“I’m Getting Sentimental over You” is undoubtedly the best-known composition of George Bassman, whose career was mostly as an arranger and writer for films. Lyricist Ned Washington had many hits, including “I Don’t Stand a Ghost of Chance with You” and “My Foolish Heart” (both with Victor Young), yet he also became heavily involved with film work.
As is often the case, composer Alec Wilder’s comments from his American Popular Song: The Great Innovators, 1900-1950 are spot-on regarding the Bassman-Washington tune. He writes, “Having for so long associated this music with Dorsey’s trombone, I never bothered to consider it a song. And, frankly, it isn’t one. It’s a very, very good instrumental piece, 20 measures long and with an unexpected tag.”
Nevertheless, Dorsey’s premier version from 1932 has a vocal by Jean Bowes, and the 1934 version features soon-to-be-bandleader Bob Crosby (Bing’s brother). The song has two refrains, both explaining why a newly-found love is making one feel sentimental.
Oh, I never thought I'd fall But now I hear the call I'm getting sentimental over you All the thoughtful little things you say and do That thrill me through and through I'm getting sentimental over you I thought I was happy I could live without love Now I must admit that love is all I'm thinking off Baby, won't you please be kind And just make up your mind That you'll be sweet and gentle Be gentle with me Because I'm sentimental over you