Judy at Carnegie Hall

Judy at Carnegie Hall
Live album by Judy Garland
Released July 10, 1961 (1961-07-10)
Recorded April 23, 1961, at Carnegie Hall
Genre Jazz vocal
Length 122:51
Label Capitol
Judy Garland chronology
That's Entertainment! (1960) Judy at Carnegie Hall (1961) Judy Garland Live! (1962)
Professional ratings
Review scores

Judy at Carnegie Hall is a two-record live recording of a concert by Judy Garland at Carnegie Hall in New York, complete with backing orchestra led by Mort Lindsey.

This concert appearance, on the night of Sunday April 23, 1961, has been called "the greatest night in show business history".[2] Garland's live performances were big successes at the time and her record company wanted to capture that energy onto a recording. The double album became a hit, both critically and commercially. The album also won the Grammy Award for Album of the Year, making Garland the first woman to win the award.

Judy Garland's career had moved from movies in the 1940s, to vaudeville and elaborate stage shows in the 1950s. She also suffered from extreme drug and alcohol abuse, and, by 1959, had become overweight and ill and needed extensive medical treatment. After a long convalescence, weight loss, and vocal rest, she returned in 1960 to the concert stage with a simple program of 'just Judy.' Garland's 1960-1961 tour of Europe and North America was a success, and her stage presence was highly regarded. Eventually Judy was billed as "The World's Greatest Entertainer". Audiences were documented as leaving their seats and crowding around the stage to be closer to Garland, and often called her back for encore after encore, even asking her to repeat a song after her book of arrangements was completed.


On the evening of the Carnegie show, after a bombastic overture that built high emotion, Judy appeared looking remarkably healthy and well-groomed to a loud ovation from the star-studded audience. The raucous standing ovation when she took the stage set the tone for the evening that followed. "They were on their feet even before the goddess grabbed the microphone," wrote Lewis Funke for the New York Times. Alan King told Garland biographer John Fricke, that Howard Arlen, in the seat next to King, confided that he was worried about Garland's physical condition, not having seen her since before her 1959 hospital stay. "Then she walked out," King said. "She was magnificent: svelte, beautifully dressed, perfectly made up. She sang "When You're Smiling" and when she got to the second chorus ... Arlen turned to me and said, 'I think we're in good shape tonight'". Judith Christ wrote for the New York Herald, "And then she sang. And she sang, let it be reported, as she hasn't in years."

The New York Times wrote: "Indeed, what actually was to have been a concert – and was – also turned into something not too remote from a revival meeting." The recorded applause on the album is lengthy and loud and illustrates the energetic connection between Garland and her fans. Ann Miller once characterized Judy as having a "force field" around her onstage. Her audience at Carnegie Hall included theatre performers on their usual Sunday night off, and the celebrities appeared to be as enthusiastic as the rest of the audience. Even Judy's peers were "reaching out to touch Judy Garland" as Rex Reed would state years later. Among those who attended the show are Carol Channing, Lauren Bacall, Henry Fonda, Richard Burton, Spencer Tracy, Julie Andrews, Rock Hudson, Mike Nichols, Elaine May, Leonard Bernstein, Betty Comden, Adolph Green, Phyllis Newman, Kay Medford, Jerry Herman and Terrence McNally. Photographs on the liner notes show the audience, in evening dress, lining the stage as was indicative of a Garland performance. Lauren Bacall claimed to have seen Leonard Bernstein excitedly jumping up and down in his chair. On the record, the audience is excitedly loud in their applause even before Garland has finished the final chorus to "San Francisco". In the biographical film, Beyond The Rainbow, Adolph Green stated emphatically, "That night, there seemed to be no end to her energy". After "Rock-a-bye Your Baby With a Dixie Melody", a three-minute song, the audience loudly applauds for almost 2 minutes and then catcalls requests for the next song. Judy glibly responded, "I know, I'll sing 'em all and we'll stay all night!" to which the audience roars in thunderous approval.

Reviews of the show gave high marks, and commented on Garland's exuberance, energy, vocal power, and the emotional effects that she had on her audience. Hedda Hopper (who was in attendance), reviewed Garland's ability to embrace her audience by saying of the show, "..I never saw the like of it in my life." Life magazine wrote of the concert that Garland was "part bluebird, part phoenix, she is a legend in her own time". "She wove enchantment," wrote The Times. By all accounts, even if the concert had not been recorded, the evening's performance was a resounding success. Alan Livingston, the head of Capitol Records, called the performance "...more than a commercial success; It was really an artistic success". The release of Judy at Carnegie Hall, only two months after the concert, cemented her comeback from illness, and brought her a new widespread popular acclaim. To this day, Judy At Carnegie Hall is considered one of the greatest live performances ever caught on record.


