Al Hoffman

Al Hoffman

Al Hoffman (September 25 1902–July 21 1960), a member of the Songwriter's Hall Of Fame since 1984, was a hit songwriter active in the 1930s, 40s and 50s, usually co-writing with others and responsible for many number one hits through each decade, many of which are still sung and recorded today. The popularity of Hoffman's song, "Mairzy Doats", co-written with Jerry Livingston and Milton Drake, was such that newspapers and magazines wrote about the craze. Time magazine titled one article "Our Mairzy Dotage". The New York Times simply wrote the headline, "That Song".

Hoffman's songs were recorded by Frank Sinatra ("Close To You", "I'm Gonna Live Until I Die"), Billy Eckstine ("I Apologize") Perry Como ("Papa Loves Mambo", "Hot Diggity"), Ella Fitzgerald and Louis Armstrong ("Who Walks In When I Walk Out"), Nat "King" Cole, Tony Bennett, the Merry Macs, Sophie Tucker, Eartha Kitt, Patsy Cline, Patti Page ("Allegheny Moon"), Bette Midler, and most everyone who was a star of that era. In October, 2007, Hoffman's "I'm Gonna Live Til I Die" was the lead single from Queen Latifah's new album, "Trav'lin' Light".


Hoffman was born in Minsk in Russia (now Belarus). His parents moved to Seattle, Washington in the United States when he was 6. After graduating from high school in Seattle, he started his own band, playing the drums, and moved to New York City in 1928 to pursue a music career. Though he continued playing the drums in night club bands and selling bagels door-to-door on Broadway, he began writing songs, collaborating with such other songwriters as Leon Carr, Leo Corday, Mann Curtis, Mack David, Milton Drake, Al Goodhart, Walter Kent, Sammy Lerner, Jerry Livingston, Dick Manning, Bob Merrill, Ed Nelson, and Maurice Sigler.

In 1934 he moved to London to work on stage productions and movies, co-writing the hit songs "She Shall Have Music" and "Everything Stops For Tea". He returned to the U.S. three years later.

In 1984 he was inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame. He has over 1,500 songs registered with A.S.C.A.P.

He died in New York City of prostate cancer and is buried in New Jersey.

Partial list of published songs

ongs written by Al Hoffman and Dick Manning

*"Allegheny Moon" (1956)
*"Dennis The Menace Song" (1960)
*"Gilly, Gilly, Ossenfeffer, Katzenellen Bogen by the Sea" (1954)
*"Hot Diggity" (1956)
*"I Can't Tell A Waltz From A Tango" (1954)
*"Mama, Teach Me to Dance" (1956)
*"Moon Talk" (1958)
*"O Dio Mio" (1960)
*"Takes Two to Tango" (1952)

ongs written by Al Hoffman, Dick Manning, and another collaborator

*"Are You Really Mine?" (1958) (with Mark Markwell)
*"Make Me a Miracle" (1958) (with Mark Markwell)
*"Oh-Oh, I'm Falling in Love Again" (1958) (with Mark Markwell)
*"Papa Loves Mambo" (1954) (with Bix Reichner)
*"Secretly" (1958) (with Mark Markwell)

ongs written by Al Hoffman, Mack David, and Jerry Livingston

*"Bibbidi-Bobbidi-Boo" (1948)
*"Chi-Baba, Chi-Baba" (1947)
*"A Dream Is A Wish Your Heart Makes" (1949)
*"A Very Merry Un-Birthday To You" (1951)


*"Apple Blossoms and Chapel Bells"
*"Auf Wiedersehn, My Dear"
*"Bear Down, Chicago Bears"
*"Black-Eyed Susan Brown"
*"Close to You" (with Jerry Livingston and Carl Lampl)
*"Don’t Stay Away Too Long"
*"Everything Stops for Tea"
*"Everything's in Rhythm with My Heart" (1935) (with Al Goodhart and Maurice Sigler)
*"Fit as a Fiddle" (1932) (with Arthur Freed and Al Goodhart)
*"From One Minute to Another"
*"Goodnight, Wherever You Are"
*"Heartaches" (1931) (lyrics by John Clenner)
*"I Apologize" (1931) (lyrics by Al Goodhart)
*"If I Knew You Were Comin' I'd've Baked a Cake" (1950) (with Bob Merrill and Clem Watts)
*"I Must Have One More Kiss Kiss Kiss"
*"I Saw Stars"
*"I’m in a Dancing Mood"
*"Little Man You’ve Had a Busy Day"
*"Mairzy Doats"
*"Roll Up the Carpet" (1933) (lyrics by Raymond Klages, music by Raymond Klages, Al Goodhart, and Hoffman)
*"The Story of a Starry Night" (1941) (with Jerry Livingston and Mann Curtis)
*"There Isn’t Any Limit to My Love"
*"What’s the Good Word, Mr. Bluebird?"
*"Who Walks in When I Walk Out?"
*"Why Don’t You Practice What You Preach?"
*"Without Rhythm"


Hoffman is the great Uncle of New York songwriter, performer and writer Josh Max.

External links

*Shof|id=273|name=Al Hoffman

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