How Deep Is the Ocean?

"How Deep Is the Ocean " is a popular song written by Irving Berlin in 1932, and can be heard in the background of the 1933 film The Life of Jimmy Dolan. The song was introduced by Paul Whiteman and His Orchestra with vocals by Jack Fulton.

The song was written at a low point in Berlin's professional and personal life, and is among the select few of his numbers that were introduced on the radio rather than on stage or film. The song is a series of questions posed one after another, the only exception being the second line, "I'll tell you no lie."

Notable recordings

Sortable table
Date Main recording artist Featured vocalists
(or instrumental)
Album title, notes
1941 Benny Goodman Peggy Lee Benny Goodman and his orchestra, How Deep Is The Ocean / My Old Flame, Columbia 36754
1947 Axel Stordahl Frank Sinatra Songs by Sinatra
1947 Charlie Parker (Instrumental) Charlie Parker on Dial. Vol. 4
1952 Miles Davis (Instrumental) Miles Davis Volume 1
1954 Harry James (Instrumental) Trumpet After Midnight, Columbia CL-553
1955 Jackie Gleason (Instrumental) Jackie Gleason Presents Lonesome Echo, 10 inch that reached No. 1 in the Billboard 200 chart
1958 Paul Weston Ella Fitzgerald Ella Fitzgerald Sings the Irving Berlin Song Book
1960 Miss Toni Fisher Toni Fisher "How Deep Is the Ocean", released only as single A-side
1962 Al Hirt (Instrumental) Trumpet and Strings with arrangements by Marty Paich. The album peaked #96 in the Billboard 200 chart.[1]
1964 Nashville Teens vocal "The Nashville Teens" Decca DFE 8600
1990 Franck Amsallem (Instrumental) "Out A Day" recorded with Gary Peacock and Bill Stewart

See also


  1. Al Hirt, Trumpet and Strings Retrieved April 8, 2013.

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