"I Got It Bad (And That Ain't Good)" was written in 1941 by Duke Ellington and Paul Francis Webster and was beautifully, perfectly arranged by Nelson Riddle for 1957's A Swingin' Affair:
Sinatra plays to a T the part of the desperately smitten guy whose girl just isn't that into him. The song follows the classic Riddle/Sinatra pattern, starting quietly, building to a climax, and then "coming in for a soft landing" and a very satisfying conclusion. Like all the best Sinatra recordings, it holds up to repeated listening on a grand, even obsessive, scale. And it contains one of my all-time favorite lines from any song:
Like a lonely weepin' willow who's lost in the woodWhat would that look like, exactly? No matter; it's something a guy wallowing in self-pity might actually say, or at least feel, and it also provides a rhyme for the next line, which is just terrific:
And the things I tell my pillow, nobody shouldIt's a great song with great lyrics by Mr. Webster, who demonstrated his linguistic flair in another, probably better-known, song, the theme to the 1967 Spider-Man cartoon show. And, oh yeah, he also wrote the lyrics to (among others) "The Shadow Of Your Smile," "Love Is A Many-Splendored Thing," "April Love," and the steaming-hot "Black Coffee":
Peggy's centenary is coming up in five years. Meanwhile, she'll be appearing here again, much later in the year.