Wednesday, August 9, 2017

Actress/singer Doris Day

The one and only. :-)

In the fifties and early sixties, a time when the movies were dominated by sex goddesses  - Marilyn Monroe, Diana Dors, Brigitte Bardot - the similarly alliteratively named Doris Day stood out for playing the good-girl-next-door type, most notably in her movies with Rock Hudson - Pillow Talk, Lover Come Back, and Send Me No Flowers.

Even James Garner lost his heart to Doris Day.  They appeared together in The Thrill of It All, a comedy about a housewife who becomes an unlikely celebrity when she endorses a laundry soap in a TV commercial, and they also co-starred in Move Over, Darling, in which Garner played the husband of Doris's character, who's mistakenly believed to be dead after a plane crash they were both in . . . until it turns out she survived the plane crash and returns to her remarried husband. Both movies are from 1963.  (Move Over, Darling was a reworking of the unfinished Marilyn Monroe film Something's Got To Give.)     

Doris Day, of course, started out as a singer in the 1940s, recording such songs as "Sentimental Journey" and "The Whole World is Singing My Song." She was in fact as big a star on the Billboard charts then as, say, Taylor Swift (an earlier honoree on this blog) is in the twenty-first century.  Her singing talents led to the a movie career when her performance of "Embraceable You" got her a role in the 1948 movie Romance on the High Seas. She also appeared in musicals like 1955's Young At Heart with Frank Sinatra, and her signature song, "Que Sera, Sera (Whatever Will Be, Will Be)", was the song she sang in the 1956 James Stewart/Alfred Hitchcock thriller The Man Who Knew Too Much.  Musical ability was something she passed on to her son, Terry Melcher; he produced the Byrds' first two albums and also worked with the Beach Boys.  Melcher died of cancer in 2004. 

She became a TV star in the sixties and seventies with "The Doris Day Show," which ran for five seasons, and she returned to the album charts in Britain and America at the age of 89 in 2011 with My Heart, an album of contemporary tunes from folks like John Sebastian, Billy Preston, and the Beach Boys' Bruce Johnston.  There's even a duet with her son,  Most of this material was recorded years before.  The proceeds from My Heart went to her animal-welfare charity, the Doris Day Animal League.         

At 95 in 2017 (this picture was taken for her ninety-fifth birthday, Doris Day shows no signs of slowing down. :-) 

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