On the occasion of the singer Andy Williams's death, I posted a clip of Williams and said that his mid-1960s style and look -- pre-Hendrix, pre-Sgt. Pepper, pre-Pet Sounds -- helped me understand Mitt Romney. More and more Romney comes across to me as a man whose taste and demeanor are from an earlier age, and who doesn't quite know how to convey them to the current audience.
That Williams clip was of a duet with the great Antonio Carlos Jobim. Many readers write in to protest the idea that the Jobim and Romney aesthetics can be linked in even this indirect way. For instance, from a reader in Japan:
I'm taking the liberty of writing you now to comment on your "Andy Williams/Antonio Carlos Jobim" post. I gather it was put up partly in the nature of a tribute to the recently deceased Andy Williams, and I shouldn't nitpick at it--but--as you probably know anyway, you do Jobim a huge disservice by filing him under the inspiration for Mitt Romney's sense of style!
Jobim is up there in the list of greatest composers and performers of the 20th century ("Aguas de Marco," "Se todos fossem iguais a voce" etc. etc.). Andy Williams, nice voice and all, doesn't hold a candle to him. (He was also gorgeous in his younger days, judging by the photographs taken in Brazil, without the extra dose of Brylcreem the Andy Williams Show seems to have applied to him.) Do your readers a favor and post some of the YouTube videos from "Tom Vinicius Toquinho e Miucha," for a treat.
I apologize for jumping down your throat, but I wrote my senior thesis, back when, on Tom Jobim and the singer Elis Regina, and they have a space very close to my heart.
OK, how about this one with Elis Regina, below. Watch it through and tell me that this interaction is not as romantic as anything you have seen -- even if, like me, you don't understand a word they are saying.
My wife will testify that I love Jobim music in general and could listen to the deceptively simple melodies of Aguas de Março or even Samba De Uma Nota Só for a very long time. Not to mention Onda, Insensatez, Saudade, Agua de Beber, Dindi, etc. So there.