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Bob Kennedy sings “Whispering” (music by Vincent Rose, lyric by Richard Coburn and John Schoenberger, 1920) in a 1947 Soundie. Soundies are short musical films which were played in a kind of motion picture jukebox in restaurants and bars.

“Whispering” was first recorded by the Paul Whiteman Orchestra and became the first record to sell a million copies. Bob Kennedy was a singer and actor whose daughter Karen invited Michael Feinstein to come to her father’s New Jersey home, after his death in 2007, and go through her father’s collection of sheet music, manuscripts, recordings, and other memorabilia. Among them were unpublished lyrics and arrangements of historical importance. Karen donated the materials to the Michael Feinstein Foundation for the Preservation of the Great American Songbook.

This Soundie was discovered in the course of making the PBS series, in the film collection of J. Fred MacDonald.

  • 1947
  • PBS Episode(s): 1
  • Performance: “Whispering” by Vincent Rose, Richard Coburn and John Schoenberger, performed by Bob Kennedy
  • Performance Type: Movie
  • Performance Venue: Whispering