In A Minute! (...Or Two): Ep. #40

Monday, June 22, 2020

Ep. #40: Featuring Ashley Faatoalia and Molly Miller
"Fly Me to the Moon"

The story of “Fly Me To The Moon” is almost as impressive as the moon landing itself.

Bart Howard wrote this love song for singer Mabel Mercer in just 20 minutes saying “it just flew out of me”. He then took it to a publisher who loved everything except the first line of the chorus, “Fly me to the moon”, since nobody said “fly me”, and suggested switching it to “Take me to the moon”. Howard refused.

For years the song was heard in all of New York’s cabarets. Then, beginning with Kaye Ballard, who was the first to record it, “Fly Me to the Moon” became a favorite of all recording artists. One 1964 day, out of the blue, Frank Sinatra phoned Quincy Jones to ask if he could arrange and conduct a studio session of the song. About that fateful moment, Quincy Jones said, “Looking back, that call from Frank was a major turning point in my career and my life…Frank was my style. He was hip, straight up, and straight ahead, and above all, a monster musician.” Sonny Payne’s brushes set the swing tempo, Count Basie provided a couple of piano plinks an octave apart, and Sinatra sang… “Fly Me To The Moon”. Pure magic! Which brings us to 1969, the year that very recording literally flew to the moon! Quite the journey!

MUSE/IQUE’s Ashley Faatoalia and Molly Miller pay homage to this American classic.