“Mr. Music” is Jule Styne’s unofficial title. He has written over 2,000 songs, with a list of standards that encompasses Broadway, motion pictures and television.
Born in London, England, Jule Styne grew up in Chicago and began his study of music at the age of eight. He attended the Chicago College of Music. He appeared as a piano soloist with various symphony orchestras, and in 1931 organized his own popular orchestra, playing in Chicago’s posh hotels and night clubs. In 1935, he moved to New York and for a brief time was a vocal coach. It wasn’t long before he migrated to Hollywood to write background music and coach movie stars. He quickly moved into the forefront of Hollywood songwriters and has written a solid string of hits ever since 1942, including many motion picture title songs and scores.
A partial list of Jule Styne’s songs includes “Sunday,” “I Don’t Want to Walk Without You,” “I’ve Heard That Song Before,” “Saturday Night Is The Longest Night,” “I Fall In Love Too Easily,” “Let It Snow,” “Time After Time,” “It’s Magic,” “The Things We Did Last Summer,” “Five Minutes More,” “Bye Bye Baby,” “Diamonds Are A Girl’s Best Friend,” “Three Coins In The Fountain,” and “Guess I’ll Hang My Tears Out To Dry.”
His big Broadway smashes include “Gentlemen Prefer Blondes,” “Bells Are Ringing,” “Gypsy,” and “Funny Girl.” Other memorable scores include “High-Button Shoes,” “Two On the Aisle,” “Hazel Flagg,” “Peter Pan,” “Say Darling,” “Do Re Mi,” “Subways Are For Sleeping,” “Hallelujah Baby!” for which he was awarded the Tony, “Sugar” and “Arturo Ui.” All of these have given Jule Styne an indelible place in Broadway history. His amazing output of songs from these shows include “Diamonds Are A Girl’s Best Friend,” “Just In Time,” “The Party’s Over,” “Everything’s Coming Up Roses,” “Small World,” “Make Someone Happy,” “Never Never Land and “People”—these will be standards as long as music itself exists.
A melody without a lyric is just a melody. With a lyric, it becomes a song. Jule Styne has always acknowledged his lyricists as his better half. They include: Sammy Cahn, Comden and Green, Susan Berkenhead, Bob Merrill, Stephen Sondheim, Leo Robin, E.Y. Harburg, Frank Loesser, Bob Hilliard, Herb Magidson, Sol Meyers, Ned Miller and Walter Bishop.
Jule Styne is currently perfecting a new musical based on Treasure Island,” entitled “Pieces of Eight,” starring Tony Award Winner George Hearn.
In addition to a Tony Award, Jule Styne has won the Academy Award for Best Song for “Three Coins In The Fountain;” the Donaldson Award for the score of “High Button Shoes,” and for producing the major revival of “Pal Joey;” two Grammy Awards for “Gypsy” and “Funny Girl.” He is an inductee into the Songwriters Hall of Fame and the Theatre Hall of Fame. He has also received a unique accolade?a tribute entitled “Jule’s Friends at the Palace,” which received outstanding critical acclaim.