STRIKE UP THE BAND

STUDIO:  Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer

PRODUCTION NUMBER:  1141

PRODUCTION DATES: April 1940 – August 1940

PRODUCTION COST:   $838,661.40

RUNNING TIME:  120 minutes

RELEASE DATE:  September 29, 1940

INITIAL BOX OFFICE:  $3,494,000

Judy Garland and Mickey Rooney in "Strike Up The Band"The enormous success of 1939’s Babes in Arms featuring Judy and Mickey Rooney as lovable teens who just want to put on a show guaranteed that there would be a follow-up.  The result was a mini-golden age of “Let’s Put On A Show” or “Barnyard” musicals that encompassed just four films (all starring Judy and Mickey) that to date still have a lasting legacy.  The “Hey kids, let’s put on a show” trope has been used and parodied over and over. 

The reason this four film series had such a lasting impact is due to the talents of its stars on screen and the directors and staff behind the scenes.  Judy and Mickey were the perfect pair of idealized teens who just happened to be incredibly talented.  They reflected the emerging American teen market that at the time was full of “hep” for (mostly) swing music.  This stereotype lasted for decades with varying changes in style and music (most notably rock and roll replacing swing).  Strike Up The Band was the first in the series to continue and cement this legacy.  It’s the archetypical “Let’s Put On A Show” musical. 

The title (and Gershwin song) Strike Up The Band was chosen as the follow-up to Babes in Arms because, as legend has it, MGM studio boss Louis B. Mayer thought that it sounded “patriotic.”  The producer of both films, Arthur Freed, had wanted to remake Good News (and early MGM talkie in 1930), which had a similar theme although the “kids” were in college rather than high school.  The property had been a big stage success and as noted, a popular early MGM musical.  The popular score included “The Best Things In Life Are Free” and “The Varsity Drag.”  Good News became a pet project for Freed.  After being told to put Good News on hold, he tried to get it filmed for several years before finally it was made with June Allyson and Peter Lawford in 1947.

For Strike Up The Band, Freed turned to Fred F. Finklehoffe and John Monks, Jr. to write the script.  The duo had just had a Broadway hit with their play “Brother Rat” and Freed wanted them to spruce up Good News.  After Mayer convinced Freed that Strike Up The Band was a better choice, the duo was tasked with writing an original story.  The only real direction the duo was given was to use the song “Strike Up The Band” but forgo the rest of the original 1927 stage show of the same name, to find a way to incorporate Paul Whiteman and his Orchestra, and to be sure to center it around the talents of Judy and Mickey.  The duo came up with the story of Mickey as Jimmy Connors, a high school kid who forms his own swing band in opposition to the traditional school brass band with Judy as Mary Holden, Jimmy’s girl singer and best “pal.”  They find some success then hear about a national radio contest for school bands in far off Chicago.  They need to raise the money to travel to Chicago and compete so naturally, they put on a show.  Drama ensues when one of the kids is injured during that show (the “Gay Nineties” sequence) whose parents can’t afford the important operation needed to make him well.  The kids reluctantly use their Chicago money to pay for the operation.  But all is not lost.  The richest man in town (who’s daughter, played by June Preisser, was a temporary competitor for Jimmy’s attentions away from Mary) hears of their selflessness and pays for their trip.  Naturally, Jimmy’s band with Mary as their vocalist wins the contest.  The film ends with a big band finale medley of songs previously performed, ending with the flag waving last shot of Judy and Mickey superimposed over the American flag during the last notes of “Strike Up The Band.”  You can’t get any more patriotic or American that than!

