b. 14 August 1907, New York City, New York, USA, d. 27 January 1994, Manhasset, New York, USA. The lyricist for a relatively modest number of songs in the 30s and 40s, Adams attended New York University and subsequently studied law before taking up songwriting. He contributed some lyrics to various revues before having his ‘I’ll Betcha I’ll Getcha’ and ‘Hiya, Sucker’ (both with Jesse Greer) included in the 1933 Broadway musical comedy Shady Lady. Later in the decade, he collaborated extensively with Hoagy Carmichael, and one of their most appealing numbers, ‘Little Old Lady’, was in the 1936 Beatrice Lillie - Bert Lahr revue, The Show Is On. Adams’ other credits around this time included ‘In The Dim Dim Dawning’ (with Al Goodhart- Al Hoffman), the English words to Cugat’s theme song, ‘My Shawl’ (music: Xavier Cugat), English words to ‘Cuando Vuela A Tu Lado’ (‘What A Diff’rence A Day Made’) (music: Maria Grever), which was a hit for Tommy and Jimmy Dorsey in 1934, and ‘Wacky Dust’, a novelty item popularized by the Chick Webb Orchestra, with Ella Fitzgerald on vocal. In 1940, ‘Yesterthoughts’, with an Adams lyric, adapted from a Victor Herbert instrumental composition of the same name, and originally published in 1900, entered the US Hit Parade in a version by Glenn Miller’s civilian band.
Adams also wrote songs for films, and one of the most popular of these was ‘Jubilee’ (Carmichael), which featured in Mae West’s last movie for Paramount, Every Day’s A Holiday (1938). He also contributed ‘Slave Annie’, ‘Yum Yum’ and ‘Calliope Jane’ (all Carmichael) to Road Show (1941), and provided the lyric for ‘Duel In The Sun (A Duel Of Two Hearts)’ (Maxson Judell- Dimitri Tiomkin), which was adapted from Tiomkin’s superb theme to the spectacular western, Duel In the Sun (1946). Adams’ other work included ‘Rollin’ Down the River’, ‘La Cucaracha’, ‘I Couldn’t Be Mean To You’, ‘Seein’ Is Believin’, ‘Sing Me A Swing Song’, ‘Take It From Me’, ‘Shadows On The Sand’, ‘My Silent Mood’ and ‘While You’re Away’ (1955). Among his other collaborators were Fats Waller, Milton Ager and Louis Alter. Adams served for a time as President of ASCAP.