Obviously The Wizard of Oz has been
Judy's most popular film and recording. In July 1939, a month
prior to the opening of Oz, Judy signed
a contract with Decca for 12 new singles.
on July 28, 1939 she made her first commercial recording of
"Over The Rainbow", for Decca. The single (with "The
on the "B" side) was released in September 1939.
It eventually peaked at the #5 spot on the Hit Parade (the "Billboard
Top 20" of the day). In the intervening years it has
sold well over several million copies.
released (supposedly in 1939 as well, although I can't verify
it) with "(Dear Mr. Gable) You Made Me Love You" on
"Over The Rainbow"/"The Jitterbug" was released as a single
Decca 2672 (78 rpm)
Decca 23961 (78 rpm) (this is the 78 with "Dear Mr. Gable"
on the "B" side)
Decca 9-23961 (45 rpm)
(I believe this also has "Dear Mr. Gable" on the "B" side,
but I have not been able to verify that).
The album of songs from "The Wizard of Oz" was the
first of Decca's original movie "cast albums". Although
these songs were done
at the Decca studios, and differ immensely from those heard in
the film, this album was nonetheless very popular and lucrative
for Decca. The company would re-release the "album" in
various formats over the years.
Album cover image above & 45 rpm cover image below from the
collection of Scott Brogan.
Original 78 booklet insert images from the collection of Eric
The cover and first page of the original
insert to the March 1940 inaugural issue of the album.
The remaining pages are biographies of Harold Arlen and E.Y.
(the composers of the songs and score).
Only "Over The Rainbow" and "The Jitterbug" are
The "vocal trio" who accompany Judy on "The Jitterbug"
are none other than Harold Arlen as The Scarecrow
as The Tin Man, & Garney Bell as The Lion.
The remaining songs are performed by the
Ken Darby Singers.
Part I (includes "Ding! Dong! The Witch Is Dead")
I Only Had A Brain
I Only Had A Heart
Merry Old Land Of Oz
Off To See The Wizard
The Victor Young Orchestra under the direction
Vocals by The Ken Darby Singers under the direction
of Ken Darby