Stormy Weather (song)

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For other songs of similar name, see Stormy Weather.
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Stormy Weather on tenor saxophone

"Stormy Weather" is a 1933 song written by Harold Arlen and Ted Koehler. Ethel Waters first sang it at The Cotton Club night club in Harlem in 1933 and recorded it that year, and in the same year it was sung in London by Elisabeth Welch and recorded by Frances Langford. It has since been performed by artists as diverse as Frank Sinatra, Clodagh Rodgers, and Reigning Sound and most famously by Lena Horne and Billie Holiday. Leo Reisman's orchestra version had the biggest hit on records (with Arlen himself as vocalist), although Ethel Waters's recorded version also sold well.[citation needed] "Stormy Weather" was featured in the 1943 movie of the same name.

The song tells of disappointment, as the lyrics, "Don't know why there's no sun up in the sky", show someone pining for her man to return. The weather is a metaphor for the feelings of the singer: "stormy weather since my man and I ain't together, keeps raining all the time."

The original handwritten lyrics, along with a painting by Ted Koehler, were featured on the (US) Antiques Roadshow on 24 January 2011, where they were appraised for between $50,000 and $100,000. The lyrics show a number of crossings out and corrections.[1]

Ethel Waters's recording of the song in 1933 was inducted in the Grammy Hall of Fame in 2003, and the Library of Congress honored the song by adding it to the National Recording Registry in 2004.

Other versions[edit]


In popular culture[edit]

The music of the song appears in the film "All About Eve" (1950). It is played on the piano at the party when Margo is going upstairs.

It also appears periodically in Federico Fellini´s film, Amarcord (1973).

A section from Stormy Weather was referenced by British heavy metal band Iron Maiden through their song "Revelations" off of their album Piece Of Mind.

The alternative rock band Cake mentions the song by name in their song Frank Sinatra, "while Frank Sinatra sings Stormy Weather."[7]

Further reading[edit]


  1. ^ Antiques Roadshow 24 January 2011
  2. ^ A Duke Ellington Panorama
  3. ^ Stratemann, Dr. Klaus (1992). Duke Ellington Day by Day and Film by Film. Copenhagen: JazzMedia ApS. pp. 59–64. ISBN 87-88043-34-7. 
  4. ^ Grammy Hall of Fame
  5. ^ Whitburn, Joel (2004). Hot Dance/Disco: 1974-2003. Record Research. p. 281. 
  6. ^ Marketplace FAQ from its website
  7. ^

External links[edit]