Songbook: Jimmy Van Heusen

Songbook: Jimmy Van Heusen

Composer Jimmy Van Heusen was half of Frank Sinatra's favorite songwriting team. Working mainly with lyricist Sammy Cahn, his songs had sophisticated cool and finger-snapping swagger that were perfect for Sinatra's persona. Originally a Tin Pan Alley pianist, Van Heusen won his first Oscar in 1944 for “Swinging on a Star,” with lyricist Johnny Burke. His songs would grace more than two hundred movies, and be recorded by everyone from Miles Davis to Bjork. Known as a Hollywood jet-setter and ladies' man, Van Heusen clearly lived the good life that his music evoked.

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