Lydian, Oh Lydian …

TCM ran a couple of the Leonard Bernstein Young People’s Concerts last night. In one, he discussed the different modes. When he got to the Lydian mode, he mentioned that it was frequently used in Polish music. I flashed on the Groucho Marx classic, “Lydia, the Tattooed Lady,” which contains the lyric, “For two bits she will do a mazurka in jazz.” The mazurka is a Polish dance. Was this a very sly, esoteric musical pun on the Lydian mode by Arlen and Harburg?

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