Judy Garland in "Strike Up The Band"Even though it clocks in at a solid 120 minutes (which was long for movie musical at the time) and today might be predictable and a bit corny, Strike Up The Band is filled with delights.  The “Do the La Conga” number is still as thrilling a musical sequence as has ever been put on film.  The energy is palpable and the sequence is one of director Busby Berkeley’s best.  Judy and Mickey got to introduce “Our Love Affair” (written by Freed and Roger Edens) which became an instant standard (still performed today) that was nominated for the Oscar for “Best Song.”  Judy’s plaintive solo “(I Ain’t Got) Nobody” (sometimes referred to as simply “Nobody”), is one of her best.  At this point Judy’s image in these films was that of the girl who’s in love with Mickey’s character but he basically doesn’t know she’s around (other than as a “pal”) and takes her for granted, hence her solo about her plight as the unseen and unloved girl next door.  Naturally the audience can see that she’s the girl with the heart of gold and that somehow he’ll see what’s been right in front of him the whole time.  Another highlight is “Drummer Boy, ” a wonderful swing number that gives Judy a great vocal.  Naturally, Paul Whiteman and His Orchestra get several chances to shine as well.  

The choice of Strike Up The Band over Good News proved to be the correct one.  Strike Up The Band was another big hit for MGM and the burgeoning Freed Unit, which became the premiere producer of movie musicals in the 1940s and early 50s.  The success of these “Let’s Put On A Show” musicals afforded Freed the chances to bring in some of the top musical talent (usually) from Broadway which helped advance the style and prestige of the movie musical.

One of Freed’s Broadway imports was Vincente Minnelli.  Minnelli was a successful Broadway designer and director who, thanks to a negative experience at Paramount Pictures a few years before, had no intention of “going Hollywood.”  Freed lured him to MGM with the promise that he wouldn’t be required to do anything other than observe and learn, and give input if necessary.  It was a lucrative offer.  Minnelli arrived at MGM in April of 1940.  Minnelli ended up helping Berkeley solve an issue with “Our Love Affair.”  Berkeley was having trouble with how to effectively show Mickey’s character’s enthusiasm for his band as he’s explaining it to Judy’s character, during the “Our Love Affair” scene.  There needed to be something to show it.  Minnelli was on the set and noticed the prop bowl of fruit on the prob table.  He came up with the idea of having the fruit become the musicians in a dream-like fantasy sequence.  In his autobiography “I Remember It Well” Minnelli noted, “Apples for fiddles, oranges for brass, bananas for woodwinds. Then have Mickey conduct with his hands. The pieces of fruit are now puppet characters of musicians.”  The idea worked like a charm and proved to the studio that having Minnelli around was an asset.  For years afterward, Mayer would exclaim that Minnelli was “the genius who took a bowl of fruit and made a big production number out of it.”   

Minnelli’s presence is also notable as it was his first encounter with his future wife, Judy Garland.  After Strike Up The Band their careers at MGM went in separate directions until Meet Me In St. Louis went into production in 1943 with Judy as the initially reluctant star.  The rest is history.  Louis was Minnelli’s first chance to prove himself as a director and he created a masterpiece.  He and Judy fell in love during the production.  They eventually married and gave us Liza Minnelli.  Judy was his muse and he created some of her most famous (and fabulous) musical films and numbers.  Minnelli stayed at MGM for over 20 years and directed not just musicals but comedies and dramas.  He won the Oscar for Best Director for 1958’s Gigi.

Strike Up The Band, probably more than Babes in Arms, remains the archetypical “Let’s Put On A Show” musical.  Though music and styles have changed, the youthful zest on display is timeless.  It’s still a delightful and infectious movie musical.

TIMELINE PART ONE:

