Doris Day - July, 1970 Sports Illustrated "Swimming is my main exercise,' said Doris Day recently. 'I keep my pool at 94 degrees the year round and I swim four times a day. I really do. And at night I skinny dip.' For the benefit of fans inclined to fall down in a faint at this news, Doris said reassuringly, 'My pool is very, very private. Nobody could possibly see. Though sometimes,' she added, throwing her admirers back into a nervous fit, 'I do get the most awful feeling that maybe a gardener might be peeking in through the hedge."
John Wayne - "Jesus Christ! I would crawl over the mountains of Beverly Hills on my hands and knees if I could do a movie with Doris Day!"
John Updike - "I’m always looking for insights into the real Doris Day because I’m stuck with this infatuation and need to explain it to myself."
JOAN CRAWFORD - Interviewed by Paul Brogan in 1976 .. - “David Miller was a good director and really understood actresses. I thought his work with Doris Day on 'Midnight Lace' should have brought her an Academy Award. She really got inside that character and made you forget you'd ever seen Doris Day before.”“She had really grown as an actress in the 50's, from a June Allyson type to a real actress.”
MARTHA HYER - (In her 1990 bio) - "Doris was not feeling well during that picture, but she was always smiling and had the rare quality of making people feel good just by being near her."
DORIS DAY - "You know, when I discovered Saturday Night Live, it was after I moved up here. Terry used to always talk about it and say "Watch it," and I'd say, "That’s much too late. I go to bed early." And then when I started seeing the SNL shows on the Comedy Channel, I flipped out over Phil Hartman. He was such a genius and it kills me that I can’t write to him. I watch his DVD’s constantly and can’t get enough of his work. Oh, my God. And Dana [Carvey] too - so funny and talented. And the two of them together were just priceless."
CONNIE FRANCIS - (on FredNet Birthday salute to DD) - “She was my mentor.”
CHAKA KHAN - “But me and my sister knew all the Doris Day and Frank Sinatra songs, too." Philadelphia Inquirer, 9/9/08
ROGER EBERT - Chicago Sun Times, 7/10/09 - "When I had been a film critic for ten minutes, I treated Doris Day as a target for cheap shots. I have learned enough to say today that the woman was remarkably gifted."
KATY PERRY - “spent her days pretending to be Doris Day.” TIMES ONLINE, 6/21/09.
NELLIE MCKAY - “What she possessed, beyond her beauty, physical grace and natural acting ability, was a resplendent voice that conveyed enormous warmth and feeling.” NEW YORK TIMES
DIANE KEATON (at a lecture, 2009) - She said she used to "love, love, love Doris Day" and used to sing to her records for hours.
KEITH URBAN (Country singer) - I listen to '40s music," he reveals. "When we were doing showcases here in Nashville, someone had given me a Doris Day greatest hits [CD]. I know this sounds bizarre. But there's something about that era -- Andrew Sisters, Doris Day -- where it's got that attitude of 'everything's fine, everything's cool' and laid back. And I'm just ready to play."
DAVID THOMSON (film historian and author) - "I grieve for Doris Day and the ignorance that regards her as old-fashioned."
MICHAEL FEINSTEIN (singer) - "Well most of the people I would have liked to work with are dead, but of those that are still alive, I would have liked to work with Doris Day. I asked Doris Day to sing with me 20 years ago and she’s well retired and was very, very sweet, but resistant and that would be a dream because I think she is one of the greatest living vocalists."
RONNEL BRIGHT (Jazz musician) "To me, Doris wason the same level as Sarah, Carmen, Ella and Nancy. When she sang, she had the love coming right through her. I so enjoyed her singing, and it was a joy to play behind her on The Love Album."
WILL FRIEDWALD (Author/Jazz critic) - from his book, “A Biographical Guide to the Great Jazz and Pop Singers”: “the most erotic vocalizing you’ll ever hear.”
