Wednesday, December 30, 2020


Phyllis McGuire, the last surviving sister of the McGuire Sisters fame has died today at the age of 89 in her Las Vegas home. The McGuire sisters were born to Asa and Lillie McGuire in Middletown, Ohio, and grew up in Miamisburg near Dayton. The McGuire Sisters signed with Coral Records in 1952. 

In the same year, they appeared on Arthur Godfrey's Talent Scouts, and Godfrey hired them for his other shows, where they remained for seven years. The November 1953 issue of Cosmopolitan called them "Godfrey's Merry McGuires". The sisters often were compared to the Andrews Sisters. Maxene Andrews said in an interview with Joe Franklin on WOR (AM) radio in 1979, "The McGuire Sisters were fine once they stopped imitating the Andrews Sisters." While working on the Godfrey show, the McGuires befriended the singer Lu Ann Simms and attended her wedding to the music publisher Loring Buzzell in July 1956. Buzzell's publishing firm, Hecht-Lancaster & Buzzell Music (co-owned by Harold Hecht and Burt Lancaster) provided two songs for the McGuire Sisters, "May You Always" and "Theme from The Unforgiven (The Need for Love)".

During the 60s the sisters maintained a busy television schedule, making frequent appearances on popular variety programs hosted by Ed Sullivan, Dean Martin, Danny Kaye, Milton Berle, Andy Williams, Perry Como, and Red Skelton. The trio was dressed and coiffed identically and performed synchronized body movements and hand gestures with military precision. Their recordings of "Sincerely", "Picnic", and "Sugartime" all sold more than one million copies.

They retired from public appearances in 1968, giving their last performance that year on The Ed Sullivan Show. Phyllis McGuire continued to perform solo for a time. The demise of the group is often attributed to Phyllis' long-standing personal relationship with mobster Sam Giancana (although for years she claimed that their friendship was strictly platonic), which reportedly led to the group's blacklisting.

In November 1952, Phyllis married Cornelius (Neal) Anthony Burke Van Ells. They divorced in 1956. She has no children. On September 7, 2012, Dorothy McGuire died at her son's home in Paradise Valley, Arizona, after suffering from Parkinson's disease and age-related dementia; she was 84. Dorothy's husband of 54 years, Lowell Williamson, died six months later on February 25, 2013, after sustaining a fractured back from a fall; he was 89. Christine McGuire died in Las Vegas, Nevada, on December 28, 2018, at the age of 92.

They last performed together in an appearance on a PBS special in 2004. Their recordings on the Coral label made them one of the most popular sister acts of the 1950s and 1960s...


As time goes by we come to the end of another year, and we come to a list of great entertainers and memorable people that have died in 2020. This is just a partial list of who we lost this year...

Vera Lynn

Singer, DAME VERA LYNN died on June 18th at the age of 103. She was a British singer, songwriter and entertainer whose musical recordings and performances were largely popular during the Second World War. She was widely known as "the Forces' Sweetheart" and gave outdoor concerts for the troops in during the war . The songs most associated with her are "We'll Meet Again", "(There'll Be Bluebirds Over) The White Cliffs of Dover", "A Nightingale Sang in Berkeley Square" and "There'll Always Be an England". She remained popular after the war, appearing on radio and television in the United Kingdom and the United States, and recording such hits as "Auf Wiederseh'n, Sweetheart" and her UK number one single "My Son, My Son". Her last single, "I Love This Land", was released to mark the end of the Falklands War. In 2009, at the age of 92, she became the oldest living artist to top the UK Albums Chart with the compilation album We'll Meet Again: The Very Best of Vera Lynn. In 2014, she released the collection Vera Lynn: National Treasure and in 2017, she released Vera Lynn 100, a compilation album of hits to commemorate her centenary year—it was a No. 3 hit, making her the first centenarian performer to have a Top 10 album in the charts.

Actor KIRK DOUGLAS died at the age of 103 on Feburary 5th. Making his film debut in The Strange Love of Martha Ivers (1946), Douglas became an international star through positive reception for his leading role as an unscrupulous boxing hero in Champion (1949), which brought him his first nomination for the Academy Award for Best Actor. His other early film include Young Man with a Horn (1950), playing opposite Lauren Bacall and Doris Day, and he received a second Oscar nomination for his dramatic role in The Bad and the Beautiful (1952), opposite Lana Turner. He survived a helicopter crash in 1991, and he recovered from a stroke in 1996. He retired from acting in 2008.

