Saturday, September 1, 2012

R.I.P. Hal David

An Oscar- and Grammy-winning (and Tony-nominated) songwriter--no Emmy nomination, strange given the length of his career and his esteem. He's forever linked with Burt Bacharach, so let's start with a few songs he didn't write with Burt.

First, a collaboration with Albert Hammond (Sr.), you likely know the Julio Iglesias/Willie Nelson duet, but I'm using the kicky Alanis version, "To All The Girls (Boys) I've Loved Before" cause I wanted to see if she mentions me.

His collaborations with Sherman Edwards included "Johnny Get Angry," a hit for Joanie Somers and a staple in k.d. lang and The Reclines' early shows.

With Paul Hampton the classic "Sea of Heartbreak" has several fantastic versions. Rosanne Cash and Bruce Springsteen picked up a Grammy nomination for their collaboration as part of Rosie's The List:

Okay, now Burt, non-Dionne edition. My mom used to sing this to us as kids. She probably still would if I asked. Hal and Burt got an Oscar, my mom just the undying love of her kids.

Hal and Burt picked up an Oscar nomination for "The Look of Love" from Casino Royale. It was performed for the film by my cousin Tom (Jones, duh) but apparently I'm eschewing originals for recent covers. I liked Susannah Hoffs version as part of her Under the Covers albums with Matthew Sweet (but I liked her even more when she was just a Bangle, before she became a name before the Bangles).

Speaking of singers who got all full of themselves and promoted themselves ahead of the band, here's Marilyn McCoo and The Fifth Dimension. Grammatically it should be one fewer bell to answer, one fewer egg to fry. But then I don't have any Oscars or Grammys, so what do I know?

I've written about "Alfie" before. There are other hits they (Hal, Burt and Dionne) have had that were bigger, but I'll close with the song I hear referenced every time I talk about traveling to San Jose. Still.

Every time.


Rest in peace dude.

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