“Moon River”

Towering Song

“Moon River” was written in 1961 by SHOF co-founder and great American songwriter, Johnny Mercer (lyrics), and the versatile and celebrated Henry Mancini (music). It garnered the Oscar that year - “Best Original Song,” and was first featured in the blockbuster film Breakfast at Tiffany’s, where it was performed by Audrey Hepburn, then as the theme song for Andy Williams, who recorded “Moon River” in 1961 and sang it at the Academy Awards ceremony in 1962.

Williams also performed the first eight bars to begin his popular weekly television show The Andy Williams Show each week. The song became so linked to both Mercer and Williams that an inlet near Savannah, Georgia where Johnny Mercer grew up was named Moon River in honor of Mercer and the song, and Andy Williams named his production company and venue in Branson, Missouri after the song.

Others who have covered the song include SHOF inductees Paul Anka, Bobby Darin and SHOF Chairman Emeritus Frank Sinatra. “Moon River” is published by Sony ATV Harmony.