Screenwriter and actor BUCK HENRY died on January 8th at the age of 89 of a heart attack. He was twice nominated for an Academy Award, in 1968 for Best Adapted Screenplay for The Graduate and in 1979 for Best Director for Heaven Can Wait alongside Warren Beatty. His long career began on television with work on shows with Steve Allen in The New Steve Allen Show (1961). He went on to co-create Get Smart (1965-1970) with Mel Brooks, and hosted Saturday Night Live 10 times from 1976 to 1980. He made his last movie in 2015.

Singer LYNN EVANS died at the age of 95 on February 6th. She was the last surviving member of the original The Chordettes. The group performed from 1946 to 1963 and have huge hits like "Mr. Sandman" and "Lollipop". Lynn came out of retirement in 2004 to appear and sing at a PBS nostalgia special.

Actor EDD "KOOKIE" BYRNES died on January 8th at the age of 87.He was best known for his starring role in the television series 77 Sunset Strip. He also was featured in the 1978 film Grease as television teen-dance show host Vince Fontaine, and was a charting recording artist with "Kookie, Kookie (Lend Me Your Comb)" (with Connie Stevens). He retired from acting in 1999.

Jerry Stiller

Actor JERRY STILLER died at the age of 92 on May 11th. He spent many years as part of the comedy duo Stiller and Meara with his wife, Anne Meara, to whom he was married for over 60 years until her death in 2015. Stiller saw a late-career resurgence starting in 1993, playing George Costanza's father Frank in the sitcom Seinfeld, a part which earned him an Emmy nomination. The year Seinfeld went off the air, Stiller began his role as the eccentric Arthur Spooner on the CBS comedy series The King of Queens, another role which garnered him widespread acclaim. He retired in 2016. Jerry was also the father of actor Ben Stiller.

Actor SEAN CONNERY died at the age of 90 on October 31st. He is best known as the first actor to portray the character James Bond in film, starring in seven Bond films (every film from Dr. No to You Only Live Twice, plus Diamonds Are Forever and Never Say Never Again) between 1962 and 1983. Connery began acting in smaller theatre and television productions until his breakout role as British secret agent James Bond garnered him international recognition. Other great films included Marnie (1964), Murder on the Orient Express (1974), The Man Who Would Be King (1975), Highlander (1986), The Untouchables (1987), Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade (1989), The Hunt for Red October (1990), Dragonheart (1996), The Rock (1996), and Finding Forrester (2000). Connery retired from acting in 2006.

Comedian TERRY JONES died on January 21st at the age of 77 from dementia. He was a Welsh actor, writer, comedian, screenwriter, film director and historian. He was a member of the Monty Python comedy team. He created Monty Python's Flying Circus with  fellow Cambridge graduates Eric Idle, John Cleese, and Graham Chapman, and American animator/filmmaker Terry Gilliam. Jones was largely responsible for the programme's innovative, surreal structure, in which sketches flowed from one to the next without the use of punchlines. He was diagnosed with dementia in 2015.

Comedian FRED WILLARD died on May 15th at the age of 86. He was an American actor, comedian and writer. He was best known for his roles in the Rob Reiner mockumentary film This Is Spinal Tap; the Christopher Guest mockumentaries Waiting for Guffman, Best in Show, A Mighty Wind, For Your Consideration, and Mascots; and the Anchorman films. He had important supporting roles on television from Everybody Loves Raymond to Modern Family. His last role was on the Netflix series Space Force, playing Steve Carell's father. It debuted shortly after Fred's death.

Actress RHONDA FLEMING died on October 14th at the age of 97. She was considered one of the great beauties of Hollywood, and she appeared in over 40 movies during her career mostly in the 1940s and 1950s. She starred with Bing Crosby in A Connecticut Yankee In King Arthur's Court (1949), with Bob Hope in The Great Lover (also 1949), and Cry Danger (1951) with Dick Powell among others. She made her last movie in 1990, but she was active in her charities through the 2000s.