  • April 3, 1940:  Judy began work on Strike Up The Band with a rehearsal of “Nobody.”  Time called: 10:00 a.m.; dismissed: 2:15 p.m.
  • April 4, 1940:  Rehearsals of “Our Love Affair.”  Time called: 10:00 a.m.; dismissed: 3:45 p.m.
  • April 12, 1940:  Pre-recording session of “Our Love Affair” and “Nobody.”  Time called: 9:00 a.m.; dismissed: 4:00 p.m.
  • April 15, 1940:  A busy day for Judy.  During the day she worked on rehearsing the “Gay Nineties” number for Strike Up The Band, time called: 9:00 a.m.; dismissed: 6:00 p.m.  That night she was at the Decca Records studios.  There was time after a session for Bing Crosby during which Judy and Johnny Mercer recorded “Friendship.”  Judy then went to the NBC Radio studios for her weekly appearance on “The Pepsodent Show Starring Bob Hope.”  No recording of this show is known to exist.
  • April 16, 1940:  Music rehearsal of the “Gay Nineties” number.  Time called: 9:00 a.m.; dismissed: 3:20 p.m.
  • April 17, 1940:  Music rehearsal of the “Gay Nineties” number.  Time called: 9:00 a.m.; dismissed: 6:00 p.m.
  • April 18, 1940:  Music rehearsal of the “Gay Nineties” number.  Time called: 9:00 a.m.; dismissed: 3:20 p.m.  The assistant director’s notes state that there was also a shooting of “tests [with] Mickey Rooney and JG.”
  • April 19, 1940:  The first day of filming was devoted to scenes shot on the ‘Interior Public Library” set.  Time called: 9:30 a.m.; dismissed: 5:00 p.m.
  • April 20, 1940:  Filming continued on the “Interior Public Library” set.  Time called: 9:00 a.m.; dismissed: 4:30 p.m.
  • April 22, 1940:  Filming continued on the “Interior Public Library” set.  Time called: 9:00 a.m.; dismissed: 4:40 p.m.
  • April 23, 1940:  Pre-recording session was devoted to the lengthy “Gay Nineties” sequence.  That night Judy had her weekly appearance on NBC Radio’s “The Pepsodent Show Starring Bob Hope.”  She sang, “Nobody” as an early promotion of the film.   
  • April 24, 1940:  Photo shoot for the “Gay Nineties” sequence.  Time called: 9:00 a.m.; dismissed: 4:30 p.m.
  • April 25, 1940:  Filming continued on the “Prologue” and “Exterior/Interior Delmonico’s” sets – part of the “Gay Nineties” sequence.  Time called: 9:00 a.m.; dismissed: 4:30 p.m.
  • April 26, 1940:  Filming continued on the “Interior Delmonico’s” set.  Time called: 9:00 a.m.; dismissed: 5:54 p.m.
  • April 27, 1940:  Filming continued on the “Interior Delmonico’s” and “Exterior Delmonico’s” sets.  Time called: 9:00 a.m.; dismissed: 4:45 p.m.
  • April 29, 1940: Filming continued on the “Interior Delmonico’s” and “INterior Backstage” sets.  Time called: 9:00 a.m.; dismissed: 4:20 p.m.
  • April 30, 1940:  Filming continued on the “Interior Saloon” and “Exterior Delmonico’s” sets.  Time called: 8:30 a.m.; dismissed: 4:20 p.m. That night Judy had her weekly appearance on NBC Radio’s “The Pepsodent Show Starring Bob Hope.”   She sang “Ma, He’s Making Eyes At Me.”
  • May 1, 1940:  Filming continued on the “Interior Attic” and “Interior Sawmill” sets.  Time called: 9:00 a.m.; dismissed: 4:30 p.m.  The assistant director’s notes state “2:05-2:56 JG in school.”
  • May 2, 1940:  Filming continued on the “Interior Attic” and “Interior Sawmill” sets. Time called: 10:30 a.m.; dismissed: 5:45 p.m.
  • May 3, 1940:  Filming continued on the “Exterior Park” and “Exterior R. R. tracks” sets.  Time called: 9:00 am.  Judy went home sick at 12:50 p.m.
  • May 4, 1940:  Filming continued on he “Exterior R. R. tracks” and Interior Attic” sets.  time called: 10:30 a.m.; Judy went home sick at 5:10 p.m.
  • May 6 through 14, 1940:  Judy took a break from Strike Up The Band to work on retakes for Andy Hardy Meets Debutante.
  • May 8, 1940:  Judy pre-recorded “Alone” for Andy Hardy Meets Debutante.
  • May 10, 1940:  Judy pre-recorded another version of “Alone” as well as its reprise, plus “All I Do Is Dream Of You” for Andy Hardy Meets Debutante.
  • May 14, 1940:  Judy’s last weekly appearance on the NBC Radio show “The Pepsodent Show Starring Bob Hope.”
  • May 5, 1940:  Judy had no film work but posed for glamour photos with photographer Eric Carpenter.
  • May 16, 1940:  Filming continued on the “Interior Gym” and “Exterior Carnival” sets.  Time called: 9:00 a.m.; dismissed: 4:30 p.m.
  • May 17, 1940:  Filming continued on the “Interior Judd Living Room” and “Interior Jim’s Bedroom” sets.  time called: 9:00 a.m.; dismissed: 4:30 p.m.
  • May 18, 1940:  Filming continued on the “Interior Storeroom,” “Interior Judd Living Room,” and “Exterior Holden Porch” sets.  Time called: 2:30 p.m.; dismissed: 10:00 p.m.
  • May 20, 1940:  Filming continued on the “Exterior Holden Porch” and “Interior Hospital” sets.  Time called: 9:00 a.m.; dismissed: 4:45 p.m.
  • May 21, 1940:  Filming continued on the “Exterior Holden Porch” and “Interior Classroom” sets.  Time called: 9:00 a.m.; dismissed: 4:32 p.m.
  • May 22, 1940:  Judy was out sick.
  • May 23, 1940:  Filming continued on the “Interior Classroom” and “Locker Room” sets.  Time called: 10:30 a.m.; dismissed: 6:00 p.m.
  • May 24, 1940:  Filming continued on the “Interior Gym” set.  Time called: 9:00 a.m.; dismissed: 1:55 p.m.
  • May 25, 1940:  Filming continued on the “Morgan Home” and “Bar/riverwood Street” sets.  Time called: 2:30 p.m.; dismissed: 10:00 p.m.
  • May 26, 1940:  Judy appeared on the “Red Cross War Fund Program” broadcast simultaneously by both CBS and NBC Radio.  She sang “Over the Rainbow.”
  • May 27, 1940:  Filming continued on the “Interior Holden Home” set.  Tie called: 9:00 a.m.; dismissed: 4:05 p.m.
  • May 28, 1940:  Filming continued on the “Interior Holden Home” and “Exterior Barbara’s Car” sets.  Time called: 9:00 a.m.; dismissed: 4:05 p.m.  Also on this day, photos and some silent film was taken of Judy with her niece Judalein, sister Virginia, and mom Ethel at a backyard birthday party.
  • May 31, 1940:  Filming continued on the “Riverwood High School” and “Morgan Dining Room” sets.  Time called: 9:00 a.m.; dismissed: 4:05 p.m.

