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Bobby Darin – Mack the Knife – 1959

About The Song

“Bobby Darin” was an American singer, songwriter, and actor, known for his versatility and contributions to various musical genres. “Mack the Knife” is one of his most famous songs, released in 1959, and it became a classic in the pop and jazz genres.

Five facts about “Mack the Knife” by Bobby Darin (1959):

  1. Adaptation from “The Threepenny Opera”: “Mack the Knife” is an adaptation of a song from Kurt Weill and Bertolt Brecht’s “The Threepenny Opera” titled “Die Moritat von Mackie Messer.” Bobby Darin’s version, with English lyrics by Marc Blitzstein, became a major hit.
  2. Chart-Topping Success: Darin’s rendition of “Mack the Knife” reached No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart in 1959. The song’s popularity helped establish Bobby Darin as a prominent figure in the music industry.
  3. Grammy Awards: The song earned Bobby Darin two Grammy Awards in 1960 – Record of the Year and Best New Artist. Darin’s dynamic performance and the song’s jazzy arrangement contributed to its critical acclaim.
  4. Live Performance at the Grammy Awards: Darin’s Grammy Awards performance of “Mack the Knife” showcased his charismatic stage presence. The live rendition captured the spontaneity and energy of his performances, contributing to the song’s lasting impact.
  5. Cultural Impact: “Mack the Knife” has been covered by numerous artists and has become a jazz standard. Its enduring popularity is evident in its continued use in films, TV shows, and commercials, solidifying its place as one of the iconic songs of the 20th century.



Oh, the shark, babe, has such teeth, dear
And it shows them pearly white
Just a jackknife has old MacHeath, babe
And he keeps it, ah, out of sight
You know when that shark bites with his teeth, babe
Scarlet billows start to spread
Fancy gloves, oh, wears old MacHeath, babe
So there’s never, never a trace of red

Now on the sidewalk, huh, huh, whoo sunny morning, un huh
Lies a body just oozin’ life, eek
And someone’s sneakin’ ’round the corner
Could that someone be Mack the Knife?

There’s a tugboat, huh, huh, down by the river don’tcha know
Where a cement bag’s just a-drooppin’ on down
Oh, that cement is just, it’s there for the weight, dear
Five’ll get ya ten, old Macky’s back in town
Now did ya hear ’bout Louie Miller? He disappeared, babe
After drawin’ out all his hard-earned cash
And now MacHeath spends just like a sailor
Could it be our boy’s done somethin’ rash?

Now Jenny Diver, ho, ho, yeah, Sukey Tawdry
Ooh, Miss Lotte Lenya and old Lucy Brown
Oh, the line forms on the right, babe
Now that Macky’s back in town

I said Jenny Diver, whoa, Sukey Tawdry
Look out to Miss Lotte Lenya and old Lucy Brown
Yes, that line forms on the right, babe
Now that Macky’s back in town
Look out, old Macky’s back