Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Andy Williams Dead at 84

Andy Williams, one of America's top pop vocalists and a popular TV variety-show host in the 1960s when he recorded hits such as "Moon River" and "Days of Wine and Roses," has died. He was 84.

Williams, who announced in late 2011 that he had been diagnosed with bladder cancer, died Tuesday at his home in Branson, Missouri, his family announced.

The Iowa-born Williams began singing professionally as a boy with his three older brothers in the 1930s, and he went solo when the quartet broke up in the early 1950s.

Williams had hits with songs such as "Canadian Sunset," "Butterfly," "Are You Sincere," "Hawaiian Wedding Song," "The Village of St. Bernadette," "Can't Get Used to Losing You," "Dear Heart," "Charade," "Music to Watch Girls By" and "(Where Do I Begin) Love Story."

The singer hosted THE ANDY WILLIAMS SHOW on NBC from 1962 to 1967. After doing three specials a year for two years, he returned to the weekly series from 1969 to 1971.

Williams influenced generations of musical artists including soap alum Jon Lindstrom.  "Music was important in my family’s home," he said on our 2010 interview. "My father was always playing guitar, my mother was always singing. I was always spinning her Andy Williams records."

His songs were also played on soap operas around the world.

In 2007 he appeared and sang as a special guest star on AS THE WORLD TURNS when Jennifer Landon's Gwen (plus her look-a-like Cleo) and friends headed to Branson. Watch a clip below of Williams and Landon singing "What The World Needs Now Is Love."