Barry Manilow–who always reminded me of a gay Snoopy–is coming to Broadway, so it’s the perfect time for me to sit back and determine which of his hits is the least egregious to the ears.
(And also to admit that some of them are actually pretty catchy, and not just like a plague.)
My choices in ascending order.
(10) “I Write The Songs”
This one always annoyed me. I always want to say, “Well, I wish they hadn’t written this song.”
(9) “Copacabana (At The Copa)”
This should be put into a medley with Peter Allen’s “I Go To Rio” and sent on the next flight to South America. Though at least it’s a story song about a showgirl–the kind of thing I’d normally like.
(8) “This One’s For You”
A song that always sounded written for a beer commercial (even though Barry wouldn’t let Bud use it, so they wrote a whole new one).
(7) “Trying To Get The Feeling Again”
Sounds like a Viagra commercial. It depresses me deeply.
(6) “Could It Be Magic?”
I always want to say “No!” but as it keeps mounting, some people want to keep mounting.
She gave without taking, she stopped him from shaking. She’s a miracle worker! And the tune is as pretty as I imagine Mandy herself is.
(4) “It’s a Miracle”
Light and poppy, this one gets me, so I’m giving in. Yes, that’s a miracle too.
(3) (tie) “Looks Like We Made It”/“I Made It Through The Rain
A friend and I enjoy rewriting the first one as “Looks Like We Ate It” but I must say it’s one of Barry’s more appealing hits. The second one has a lilt too. Ugh. Don’t tell anyone I said that.
(2) “Can’t Smile Without You”
Again, it’s optimistic and jaunty. What’s not to like–especially if you like riding elevators?
(1) “Weekend In New England”
The old sap in me comes out when this song plays, and I’m suddenly misting over lines like “When will our eyes meet again?”
But I’ll skip seeing Barry on Broadway for fear of showing any appreciation in public.
This article from the Village Voice Archive was posted on October 24, 2012