The Numbers Music

For 20 years, Marketplace's "The Numbers" segment has been a popular feature for listeners. This daily recap of the ups and downs of the stock market is accompanied by music that has probably become the most recognizable part of the program. Marketplace listeners know that when they hear "Stormy Weather," the Dow Jones Industrial Average, NASDAQ and Standard & Poor's 500 are all down. When they hear, "It Don't Mean a Thing (If It Ain't Got That Swing)" those indexes are mixed -- some up, some down. And when "We're in the Money" comes on, the indexes are all up.

However, with the Great Recession of 2008-09, Marketplace's discerning listeners began asking why they were hearing "We're in the Money" when many investors weren't so much anymore. Their point was well taken.

So Marketplace decided to add a more melancholy version of this "happy music" in response to the historic drops in the markets. The new version of "We're in the Money" better reflects the "cheeriness" investors may be feeling when the markets tick up only a few points at a time when the Dow is hovering around 7,000 points. (There is an interesting twist to "We're in the Money." A Depression Era song, it comes from the 1933 film "Gold Diggers of 1933." Ginger Rogers and a cast of showgirls toting giant coins performed to it.)

Here are short clips of "The Numbers" music:

"The Gold Diggers Song" or "We're in the Money"
(the happier, Dave McKenna version)

Dave McKenna, a jazz pianist famous for his solo performances, was described by The New Yorker magazine's late jazz critic Whitney Balliet as "the hardest-swinging jazz pianist of all time."
"The Gold Diggers Song" or "We're in the Money" (the less happy, Joe Matzzie version)

Joe Matzzie is a composer and multi-instrumentalist, living and working in Los Angeles. He holds degrees in film scoring from Berklee College of Music, and in music performance from Duquesne University. He is also a member of the Renaissance/Medieval group, Mince Pye.

"Stormy Weather"
(the Red Garland version)

William "Red" Garland was an American hard bop jazz pianist whose block chord style, in part originated by Milt Buckner, influenced many forthcoming pianists in the jazz idiom.
"It Don't Mean a Thing (If It Ain't Got that Swing" (Thelonius Monk version)

Thelonious Sphere Monk was an American jazz pianist and composer. Widely considered one of the most important musicians in jazz, he had a unique improvisational style and made numerous contributions to the standard jazz repertoire. Often regarded as a founder of bebop, his playing style later evolved away from that form. Monk's compositions and improvisations are full of dissonant harmonies and angular melodic twists, and are impossible to separate from his unorthodox approach to the piano, which combined a highly percussive attack with abrupt, dramatic use of silences and hesitations.

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Learn more about "The Numbers" music heard on Marketplace.