Roy Turk

Roy Turk ( born September 20, 1892 in New York City; † November 30, 1934 in Hollywood ) was an American songwriter of the Tin Pan Alley era. His most famous songs are Are You Lonesome Tonight?, Which he shared with Lou Handman (Music) wrote in 1926, and Mean to Me, which he wrote in 1928, together with Fred E. Ahlert ( music).


Roy Turk grew up in New York City, where he attended college. During World War II he served in the United States Navy. After his release, he began to write for various vaudeville artists such as Nora Bayes lyrics before he began to work for various music publishers of Tin Pan Alley. Later he went to Hollywood, where he wrote texts for film scores. He had his first success in 1919 with the song Oh How I Laugh When I Think How I Cried About You, his first work for the stage play Plantation Revue ( 1922) was not a success. In 1923 he wrote two songs for a successful performance at the Earl Carroll Theatre. Until 1933, Turk had written several hits per year. His music was used in films such as In Gay Madrid or Children of Pleasure (both 1930). Between 1928 and 1933 he worked mainly together with composer Fred E. Ahlert, but also collaborated with other artists such as Harry Akst, George Meyer, Maceo Pinkard and J. Russel Robinson.

Known songs

  • Are You Lonesome Tonight? (1926, music by Lou Handman )
  • Mean to Me (1928, music by Fred E. Ahlers )
  • I'll Get By (1928, music by Fred E. Ahlers )
  • Walkin ' My Baby Back Home (1931, music by Harry Richmond, Fred E. Ahlers )
  • I Do not Know Why (I Love You Like Do) (1931, music by Fred E. Ahlers )
  • Where the Blue of the Night Meets the Gold of the Day (1931, with Bing Crosby, Music: Fred E. Ahlers )
  • Love, You Funny Thing (1932, music by Fred E. Ahlers )
  • After My Laughter Came Tears (1932, music by Charles Tobias )
  • Beale Street Mama (1932, music by J. Russel Robinson)
  • Aggravatin ' Poppa (1933, music by J. Russel Robinson)