The Life and Music of Savannah-Born Songwriter Johnny Mercer

Jun 21, 2018

Johnny Mercer grew up in Savannah and went on to write some of the most popular love songs of the 20th century. You may not know his name, but you certainly know his music, which includes "Something’s Gotta Give," "Moon River," and "Autumn Leaves." Between 1929 and 1976, Mercer wrote the lyrics—and in some cases the music too—to some 1,400 songs.

We explore the life and music of Johnny Mercer with Georgia State University archivist Kevin Fleming. Georgia State is the repository for Johnny Mercer’s papers as well as a vast collection of other materials related to his life and career.

Fleming shares the surprising stories behind some of Mercer’s biggest songs. Hear how the songwriter made a hit out of a message addressed to him on a postcard and wrote another popular song in under ten minutes.