"In the Mood"
Single by Glenn Miller and His Orchestra
B-side"I Want to Be Happy"
PublishedNovember 27, 1939 (1939-11-27) Shapiro, Bernstein & Co., Inc., New York[1]
ReleasedSeptember 15, 1939
RecordedAugust 1, 1939
StudioRCA Victor, New York City
GenreBig band, swing
LabelBluebird (US) His Master's Voice (UK)
Songwriter(s)Wingy Manone (c), Andy Razaf (w), Joe Garland (a)
"In the Mood"
Single by Ernie Fields
B-side"Christopher Columbus"
ReleasedJune 1959
GenreJazz, instrumental
Songwriter(s)Wingy Manone (c), Andy Razaf (w), Joe Garland (a)
Ernie Fields singles chronology
"In the Mood"
"Begin the Beguine"

"In the Mood" is a popular big band-era jazz standard recorded by American bandleader Glenn Miller. "In the Mood" is based on the composition "Tar Paper Stomp" by Wingy Manone. The first recording under the name "In the Mood" was released by Edgar Hayes & His Orchestra in 1938.

In 1983, the Glenn Miller recording from 1939 was inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame. In 2004, the recording was inducted into the Library of Congress National Recording Registry which consists of recordings that are "culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant."

In 1999, National Public Radio (NPR) included the 1939 Glenn Miller recording in its list of "The 100 most important American musical works of the 20th century".[2][3]

Glenn Miller's "In the Mood", with "I Want to Be Happy" on the B-side, became the best-selling swing instrumental.[4][5]


"In the Mood" starts with a saxophone section theme based on repeated arpeggios that are rhythmically displaced; trumpets and trombones add accent riffs. The arrangement has two solo sections: a "tenor fight" or chase solo—in one recording between Tex Beneke and Al Klink—and a 16-bar trumpet solo by Clyde Hurley.[6] At the end of the song, a coda climbs triumphantly, then sounds a sustained unison tonic pitch with a rim shot.[4]


"In the Mood" was an arrangement by Joe Garland based on an existing melody. Lyrics were added by Andy Razaf. The main theme with repeated arpeggios rhythmically displaced appeared under the title "Tar Paper Stomp" and was credited to trumpeter Wingy Manone.[7] Manone recorded "Tar Paper Stomp" on August 28, 1930, in Richmond, Indiana, and released it as a 78 single for Champion Records under the name Barbecue Joe and his Hot Dogs. It was re-released in 1935 by Wingy Manone's Orchestra.[8]

Horace Henderson used the same riff in "Hot and Anxious", which was recorded by his brother Fletcher Henderson on March 19, 1931, for Columbia under the name the Baltimore Bell Hops. Don Redman recorded "Hot and Anxious" for Brunswick in 1932.

Under copyright laws, a tune that had not been written down and registered with the copyright office could be appropriated by any musician with a good ear. Manone raised the similarity between "Tar Paper Stomp" and "In the Mood" to Joe Garland and to the publisher Shapiro, Bernstein, and Company of New York.[9] Manone also discussed the issue in DownBeat magazine.

"Tar Paper Stomp" was copyrighted on November 6, 1941, as a pianoforte version by Peer International.[10]

The first recording of Joe Garland's version of "In the Mood" was made by Edgar Hayes and his Orchestra in 1938 with Garland participating. It was released as a B side to their recording of "Stardust" for Decca. On this recording there was a baritone saxophone duet rather than a tenor saxophone battle. The riff had appeared in a 1935 recording by the Mills Blue Rhythm Band entitled "There's Rhythm in Harlem", which had been composed and arranged by Garland. Before offering it to Miller, Garland sold it in 1938 to Artie Shaw, who chose not to record it because the original arrangement was too long, but he did perform it in concert.[11]

Artie Shaw's version was over six minutes long and met a lackluster audience response.[9] Jerry Gray arranged Shaw's version. The band later performed a shorter version. The Hayes recording was over three minutes in length to fit on one side of a 78 record.

The song was sold in 1939 to Glenn Miller, who experimented with the arrangement. The author of the final arrangement is unknown. One possibility is Eddie Durham because he wrote other arrangements on the same day that "In the Mood" was recorded. Other possibilities include pianist Chummy MacGregor, who was Miller's chief arranger, John Chalmers, and Miller himself. According to an account by MacGregor, "all they used of the original arrangement were the two front saxophone strains and another part that occurred later on in the arrangement."[12] Both MacGregor and Miller were involved in creating the final arrangement: "MacGregor mentioned that additional solos were added to the original arrangement and he wrote the finishing coda. Miller probably edited some of the arrangement along with MacGregor."[12][13] In its final form, it is an example of Hemiola rhythm.