Regis Philbin

Television host REGIS PHILBIN died on July 24th of heart failure at the age of 88. Once called "the hardest working man in show business", he holds the Guinness World Record for the most hours on U.S. television. After graduating from the University of Notre Dame, Philbin served in the U.S. Navy and got his television start serving as a page for The Tonight Show in the 1950s. He got his first network TV exposure in 1967 as Joey Bishop's sidekick on The Joey Bishop Show. He is most widely known as the co-host of the New York City-based nationally syndicated talk show Live! with Regis and Kathie Lee, starting in 1988, which became Live! with Regis and Kelly in 2001, and continued as Live! with Kelly after Philbin's departure in 2011.

Singer BETTY BENNETT died at the age of 98 on April 7th. Her first major signing was with the Claude Thornhill band in 1946, the band in which her husband, bassist Iggy Shevak, was playing. Shortly after her husband left to join Alvino Rey, Bennett followed him there. In 1949, she joined Charlie Ventura's band before going on to join Benny Goodman in 1959.Her second album featured arrangements by Shorty Rogers and her second husband, AndrĂ© Previn. Bennett later married guitarist Mundell Lowe. 

Actor ROBERT CONRAD died of heart failure on February 8th at the age of 84. Robert was a television actor, singer, and stuntman. He is best known for his role in the 1965–1969 television series The Wild Wild West, playing the sophisticated Secret Service agent James T. West. He portrayed World War II ace Pappy Boyington in the television series Baa Baa Black Sheep (later syndicated as Black Sheep Squadron). In addition to acting, he was a singer, and recorded several pop/rock songs in the late 1950s and early 1960s as Bob Conrad. He retired from hosting a radio show in 2019.

Singer FREDDY COLE died at the age of 88 on June 27th. He was an American jazz singer and pianist whose recording career spanned almost 70 years. He was the brother of singer Nat King Cole. During the 1970s, Cole recorded several albums for European and English based labels. He went on to work with Grover Washington, Jr. and to record jingles for various companies, including Turner Classic Movies. He was the subject of the 2006 documentary The Cole Nobody Knows.

Dancer TOMMY RALL died of heart failure on October 6th at the age of 90. He was a gifted ballet dancer who played supporting roles in such MGM musicals as Kiss Me Kate (1953) and Seven Brides For Seven Brothers (1954). Later on he appeared in movie musicals like Funny Girl (1968) with Barbra Streisand. He recent years he became a gifted painter as well.

Ann Reinking

Dancer and choreographer ANN REINKING died on December 12th at the age of 71. Her extensive work in musical theater included starring in Broadway productions of Coco (1969), Over Here! (1974), Goodtime Charley (1975), Chicago (1977), Dancin' (1978) and Sweet Charity (1986). In the 1996 revival of Chicago, she reprised the role of Roxie Hart and was also the choreographer, winning the Tony Award for Best Choreography. For the 2000 West End production of Fosse, she won the Olivier Award for Best Theatre Choreographer. She also appeared in the films All That Jazz (1979), Annie (1982), and Micki & Maude (1984).

Actor DANIEL GOLDMAN died on April 12th at the age of 80 from a stroke. He is most widely recognized as the voice of Brainy Smurf in Hanna-Barbera's The Smurfs (1981–1989) and as the inquisitive medical student in the opening scene of Young Frankenstein (1974). He remained active as a casting director through 2012.

Actress OLIVIA DEHAVILLAND died on July 26th at the age of 104. The major works of her cinematic career spanned from 1935 to 1988. She appeared in 49 feature films and was one of the leading actresses of her time. She was the last major surviving star from the Golden Age of Hollywood Cinema and the oldest living and earliest surviving Academy Award winner until her death in July 2020. Her younger sister was the actress Joan Fontaine. De Havilland first came to prominence with Errol Flynn as a screen couple in adventure films such as Captain Blood (1935) and The Adventures of Robin Hood (1938). One of her best-known roles is that of Melanie Hamilton in Gone with the Wind (1939), for which she received her first of five Oscar nominations.

Singer LITTLE RICHARD died on May 9th at the age of 87. He was an influential figure in popular music and culture for seven decades. Nicknamed "The Innovator, The Originator, and The Architect of Rock and Roll", Little Richard's most celebrated work dates from the mid-1950s, when his charismatic showmanship and dynamic music, characterized by frenetic piano playing, pounding back beat and raspy shouted vocals, laid the foundation for rock and roll.

