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Hoagland Howard "Hoagy" Carmichael (November 22, 1899 – December 27, 1981) was one of the greatest American composers and musicians of the 20th century. He was born and raised in Bloomington. He lived in a poor part of town during his childhood and had many African-American friends which interested him into jazz music. He attended Indiana University and received his Bachelor's degree in 1925 and a degree in law in 1926. His first break in the music business was when the radio played one of his songs, Stardust, which has been called the most recorded American song ever written. Another musician heard the song and loved it so he made a different versions of it. He Moved to Hollywood and got married and had a child, but through all this fame he still missed Bloomington.
The reason he became famous through his music was because his writing was different from all the other writers at the time. His writing was different because his phrasing was different. Most writers wrote with four measures with eight bars and changed keys in those eight bars and Hoagy wrote his songs with four measures and six bars and changed keys in those six bars and could make it sound good. Some of his most famous songs were “Star Dust”, Georgia on My Mind”, and “Nearness of You”.
Hoagy is buried in Bloomington at the Rose Hill Cemetery. Now people in Bloomington remember Hoagy Carmichael by putting pennies on his grave. Also there is a part of the song “Star Dust” written on a bridge in down town Bloomington,
He is a 1981 inductee into the Monroe County Hall of Fame on which his plaque reads "1899 - Native of Bloomington, became world-famous composer, musician, TV and film star; Wrote "Star Dust" in 1929 while a student at Indiana University; Won 1951 Oscar for "In The Cool, Cool, Cool Of The Evening".