A Lost Love Is Hard: Jazz Singers Understand

Partner content from Jazz24

Broken Heart. i i
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Broken Heart.
iStockphoto.com

Valentine's Day is great for lovers, but what about those who have loved and lost? Don't they deserve a Valentine's gift, too? Absolutely. So here are five deliciously heartbreaking songs of love lost by some of the greatest jazz singers of all time. You might be lonely, but you're not alone.

A Lost Love Is Hard: Jazz Singers Understand

Cover for Tony Bennett/Bill Evans Album

Bill Evans/Tony Bennett

  • Album: Tony Bennett/Bill Evans Album [Bonus Tracks]
  • Song: Some Other Time

It took three great songwriters (or one great composer and two great songwriters) to come up with this beauty: Leonard Bernstein, Betty Green, and Adolph Comden. But it only took two great musicians to give it what we think is its definitive recording: Tony Bennett and Bill Evans. This song is included on the first of two collaborations between the world's finest saloon singer and the master of jazz piano. The other is called Together Again.

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Song
Some Other Time
Album
Tony Bennett/Bill Evans Album [Bonus Tracks]
Artist
Bill Evans/Tony Bennett
Label
Fantasy
Released
2006

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Cover for Jazz 'Round Midnight: Dinah Washington

Dinah Washington

  • Album: Jazz 'Round Midnight: Dinah Washington
  • Song: You Don't Know What Love Is

When it comes to singing about lost love, you can believe every word you hear from Dinah Washington. In her 39 years on the planet, she was married seven (some say eight) times and, in this version of "You Don't Know What Love Is," she brings all her hard-won experience front and center. If you're just coming out of a romance that's gone bad, you might want to wait until you're feeling a little better before listening to this one. It's a crusher.

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Song
You Don't Know What Love Is
Album
Jazz 'Round Midnight: Dinah Washington
Artist
Dinah Washington
Label
Verve

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Cover for Come Dream with Me

Jane Monheit

  • Album: Come Dream with Me
  • Song: Blame It on My Youth

We feel that "Blame It on My Youth" sounds best when sung by someone who's actually... well... young. Jane Monheit recorded this version of the song in 2001, when she was 20. Monheit has one of the most beautiful voices in jazz today, and she uses it to great advantage on this song.

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Song
Blame It on My Youth
Album
Come Dream with Me
Artist
Jane Monheit
Label
Sony Jazz
Released
2001

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Cover for Quiet Now: Ella's Moods

Ella Fitzgerald

  • Album: Quiet Now: Ella's Moods
  • Song: Cry Me a River

Arthur Hamilton wrote this song specifically for Ella Fitzgerald to sing in the 1955 film Pete Kelly's Blues. The way the story goes, however, the film's producer didn't like the fact that the word "plebian" was in the song (go figure) and asked Hamilton to change it. Hamilton refused, the song was dropped, and Fitzgerald never got a chance to record "Cry Me a River" until 1961. It was worth the wait.

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Song
Cry Me a River
Album
Quiet Now: Ella's Moods
Artist
Ella Fitzgerald
Label
Polygram
Released
1999

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Cover 'Lady in Autumn'

Billie Holiday

  • Album: Lady in Autumn: The Best of the Verve Years
  • Song: These Foolish Things

It's always nice to save the best for last. That's why we decided to end this list with The Queen of (Broken) Hearts: Billie Holiday. You want to hear what lost love sounds like? Just listen to this.

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Song
These Foolish Things
Album
Lady in Autumn: The Best of the Verve Years
Artist
Billie Holiday
Label
Verve
Released
1946

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