Tunes on Tuesday: The Shadow Of Your Smile

Why this tune?

This week’s tune is another award-winning movie theme that has become a jazz and pop standard. I thought Henry Mancini wrote the music for “The Shadow of Your Smile, ” but learned that is was in fact written by Johnny Mandel. It’s an understandable mistake. Mandel and Mancini (born two years apart) were both award-winning songwriters and composers. “Shadow” won an Oscar and Grammy in 1965 as the theme for “The Sandpiper,” two years after Mancini’s “Days of Wine and Roses” won both awards. Mandel went on to win the ASCAP Henry Mancini Award in 1997, after Mancini’s death in 1994. Mandel passed in 2020.

Maybe it was the Caribbean climate during my recent stay on St. Croix, but I thought this tune would work with a reggae groove. It was an excellent opportunity to learn more
about the details of reggae rhythm, like the signature “one drop” drum patterns, and try to reproduce them in this track.

Tunes On Tuesday Reel

Full track

Check out these recordings

From the movie soundtrack of “The Sandpiper”

Tony Bennett

Stevie Wonder

Richard “Groove” Holmes

Published by Oren Levine

Jazz pianist and composer from Washington, DC. Also a digital product and technology consultant currently working with nonprofit cllients

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