Actor and screenwriter NED WYNN died on December 21st at the age of 79 from Parkinson's Disease. He was the son of actor Keenan Wynn and the grandson of comedian Ed Wynn. Ned Wynn appeared in small roles in just a handful of films. He, his father and grandfather worked together in The Absent Minded Professor (1961), Son of Flubber (1963) and The Patsy (1964); he also acted with his dad in Bikini Beach (1964) and Stagecoach (1966). He also wrote an autobiography on his life as a Hollywood child in 1990.

Carl Reiner

Comedian CARL REINER died on June 29th at the age of 98. During the early years of television comedy from 1950 to 1957, he co-wrote and acted on Caesar's Hour and Your Show of Shows, starring Sid Caesar. In the 1960s, Reiner was best known as the creator, producer, writer, and actor on The Dick Van Dyke Show. He also had great success as a film director and writer and in the 1970s and 1980s. He co-wrote and directed some of Steve Martin's most successful films, including The Jerk (1979). He also directed notable comedies such as Where's Poppa? (1970), Oh, God! (1977), and All of Me (1984). Over his long and distinguished career, Reiner won many awards and honors including, nine Emmy Awards, one Grammy Award, and The Mark Twain Prize for American Humor.

Actress DIANA RIGG died of cancer at the age of 82 on September 10th. Some of her notable roles were as Emma Peel in the TV series The Avengers (1965–1968); Countess Teresa di Vicenzo, wife of James Bond, in On Her Majesty's Secret Service (1969); and Olenna Tyrell in Game of Thrones (2013–2017).Rigg had a successful career and life in theatre, making her professional stage debut in 1957 in The Caucasian Chalk Circle, and joining the Royal Shakespeare Company in 1959, she made her Broadway debut in Abelard & Heloise in 1971. She performed the title role in Medea, both in London and New York, for which she won the 1994 Tony Award for Best Actress in a Play. She continued working through 2020.

Singer PHYLLIS MCGUIRE died on December 29th at the age of 89. She was the last surviving member of the McGuire Sisters singing groups, which also consisted of her older sisters - Christine (1926-2018) and Dorothy (1928-2012). Among their most popular songs were "Sincerely" and "Sugartime", both number-one hits. Phyllis was the long time girlfriend of mobster Sam Gianciana, and as a result the sister broke up the act in 1968. They reunited to perform in the 1980s, and they last performed together in 2004 on a PBS special. 

They wonderful stars and icons left us in 2020 but they will never be forgotten...

Wednesday, December 23, 2020


My favorite song writing team was the team of Richard Rodgers and Lorenz Hart. From 1919 to 1943 they wrote some of the most beautiful songs that America has ever had the pleasure of listening to. Even their forgotten melodies are an example of near perfect music. Their songs are always intelligent, thought provoking, and memorable. One of their forgotten songs that became a standard was the song "He Was Too Good To Me".

"He Was Too Good for Me" was too good to be forgotten after it was cut from the show it was written for. It is one of those songs that became a standard without the aid of exposure in a show or movie. Intended for Lee Morse in Simple Simon, "He Was Too Good for Me" was dropped before the New York opening of the show. There was then talk of using it in the ill-fated Nine-Fifteen Revue (also from 1930) but again it was cut. Rodgers and Hart must have had faith in it because they published it independently, and after being found and recorded by artists such as Helen Merrill, Jeri Southern, Nina Simone, Doris Day, Carmen McRae, and others, it became clear it was headed to become a songbook standard. My favorite version is by the versatile Jeri Southern.


There goes my young intended
The thing has ended
Regrets are vain
I'll never find another half so sweet
And we'll never meet again
I got impatient
Told him goodbye
Sad eyes out in the rain
He was too good to me
How can I get along now
So close he stood to me
Everything seems all wrong now
He would have brought me the sun
Making me smile, that was his fun
When I was mean to him
He'd never say go away now
I was a Queen to him
Who's gonna make me gay now
It's only natural that I'm blue
He was too good to be true

Songwriters: Lorenz Hart / Richard Rodgers
He Was Too Good to Me lyrics © Concord Music Publishing LLC

Friday, December 18, 2020


URBAN LEGEND: Was Doris Day really the "girl next door"

ANSWER: Not 100% true

While Doris Day was alive she was one of the charitable celebrities of her day. She gave millions of dollars to charities, especially her work on behalf of animals. However, in regards to her relationships with men - that was a different story.

