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Ill Wind (Arlen-Koehler song)

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"Ill Wind" ("You're Blowin' Me No Good") is a song composed by Harold Arlen with lyrics by Ted Koehler. It was written for their last show at the Cotton Club in 1934 and was sung by Adelaide Hall[1] In an interview, Adelaide Hall explained how she performed the song to great effect during the show:

I starred in the Cotton Club Parade where I sang "Ill Wind," which Harold Arlen had written for me. There were twenty-four girl dancers behind me all dressed in grey and I was in pink. It was the first show ever that had nitrogen smoke rise from the floor on stage.

The melody came to Arlen while he was visiting Anya Taranda, then a model who later became his wife.[3]

The song is also featured in the 1984 Francis Ford Coppola movie The Cotton Club sung by the actress Lonette McKee. McKee plays a character with similarities to Adelaide Hall in real life.

Notable recordings


  1. ^ Underneath a Harlem Moon: the Harlem to Paris Years of Adelaide Hall, by Iain Cameron Williams, Continuum Publishing (2003); ISBN 0826458939
  2. ^ "Obituary: Adelaide Hall," by Steve Voce, The Independent, November 8, 1993
    Note: Hall is quoted about her time spent at the Cotton Club and singing "Ill Wind"
    (retrieved 26 December 2014)
  3. ^ Liner notes: Ella Fitzgerald Sings the Harold Arlen Songbook (LP), Verve MGV 4046-2 (1961)
  4. ^ "Together overview".
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Ill Wind (Arlen-Koehler song)
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