producer hoping to use her in his new project. The glorious Madeline Kahn originated the role of Lily in the Broadway production and sang this gem in the second act, a highlight of the cast recording. Taken from this world far too soon, this song is in recognition of the late great actress and comedienne who was born on this day in 1942.