"I'll Be Seeing You" is a popular song, with music by Sammy Fain and lyrics by Irving Kahal. Published in 1938, the song was inserted into the Broadway musical Right This Way, which closed after fifteen performances. In the musical, it was performed by the singer Tamara Drasin, who had a few years earlier introduced "Smoke Gets in Your Eyes". The song is ajazz standard, and has been covered by many musicians.
The musical theme has emotional power, and was much loved during World War II, when it became an anthem for those serving overseas (both British and American soldiers). The lyrics begin, in Ambrose's recorded version, with a preamble:
Cathedral bells were tolling and our hearts sang on;
Was it the spell of Paris or the April dawn? Who knows if we shall meet again? But when the morning chimes ring sweet again...I'll be seeing you in all the old familiar places [etc.]
As the song develops, the words take a jaunty commonplace of casual farewell and transform it by degrees, to climax with
...and when the night is new,
I'll be looking at the moon,But I'll be seeing you.
Featured throughout the 1944 movie also titled I'll Be Seeing You, starring Ginger Rogers and Joseph Cotten, the recording by Bing Crosby became a hit that year, reaching number one for the week of July 1. Later, the song became notably associated with Liberace, as the theme music to his television show of the 1950s. In 1956, Jackie Gleason's character, Ralph Kramden, referenced the song on an episode of The Honeymooners in which Kramden experienced an early exit on the game show, The $99,000 Answer, and refused to leave the stage. The song was heard on an episode of the 1960s spy spoof Get Smart, when the main character had a high-tech trumpet that could play any tune, just by speaking the title into the mouthpiece. It has also been played in the 1989 Woody Allen film Crimes and Misdemeanors; in the end credits of the 1990 film Misery (Liberace's rendition); in the 1992 movie Shining Through; in the closing episode of Star Trek: Deep Space Nine; in the 1999 documentary Beyond the Mat, in the 2004 film The Aviator, and in the 2004 film The Notebook as the song for Noah and Allie. It was featured in the 2006 "Dance with the Dead" episode of Midsomer Murders, which was set near an old WWII airfield. It was also played in the closing credits for the final (until 2011) episode of Beavis and Butt-head; in the 2010 season 4 episodes of Eureka ("Founder's Day" "A New World" and "I'll Be Seeing You"). On the final episode of The Tonight Show starring Johnny Carson which was aired on May 22 1992, Doc Severinsen and the NBC Orchestra closed the show with it, as it was one of Carson's favorite songs.
During the 2009 Academy Awards presentation, Queen Latifah sang the song during the "In Memoriam" tribute to members of the motion picture industry who had died during the previous year, which was controversial because the In Memoriam tribute was previously traditionally unaccompanied.
The song has been covered by well known artists.
- Al Hirt released a version on his 1965 album, They're Playing Our Song
- Andrea Corr performed "I'll Be Seeing You" on her 2011 album Lifelines
- Anne Murray recorded a version for her Greatest Hits compilation, All of Me
- Barry Manilow, on his 1991 studio album Showstoppers
- Billie Holiday sang a rendition of the song (1944)
- Bill Kenny on his 1966 album Remember Me
- Bing Crosby recorded it in 1944
- Brad Mehldau on his live album, The Art of the Trio, Vol. 4 (Back at the Vanguard)
- Brenda Lee on her 1962 album Sincerely, Brenda Lee
- Carmen McRae from her album "When You're Away" 1958
- Cass Elliot released the song on her live album Don't Call Me Mama Anymore
- Connee Boswell, Studio & Radio Broadcast Recordings, 1931 - 1946
- Engelbert Humperdinck recorded it on his 1985 album A Lovely Way to Spend an Evening
- Etta James for her 1994 cover album Mystery Lady: Songs of Billie Holiday
- Françoise Hardy and Iggy Pop for the 1998 album Jazz a Saint-Germain
- Frank Sinatra recorded multiple versions of the song, initially with Tommy Dorsey and His Orchestra (1940), including one version that was more upbeat and "swinging" than later slower versions of the song
- Holly Cole on her album Blame It on My Youth
- James Darren twice on Star Trek: Deep Space Nine as the character Vic Fontaine, later on also on his album This One's from the Heart
- Jimmy Durante, a song from his 60's TV show was used in the motion picture The Notebook
- Jo Stafford recorded the song on her 1958 album G.I. Jo – Songs of World War II with arrangements by Paul Weston (her husband) as the band leader
- Judy Collins, on her 1975 album Judith
- June Tabor on her A Quiet Eye CD 2000
- Linda Ronstadt on her Hummin' To Myself CD 2004
- Liza Minnelli, on her 2002 live album Liza's Back
- Mel Tormé recorded several studio versions of the song as well as a live performance with pianist George Shearing on the Concord Records album An Elegant Evening
- Michael Bublé recorded it on his EP First Dance
- Mina recorded and released the song on her 2012 album 12 (American Song Book)
- Neil Sedaka recorded it in 1964, but it was not released until 2005, when it was issued on his Love Songs album
- Peggy Lee recorded it on her 1972 album Norma Deloris Egstrom from Jamestown, North Dakota
- Queen Latifah sang the song during the "In Memoriam" tribute during the 81st Academy Awards
- Ray Charles recorded it in 1967 on his album Invites You to Listen
- Ray Conniff recorded it in 1959 with his orchestra and singers in a very upbeat and swinging version on his album Young At Heart
- Regina Carter recorded it in 2006 on her album I'll Be Seeing You: A Sentimental Journey
- Rickie Lee Jones on her 1991 album Pop Pop
- Rod Stewart, on his 2002 album It Had to Be You: The Great American Songbook
- Rosemary Clooney recorded it in the early 1990s in her homage to the "War Years" on an album entitled For the Duration
- Sarah Vaughan, on her 1960 album Dreamy and her 1963 live album Sassy Swings the Tivoli
- Sonny Rollins, on his 1982 concert in Montreal
- Steve Tyrell recorded the song on his 1999 album A New Standard* The Blanks recorded an a cappella version on their 2004 album Riding the Wave
- The Five Satins recorded the song in 1959
- The Poni-Tails sang the song in 1959 when it reached as high as #87 in the U.S.
- The Skyliners and The Belmonts recorded the song
- The Vocal Majority recorded the song on "I'll Be Seeing You" in 1990
- Tony Bennett included the song as the final track on his 1992 album Perfectly Frank
- Vera Lynn recorded the song
- Willie Nelson recorded the song on Healing Hands of Time
- Hans Keller, 'Truth & Music', Music and Musicians Magazine, November 1970 Cooke's radio broadcast is described in
- "List of number-one singles of 1944". Wikipedia.
- Carr, David (2009-02-19). "Oscars on TV: The Subtext". The New York Times. Retrieved 2009-04-24.
- Cieply, Michael and David Carr (2009-02-23). "A ‘Slumdog’ Kind of Night at the Oscar Ceremony". The New York Times. Retrieved 2009-04-24.
- Al Hirt, They're Playing Our Song Retrieved April 13, 2013.
- 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 1, side B.
|Preceded by||U.S. Billboard Best Sellers in Stores number-one single
July 1, 1944
|Preceded by||U.S. Billboard Best Sellers in Stores number-one single
July 15, 1944–July 29, 1944