The Coen Brothers - ‘Bob Dylan we find very funny,’ begins a surprisingly animated Joel, 56, the older of the writing and directing duo, ‘and really old episodes of The Tonight Show. Oh, and old movies with Doris Day and Bob Hope.’ - Metro.co.uk - 2/11/11
UMA THURMAN (Actress) “All my life, I’ve wanted to be Doris Day.”That’s the totally surprising word I got from … sexy Uma Thurman, who looks just great in ads for the big-screen version of the hit musical The Producers, opposite Nathan Lane and Matthew Broderick. “Getting to sing and dance was something I wasn’t sure I could pull off,” Uma said. “But it gave me a chance to cross off something on my wish list … I finally got my Doris Day moment. I didn’t quite take a page out of her book, but I did fulfill a lifetime dream.” -Interview with Jeanne Wolf.
Perfect Day - Variety - 8/30/06
By LIZ SMITH
"IS THERE such a thing as a truly underrated icon? You bet. Her name is Doris Day and her great talent was so effortless as to seem ephemeral, and her image so distorted as to render her anachronistic in her own starring era. Luckily, writer Tom Santopietro exists to put Day's career into the proper perspective. His coming book does exactly that -- it considers the often-turbulent life of this great star, but more vitally, reassesses her long public reign; as an evocative big-band singer, an exuberant and sexy young movie star, a nuanced actress, a brilliant interpreter of American pop music, and, finally, alas, a joke. Day was the intelligent, independent no-nonsense career woman/wife/mother -- a bracing contrast to Marilyn Monroe's pastiche of femininity, Elizabeth Taylor's overwrought women-in-love or Audrey Hepburn's fey sprite, usually consigned to romance with much older men. And of course, with one ballad, Doris could convey every emotion, even when her scripts faltered."
STELLA MCCARTNEY - (Fashion designer) ."I think it was films," admits Stella McCartney, asked why she became a fashion designer. "I loved all those Doris Day visuals of her being a tomboy and then changing into this gorgeous girl in a ballgown."
BRUCE JOHNSTON (Beach Boys) - "Doris Day’s singing still stops me in my tracks!"
LIZ SMITH (Columnist) "SPEAKING OF national treasures, if you love Doris Day (and if you don’t, please see a doctor,) you’ll adore her new album, “My Heart,” which has been a big hit in England.It’s not exactly “new” — that is, some of the songs are from the vault, when her voice was still pristine, liquid velvet. Others were recorded more recently, though I don’t know how recently. On newer songs, such as “You Are So Beautiful,” “Disney Girls,” “Daydream,” “Hurry, It’s Lovely Up Here” and “Heaven Tonight,” there is an exquisite maturity to her voice, a deepening tone and even more care taken to express the meaning of the lyrics. Her diction is, as ever, perfection.Doris also speaks in a moving dedication to her late son, Terry Melcher, introducing his own singing on “Happy Endings.”I think Doris was underrated as an actress and as a singer. She was the equal of Streisand and Garland and Billie. Her voice got into your ear, into your head — so intimate — and often so sensual! You feel she is singing for you and only you.
Go to Amazon and order “My Heart.” It’ll do your heart good.”
L.A. Press Agent, Dick Guttman - (Liz Smith column, 11/28/11) “I always thought she was the most underrated actress I ever worked with. Hers was one of the biggest stardoms this town has ever seen, but she was exploited and under-appreciated.”
KATHIE LEE GIFFORD (TODAY SHOW HOST) 12/1/11 "...She’s a treasure”
REX REED (Film critic) - "Doris Day was one of the truly perfect women ever to grace the screen. She was smart, funny, warm, beautiful in a sunny, wholesome way and surprisingly, unfailingly sexy. She was such a natural and charismatic force that without a single acting lesson, she seized the screen from her very first appearance (in the 1948 musical Romance on the High Seas) and remained a superstar for 20 years, and she was—and still is—one of the really flawless singers of all time."
NORMAN JEWISON (Motion picture director) — “Doris had wonderful comedic timing. This was, I think, because she had been a singer. People who sing, who have great rhythm — like Sinatra, Dean Martin, Judy Garland — all seem to have better timing than other actors. And that’s why Doris Day became queen of the romantic comedies. She was also an excellent dramatic actress, but because she didn’t have any training, people underestimated her.” (From an interview in Biography Magazine)(At L.A. Films Critics Award - Honorary to Doris Day) Norman Jewison - Whether you know it or not, you carry some magic in your heart, and somehow you reached out to the world...and you touched people's hearts.”
