Anniversary

Today's Audio/Video Links

Singer-composer Paul Anka liked to recycle. Some time in the late fifties, he wrote an instrumental called "Toot Sweet" that didn't get much attention. Then in 1959, he set lyrics to it and it became a song for Annette Funicello called "It Must Be Love." In 1962, much of it became "Johnny's Theme," the song that opened The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson for more than three decades. Officially, the last of these was authored by the one-time-only team of Anka and Carson but no one ever thought Johnny had contributed a note. What they thought was that Paul had made a deal: Use my song and I'll credit you as co-writer so you'll get half the royalties. A good deal for both of them. Over the life of Johnny's Tonight Show, each of them cleared more than a million and a half bucks for its use…

Here's the version with Annette…

And here's an instrumental version of "Toot Sweet" that the folks at Disney's record company issued in 1960 on one of its many labels…

And just to remind you, here's how it sounded when it became Mr. Carson's theme song. This includes the part that rarely made it onto air…