This Bop standard was composed by Anglo-American jazz pianist George Shearing in 1952. The song celebrates the famous New York jazz club Birdland, named after the saxophonist Charlie "Bird" Parker, which was a venue for many leading Jazz musicians.
This tune has been recorded by many other vocal and instrumental performers, including Sarah Vaughan, Mel Torme and Blue Stars. The latter were a Paris-based 4-man, 4-woman pop-jazz group led by former American big band vocalist, Blossom Dearie, whose version arranged by Michael Legrand reached #16 in the US singles chart in 1956.
Linda Macrae from Hamilton CanadaElla was one of the true greats of America’s vocalists in the early jazz era, and also a wonderful interpreter of modern American ballads - Cole Porter, Oscar Hammerstein, George Gershwin, et al! So glad her music is still with us and played today. A tribute to her great talent. I was a visitor to Birdland all those many years ago! Love Ella’s version!
Frederic from VirginiaBirdland became famous for the live broadcasts made there. The club's owner, Morris Levy, asked George to record a theme song for the show. But Shearing didn’t like the song that Levy gave him, so he offered to write one especially for the show.
Steve Dotstar from Los Angeles, CaI think George composed this wilhe he was playing at Birdland....or so i have heard.
"Islands in the Stream" was originally written by The Bee Gees as an R&B song. It was originally written by the brothers for Marvin Gaye, however it was recorded instead as a duet by Kenny Rogers and Dolly Parton with the Gibb Brothers also contributing vocals.