“But I must say he’s a little peculiar and hard to get used to.” – Judy Garland joking about new husband Vincente Minnelli in 1945
June 17, 1926: The Gumm family’s working/vacation trip to California continued with their engagement at the Liberty Theater in Kalispell, Montana. They were billed as “Jack and Virginia Lee and Three Little Lees.”
June 17, 1934: “The Gumm Sisters” (Judy and her sisters) sang at a Farewell Reception/Open House at their home in the Silverlake district of Los Angeles, California. The event was the kick-off of their cross-country tour that culminated in their engagement at the Oriental Theater in Chicago which is where the name change from Gumm to Garland happened.
Photos above: A page from the 2016 Holiday issue of “Garlands for Judy” which featured an article about the various places Judy and her family lived in over the years in the greater Los Angeles area.
June 17, 1937: Judy was one of Frank Morgan’s guests on his new 15-minute weekly limited radio series. Not much is known about these shows aside from what’s been printed in the papers. There are no known recordings and it’s unknown what Judy sang. She might not have actually participated live but rather via MGM recordings (air trailers). The show was too short to include very much so it’s safe to say that the shows were probably just extended commercials promoting MGM films.
June 17, 1939: Babes in Arms filming continued with rehearsals for the “Babes In Arms” production number. Filming was done on the following sets on MGM’s Backlot #2 (the “Andy Hardy” street: “Exterior Alley”, “Exterior Lumber Yard”, “Exterior Moran Backyard”, and “Exterior Moran Home.” Judy was due on set at 9 a.m.; dismissed at 12:15 p..m.
June 17, 1945: This article titled “The Life and Second Love of Judy Garland” by Mary Morris was published in the “Des Moine Register.” “Second Love” is referencing Judy’s recent second marriage, to Vincente Minnelli. Click on the image to read the article.
Also on June 17th: Judy’s first dramatic film, The Clock, was enjoying continued success and good reviews nationwide.
On this day at MGM, Judy had another rehearsal for The Barkleys of Broadway. She was on time for her 1:30 p.m. call, dismissed: 5:25 p.m.
June 17, 1949: Sheilah Graham’s column reported on Judy’s recent suspension from Annie Get Your Gun claiming that Judy would go back in the film but that she lost the lead in Lovely To Look At. Judy was never seriously in the running for the film, which was made in 1952 with Kathryn Grayson and Howard Keel in the lead roles.
Check out The Judy Room’s The Films That Got Away section for more information about film projects Judy was mentioned for or really in the running for.
June 17, 1950: Judy woke with a migraine and called MGM to cancel her 1 p.m. rehearsal call for Royal Wedding. MGM promptly placed her on suspension in spite of the $20,604 already spent on the film. She had not yet recorded the score, as that was scheduled for just a few days later on June 19th, including the ballad “Too Late Now” which was written for Judy. Her replacement, Jane Powell, sang it in the finished film. Judy performed it on the first episode taped for her TV series in 1963.
June 17, 1954: Judy had a pre-recording session for A Star Is Born although it’s not known just what numbers were recorded. They weren’t listed. It could have been a rehearsal session as Judy had just begun work on pre-recording the extensive “Born in a Trunk” segment.
June 17, 1958: The final recording session for the Capitol album “Judy in Love.” Judy recorded “Do It Again”; “I Am Loved”; “I Concentrate On You”; and “Do I Love You?”
Listen to “Do It Again” here:
Listen to “I Am Loved” here:
Listen to “I Concentrate On You” here:
Listen to “Do I Love You?” here:
The mono version was released on November 3, 1958, and the stereo version, which contains the exact same performances as the mono version excepting the ending of “Zing! Went The Strings Of My Heart,” was released on February 16, 1959.
June 17, 1960: The final recording session for the Capitol album “Judy: That’s Entertainment!” Judy recorded “That’s Entertainment!”; “Old Devil Moon”; “I’ve Confessed To The Breeze”; and “Alone Together.”
Listen to “That’s Entertainment!” here:
Listen to “Old Devil Moon” here:
Listen to “I’ve Confessed To The Breeze” here:
Listen to “Alone Together” here:
Judy probably also recorded “Yes” on this date although the recording date is always listed as June 8th, however, the master number, 34026, is the highest (last) number listed in the logs for the album’s sessions.
June 17, 1961: Judy attended a dinner party given by Attorney General Robert Kennedy and his wife, Ethel, on the lawn of their home, Hickory Hill, in McLean, Virginia, to celebrate their eleventh wedding anniversary.
Judy was one of several musical guests on hand to provide entertainment for the Kennedy family, including Kay Thompson (she and Judy were both close friends and supporters of the Kennedys) and Ethel Merman (who happens to be a Republican). With Lester Lanin and His Orchestra accompanying them, Judy, Kay, and Ethel sang”The Trolley Song.” Unfortunately, no recording was made of this performance.
June 17, 1964: The rumors about Judy marrying Mark Herron were still in the news when on this day Judy’s attorney Howard Schwab announced that she had simply received a blessing from a Buddhist priest, which is what started the rumors. Judy was still legally married to Sid Luft and did not marry Herron until November 14, 1965.
June 17, 1969: Judy and her husband Mickey Deans flew back to London from New York. Bob Jorgen took the couple to New York’s Kennedy Airport where, according to Gerald Clarke, after saying his goodbyes, Jorgen called Mickey back to say “take very good care of her, because she’s dying.” On the plane, Judy allegedly agreed to Dean’s proposal of their own “A Day In The Life Of Judy Garland” film, plus a concert for which Judy had handwritten a list of songs: Orchestra Arrangements: “Georgia Rose”, “Georgia On My Mind”, “Second Hand Rose”, “San Francisco Bay”, “You Came A Long Way From St. Louis”, “Before The Parade Passes By”, “Second Hand Rose (reprise)”, Intro Orchestra and “I Love A Parade.” Good New Songs: “Open 1. “Someone Needs Me”, “Who Am I?”, segue into “At Last I Have Someone Who Needs Me”, (above-definite!), “Newley’s This Dream”, Get Lindsey’s Orch of “Here’s To Us.”
When they arrived home at the mews cottage, Judy’s friend, and the head of the London fan club, Lorna Smith, who had dressed her at the Talk of the Town in January, came over to help unpack. Judy also spoke on the phone with Brian Glanvill, a London fan, who called Judy at the suggestion of their mutual friend, the designer Beatrice “Bumble” Dawson. Dawson thought Brian might work for Judy as an assistant. Brian says Judy told him he should come over to see her soon, and he sent her flowers to thank her until he would be able to meet with her. They would never meet.
Photos: These two photos are allegedly the last photos taken of Judy in New York shortly before the trip to London (taken on June 15th). Judy is seen with her friend Bob Jorgenson. Both photos provided by Bobby Waters. Thanks, Bobby!