Number One on the Charts – July 10, 1950

“Mona Lisa” sung by the unforgettable Nat King Cole.


nat king cole


The song was written by Ray Evans and Jay Livingston for the Paramount Pictures film Captain Carey, U.S.A. and won the Academy Award for Best Original Song for 1950.

The arrangement was by Nelson Riddle and the orchestral backing was played by Les Baxter and his Orchestra. The soundtrack version by Nat King Cole spent eight weeks at number one on the Billboard singles chart in 1950.  Cole’s version of the song was inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame in 1992.

“Mona Lisa” plays in the background of one scene in Alfred Hitchcock’s Rear Window (1954). In 1986, it was used as the theme for the British film Mona Lisa.  In 2003, Julia Roberts starred in Mona Lisa Smile, a movie about 1950s “Wellesley Girls” and the pressure to conform to a “woman’s role” of marriage and motherhood.



About wordcloud9

Nona Blyth Cloud has lived and worked in the Los Angeles area for the past 50 years, spending much of that time commuting on the 405 Freeway. After Hollywood failed to appreciate her genius for acting and directing, she began a second career managing non-profits, from which she has retired. Nona has now resumed writing whatever comes into her head, instead of reports and pleas for funding. She lives in a small house overrun by books with her wonderful husband.
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2 Responses to Number One on the Charts – July 10, 1950

  1. Wonderful! TY, Nona.

  2. wordcloud9 says:

    You’re very welcome Joy!

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