Interview: A new Day is dawning as Doris returns

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Interview: A new Day is dawning as Doris returns

Unread post by Jiminy Cricket »

Here's a nice interview with DoDo. =)
DORIS DAY is releasing her first new album in 17 years. The octogenarian tells Jeananne Craig why she has no intention of slowing down.

Reading through the sunny track list for Doris Day’s new album, you would be forgiven for thinking the star’s life had been, to borrow one of her song titles, Just A Bowl Of Cherries.

Behind the deceptively twinkling lyrics and breezy sentiments, however, lies a far more complex tale.

The Oscar-winning girl-next-door has had her fair share of heartache, with four marriages, a messy, multi-million dollar legal battle and the death of her beloved only child.

Ever the professional, Day has never been one to let her private problems affect her smiling public image. The wholesome Calamity Jane star – once cheekily dubbed America’s oldest virgin – made 39 films and recorded more than 650 songs before quietly retreating from the spotlight to focus on her charity work.

Now, aged 87 and almost two decades since the release of her last album of fresh material, the reclusive star is back with her new record My Heart.

So what made her return to the fray after so long?

“I completely forgot about these recordings and honestly thought no one would be listening to my music anymore,” Day laughs modestly.

“It was brought to my attention that the recordings were in storage and Sony was interested in releasing them. So I listened to them and at first had some misgivings, but after they were re-mastered, I liked them and hoped my fans would too.”

Devotees won’t be disappointed. The album is classic Day, with a smattering of covers and new songs added to the mix.

“I had to sing some modern songs, because I had already done all the old ones,” she quips.

Day puts her own stamp on Joe Cocker’s You Are So Beautiful and the nostalgic Beach Boys song Disney Girls. She even challenges the virgin moniker with a sultry, lingering performance of My One And Only Love.

The George Gershwin-penned Life Is Just A Bowl Of Cherries, all about having a sense of humour and refusing to dwell on worries, “absolutely” rings true to her.

“We should never take ourselves too seriously. I certainly don’t,” Day says, before adding: “That was my son Terry’s favourite recording of mine.”

The new track was laid down by Day’s son, gifted producer and musician Terry Melcher, before he died in 2004, aged 62, after a lengthy struggle with melanoma. His presence is felt throughout the album.

The determinely upbeat tempo and cheerful mood of the album only falter near the end when Day – for the first time sounding like the octogenarian she is – softly introduces the penultimate song Happy Endings.

Directly speaking to her listeners, she says: “Terry was not only my son, but he was my buddy for all of his life. He was a very talented musician, producer, composer and singer.

“He wrote this song for me but when I heard it, I insisted he sing it. I’m so glad that he did.”

Day is the first to admit she hasn’t had happy endings in many aspects of her life, even before the loss of her son.

She was already divorced twice when her third husband, Terry’s stepfather Marty Melcher, died in 1968. The grieving Day was shocked to learn Melcher and his lawyer had recklessly mismanaged her hard-earned millions – in her words, “to the point of wipe-out” – and signed her up for a TV series without her knowledge, which started shooting shortly after his death. It became The Doris Day Show, which ran from 1968 to 1973.

Following intense legal wrangling (which concluded with Day being awarded more than $20m in damages), and after her TV work ran its course in the early 1970s, the singer quit Hollywood to dedicate herself to animal welfare, campaigning from her home in Carmel Valley, California.

Not that she doesn’t feel a pang for her old day job every so often.

“At times, I’m sorry I left Hollywood when I did,” Day admits.

“I probably could have done a lot more work but I wanted to devote myself to helping animals.”

Besides, she adds: “I never dwell on regrets.”

Day’s work has included lobbying the US Congress to encourage animal rights legislation, setting up a national ‘spay day’ to encourage pet neutering, and more recently setting up a horse rescue centre in Texas.

“I’ve been able to accomplish a great deal in animal welfare through my Doris Day Animal League and the Doris Day Animal Foundation, which are both still very active,” she says with palpable pride.

“When you’re working with animals, you don’t have a lot of spare time, but I enjoy visiting with friends, taking care of my gardens and listening to music.

“I don’t really listen to many current singers, especially those whose lyrics I can’t understand.

“I think Michael Buble is marvellous but perhaps that’s because he sings in the style I’m so familiar with.”

More than 70 years since she took to the microphone at a local Chinese restaurant for her debut gig, singing remains Day’s first love.

“It’s the thing I enjoy most,” she says. “I love taking a lyric and putting in all the feeling and emotion that the writer intended.

“I feel so fortunate that I was able to do something I loved so much. I would have worked for nothing – and I really mean it.”

Without missing a beat, the showbiz veteran adds: “My mother once said to me, ‘Don’t tell anyone that’.” ... _1_3675431
- "With a smile and a song,life is just a like bright sunny day..." -

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Re: Interview: A new Day is dawning as Doris returns

Unread post by lovemeorleaveme »

Ah....thanks so much for posting that!! What a joy to hear from Doris; this interview is marvelous :)

I am soooooo excited about the new album, and cannot WAIT to receive my copy!

Have a lovely "Day"!

God Bless,

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Re: Interview: A new Day is dawning as Doris returns

Unread post by rickyray »

I moved to Florida almost two years ago and it has been quite an experince fo this tired Old man like myself. But I love the hot weather and honestly do not miss Rhode Island where I lived 57 years. I do miss my forum friends. Doris always said life is eternal and my Love for her is also eternal. People today will probably remember her songs Sentimental Journey and Que Sera Sera, along with Pillow Talk and her animal welfare work. With this new CD they will get many songs not heard and of course Terry's special song, hope it reaches many to appreciate Doris as she should be, a talented force in entertaiment. If I see one more tabloid that Doris is dead again I will scream!!!! She is alive and well and doing better than most of us! She probably will outlive me!!!LOL

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Re: Interview: A new Day is dawning as Doris returns

Unread post by Ania »

I ordered the disc and now I cannot wait when I can sit comfortably in a chair and listen to the latest CD of our beloved Doris :D
All these tabloids are living with cheap sensationalism. The tabloids are cheap and primitive newspapers, do not read tabloids, because it's simply rubbish. The worst thing is that the tabloids thrive on other people's wrongs. They're looking for cheap sensationalism. This is a swamp, not real journalism :( Doris is beautiful, always smiling and wonderful. I love her for everything she did. Doris is the best! :D

Have a nice day :D Ania

“You haven't lived until you've lived with a cat.” Doris Day
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Re: Interview: A new Day is dawning as Doris returns

Unread post by Jas1 »

I've ordered the CD too and cannot wait to hear it all.

Ray, great to hear from you and know you are doing well.

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