TIMELINE PART TWO:

  • June 1, 1940:  Filming continued on the “Exterior R.R. Station” set, which was the standing train depot set on MGM’s Backlot #2.
  • June 3, 1940:  Filming continued on the “Interior Holden Home” and Interior Willy’s Bedroom” sets.  Time called: 9:00 a.m.; Judy was in makeup at 7:37 a.m.; dismissed: 4:37 p.m.
  • June 4, 1940:  Filming continued on the “Interior Country Club” set.  Time called: 10:30 a.m.; dismissed: 4:50 p.m.
  • June 5, 1940:  Filming continued on the “Interior Country Club,” “Interior Anteroom,” and “Interior Bedroom” sets.  
  • June 6, 1940:  Filming continued on the “Interior Anteroom” and “Interior Hotel Room” sets.  These scenes featured Mickey only.  It’s assumed that because of this Judy had the day off.
  • June 7, 1940:  Filming continued on the “Interior Backstage” and “Interior Radio Theatre” sets.  Time called: 10:00 a.m.; dismissed: 4:35 p.m.
  • June 8, 1940:  Judy and the Six Hits & A Miss pre-recorded “Drummer Boy.”  Time called: 10:00 a.m.; dismissed: 5:00 p.m.
  • June 10, 1940:  Judy’s eighteenth birthday.  Judy had rehearsals plus posing for publicity photos with Mickey with the huge drum prop.  The assistant director’s notes stage: “Both Miss Garland and Mr. Rooney were shooting poster still before reporting for rehearsal at 11 a.m.” 
  • June 11, 1940:  Jud began work on her next film, Little Nellie Kelly, by shooting costume tests. 
  • June 12, 1940:  Rehearsals of the “Drummer Boy” number.  Time called: 9:00 a.m.; dismissed: 5:45 p.m.
  • June 13, 1940:  A short day.  Time called: 10:00 a.m.; dismissed: 10:30 a.m.  The day was planned to include shooting on the “Interior Backstage” and “Interior Hospital Room” sets, but as the assistant director’s notes stage: “When Rooney arrived on set at 9 a.m., his lower lip was in bad condition wit a fever blister and unable to be photographed.  After discussing situation it was decided to let Rooney rehearse with drum instructor to playback and company will move to stage #6 for shots backstage.
  • June 14 through June 17, 1940:  Mickey still had a fever blister and was unable to be photographed.  Judy worked on more tests for Little Nellie Kelly on the 17th.
  • June 18, 1940:  Micke still couldn’t be photographed so the company rehearsed the “La Conga” number from 1:00 – 2:15 p.m.
  • June 19, 1940:  Filming continued on the “Interior Country Club” set.  Specifically the “Drummer Boy” number.  Time called: 2:00 p.m.; dismissed: 11:00 p.m.
  • June 20, 1940:  Filming continued on the “Interior Country Club” set.  Time called: 12:00 p.m.; dismissed: 1:43 a.m. (early that next morning!).
  • June 21, 1940:  Filming continued on the “Exterior Holden Home,” “Exterior School,” and “Interior Country Club” sets.  Time called: 1:45 p.m.; dismissed: 5:30 p.m.
  • June 22, 1940:  Judy wasn’t needed for any work on the film so had the day off.
  • June 24, 1940:  “La Conga” rehearsal.  Time called: 11:00 a.m.; dismissed: 5:40 p.m.  Also on this day, Judy posed with her mother in MGM studios boss Louis B. Mayer’s office in celebration of her recent birthday (June 10) with a big cake.  Judy received her first car as a gift, a new Studebaker Champion.  
