Lady Be Good

Synopsis: Songwriters Dixie Donegan and Eddie Crane are still in love after their divorce. Dixie's friend Marilyn Marsh tries to convince them to marry again, but this isn't that easy.
Genre: Comedy, Musical
112 min

Do you swear to tell the truth,

nothing but the truth, so help you God?

- I do.

- Sit down, please.

You're a professional songwriter,

I believe, Mrs. Crane.

- I am.

- Your husband also?

- Yes.

- You composed love songs together, eh?

- Mostly.

- Who wrote the words?

- I did.

- I see.

And your husband furnished the music?

Oh, no, his music came first,

I furnished the words.

How long did you know the defendant

before you married him?

About four and a half years.

And you met him professionally

at that time?

Well, um, not exactly, Your Honor.

You see...

Well, he used to come into a little

restaurant on 47th Street where I worked.

I used to serve him breakfast

every day at 12.

He'd eat 50 cents' worth

and I'd only punch 20 on the check.

That's how we became acquainted.

Why did you do that?

I liked him.

Well, don't you think that was

dishonest to your employer?

No. I always put the difference

on somebody else's check.

I take it Mr. Crane wasn't so successful.

- Well, nobody appreciated him then.

- Except you.

- Well, I didn't count.

- But you encouraged him.

- Yes.

- So you feel you discovered him?

No. Eddie discovered me.

- How?

- I went out with him one night...

Proceed, Mrs. Crane.

Well, we became a habit.

I know, but how did you happen

to become a writer of lyrics?


Well, I started rewriting

Mother Goose when I was only 6.

Then I wound up writing verses

on greeting cards...

...and the firm went bankrupt.

That's when I went into dealing them

off the arm.

- Off the arm?

- Yes. You know, like:

Oh, I'm sorry.

I mean, that's when I became a waitress.

- Your Honor, may I interrupt?


I would like Mrs. Crane to tell us how she

formed this partnership with her husband.

It's relevant at this point.

Just tell us in your own words,

Mrs. Crane.

Well, it all happened

very suddenly one night.

We were sitting in a little gloomy piano

room at Max Milton's publishing house.

Max thought Eddie had talent,

so he let him use the room as a favor.

Well, Eddie was working with a lyric writer

on one of the best tunes he ever wrote.

But it was no dice.

I was just sitting there

listening to that piano.

They'd been going on for hours.

Something's wrong.

Maybe it's me or the tune.

I don't know, but I'm not clicking.

Well, you will. You will.

Take your time, Billy.

Look, Eddie, I'll be frank with you.

It's silly for us to waste our time.

I just don't like the tune.


That doesn't mean we can't get together.

That's not the only tune you'll write.

I don't know whether it is or not.

You're taking it too serious, kid.

Pull yourself together. Let's get coffee.

- What do you say?

- Whatever Eddie says.

No, you go ahead.

I'll stick around for a while.

Okay. No hard feelings?

No, certainly not.

And thanks for getting together with me.

Forget it. If you think you got something,

give me a jingle.

- I want a hit as much as you. Good night.

Good night.

- Night, Dixie.

- Night.

I'm sorry,

I didn't mean to take it out on you.


...I know you're disappointed,

and I don't blame you.

Just because Billy

says the tune's no good...

...that doesn't make it so.

Why, it's beautiful.

You don't understand.

It isn't only the song.

It isn't necessarily Billy. It's just that...

Well, in this business

you've gotta have a hookup, a team.

There's no sense in writing a tune

then peddling it like a hot fur coat...

...from one guy to another

hoping to get a fluke hit.

You've gotta work with somebody

until you've built a style...

...and a quality that's recognizable.

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Jack McGowan

John "Jack" McGowan (1894–1977) was an American librettist, director and producer. more…

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Submitted on August 05, 2018

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    "Lady Be Good" STANDS4 LLC, 2021. Web. 21 Oct. 2021. <>.

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