Anything Goes

  • Most definitely not to be confused with the AC/DC song of the same name, "Anything Goes" is one of American musical composer Cole Porter's most well-known and cleverly crafted songs.

    The sheet music from the show of the same name by P.G. Wodehouse and Guy Bolton, was published by Chappell of London at 2 shillings, copyright Harms of New York, 1934. The show was a Charles B. Cochran presentation.

    Sung by Ethel Merman and ensemble, Robert Kimball says in The Complete Lyrics Of Cole Porter, "The lyric for an earlier version of the first refrain was found in a copyist ink score at Warner Brothers Music warehouse, Secaucus, New Jersey, February 1982. Over the years Porter revised the sequence of the song's three refrains. Presumably, his final thoughts are set down in the version published in The Cole Porter Song Book (1959)."
  • Although basically a love song, this is also a mild rant at the way social mores change (as ever for the worse). In olden days a glimpse of stocking may have been looked on as something shocking, and contemporary writers may have taken to using four-letter words, but did anything really go in the '30s?

    Porter was no shrinking violet: "Love For Sale," one of his most famous songs, was written around this time and fell foul of the censor because of its overt reference to prostitutes. Had he lived to see punk rock and the gratuitous profanity, sex and violence of the modern cinema and other art forms, however, he might well have revised his opinion. >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Alexander Baron - London, England, for above 2
  • Australian actress Caroline O'Connor performed this song in the 2004 Cole Porter biopic, De-Lovely, named for the Porter song.
  • At the beginning of the 1984 movie Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom, Willie Scott (Kate Capshaw) sings this in Mandarin at a nightclub in Shanghai. An orchestral version also plays as Indy fights his way out of the club.

Comments: 3

  • Barry from Sauquoit, NyOn August 13th 1967, "Anything Goes" by Harpers Bizarre entered Billboard's Hot Top 100 chart at position #85; and on September 17th, 1967 it peaked at #43 {for 3 weeks} and spent 8 weeks on the Top 100...
    Between February 1967 and September 1968 the Santa Cruz quintet had five Top 100 records, with "The 59th Street Bridge Song (Feelin' Groovy)" being their biggest hit, and it peaked at #13 {for 2 weeks} on March 26th, 1967.
  • Zabadak from London, EnglandParodied by Monty Python, with different words AND tune!
  • Geno from Columbus, OhA classic forever.
see more comments

Mike Scott of The WaterboysSongwriter Interviews

The stories behind "Whole Of The Moon" and "Red Army Blues," and why rock music has "outlived its era of innovation."

00s Music Quiz 1Music Quiz

Do you know the girl singer on Eminem's "Stan"? If so, this quiz is for you.

Brenda RussellSongwriter Interviews

Brenda talks about the inspiration that drove her to write hit songs like "Get Here" and "Piano in the Dark," and why a lack of formal music training can be a songwriter's best asset.

Chrissie Hynde of The PretendersSongwriter Interviews

The rock revolutionist on songwriting, quitting smoking, and what she thinks of Rush Limbaugh using her song.

Frankie ValliSong Writing

An interview with Frankie Valli, who talks about why his songs - both solo and with The Four Seasons - have endured, and reflects on his time as Rusty Millio on The Sopranos.

Scott StappSongwriter Interviews

The Creed lead singer reveals the "ego and self-fulfillment" he now sees in one of the band's biggest hits.