Before them, the song, was recorded by several notable names
The Platters peaked to the Top of the charts in 1959 with their rendition of “Smoke Gets In Your Eyes”
Not many songs have known so many notable interpreters as “Smoke Gets In Your Eyes”, a show tune written by American composer Jerome Kern and lyricist Otto Harbach for the 1933 Broadway musical “Roberta”. The version that still stands the most and became a worldwide hit it’s the one released by The Platters in 1958. But before The Platters secured their place in history with the most popular rendition of “Smoke Gets In Your Eyes”, let’s have a look of the notable artists that performed it before them.The song was first sung in “Rebeca” by Tamara Drasin, but the first recorded performance was in 1933 by Gertrude Niesen (who recorded the song with orchestral direction from Ray Sinatra, Frank Sinatra’s second cousin). Irene Dunne, performed it in 1935 on the film adaptation of the musical, co-starring stars Fred Astaire, Ginger Rogers, and Randolph Scott, and was reprised again in 1952 on the remake of the same movie “Lovely To Look At”, performed by Kathryn Grayson. But before that, in 1946, Nat King Cole recorded it with his trio featuring Oscar Moore on guitar and Johnny Miller on double bass during a live broadcast from New York City and later performed it on his 1957 TV show “The Nat King Cole Show”. In 1949, another notable name makes his own rendition of it, Harry Belafonte, featuring jazz saxophonist Zoot Sims. In 1950 another Jazz icon, Charlie Parker does his rendition, and the same year, also Jo Stafford. Later in 1956, the song is recorded and released by Dinah Washington, and in 1958 another notable name Sarah Vaughan, releases her version. It’s then that we arrive to The Platters notable version. The Doo-wop group, by then one of the most popular bands, released “Smoke Gets In Your Eyes” backed with B-Side “No Matter What You Are” in 1958, also included on their album “Remember When?”. On March 16, 1959, the band scores their first and only U.K No.1 with the song. Prior to that, it already was a smash hit in the U.S, peaking at No.1 on the Hot 100 on January 19, 1959, spending 19 weeks total in the chart. Over the years, many other versions were made, but it’s still The Platters one that stands, and every now and then goes back to the charts. Other smash hits by The Platters included “Only You”, “The Great Pretender” and “My Prayer”.
Watch The Platters performing “Smoke Gets In Your Eyes” in 1959
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