Can you name a memorable song from West Side Story? Sure you can, there’s ‘America’, ‘Maria’, ‘Tonight’…but what about ‘Gee, Officer Krupke’? (okay, if maybe you might remember it, but not as well as the others)
And when people mention ‘The Wizard of Oz’ you no doubt think of ‘Over the Rainbow’, ‘If I only had a Brain’, or maybe ‘Follow the Yellow Brick Road’ but what about ‘It Really Was No Miracle’? Not so much, huh?
And musicals like Chorus Line recall hits like ‘One’ or ‘What I Did For Love’, but do you remember the song ‘The Music and the Mirror’ (I just looked it up)
What are the least memorable (vocal) songs from the most memorable shows?
Everything composed by Stephen Sondheim (as opposed to having his lyrics) except “Comedy Tonight,” “Everybody Ought to Have a Maid,” “Send in the Clowns,” “A Little Priest” (if you ignore the fact he stole much of the tune).
People remember Sondheim’s (brilliant) lyrics, but very few can remember the tunes.
I tend to learn an entire show, rather than individual songs, so I know a lot of the less memorable ones. “Something Good” and “Feed the Birds” are favorites of mine, but I also frequently sing “Confidence” from The Sound of Music and “Sister Suffragette” from Mary Poppins.
Some other favorites:
“Many A New Day” from Oklahoma. I was also very disappointed when someone visited Kansas City and I made a joke about everything being up-to-date there, and they had no idea what I was talking about.
It was Walt’s favorite, anyway. He liked to ask the Sherman brothers to play it for him.
I’ve always wondered why “Chim Chim Cheree”, as much as I like it, got the Oscar nom and win, while “Feed the Birds”, the emotional center of the picture, the first melody we hear in the overture, didn’t even get nominated.
(I’ve also always been rather tickled that the Bird Woman chapter from the book, really not much more than a throwaway that had little-to-no bearing on the story–it didn’t even feature Mary Poppins doing any magic–BECAME the emotional center of the picture. A good call on Walt’s part, I think.)