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Imagination – Jimmy Van Heusen

July 23, 2021

Today’s song of the day, “Imagination,” by Jimmy Van Heusen and the lyrics by Johnny Burke, is now considered standard jazz.

Fun Facts

  • Jimmy Van Heusen originally wrote it as a teenager, but with different words.
  • “Imagination” was first published in 1940 and recorded and released by four different performing artists that year. 
  • Of the four releases, esteemed swing-dance bandleader and composer Glenn Miller and his Orchestra’s was one of the most successful and remains so to date. Tommy Dorsey and his Orchestra also recorded one of the most successful of the arrangements released in 1940.
  • When it’s played on the radio today, the most often played renditions are by Ella Fitzgerald. She recorded and released the song three times —1940, 1954 and again in 1962, accompanied by Nelson Riddle’s Orchestra.
  • A song that has withstood the test of time, countless artists have released different versions of ‘Imagination.’ Some of the most notable are Patti Page (1956), Nat King Cole (1956), Frank Sinatra (1961), Shirley Bassey (1962), Petula Clark (1963), Rosemary Clooney (1963), Harry Connick Jr. (1988), and Lena Horne (1998). But when Jimmy Van Heusen heard Doris Day’s adaptation (1947), he commented, “It has been sung now by the very best.”



Imagination is funny

It makes a cloudy day sunny

Makes a bee think of honey

Just as I think of you

Imagination is crazy

Your whole perspective gets hazy

Starts you asking a daisy

What to do, what to do

Have you ever felt a gentle touch

And then a kiss, and then, and then

Find it’s only your imagination again

Oh, well

Imagination is silly

You go around willy-nilly

For example, I go around wanting you

And, yet I can’t imagine that you want me too


  1. Karen Lydon

    thank you

  2. Abdal ALFINEZ

    i like the songs you pick with the artists but you forgot one in the 50s my favorite miss Joni James keep it up i love the tests

  3. Ellen Wlliams

    Arthur Prysock also gave A soulful rendition of IMAGINATION with his rich voice

  4. Dottie

    remember September Song ? I miss it.

    • bryson

      Do you remember – 21st night!!! (I’m screaming)


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