The double album was a huge best seller—charting for 73 weeks on the Billboard chart, including 13 weeks at number one, and being certified gold. It won four Grammy Awards, for Album of the Year (the first live music album and the first album by a female performer to win the award), Best Female Vocal Performance, Best Engineered Album, and Best Album Cover.[3] The album has never been out of print.

In 2003, the album was one of 50 recordings chosen that year by the Library of Congress to be added to the National Recording Registry.

Track listing

Side one
No. TitleWriter(s) Length
1. "Overture":
a) "The Trolley Song"
b) "Over the Rainbow"
c) "The Man That Got Away"  

a) Ralph Blane, Hugh Martin
b) Harold Arlen, Yip Harburg
c) Harold Arlen, Ira Gershwin
2. "When You're Smiling (The Whole World Smiles With You)"  Mark Fisher, Joe Goodwin, Larry Shay 3:29
3. "Medley":
a) "Almost Like Being in Love"
b)"This Can't Be Love"  

a) Alan Jay Lerner, Frederick Loewe
b) Richard Rodgers, Lorenz Hart
4. "Do It Again"  George Gershwin, Buddy DeSylva 6:16
5. "You Go to My Head"  J. Fred Coots, Haven Gillespie 2:43
6. "Alone Together"  Howard Dietz, Arthur Schwartz 5:38
Side two
No. TitleWriter(s) Length
1. "Who Cares (As Long as You Care for Me)"  George Gershwin, Ira Gershwin 1:46
2. "Puttin' On the Ritz"  Irving Berlin 2:45
3. "How Long Has This Been Going On?"  George Gershwin, Ira Gershwin 4:12
4. "Just You, Just Me"  Jesse Greer, Raymond Klages 2:16
5. "The Man That Got Away"  Harold Arlen, Ira Gershwin 5:03
6. "San Francisco"  Walter Jurmann, Gus Kahn, Bronisław Kaper 4:45
7. "I Can't Give You Anything But Love"  Dorothy Fields, Jimmy McHugh 6:46
8. "That's Entertainment!"  Howard Dietz, Arthur Schwartz 6:38
Side three
No. TitleWriter(s) Length
1. "Come Rain or Come Shine"  Harold Arlen, Johnny Mercer 7:23
2. "You're Nearer"  Richard Rodgers, Lorenz Hart 2:33
3. "A Foggy Day"  George Gershwin, Ira Gershwin 3:04
4. "If Love Were All"  Noël Coward 2:53
5. "Zing! Went the Strings of My Heart"  James F. Hanley 4:04
6. "Stormy Weather"  Harold Arlen, Ted Koehler 6:11
Side four
No. TitleWriter(s) Length
1. "Medley":
a) "You Made Me Love You"
b) "For Me and My Gal"
c) "The Trolley Song"  

a) Joseph McCarthy, James V. Monaco, Roger Edens
b) George W. Meyer, Edgar Leslie, E. Ray Goetz
c) Hugh Martin, Ralph Blane
2. "Rock-a-Bye Your Baby with a Dixie Melody"  Sam M. Lewis, Jean Schwartz, Joe Young 5:22
3. "Over the Rainbow"  Harold Arlen, Yip Harburg 5:47
4. "Swanee"  Irving Caesar, George Gershwin 7:31
5. "After You've Gone"  Henry Creamer, Turner Layton 4:20
6. "Chicago"  Fred Fisher 5:15

Weekly charts

Chart Position
UK Albums (OCC)[4] 13
US Billboard 200[5] 199
US Top Catalog Albums (Billboard)[6] 26

Certifications and sales

Region Certification Certified units/Sales
United States (RIAA)[7] Gold 500,000^

*sales figures based on certification alone
^shipments figures based on certification alone


  1. AllMusic review
  2. Me and My Shadows: Life With Judy Garland (2001)
  3. "Grammy Award Winners – Judy at Carnegie Hall". The Recording Academy. Retrieved 2008-11-29.
  4. "Judy Garland | Artist | Official Charts". UK Albums Chart Retrieved March 8, 2016.
  5. "Judy Garland – Chart history" Billboard 200 for Judy Garland. Retrieved March 8, 2016.
  6. "Judy Garland – Chart history" Billboard Top Catalog Albums for Judy Garland. Retrieved March 8, 2016.
  7. "American album certifications – Judy Garland – Judy at Carnegie Hall". Recording Industry Association of America. If necessary, click Advanced, then click Format, then select Album, then click SEARCH

External links

Preceded by
Something for Everybody by Elvis Presley
Billboard 200 number-one album (mono)
September 11 – December 10, 1962
Succeeded by
Blue Hawaii (soundtrack) by Elvis Presley
Preceded by
Stars of a Summer Night by Various artists
Billboard 200 number-one album (stereo)
September 11 – November 12, 1962
Succeeded by
Stereo 35/MM by Enoch Light & the Light Brigade
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