Two copyrights were filed by Joseph Copeland Garland on June 8 and November 26, 1938,[14] before the song was published by Lewis Music Pub. Co., Inc. on October 31, 1939, with Joe Garland the lone songwriter.[15] Then on November 27, a copyright was filed with both Garland and Razaf by Shapiro, Bernstein & Co., Inc. of New York. A final copyright was filed by Shapiro, Bernstein on December 11, 1939, worded as follows: "In the mood; fox-trot, Andy Razaf & Joe Garland, arr. Joe Garland as suggested by Glenn Miller; orch. pts., with w."[16]

Two editions of the sheet music are in circulation. The 1939 publication credited to Garland and Razaf is in A♭ and has lyrics beginning: "Mister What-cha-call-em, what-cha doin' tonight?" The 1960 reprint credited only to Garland (with piano arrangement by Robert C. Haring) is in G and has lyrics beginning: "Who's the livin' dolly with the beautiful eyes?"

On August 1, 1939, Miller's version was recorded at the RCA Victor Studios at 155 East 24th Street in New York City. The personnel on Miller's recording included Al Mastren and Paul Tanner on trombone; Clyde Hurley, Legh Knowles, and Dale McMickle on trumpet; Wilbur Schwartz on clarinet; Hal McIntyre on alto saxophone; Tex Beneke, Al Klink, and Harold Tennyson on tenor saxophone; Chummy MacGregor on piano; Richard Fisher on guitar; Rowland Bundock on double bass; and Moe Purtill on drums.[17]

Other versions

1939 sheet music cover, "Introduced by Glenn Miller", Shapiro, Bernstein, and Co., New York

In February 1944, the Glenn Miller RCA Victor Bluebird 1939 studio recording of "In the Mood" was released as a V-Disc, one of a series of recordings sent free by the U.S. War Department to overseas military personnel during World War II. A second version recorded by Glenn Miller's Overseas Band in 1945, was released in May 1948. A new recording by Glenn Miller with the American Band of the Allied Expeditionary Forces (AEF) was broadcast to Germany in 1944 on the radio program The Wehrmacht Hour.[18]

This piece of music was not new in Europe. The first Swiss record of "In the Mood" were released in April 1940 by Teddy Stauffer und seine Original Teddies in Zurich.[19] Another interpretation was made by Ernst van't Hoff in February 1941 in Berlin.[20]

In 1951 a Ferranti Mark 1 computer at the University of Manchester played "In the Mood", one of the first songs to be played by a computer, and the oldest known recording of digitally generated music.[21]

In December 1959, the rendition of "In the Mood" that Ernie Fields and his Orchestra recorded peaked at number 4 by means of the Billboard popular hit parade and number 7 by means of both the Rhythm and Blues[22] and the Cash Box hit parades.

Jerry Lee Lewis, under the alias of The Hawk, recorded an instrumental version of "In the Mood" in 1959. For contractual reasons, the track was released in the USA on the Phillips label, a subsidiary of the Sun Records label owned by Sam Phillips.

Bette Midler covered the song on her album "The Divine Miss M" in 1973, with additional lyrics by herself and Barry Manilow. It was released as a single in 1974 and reached #51 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart.[citation needed]

Jonathan King, under the name Sound 9418 released his version in 1976 which reached No. 46 on the UK Singles Chart.[23]

In the winter of 1977, a novelty version by the Henhouse Five Plus Too (a Ray Stevens project) employing the sounds of clucking chickens entered the U.S. Pop Top 40: (Billboard No. 40,[24] Cash Box #37[25]).

Jive Bunny and the Mastermixers prominently featured "In the Mood" as part of their hit medley "Swing the Mood", which was a #1 single in the UK in 1989 and reached #11 in the US in 1990.[citation needed]

John Lee Hooker said that "In the Mood" was the inspiration for his song "I'm in the Mood" which became a No. 1 hit on the R&B Singles chart.[26]

V-Disc release.

