The golden age of the Hollywood musical is deeply rooted in the nostalgia and Americana of the mid twentieth century. Over this period, the titans of the American Songbook like Irving Berlin, Arthur Freed and Rodgers and Hammerstein rose to prominence in Hollywood. While culture changed drastically over those twenty years, the songs they wrote were still being sung.
In the introductory episode of Anatomy of a Song, I examine the 1945 and 1962 versions of the popular musical State Fair, and how the different interpretations of the song “Isn’t It Kinda Fun” demonstrate the cultural evolution in the United States over the decades separating both movies.
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