Saturday, November 08, 2008

The Big Apple

It's New York City. One presumes everybody knows that, 'cuz it's been used for so long -- and much longer by entertainers.

Musicians, and people in entertainment, refer to a city as an "apple." Why? I don't know, and I spent years in the business.

A "big apple" is a large city; take your pick. Any of the big ones will do. It's a major coup to get a gig in a big apple.

But to make it in The Big Apple -- ah, you are now at the top of the heap, no matter what part of the business you are in.

As to why an “apple,” simple as such, big or The Big, Wikipedia, take it or leave it, has this explanation: “The Big Apple” was first popularized as a reference to New York City by John J. Fitz Gerald in a number of New York Morning Telegraph articles in the 1920s in reference to New York horse-racing. The earliest of these was a casual reference on May 3, 1921. (Could be of African-American origin, the article goes on to say.)

What other “Bigs”? The Big Easy, New Orleans (commonly used); Big D, Dallas TX (you may remember the song); The Big Peach, Atlanta GA; The Big Apricot, Metropolis (in the comics); The Big Onion, Chicago; The Big Banana, Stockholm; The Big Orange, Tel Aviv; and The Little Apple, for Manhattan, Kansas.


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