  • June 25, 1940:  “La Conga” rehearsal.  Time called: 10:30 a.m.; dismissed: 4:00 p.m.  Later in the evening Judy graduated from University High School.  She didn’t actually attend the school, having her tutoring on the MGM lot, on set or otherwise, but she did attend the graduation.
  • June 26, 1940:  Rehearsal of the “La Conga” number, plus some camera setups.  Time called: 10:00 a.m.; dismissed: 5:40 p.m. 
  • June 27, 1940:  Rehearsal and pre-recording of the “La Conga” number.  Time called: 11:00 a.m.; dismissed: 4:30 p.m.
  • June 28, 1940:  Filming continued on the ‘Interior Gym” set, specifically the “La Conga” number.  Time called: 9:00 a.m.; dismissed: 5:55 p.m.  Judy and Mickey also posed for publicity photos in their “La Conga” costumes.
  • June 29, 1940:  Filming continued on the “La Conga” number on the “Interior Gym” set.  Time called: 9:00 a.m.; dismissed: 5:59 p.m.
  • July 1, 1940:  Filming continued on the “La Conga” number on the “Interior Gym” set.  Time called: 9:00 a.m.; dismissed: 11:00 p.m.  Quite the long day!
  • July 2, 1940:  Filming continued on the “La Conga” number on the “Interior Gym” set.  Time called: 11:00 a.m.; dismissed: 6:10 p.m.
  • July 3, 1940:  Filming continued on the “La Conga” number on the “Interior Gym” set.  Time called: 9:00 a.m.; dismissed: 11:10 p.m.  Another long one!  Luckily this was the last day of shooting the number.
  • July 5, 1940:  Rehearsals of the “Finale.”  Time called: 1:00 p.m.; dismissed: 4:15 p.m.
  • July 6, 1940:  Judy was out sick with a sore throat.
  • July 8, 1940:  Rehearsals of the “Finale” number.  Time called: 10:00 a.m; dismissed: 5:45 p.m.
  • July 9, 1940:  Rehearsals of the “Finale” number.  Time called: 11:00 a.m.; dismissed: 5:00 p.m.
  • July 10, 1940:  Pre-recording of the “Finale” lasted from 11:00 a.m. through 11:10 p.m.  Judy recorded the ultimately cut “Curse of An Aching heart.”
  • July 11, 1940:  Judy had the day off.
  • July 12, 1940:  Filming continued on the “Interior Radio Theatre” set, the “Finale” number.  Time called: 9:00 a.m.; dismissed: 5:00 p.m.
  • July 13, 1940:  Filming continued on the “Interior Radio Theatre” set, the “Finale” number.  Time called: 1:00 p.m.; dismissed: 11:33 p.m.
  • July 15, 1940:  Filming continued on the “Interior Radio Theatre” set, the “Finale” number.  Time called: 9:00 a.m..; dismissed: 7:20 p.m.  Judy also posed for a costume test for Little Nellie Kelly.
  • July 16, 1940:  Filming continued on the “Interior Radio Theatre” set, the “Finale” number.  Time called: 3:00 p.m.; dismissed: 2:15 a.m.  Another long day!
  • July 19, 1940:  Filming continued on the “Gay Nineties” number.  Time called: 9:00 a.m.; dismissed: 12:15 p.m.
  • July 30 through August 9, 1940:  Judy worked on Little Nellie Kelly
  • August 10, 1950:  Judy had retakes on the “Exterior Holden Home” and “Exterior Street” set.  
  • August 12, 1940:  The last day of work for Judy on Strike Up The Band.  She had retakes on the “Exterior Train,” “Interior Attic,” and “Interior Lower Floor” sets.  Time called: 9:00 a.m.; dismissed: 6:15 p.m.  The film was released on September 29, 1940.

