Albert Sirmay Articles

“Yes, My Darling Daughter” (1941)

“Yes, My Darling Daughter.” Words and music by Jack Lawrence and Albert Sirmay (1939). Recorded by Elsie Carlisle under the musical direction of Jay Wilbur on May 22, 1941. Rex 9989 mx. R5781-2.

Personnel: Jay Wilbur dir. Alfie Noakes-Chick Smith-t / Paul Fenoulhet or Ted Heath or George Rowe-tb / Frank Johnson-Frank Weir-cl-as / George Smith or Cliff Timms-ts / Matt Heft-p / Jack Simmons-g / Billy Bell-sb / Jack Simpson-d

“Yes, My Darling Daughter” – Elsie Carlisle (1941)

“Yes, My Darling Daughter” was written in New York by American songwriter Jack Lawrence and Albert Sirmay (or Szirmai), a former Hungarian operetta composer who had become an editor for Chappell Music. The tune has its roots, however, in a Ukrainian folk song that dates back to the early nineteenth century, if not earlier, and the modern composition retains a somewhat traditional atmosphere.  The lyrics describe the stages of a love relationship by way of an antiphonal, rapid-fire mother-daughter conversation, with both sides of the argument often delivered by the same singer. Such is the case with Elsie Carlisle, here in the last few months of her recording career. Elsie deftly conveys both sweet innocence on the daughter’s part and mature experience on that of the mother without seeming to take a pause.

“Yes, My Darling Daughter” was introduced to the public in 1940 as a duet between Dinah Shore and Eddie Cantor on the latter’s radio show, and the record she released soon afterwards helped to launch her career. The song was also recorded in America in 1940 by Gene Krupa and His Orchestra (with vocals by Irene Daye), Glenn Miller and His Orchestra (with vocalist Marion Hutton), and Benny Goodman and His Orchestra (with vocalists Helen Forrest, Cootie Williams, and Benny Goodman himself). At the beginning of 1941 there were versions by the Andrews Sisters and Bob Chester and His Orchestra.

There followed British versions by Ambrose and His Orchestra (with vocalists Anne Shelton and Doreen Villiers), Geraldo and His Orchestra (with Dorothy Carless),  Billy Cotton and His Band (with vocals by Alan Breeze), Carroll Gibbons and the Savoy Hotel Orpheans (Anne Lenner, vocalist), Harry Leader and His Band (in a Paul Jones medley), The Witley Court Music Box (with Joyce Head and Joan Bush), and Nat Gonella and His Georgians (with vocalist Stella Moya).

"The Idol of the Radio." British dance band singer of the 1920s, 1930s, and 1940s.