The Garrick Gaieties

“Out Of Breath (And Scared To Death Of You)” sheet music, 1930.

While a member of the cast of the Garrick Gaieties of 1930, Elizabeth “Ginger” Meltzer met an aspiring actor named Johnny Mercer, who had moved to New York from Savannah, Georgia to try his hand at a show business career. Mercer had hoped to win a role in the Gaieties, but instead placed one of his songs in the show and met Ginger, his future wife. Their courtship continued throughout 1930 and 1931, complicated by the separations they endured as each of their shows toured from city to city. The two were finally married in New York City on June 8, 1931. They raised two children, Georgia Amanda (known as “Mandy,” the inspiration for the Mercer song “Mandy is Two”) and John Jefferson (known as “Jeff”). Their marriage lasted 45 years, until Johnny’s death on June 25, 1976.