A Sleepin’ Bee

House of Flowers
Composer Harold Arlen
Lyricist Truman Capote, Harold Arlen
Year Written 1954
About A Sleepin’ Bee
“A Sleepin’ Bee” was written for the 1954 musical House of Flowers, based on the Truman Capote novella. Set in Haiti, the production featured a trio of steel drummers (more precisely known as pannists) from Trinidad.


When you’re in love and you are wonderin’
If he really is the one
There’s an ancient sign sure to tell you
If your search is over and done
Just catch a bee and if he don’t sting you
You’re in a spell that’s just begun
It’s a guarantee ‘til the end of time
Your true love you have won, have won

When a bee lies sleepin’ in the palm of your hand,
You’re bewitched, and deep in love’s long looked-after land.
Where you’ll see a sun-up sky with a mornin’ moon,
and where the days go laughin’ by, as love comes a callin’ on you.

Sleep on bee, don’t waken, I can’t believe what just passed.
She’s mine for the takin’ I’m so happy at last.
Maybe I dreams, but she seems sweet golden as a crown
A sleepin’ bee done told me, that I’ll walk with my feet off the ground
when my one true love, I has found.

Session / Album Information


A Sleepin’ Bee was recorded on October 28, 1959 and released in 1961 on the album Tony Sings For Two. It was arranged by Ralph Sharon.

A Sleepin" Bee

Listen to A Sleepin" Bee on Spotify. Tony Bennett · Song · 1961.

This recording released on:

  • 1961: Columbia LP 12″: CS 8242 — Tony Sings For Two
  • 1961: Columbia LP 12″ (Mono): CL 1446 — Tony Sings For Two
  • 1961: Philips LP 12″ (Mono): BBL 7479 — Tony Sings For Two
  • 1991: Columbia CD: C4K 46843 — Forty Years – The Artistry Of Tony Bennett
  • 1993: CBS/Sony CD: SRCS-6641 — Forty Years: The Artistry Of Tony Bennett
  • 1995: Sony Music CD: SMSP A 8242 — Tony Sings For Two
  • 2004: Columbia/Legacy CD: C5K 92784 — Fifty Years: The Artistry of Tony Bennett
  • 2006: RPM/Columbia/Legacy CD: 82876 87234 — Tony Sings For Two
  • 2011: Disc #19 in The Tony Bennett Complete Collection (88697874602-JK19) Tony Sings For Two


“A Sleepin’ Bee” was recorded live at Tony Bennett’s concert at Carnegie Hall on June 9, 1962, but was not released until 1997 on the album Tony Bennett at Carnegie Hall: Complete Concert. Ralph Sharon arranged the song.

A Sleepin" Bee (From "House Of Flowers") - Live at Carnegie Hall, New York, NY - June 1962

Listen to A Sleepin" Bee (From "House Of Flowers") - Live at Carnegie Hall, New York, NY - June 1962 on Spotify. Tony Bennett, Ralph Sharon & His Orchestra · Song · 1962.

This recording released on:

  • 1997: Columbia CD: C2K 64609 — At Carnegie Hall June 9, 1962: Complete Concert
  • 2011: Disc #24 in The Tony Bennett Complete Collection (88697874602-JK24) Tony Bennett at Carnegie Hall

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