Bei Mir Bistu Shein

Bei Mir Bistu Shein

Bei Mir Bistu Shein

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"Bei Mir Bistu Shein" (, "To Me You're Beautiful") is a popular Yiddish song composed by Jacob Jacobs (lyricist) and Sholom Secunda (composer) for a 1932 Yiddish musical, I Would If I Could (in Yiddish, Men Ken Lebn Nor Men Lost Nisht, "You could live, but they won't let you"), that closed after one season. The score for the song transcribed the Yiddish title as "Bay mir bistu sheyn".

The original Yiddish version of the song (in C minor) is really a dialogue between two lovers who share lines of the song.

The song became famous with English lyrics but retaining the Yiddish title, "Bei Mir Bistu Shein". It also appeared with a Germanized title "Bei Mir Bist Du Schoen".

In 1937, Sammy Cahn heard a performance of the song, sung in Yiddish by African American performers Johnnie and George at the Apollo Theater in Harlem. On seeing the response, Cahn got his employer to buy the rights so he (together with Saul Chaplin) could rewrite the song with English language lyrics and rhythms more typical of swing music. Secunda and Jacobs sold the publishing rights to the song for a mere US$30. Cahn then convinced the still unknown Andrews Sisters to perform the song (recorded November 24, 1937). It became their first major hit, earning them a gold record, the first ever to a female vocal group. The song is performed by Renata Flores in the film The Last Metro. It was also a worldwide hit beyond ...
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