Tuesday, April 21, 2009

#85: Something Wonderful

He will not always say
What you would have him say
But now and then he'll do
Something wonderful

Captain Von Trapp. The King of Siam. Billy Bigelow. I like to think that the women who love these headstrong, hard-hearted Rodgers and Hammerstein men don't have low expectations; they see something truly special that forgives all of the drama these blokes bring. This particular early Fifties ballad tugs at the heartstrings with its closed melody that opens up like a flower every time it hits the phrase, "Something Wonderful." While I would stay away from operatic interpretations of the song and am partial to Shirley Bassey's full-throated performance here, I also like this stirring, softly soulful version of Amel Larrieux's 2007 album, "Lovely Standards," which rescues this tune from well-meaning sophomores playing Lady Thiang in their high school productions of "The King and I," from where this song originates.

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