Doris Day married her first husband, trombonist Al Jorden when she was 19. He was abusive, and three more husbands would follow for Day. Doris had an illicit affair with producer Marty Melcher as well. Melcher was then the husband of Patti Andrews (of the Andrews Sisters). They were married from 1947 to 1950. During that time, Patti returned from the recording studio one day to find Melcher and Doris Day literally in bed together. After Marty divorced Patti, he married Doris Day in 1951.

When Marty died in 1968, it was discovered that he had spent all of Doris Day's money and signed contracts on her behalf that she was not aware of.  Again, Doris Day was not a horrible person, she was just not the girl next door...

Monday, December 14, 2020


Tony Award-winning Broadway legend Ann Reinking, an actor, dancer and choreographer, died on Saturday night in Washington, her sister-in-law Dahrla King told Variety. She was 71.

“The world and our family have lost a vibrant, amazing talent and beautiful soul. Ann was the heart of our family and the life of the party,” her family said in a statement on Monday. “She was visiting our brother in Washington state when she went to sleep and never woke up. We will miss her more than we can say. Heaven has the best choreographer available now. I’m sure they are dancing up a storm up there! Annie, we will love and miss you always!!!”

News of the actor’s death was first announced Monday on Facebook by dancer and choreographer Christopher Dean, who teaches Reinking’s niece.

“The lights on Broadway are forever more dim this morning and there is one less star in the sky,” he wrote. “The good news is that heaven has the very best choreographer on earth now.”

The star got her acting start in a Seattle Opera House production of “Bye Bye Birdie” in 1965. She soon found her way onto the Broadway stage when she was cast in the ensemble for the 1969 production of “Cabaret.”

She is perhaps best known for playing Roxie Hart in 1977’s “Chicago,” replacing Gwen Verdon. She reprised the part when she returned for the 1996 revival of the famed production.

“The hope is that in rediscovering ‘Chicago,’ audiences will rediscover what theater was,” Reinking told The New York Times at the time of the show’s revival. “It was sophisticated, complicated, adult.”

Reinking’s other Broadway roles include “Sweet Charity,” “Over Here!” and “Goodtime Charley.”

In Bob Fosse’s 1979 autobiographical film “All That Jazz,” Reinking played a fictionalized version of herself, as the main character’s girlfriend and one of his muses. Reinking, who was with Fosse for years, was played by Margaret Qualley in FX’s 2019 limited series “Fosse/Verdon.”

“I really did watch her [on video] in the back of a minivan on my way to dance countless times,” Qualley said of Reinking in a 2019 interview with IndieWire. “I was really nervous because I wanted to do right by her. I looked up to her for so long, was so familiar with her. More than anything, I wanted her to like it.”

Reinking choreographed for theater as well. Her work on the later “Chicago” ultimately earned her a Tony Award for best choreography.

Reinking was also the co-creator, co-director and co-choreographer for “Fosse,” a musical meant to showcase Fosse’s choreography. She created the project alongside Richard Maltby Jr. and Chet Walker. The musical was Reinking’s final bow on Broadway, as she served as a replacement ensemble member in 2001.

She is survived by her husband, Peter Talbert, and her son Chris.

Many members of the theater community and Hollywood who knew Reinking paid tribute to the actor on social media Monday.

Billy Eichner, star of “Billy on the Street,” voiced his appreciation for her work in a Twitter post. “One of the most mesmerizing people I’ve ever seen on stage,” he dubbed Reinking based on her successful run on the “Chicago” revival...

Saturday, December 12, 2020


Here is a great Christmas advertisement for cigarettes featuring actor and future president Ronald Reagan. I guess there was a time when you gave cigarettes as gifts! Merry Christmas - here is some emphysema! It is a great ad though. This was published in 1952 when Reagan was appearing in the forgotten film Hong Kong...

Wednesday, December 9, 2020


"Deconstructing the Rat Pack: Joey, the Mob, and the Summit"
By Richard A. Lertzman with Lon Davis
(Prestige Cinema Books - December 2, 2020)

In celebration of the Rat Pack's 60th anniversary comes an amazing, historical, and wild ride of a tome called "Deconstructing the Rat Pack: Joey, the Mob, and the Summit."

For 28 consecutive nights in February 1960, a dusty town called Las Vegas became the epicenter of the world. All eyes were on the party happening at the Sands Hotel and Casino, the new headquarters for the Chairman of the Board, Frank Sinatra. Dubbed by many as “The Rat Pack,” “The Clan” and “The Summit”—Sinatra, Dean Martin, Sammy Davis Jr., Joey Bishop, and Peter Lawford gave those lucky audiences an entertainment experience, the likes of which will never be seen again.