FACTOIDS:

  • Strike Up The Band was nominated for three Academy Awards, winning one:
    • Best Song, “Our Love Affair.” It lost to “When You Wish Upon A Star” from Pinocchio.
    • Best Scoring (George Stoll & Roger Edens).  It lost to Alfred Newman for Tin Pan Alley.
    • Best Sound Recording – won by MGM’s Sound Director Douglas Shearer.
  • Judy began work on Strike Up The Band while finishing her work on Andy Hardy Meets Debutante.  Toward the end of filming on Strike Up The Band, Judy began work on Little Nellie Kelly.  This was the beginning of a very busy period for Judy at MGM.  She didn’t get much of a break until early 1942 when she went on her first USO tour of Army camps around the country, which was if not a real break at least a break from the studio’s grueling schedule.
  • On April 17, 1941, the famous photo of Mickey swinging Judy around and in the air,  taken by Ed Cronenweth, won first prize for “Best Action Still” in the first year the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences honoring still photographers from the movie studios. “International Photographer’s” May issue featured some of the winners in the various categories, including this one.  See below.

CAST:

Mickey Rooney as Jimmy Connors

Judy Garland as Mary Holden

Paul Whiteman as Himself

June Preisser .as Barbara Frances Morgan

William Tracy as Phillip Turner

Larry Nunn as Willie Brewster

Margaret Early as Annie

Ann Shoemaker .as Mrs. Connors

Francis Pierlot as Mr. Judd

Virginia Brissac as Mrs. May Holden

George Lessey as Mr. Morgan

Enid Bennett as Mrs. Morgan

Howard Hickman as Doctor

Sarah Edwards .as Miss Hodges

Milton Kibbee .as Mr. Holden

Helen Jerome Eddy as Mrs. Brewster

Joe Yule as ticket seller

Harry McCrillis as Booper Barton

Elliot Carpenter as Henry

Virginia Sale as Music Teacher

Mickey Martin as Boy

Charles Smith as Boy

Sherrie Overton as Girl

Margaret Marquis as Girl

Maxine Cook as Girl

Phil Silvers as Pitchman

Billy Wayne as Clown

Joe Devlin as Attendant

Don Castle as Charlie

Harlan Briggs as Doctor

Richard Allen as Policeman

Jimmie Lucas as Barker

Jack Albertson as Barker

Earle Hodgins as Hammer Concessionaire

Harry Harvey as Shooting Gallery Concessionaire

Jack Baxley as Ice Cream Concessionaire

Harry Lash as Hot Dog Concessionaire

Jack Kenney as Hot Dog Concessionaire

Roland Got as House Boy

Lowden Adams as Butler

Margaret Seddon as Old Lady

Margaret McWade as Old Lady

Jack Mulhall as Man

Henry Roquemore as Man

Leonard Sues as Trumpet Player

Students: Louise La Planche, Lois James, Helen Seamon, Mary Jo Ellis, Naida Reynolds, Linda Johnson, Wallace Musselwhite, Myron Speth, Douglas Wilson, Sidney Miller, Vondell Darr

