Puneet Varma (Editor)

Put the Blame on Mame

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"Put the Blame on Mame" is a song by Allan Roberts and Doris Fisher, originally written for the classic film noir Gilda in 1946, in which it was sung by the title character, played by Rita Hayworth with the singing voice of Anita Kert Ellis dubbed in.

In keeping with the film character Gilda being "the ultimate femme fatale", the song sung by her at two scenes facetiously credits the amorous activities of a woman named "Mame" as the true cause of three well-known cataclysmic events in American history: The Great Chicago Fire of 1871, Great Blizzard of 1888 in New York City and the 1906 San Francisco earthquake. Mame is also credited with causing the fictional Shooting of Dan McGrew during the Yukon Gold Rush - an event derived from a short narrative poem published in 1907 by Robert W. Service.

The song was later reprised as an instrumental version in another quintessential noir film, 1953's The Big Heat, when Gilda star Glenn Ford first meets Lee Marvin's character in a bar.

It was later also recorded by:

  • Gypsy Rose Lee in the movie Screaming Mimi
  • Gale Robbins in the movie The Fuller Brush Girl
  • Nat Gonella & His Georgians.
  • Barbara Hale in "The Houston Story".
  • Liane Foly
  • John Williams and His Orchestra
  • Milt Herth Trio
  • Somethin' Smith and the Redheads
  • Tapio Rautavaara (in Finnish)
  • Alexia Vassiliou
  • Viktor Lazlo (for her debut album She)
  • Mark Murphy
  • Nancy Murphy
  • A clip of Hayworth singing the song in Gilda was to be included in Michael Jackson's performance of "Smooth Criminal" in the planned show This Is It.

    In 2004 "Put the Blame on Mame" finished #84 in AFI's 100 Years...100 Songs survey of the top tunes in American cinema.


    Put the Blame on Mame Wikipedia