The Songbook

Songbook Cover

(click image to order on Amazon)

The Jeff Blumenkrantz Songbook, published in 2005, is a piano/vocal folio of songs with music by Jeff Blumenkrantz and lyrics by Jeff Blumenkrantz, Annie Kessler, Edna St. Vincent Millay, and Libby Saines. Click the image or this link to purchase on Amazon.

The complete contents include:

“I Won’t Mind”
as recorded by Audra McDonald on her CD How Glory Goes

and 18 never-before-published songs including:

“My Book”
the Sloth song from Audra McDonald’s Seven Deadly Sins song cycle

“Departure”
as recorded by Victoria Clark on her CD, Fifteen Seconds of Grace

“I’m Free”
as recorded by Lauren Kennedy on her CD, Here and Now

“Lament”
as recorded by Megan Mullally on her CD Big as a Berry

“Hold My Hand”
as recorded by Ron Destephano (Where Is Love…) and Rena Strober (Finding Home)

“Time Does Not Bring Relief”
as recorded by Alysha Umphress (I’ve Been Played: Alysha Umphress Swings Jeff Blumenkrantz) and Jennifer Brennan-Hondorp (All Will Be Well)

– as well as –

“All Because of You” and “Another Guy”
from Urban Cowboy, the Musical

“Independence Day”

“It’ll Work for You”

“Love Is Not All”

“Moving Right Along, Parts I & II”

“The Philosopher”

“Recuerdo”

“The Spring and the Fall”

“Take the Filter Off”

“Toll”

and “Walking the Wrong Way”

Please note: This product is not a CD/recording. It is a book of piano/vocal music.

The Jeff Blumenkrantz Songbook, Vol. 1$26.00 at Amazon

132 pages, Paperback, 9″ x 12″

 

Songbook FAQs

 

I’d like to hear your songs. Is there a CD I can buy?

No, there’s no CD, however you can hear live recordings of the songs on my Podcast page (free!), and you can also hear clips from the songs on my Songclips page (also free!).

I’d like to sing one of your songs from the songbook in a transposed key. Do you offer transpositions?

and/or

I’d like to purchase the sheet music for one of the songs in the book. Is that possible?

Yes. Please see options to do both in my music store!

I need your songbook or sheet music delivered quickly/overnight. Is this possible?

I no longer sell the songbook from this website. You can deal directly with Amazon.com.

I don’t live in the US. Can I still order your songbook?

If you have an international issue ordering the songbook from Amazon, let me know. We can figure something out….

I’d like to sing one of your songs for an audition or include it in my cabaret show. Is that OK?

Absolutely! I’m thrilled! Enjoy, and break a leg.

I’d like to include one of your songs on my CD. Is that OK?

Absolutely! I’m thrilled! My song, like all the others on your recording, would be subject to standard royalty fees. You can contact The Harry Fox Agency to pay those fees. However, if yours is the first recording of the song, you will need to secure permission and a mechanical license. All inquiries regarding recording issues should be addressed to me.

Are you still working on The Other Franklin? Is it possible to hear the rest of the score?

No. We are no longer working on The Other Franklin. And unfortunately, the rest of the score will not be made available.

Is that supposed to be an A Flat on the word “you” on page 75, measure 9, in the song “My Book?”

Yikes! Yes, and I have Prof. John Koch of Illinois State University to thank for finding this oversight. If anyone else finds one, let me know and I’ll give you credit too! 🙂

Is that a misprint in the first line of the lyric for “Love Is Not All?” I know this Millay sonnet, and I’m pretty sure it’s supposed to be: “Love is not all: it is not meat nordrink….”

Yikes again! Yes, and I have the wonderful singer Rebecca Luker to thank for finding this oversight. I’m completely horrified, and I hope Edna isn’t getting too dizzy in her grave. Nor! Nor!

In “Toll,” under the lyric “think they could chat for a minute or two,” should that F# change to an F natural on the third beat in the piano right hand?

Yikes yet again! This time, Geoffrey Castles gets the credit for calling this to my attention. Thanks, Geoff! (Specifically, it’s the 4th measure on page 114.)

Could you discuss the origin of the songs in the songbook?