Additional vocals:  The Six Hits and a Miss

CREW:

Produced by: Arthur Freed

Directed by: Busby Berkeley

Original Screen Play by: John Monks, Jr. and Fred Finklehoffe

Lyrics and Music by: Roger Edens

Musical Director: Georgie Stoll

Additional Songs: “Strike Up the Band” Music by George Gershwin, Lyrics by Ira Gershwin; “Our Love Affair” (by) Arthur Freed and Roger Edens

Chorals and Orchestrations: Leo Arnaud, Conrad Salinger

Art Director: Cedric Gibbons

Associate: John S. Detlie

Set Decorations: Edwin B. Willis

Musical Presentation by: Merrill Pye

Women’s Wardrobe by: Dolly Tree

Men’s Wardrobe by: Gile Steele

Make-Up Created by: Jack Dawn

Fruit Models Created by: Henry Rox

Recording Director: Douglas Shearer

Director of Photography: Ray June

Film Editor: Ben Lewis

SONGS:

Our Love Affair
(Judy Garland and Mickey Rooney)

Do the La Conga
(Judy Garland, Mickey Rooney, Six Hits and a Miss, MGM Studio Chorus)

Nobody
(Judy Garland)

Nell of New Rochelle
(Mickey Rooney, Judy Garland, June Preisser, William Tracy, Larry Nunn, Margaret Early and the MGM Studio Chorus)
The Nell of New Rochelle sequence includes:

  • Gay Nineties
    (Judy Garland, Margaret Early, Mickey Rooney, William Tracy, MGM Studio Chorus)
  • The Sidewalks of New York (East Side, West Side)
    (MGM Studio Orchestra)
  • Walking Down Broadway
    (Judy Garland, Margaret Early and MGM Studio Chorus)
  • A Man Was the Cause of It All
    (Judy Garland)
  • Light Cavalry
    (MGM Studio Orchestra)
  • After the Ball
    (MGM Studio Orchestra)
  • I Just Can’t Make My Eyes Behave
    (June Preisser and Male Chorus)
  • Over the Waves
    (MGM Studio Orchestra)
  • Heaven Will Protect the Working Girl
    (Judy Garland and Male Chorus)
  • Home Sweet Home
    (MGM Studio Orchestra)
  • Flower Song
    (MGM Studio Orchestra)
  • Ta-Ra-Ra-Boom-Der-E
    (June Preisser and Male Chorus)
  • Father, Dear Father, Come Home with Me Now
    (Larry Nunn and Judy Garland)
  • Wintermarchen
    (MGM Studio Orchestra)
  • Jingle Bells
    (MGM Studio Orchestra)

Drummer Boy
(Judy Garland, Six Hits and a Miss and the MGM Studio Orchestra with Mickey Rooney on drums and vibraphone)

Finale: Strike Up the Band / Do the La Conga / Our Love Affair / Drummer Boy
(Judy Garland, Mickey Rooney, Six Hits and a Miss and the MGM Studio Orchestra and Chorus)

OUTTAKES:

I Just Can’t Make My Eyes Behave
(June Preisser and Male Chorus)

 “While Strolling Through the Park One Day” (aka The Fountain by the Park)
(Mickey Rooney and MGM Studio Orchestra)

The Curse of an Aching Heart
(Judy Garland)

Daily Music Reports

Media

Judy recorded a studio version of “Our Love Affair” for Decca Records on December 18, 1940.  It was the only song from Strike Up The Band that she recorded for the label.  This was the era before soundtrack albums became popular.  It was standard for some musical stars (such as Bing Crosby) to record studio versions of songs from their films for release in record shops and on jukeboxes.  Judy recorded may songs from her films and popular songs of the day for the label between 1936 and 1947.