“Please Don’t Talk About Me When I’m Gone” is a song published in 1930….which was written by Sam H. Stept with lyrics by Sidney Clare….with the original publication also crediting singer Bee Palmer as co-composer. The lyrics are an admonishment between parting lovers….where the singer asks the other to either speak nicely of her, or not at all. Early hit versions in 1931 were by Gene Austin and Bert Lown.
The song was covered by many great singers to include Mose Allison, Harry Connick + Carmen McRae, Bing Crosby, Sammy Davis Jr., Doris Day, Ella Fitzgerald + the Count Basie Orchestra, Connie Francis, Bill Haley + The Comets, Billie Holliday, Jerry Lee Lewis, Dean Martin, Pete Seger + Arlo Guthrie, Willie Nelson, Ray Price, Leon Redbone, Frank Sinatra, Bob Wills +The Texas Playboys and Johnny Gimble + The Texas Swing Pioneers with J R Chatwell singing “Please Don’t Talk About Me When I’m Gone” in this video herewith.
This song is sung by Norma Shearer’s character Mary Haines in the 1939 film The Women…. as a joke when she leaves her girl friends alone at tea….while she takes a call from her philandering husband Stephen Haines….plus, the song was used in the film House of Strangers in 1949….when it was performed by Dolores Parker at the restaurant…..and in the 1950 film The Breaking Point….when it was sung by Patricia Neal at the bar…..and in Lullaby of Broadway in 1951….when it was sung by Gladys George. The song was also sung by the character Michigan J. Frog in the 1955 Warner Bros. animated short One Froggy Evening…. plus, television anchor Edwin Newman sang the song during his hosting of Saturday Night Live in 1984…..and Jamie Cullum also performed the song on the last Michael Parkinson chat show in December 2007.