ALL BECAUSE OF YOU

Written for the Broadway production of Urban Cowboy. Aunt Corene has waited up all night for Bud, her nephew, to arrive. He was expected for dinner the night before. Now it’s morning, and she’s pissed! In the original version, there was dialogue between Corene and Bud interspersed throughout the song, but for the purposes of the songbook, I revised it as a solo.

ANOTHER GUY

Also written for the Broadway production of Urban Cowboy. Sissy, a tough, young woman regales her friend/coworker with stories of her failed relationships. 

DEPARTURE

A musical setting of a poem by Pulitzer Prize-winning poet, Edna St. Vincent Millay (1892-1950). As printed, the last stanza of “Departure” is shown in italics, so I imagine the song as the stream of consciousness reflection of a New England girl at the turn of the century. Then, the chiming of the clock is what brings her back to reality (the italics).

HOLD MY HAND

Written for (and subsequently cut from) Hush. Miles Berlin is a neurotic, young theatre composer, and this song reveals his yearning to be in a relationship.

I WON’T MIND

Written for the unfinished musical, The Other Franklin. Lizzie is wife to William Franklin, who is Benjamin Franklin’s son. After years of desperately wanting a child, becoming pregnant and ultimately miscarrying, she learns that she will never bear a child. She sings the song to her godson (her best friends’ newborn) in the nursery, while everyone else is in the next room celebrating the christening. Recorded by Audra McDonald on her CD, How Glory Goes.

I’M FREE

Written for the one-act musical, Precious Little Jewel, based on the Kate Chopin short story, “The Story of an Hour.” In turn of the century New Orleans, Louise has just found out that her husband has been killed in a train crash. After her initial response of shock and despair, she begins to recall moments from her stifling marriage and ultimately rejoices in her newfound freedom.

INDEPENDENCE DAY

A little pop song written for an ex. (Note: this song was originally delivered via voicemail, hence the line “Hope this comes out clear.”)

IT’LL WORK FOR YOU

Written for Fits and Starts (an unfinished/abandoned project). Ben, a Jewish composer, has recently come out to his mother. This is her unique response to that news.

LAMENT

Another Millay setting. A mother tells her children that their father has died. Recorded by Megan Mullally on her CD, Big as a Berry.

LOVE IS NOT ALL

Another Millay setting. A world-wise woman’s reflection on the concept of love. (And, if you ask me, a flirtation. If I were shooting the video, she would be in bed with her lover, smoking a post-coital cigarette. Edna is spinning….)

MOVING RIGHT ALONG

Written for Fits and Starts. Ben and his best friend, Linc, go to their neighborhood gay bar to find dates for Ben. Instead, they decimate everyone in sight. 

“Moving Right Along” was rewritten as a women’s duet for Rebecca Luker’s American Songbook Series Concert at Lincoln Center, February 2005. 

MY BOOK

Written for the Audra McDonald song cycle, The Seven Deadly Sins, commissioned by Carnegie Hall for her series of concerts there in June 2004. Seven writers/teams were each assigned a sin to develop as a song. Mine was Sloth. (You can listen to that concert on npr.org.)

THE PHILOSOHPER

Another Millay setting for a female singer. A woman questions her flawed choice for a partner.

RECUERDO

Another Millay setting, this time as a duet. A couple tenderly reminisces about a special evening.

THE SPRING AND THE FALL

Another Millay setting for a female singer. Another woman recalls moments from a past relationship.

TAKE THE FILTER OFF

Written for Fits and Starts. Randy was Ben’s girlfriend for a year until he came out of the closet a year ago. She has transitioned (mostly) gracefully into being his best friend, and she has been encouraging him to get in the dating pool, to no avail. After his tirade about how undate-able the men in New York are, she diagnoses his “filter problem” and launches into this song.

TIME DOES NOT BRING RELIEF

Another Millay setting dealing with the process of recovering from a relationship which has ended. 

TOLL

A song sung by a female tollbooth worker in love with one of her driver “customers.” Written for an unproduced revue which explored themes of travel, people going places, movement, etc. 

WALKING THE WRONG WAY

Lyrics by Libby Saines. A self-contained cabaret-type song which explores a woman’s experience in an extramarital relationship with a younger man.