(From his memoir “This Terrible Business Has Been Good to Me.”) - "The other was a deft way with physical comedy that I hadn't entirely expected, so I kept inventing new, funny situations for her. In one, she turned a simple act, bringing in a morning delivery of eggs from the back porch, into a tour de force of small calamities. ... she carried it off beautifully."
ROBERT OSBORNE (TCM Host) - “There’s no star, past or present, who today brings forth more enthusiasm and interest from dedicated move fans than the woman who’s our TCM Star of the Month (4/2012) for April - Cincinnati’s gift to show business, the long out-of-sight Doris Day.”
JAY LIVINGSTON (Songwriter) - “I saw her at only one party. It was at the home of Paul and Jo Stafford Weston, and there were a lot of performers there. There was a small band and a microphone, and inevitably people began to get up and sing if they were singers, tell jokes if they were comics, etc. When this started, Doris simply disappeared. I never ever saw her leave. She was shy about public appearance and apparently didn’t want to become involved.”
ROBERT GOULET (Singer/actor) - “Doris Day is one of the grand ladies of song She exudes sunshine with her acting and singing and just the mention of her name should bring a smile to one’s face. I adore her.”
PHILIP BROWN (Actor - played her son on “The Doris Day Show”) - There was something very special about walking onto the set and seeing Doris Day. It was just electrifying. Just looking at her.”
LEO FUCHS (Photographer) - “She had a pretty serious attitude toward her work, and life in general, but that did not keep her from having a very pleasant disposition and always making others around her feel good. She was always gracious no matter what the situation. There are such people whose very presence seems to make life a little brighter.”
ELYSA GARDNER of USA TODAY wrote, "Doris Day turns 88 years young Tuesday, and a lot of pop upstarts would do well to study the unfussy warmth and grace she brought to so many great songs.Among them is our Pick of the Week: the Rodgers and Hart classic My Romance, from the new two-CD compilation With a Smile and a Song. Happy birthday, Ms. Day."
JANIS PAIGE - (co-starred with DD in her first film role - “Romance on the High Seas.”) - “We all knew you were going to have a meteoric rise, and be a very big star. Nobody had any doubt of it.”
WAYNE NEWTON - “One of the reasons I was so proud to be born on April 3, is because I am such a big fan of yours.”
BRIAN MAY of the singing group Queen:
"Was watching a Doris Day movie out of the corner of my eye while writing, this evening ...I really think Doris Day is the most wonderful lady singer in history ... I spend a lot of time watching old movies out of the corner of my eye, because my dear wife is devoted to the vintage Hollywood genre ... Fred Astaire, James Mason, James Cagney ... I love them all, by proxy ... I spend a lot of my evenings wondering what some of these singers would have sounded like with the benefit of Pro-Tools ... to fix the little inaccuracies.But when the divine Doris Day comes, I go into a kind of trance ... it is simply unbelievable how accurate she is .... I think one day someone will be able to prove that she had the best pitch of any girl in history. But she is way beyond accurate ... every note is found, approached by various routes according to context, hit with a million different inflections, caressed, adored, and allowed to gently fall to the Earth. She is technically unmatched, adorable, mind-blowingly expressive, and probably the best interpreter of a song I ever saw. I just hope she knows how much she is still loved and respected. Will somebody please tell her?! She is the ultimate, as far as I'm concerned. Doris Rocks!!"
