Everything I’ve Got Belongs to You
(Richard Rodgers, Lorenz Hart)
Piano: Danny Levin
Fiddle: Paul Anastasio
Bass: Tony Garnier
Drums: Kendrick Freeman
“Everything I’ve Got Belongs To You” was introduced by Ray Bolger and Benay Venuta at the Shubert Theater June 3, 1942 in a Broadway musical called “By Jupiter,” based on Julian Thompson’s play “The Warrior’s Husband.” The musical is “set in the land of the Amazons, where women fight in wars and the men stay home and take care of the children.” (NYPL Digital Gallery)
I first heard Blossom Dearie sing the song some time ago and it made me laugh out loud, partially because of the lyrics themselves and partially because there was such a great dichotomy between her sweet and lilting voice and the murderousness of the words she was singing. When I cut the song my producers asked me to do it several more times to try to soften the revenge angle – apparently I still have some issues at my age.
The original song was quite long and was written as a duet. I had to trim it down a bit in order to get accommodate today’s average attention span. One of the omitted verses, and there were many that I had trouble leaving behind, goes like this:
“You may have some things that I can’t use at all.
When I look at you, your manly gifts are small.
I’ve a wonderful way of saying adieu,
And everything I’ve got belongs to you.”
I have used some variation of the “manly gifts” comment countless times – it never grows old!
There was a very small re-write to account for the rhyme scheme and the singular gender, and I inserted two original lines: “Oh, you’re hardly refined and you haven’t a clue” and “You consider my blouse a room with a view”. The barbs and insults found in this song as I recorded it, all directed from the woman to the man, are delivered with the attitude that she knows she can outlive him and she fully intends to exact the perfect revenge by doing so and doing it with panache.
So I’m now claiming that I have written with Rodgers and Hart, and I did so in their heyday, which is today, because they were, and continue to be, clever and funny and timeless.