This explosive tell-all book brings the inside scoop of how the mob, the future president, and five popular performers took the world (Las Vegas and Hollywood with the film Ocean’s 11 ) by storm.

You will read exclusive interviews with the participants themselves, including assorted wise guys Moe Dalitz, Carl Cohen (a relative of the author’s), Mickey Cohen, and Max Diamond (a longtime employee of the author’s liquidation business)—and show business luminaries Jack Entratter, Nancy Sinatra, Tony Curtis, Jerry Lewis, Buddy Hackett, and many, many more.

And what makes this story of the Rat Pack so unique is that it is taken from the perspective of the group’s last surviving member, Joey Bishop, who sat for numerous interviews with the author.

The New York Post, Closer Magazine, and the London Daily Express are among those already singing the praises of “Deconstructing the Rat Pack” by calling it a “A Book That Busts The Rat Pack Myth and a “Must Have.”

And let’s not forget, December 12th would have been Mr. Sinatra’s 105th birthday—so, let’s all celebrate with a swinging, retro time with the Rack Pack...

Monday, December 7, 2020



URBAN LEGEND: Were Lou Costello's last words, "That was the best ice cream I ever had"?

ANSWER: Not 100% sure but probably not!

Shortly after completion of The 30 Foot Bride of Candy Rock — his only starring film appearance without  Bud Abbott — Lou Costello suffered a heart attack. He died at Doctors Hospital in Beverly Hills on March 3, 1959, three days before his 53rd birthday. Sources conflict on the circumstances of his last day and final words. By some accounts, restated in numerous "quotes" aggregates, he told visitors that the strawberry ice-cream soda he had just finished was "the best I ever tasted", then expired. By other reports, including several contemporaneous obituaries, the ice-cream soda exchange occurred earlier in the day; later, after his wife and friends had left, he asked his private-duty nurse to adjust his position in bed. "I think I'll be more comfortable", he said; but before the nurse could comply, he suffered a cardiac arrest and died...


 Thank you for all the submittals for the holiday contest to win DVDs of Tim Janis's Buttons musical and Tim Janis' new Christmas CD.

Here are the winners, and I will be contacting you shortly:

1. Maria Meadows - Hartford, Connecticut

2. Angela Morgan - Clarks Summit, PA

3. Michael Belcher - Chicago, IL

4. Betty Humbel - Albany, NY

5. Marion Alberts - Chattanooga, TN

Thanks to everyone that sent in entries, and happy holidays to everyone!

Wednesday, December 2, 2020


Even though 1954's White Christmas is the most remembered of the holiday musicals, I think Irving Berlin's Holiday Inn (1942) is the best movie. Here are some fun facts about this 1942 classic...

1. The firecracker dance sequence required 3 days of rehearsal and took two days to film. Fred Astaire's shoes for the dance were auctioned off for $116,000 worth of war bonds.

2. The first public performance of the song "White Christmas" was by Bing Crosby on his NBC radio show "The Kraft Music Hall" on Christmas Day, 1941, during the middle of filming _Holiday Inn (1942)_, which was released seven months later. The song went on to become one of the biggest selling songs in the history of music. This was the first of three films to feature Crosby singing "White Christmas".

3. Irving Berlin got the idea for the film after writing the song "Easter Parade" for his 1933 show "As Thousands Cheer", and planned to write a play about American holidays, but it never materialized. He later pitched the idea to Mark Sandrich who got the ball rolling for this film.

4. Some controversy surrounded the history of the song "White Christmas" when it was reported in a 1960 news item that Irving Berlin wrote the song in 1938, which would have made it ineligible for an Academy Award nomination. But a biography and modern sources agree it was written for this film, and the sheet music has a 1942 copyright date.

5. The set of the Holiday Inn was reused by Paramount 12 years later for the musical White Christmas, also starring Bing Crosby and again with songs composed by Irving Berlin.

6. The script originally called for a Labor Day dance number, "This Is a Great Country." The holiday and song was cut from the film.

7. Until 1997, "White Christmas" was the best selling music single ever. It was passed at that time by "Goodbye, England's Rose", the Elton John rework of "Candle in the Wind" done for Princess Diana's funeral. These two songs still rank #1-2...