Harry Ruby (January 27, 1895 in New York City[1] – February 23, 1974 in Woodland Hills, California) was a Jewish American songwriter and screenwriter.

After failing in his early ambition to become a professional baseball player, Ruby toured the vaudeville circuit as a pianist with the Bootblack Trio and the Messenger Boys Trio, where he met his long-time partner Bert Kalmar. Together, Ruby and Kalmar formed a successful songwriting team until the latter's death in 1947, and this partnership is portrayed in the 1950 MGM musical Three Little Words starring Fred Astaire as Kalmar and Red Skelton as Ruby.

Music by Ruby can be heard in the films:

  • Animal Crackers (1930)
  • Horse Feathers (1932)
  • Duck Soup (1933)
  • Bright Lights (1935)
  • Walking on Air (1936)

Ruby also screenwrote such works as:

  • The Kid from Spain (1932)
  • Horse Feathers (1932)
  • Duck Soup (1933)
  • Bright Lights (1935)
  • Walking on Air (1936)
  • The Life of the Party (1937)
  • Lovely to Look at (1952)

Ruby's works on Broadway include the following:

  • Ziegfeld Follies of 1918 (1918)- revue - featured songwriter
  • Helen of Troy, New York (1923) - musical - co-composer and co-lyricist
  • No Other Girl (1924) - musical - co-composer and co-lyricist
  • Holka Polka (1925) - musical - co-book-editor
  • The Ramblers (1926) - musical - co-composer, co-lyricist and co-bookwriter
  • Lucky (1927) - musical - co-bookwriter
  • The Five O'Clock Girl (1927) - musical - composer
  • She's My Baby (1928) - musical - co-bookwriter
  • Good Boy (1928) - musical - co-composer and co-lyricist
  • Animal Crackers (1928) - musical - co-composer and co-lyricist
  • Top Speed (1929) - musical - co-producer and co-bookwriter
  • High Kickers (1941) - musical - co-composer, co-lyricist and co-bookwriter
  • Fosse (1998) - revue - featured songwriter for "Who's Sorry Now" from "All That Jazz" 1979

In his 1972 concert at Carnegie Hall, Groucho Marx presented this intro and a song of Ruby's that he liked:

I have a friend in Hollywood... I think I do, but I'm not sure. [laughter] His name is Harry Ruby [applause] and he wrote a lot of songs that I've sung over the years...

Today, Father, is Father's Day
And we're giving you a tie
It's not much we know
It is just our way of showing you
We think you're a regular guy
You say that it was nice of us to bother
But it really was a pleasure to fuss
For according to our mother
You're our father
And that's good enough for us
Yes, that's good enough for us

Hit songs by Kalmar and Ruby

  • "My Honey's Lovin' Arms": Later recorded by Barbra Streisand on her album @The Barbra Streisand Album".
  • "Who's Sorry Now?" (1923): Kalmar and Ruby's first big hit.
  • "Rebecca Came Back From Mecca" (1921)
  • "I Wanna Be Loved by You" (1928): a hit for Helen Kane, known as the "Boop-boop-a-doop girl."
  • "Everyone Says I Love You"
  • "I Love You So Much" (1928)
  • "Three Little Words" (1930): Their biggest hit.
  • "Nevertheless" (1931): A hit for both Bing Crosby and Rudy Vallee, later sung by The Mills Brothers and Frank Sinatra.
  • "What A Perfect Combination" (1932): lyrics by Kalmar and Irving Caesar, music by Ruby and Harry Akst, written for the Broadway show The Kid, which starred Eddie Cantor.
  • "A Kiss to Build a Dream on" (1935): His last hit.
  • "Thinking of You" (1927): Had hit recordings in 1950 by Eddie Fisher and Don Cherry.


This page uses content from the English Wikipedia. The original article was at Harry Ruby. The list of authors can be seen in the page history.

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