Sunday, September 30, 2012

Ian Martin's tribute to Andy Williams

Can’t Get Used To Losing Andy Williams
by Ian Martin

The music world has lost another of its icon. Balladeer, crooner and pop artist Andy Williams lost his battle with cancer on September 25, 2012 approximately two months shy of his 85th birthday, and a year after he was diagnosed with the disease.

Born Howard Andrew Williams, like many other successful and noted American singers, Andy started his singing on the church circuit where he performed in a children’s choir. He and his brothers subsequently formed a quartet called the Williams Brothers. The quartet had some success appearing on radio shows in the Mid-western part of the United States. The quartet also appeared in musical films along the likes of Bing Crosby.

In the early 1950’s Andy embarked on a solo career. In less than no time his talent landed him a spot on the Steve Allen television show. He mined gold and platinum along his solo career path. Unfortunately time and space do me no justice just to even begin to tell the Andy Williams’ story, and understandably so because his colorful career spanned six decades.

However, I would be doing Andy grave injustice (no pun intended) if I failed to mention some of his works relative to his solo career. The Henry Mancini’s written “Moon River” which many considered to be Andy’s signature song is the first that comes to mind. Then there is “Where Do I Begin”, the theme song from the movie film “Love Story”. “Speak Softly Love”, the vocal version of “Love Theme From The Godfather”; “Almost There”; “Home Lovin’ Man”, “Can’t Get Used To Losing You”; and “Lonely Street” are among other of his notables. And how can we forget his version of “It’ The Most Wonderful Time Of The Year”? Watching him singing it on his Christmas television shows would make you want to believe that Christmas is certainly the most wonderful time of the year.

Andy was also active outside the music arena. He was an avid golfer and for over two decades he hosted the Professional Golfers Association tournament in San Diego, California.

He prided himself on being a life long Republican, yet, his loyalty and support was not confined to the Republican Party. He had been a big time supporter of Democrats John Kennedy and Bobby Kennedy in their bid for the White House. Andy also helped raised funds for other prominent Democrats by performing at benefit concerts. He openly knocked heads with the Nixon Administration in its effort to expel John Lennon from the United States.

Andy, as we your fans say goodbye, we will never forget how you permeated our homes and other places where you performed with good music and a good voice. In your own words we want you to know that we ‘can’t get use to losing you’. However, with the advent of technology, we will somewhat be comforted knowing that we are able to listen to the good voice and good music of you and others that have gone on before you and those who will follow after you.  Rest in peace, Andy. You have crossed the “Moon River” in fine style.

from Ian Martin in
Brooklyn, New York

He wasn't one of my favourites - but my Dad loved him too! - Jean Anita

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