365 DotU, Day 122 Will Be Your Huckleberry

As you may know by now, Iowa-born-and-raised singer Andy Williams passed away this week at the ripe old age of 84. He had a long career as a crooner, and was well known for a number of rather sweet hits. The most famous, obviously, was his career-making version of Henry Mancini and Johnny Mercer’s Academy Award-winning “Moon River.”

I’ve always had mixed feelings about this song. It can come off as pure, unadulterated cheese; Williams’ version (which is beautiful) always seems to slide toward the lactose-heavy end of the scale for me. The film for which the song was originally written, Breakfast at Tiffany’s, makes me flame-spitting mad (for a whole host of reasons that I won’t bore you with right now). I sometimes find it difficult to separate the real merit of the tune from my occasional lactose-intolerant and Tiffany’s-loathing tendencies.

Still…even at my most intolerant and cranky, I cannot deny that it’s a pretty damn good song. Henry Mancini knew his way around a jazzy hook like nobody’s business, and Johnny Mercer’s lyrics (the major cheese source in the whole enterprise — the Wisconsin, if you will, of the song) sell the hook really well. It’s a song admirably designed to be sung. This is no light praise — there are a LOT of songs that really aren’t particularly voiceworthy, even if they are technically singable.

Anyway, I took a shot at it for the ol’ challenge, celebrating a full moon with a moon song. The moon, by the way, is not made of cheese — but my performance of the song really, really is.

I chopped it up a bit and shortened it, mostly because I just didn’t feel like pulling out the string arrangements this time. I had to change the key, too, in order to put it within my reasonable vocal reach. Pretty, pretty song. I hope I didn’t hurt it much…

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About L. M. Bernhardt

For a good long while (15 years or so), I taught philosophy at a little private university in northwest IA, and occasionally branched out into playing music, dabbling in photography, experimenting with food, and writing nonsense on my blog. The philosophy teaching part ended in 2017 (program elimination via prioritization), but never fear! I've just finished my MLIS at San Jose State University, and I'm currently on the market looking for new adventures in either philosophy or LIS. Otherwise, I labor to support my dogs in the lavish manner to which they've become accustomed.
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