“Li’l Darlin’” was written in 1957 by composer/arranger/trumpeter Neal Hefti who arranged it for the Count Basie band which introduced the song. Gary Giddins, in Visions of Jazz: The First Century, says, “In the enduring ‘Li’l Darlin’,” he [Hefti] tested the band’s temporal mastery with a slow and simple theme that dies if it isn’t played at exactly the right tempo. Basie never flinched.”
Hefti also wrote and arranged “Splanky” for the Basie band. Both songs appear on the album now called Atomic Basie. Hefti, who had previously arranged for Woody Herman also wrote “Girl Talk” with Bobby Troup and created the theme song for The Odd Couple.
Don't need no palace paved with gold Don't need more cash than banks can hold When I get to feelin' a feelin' For something there ain't too much of My sweet li'l darlin' gives me her love
Don't catch me chasin' round at night I'm not impressed by glamour sights Li'l darlin' may not be as pretty As some other gals you can see But my li'l darlin' only loves me