See also


  1. ^ Library of Congress. Copyright Office. (1940). Catalog of Copyright Entries 1940 Musical Compositions New Series Vol 35 Pt 3 For the Year 1940. United States Copyright Office. U.S. Govt. Print. Off.
  2. ^ "NPR 100". www.npr.org. Retrieved November 10, 2018.
  3. ^ NPR 100. The 100 most important American musical works of the 20th century.
  4. ^ a b Gilliland, John (1994). Pop Chronicles the 40s: The Lively Story of Pop Music in the 40s (audiobook). ISBN 978-1-55935-147-8. OCLC 31611854. Tape 2, side A.
  5. ^ Gioia, Ted (2012). The Jazz Standards: A Guide to the Repertoire. New York City: Oxford University Press. pp. 185–186. ISBN 978-0-19-993739-4.
  6. ^ Oliphant, Dave (June 15, 2010). "Hurley, Clyde Lanham, Jr". tshaonline.org. Retrieved November 11, 2018. With Miller Hurley was recorded playing perhaps the orchestra's most famous solo, the one for trumpet on Miller's 'In the Mood'.
  7. ^ Updike, John (2009). The Widows of Eastwick. Ballantine Books. pp. 262–. ISBN 978-0-345-51751-7. Retrieved November 10, 2018.
  8. ^ "Barbecue Joe and his Hot Dogs". www.redhotjazz.com. Retrieved November 10, 2018.
  9. ^ a b Sullivan, Steve (October 4, 2013). Encyclopedia of Great Popular Song Recordings. Lanham, Maryland: Scarecrow Press. pp. 50–. ISBN 978-0-8108-8296-6. Retrieved November 10, 2018.
  10. ^ Catalog of Copyright Entries: Musical compositions. Library of Congress, Copyright Office. 1942. pp. 112. Retrieved November 10, 2018.
  11. ^ Rickert, David (December 27, 2005). "Glenn Miller: In the Mood". All About Jazz. Retrieved November 10, 2018.
  12. ^ a b Flower, John (1972). Moonlight Serenade: A Bio-discography of the Glenn Miller Civilian Band. New Rochelle, New York: Arlington House. pp. 79–81. ISBN 0-87000-161-2.
  13. ^ Grudens, Richard (2004). Chattanooga Choo Choo: The Life and Times of the World Famous Glenn Miller Orchestra. Stonybrook, New York: Celebrity Profiles Publilshing. pp. 198–. ISBN 978-1-57579-277-4. Retrieved November 10, 2018.
  14. ^ Library of Congress. Copyright Office. (1938). Catalog of Copyright Entries 1938 Musical Compositions New Series Vol 33 Pt3 For the Year 1938. United States Copyright Office. U.S. Govt. Print. Off.
  15. ^ Library of Congress. Copyright Office. (1939). Catalog of Copyright Entries 1939 Musical Compositions New Series Vol 34 Pt 3 For the Year 1939. United States Copyright Office. U.S. Govt. Print. Off.
  16. ^ Library of Congress. Copyright Office. (1940). Catalog of Copyright Entries 1940 Musical Compositions New Series Vol 35 Pt 3 For the Year 1940. United States Copyright Office. U.S. Govt. Print. Off.
  17. ^ Jasen, David A. (June 1, 2004). Tin Pan Alley: An Encyclopedia of the Golden Age of American Song. New York, New York: Routledge. pp. 1–. ISBN 1-135-94900-X. Retrieved November 10, 2018.
  18. ^ In the Mood (U.S. government German-language broadcast recording). learnnc.com.
  19. ^ Heiner Bontrup, E. Dieter Fränzel: Wiederentdeckung einer Swing-Legende. Die Ernst Höllerhagen Story. Ein Jazzmusiker zwischen Nationalsozialismus und Wirtschaftswunder. Mit Diskographie 1934−1955. Nordpark, Wuppertal 2011, ISBN 978-3-935421-42-3, p. 141.
  20. ^ "In the Mood", Orchester Ernst van't Hoff, Polydor 47522, Matrix number 8925 GD-2, produced in Berlin, February 1941
  21. ^ BBC World June 17, 2008, "Oldest computer music unveiled"
  22. ^ Whitburn, Joel (2004). Top R&B/Hip-Hop Singles: 1942-2004. Record Research. p. 201.
  23. ^ "SOUND 9418 | full Official Chart History | Official Charts Company". Official Charts.
  24. ^ Joel Whitburn's Top Pop Singles 1955–1990 - ISBN 0-89820-089-X
  25. ^ "Cash Box Top 100 Singles, February 19, 1977". Archived from the original on October 20, 2018. Retrieved December 29, 2017.
  26. ^ The Very Best of John Lee Hooker. Rhino Records R2 71915. Liner Notes, Pg.7