Mudcat Café message #3095964 The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #37285   Message #3095964
Posted By: Joe Offer
15-Feb-11 - 05:15 PM
Thread Name: Lyr Add: Schoener Gigolo (Just a Gigolo)
Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Schoener Gigolo (Just a Gigolo)
My 96-yr-old mother-in-law asked me about "Just a Gigolo" today. She remembered almost all the words. I've always wondered about this song, and never would have guessed it had German roots. The Great Song Thesaurus (Lax & Smith) says the song was published in 1930, but Wikipedia says the German version was published in Vienna in 1929. The Harry Fox Agency attributes the German words to Julius Brammer, English by Irving Caesar, and music by Leonello Casucci. I've always associated this song with Louis Prima and with the 1985 recording by David Lee Roth, but apparently the song was introduced in the U.S. by Irene Bordoni (in a 1932 Betty Boop cartoon?) and popularized by Ted Lewis.
The U.S. Wikipedia says that Louis Prima paired "Gigolo" with another song, "I Ain't Got Nobody," (words by Roger Graham and music by Spencer Williams, 1915). David Lee Roth also recorded this medley in 1985.
If you can read German, you'll find the Wikipedia entry on Brammer (1877-1943) very intriguing. Brammer was primarily an opera librettist. He was Jewish, and he and his wife fled to Paris after the Germans took over Austria in 1938. From there, he went to the unoccupied Côte d’Azur. The Wikipedia article doesn't explain the circumstances of his death in 1943. also has a very interesting article about Eintänzer, which is the approximate German equivalent of "gigolo."
Marlene Dietrich's last film performance was in 1979, singing the title song of the film "Just a Gigolo." (click)
I question Wolfgang's translation of "goldverschnürt" - does that mean "with a golden braid on his shoulder" or "with a golden mustache"?