Here’s a lovely story by music man, BUDDY BREGMAN:
"Doris Day as well. We saw her as kids at The Panther Room in the Sherman Hotel in Chicago with Les, we were his guests. It was on mom's and our birthdays, all in the first week of July (2-9-10; I'm the 9th) we were stunned by her beauty, and eventually became the most wonderful woman whom I (and my brother) have had the pleasure of knowing. And by accident worked with. But mostly knowing. She was totally grounded and, I hate this word, so 'regular' at her height. And that terrible Marty Melcher, whom I really liked as well (he was very funny; I played tennis with him so many times) took this lovely woman for everything she had... so disgusting. Doris when married to Marty, was very friendly to my brother Bobby and I. She was like the aunt one always loved.She always wore long shorts like the basketball players do now. Marty was very funny. Little did I know that he was bilking her along with Jerry Rosenthal, my parents lawyer friend from Chicago and also our Verve lawyer. Unbelievable.I did the orchestrations in the film "Pajama Game, splitting the chores with Nelson Riddle. They kept me on to do the underscoring as well. I did all the big Fosse numbers, Once a Year Day - 8 minutes long - Hernando's Hideaway, the whole 10 minute sequence, 7 1/2 Cents - the whole Union vs. Management sequence +++ - Doris was the star, but since she knew me as a kid when she bumped into me on the set she said, "Oh, Buddy, honey what are you doing here?" "The orchestrations." "You do music?" "Yes." "I didn't know that." You can never grow up with some people.But she was the nicest woman I have ever known in this biz. She even invited me to her house on Crescent Drive for dinner. She asked if I minded having Betty Hutton at the dinner party. I took a deep breath, smiled through my clenched teeth and said, "Fine." I won't go into the Betty Hutton story other than when I was musical director on "The Eddie Fisher Show", and she was Alan Livingston's wife (head of NBC after Capitol Records), she would only do the show if she could use her own musical contingent. I won't go into the rest and I would have to use foul language re what I said about her and to her.There I find myself at Doris's house, her dinner guest and then who plops next to me but a woman in a gorgeous navy-blue silk dress with large white-polka-dots all over, most of it covering my lap. "Hi, honey, remember me?" I nodded. "I'm sorry about being such a bitch but...." "I smiled." And we had a great time, but I was with Doris the whole time as she was the one I knew best between the 20 people there other than Ronnie Cowan (her best friend and Warren Cowan's wife of Rogers & Cowan PR), and I felt safe as Doris was so nice to me and liked both my brother and I because as she used to say, "We were such nice, polite boys."I guess she didn't know I had this mad crush on her, but I knew Marty pretty well also and we were close to him and the Rosenthals who were also there. If I had an inkling of what they were doing, I would have told her. Oh yes, Gordon & Sheila MacRae were there as well and they were like my surrogate aunt and uncle. It was Sheila who pushed me into a May-December situation that became a nightmare - which I won't go into now - but I loved Sheila. She was so out there and totally ran Gordon's life and career, which didn't fare too well. We all met with our parents at The Pump Room in Chicago (where my parents were married) when I was there for a summer holiday and Sheila and Gordon knew that my mother was Jule Styne's sister so it was an instant friendship. I was in school at UCLA and I saw them at Jule's house a lot after that, and Sheila, the bombastic one, would continually push me into this situation which became a lot like drowning.But they were friends of Doris's as well, as they did a lot of films together that my uncle Jule and Sammy Cahn wrote, hence the Doris-Buddy situation. It came via The Cowans, the Stynes and the MacRaes.I can say as I write this that I was in Doris's presence probably over a period of years about 30-35 times. Times where she would be having her iced tea and I would join she and Ronnie (they were very close gal pals) and Ronnie kept us in stitches, and if she said anything off-color (1000 times) Doris very sweetly would say, "Ronnie!"A woman I will never forget, and strangely enough, I'm probably the only one who knows her personally and not much about her recordings, strange, huh? But I was with Ella, Carmen and Anita and Doris and I never recorded together. She was in a category I was not interested in other than as a lovely lady who is the quintessential Wonder(ful) Woman!"
"The Movie That Changed My Life" SARAH JESSICA PARKER - "Very recently I saw a film that I cannot get out of my head, and that's 'Love Me or Leave Me,' about the great singer Ruth Etting and her husband,'" says Parker. "It stars James Cagney and Doris Day in an absolutely perfect performance. She sings maybe a dozen songs. She's a great interpreter of lyrics and song. So that's kind of my favorite movie right now."
Leon Russell - I've always felt I struck out with Doris Day. Her son, Terry Melcher, was a producer I worked for at Columbia, and one day he asked me to go to her house to play piano on a song she was doing. So I get there and she has about 30 dogs running around the place — turns out she's a dog rescuer. I couldn't play the song she wanted me to very well, but she couldn't stop raving about the car I was driving at the time, a beige Cadillac convertible.