Born Hyman Arluck on February 15, 1905, Harold Arlen was one of the most important composers of the Great American songbook. Arlen's first collaboration with lyricist Ted Koehler, "Get Happy," became his first hit in 1930 and ever since his tunes have been covered by jazz artists. In 2000, his collaboration with Yip Harburg, "Over the Rainbow," from The Wizard of Oz, was deemed the Number One Song of the Century by the Recording Industry Association of America and the National Endowment for the Arts. Instrumental artists and vocalists still find Arlen's songbook compelling and there are many current examples of inspired performances. A birthday salute to Harold Arlen in this hour of Jazz at 100 today!
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