CNN LARRY KING LIVE
Interview With Barry Manilow
Aired May 17, 2002 - 21:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
LARRY KING, HOST: Tonight, he writes the song that make the whole world sing. The amazing Barry Manilow. A Brooklyn boy who's made it very, very big. You've got a free front-row seat for a terrific entertainer next on LARRY KING LIVE.
Good evening. We have a special treat for you tonight on this edition of LARRY KING LIVE. Barry Manilow is our guest. Based on charts, he is the No. 1 contemporary adult artist ever. Two albums out now, "Ultimate Manilow" and "Here at the Mayflower." He stars in a CBS special which will air tomorrow night. He is on tour, called "Manilow Live 2000." It's a smash hit.
He is a Grammy, Emmy and Tony winner and a past Oscar nominee. Thank you for joining us, Barry. And show's over, we have given you all the credits. We're out of time.
BARRY MANILOW, MUSICIAN: Thanks, Larry.
KING: What is it like, I guess the only way to put this is being popular again?
MANILOW: Well, you know, it is stunning. And I think it's sweeter the second time around. I didn't -- none of us expected this kind of explosion to happen. It was an explosion when this greatest hits album came out. It was called "The Ultimate Manilow." Nice title, right? And, you know, I've had greatest hits albums before, and none of them...
KING: So, why now, why this one, do you think?
MANILOW: I've been trying to figure it out. I think it's another generation. I mean, my concerts also, or the reception, it's always -- I've been on the road for like 20 some-odd years, and making albums as long, every other year and promoting. And I have had a wonderful time and a wonderful career.
This year, something flipped over. And I don't know exactly what to attribute it to except it might be a new generation that is discovering the music that has meant so much to me over the years.
KING: The only thing similar might be the return in the '80s -- in the '90s of Tony Bennett. Happened to Bennett, happened to you. Kind of second career, MTV, kids digging him, et cetera.
MANILOW: I've heard of this happening. I didn't think -- I didn't really expect it. I just didn't expect it.
KING: You have sold over 60 million recordings. You've been on charts in four decades.
MANILOW: Yes, I know. You know, when you mention things like that, it always surprises me because I just don't think of those things. I just, you know, it's straight ahead.
KING: And over the years, yet a lot of people have been ticked at you for some reason. The "New York Times" once said your songs were processed cheese. What do you make of that? I mean, I always loved your singing. What do you make of -- why were there knockers? There are knockers of you. Neil Diamond has knockers, people who like to knock you.
MANILOW: I know. And I think it's so cruel that they do that. It is.
KING: Why do that to Barry?
MANILOW: Well, you know -- or to Neil or to Michael Bolton or to any of us guys. You know, but I look back on the stuff that I did and I can't figure it out myself. I listen to "Weekend in New England" and I say that's great. That's a great record. It's a beautifully written song by Randy Adelman (ph). I think I did a beautiful record. I don't know what anybody had trouble with that or "Trying to Get the Feeling" or any of these great songs. I got a feeling I was annoyingly popular for a while.
KING: Annoyingly popular? Maybe it's also that you were vulnerable, right? So macho guys get mad at you.
MANILOW: I think maybe because I'm not from the rebellious rock n' roll. I come from a little bit more romantic, I come from a little bit more vulnerable, like you say. And I think it's easier.
KING: But you grew up in a rebellious neighborhood. You grew up in Williamsburg, New York. Trust me, folks, it's a tough neighborhood. Eastern District High School, tough school.
MANILOW: I was never a tough guy, but, you know, what you learn, and you know, what you learn coming from Brooklyn, New York or from Brooklyn or from New York at all, you learn honesty. You can't fool around, man. You know what is real and you know when they're full of baloney.
KING: And they're going to know it if you're...
MANILOW: And they are going to know it too. And I don't think I've ever -- I think because I was raised like that, I don't know how to fake it. I am, you know, what you see is what you get. And that's what you get in New York.
KING: Speaking of Brooklyn, is that what "Here at the Mayflower" is about? MANILOW: Well, the Mayflower is an apartment building on the CD, but it was actually an apartment building in Williamsburg, Brooklyn called the Mayflower.
KING: Did you live in it?
MANILOW: Yes, my family lived in it. When I was writing this album, I had this idea of writing an album about people's lives in an apartment building, and that every cut would be about a different life behind an apartment door.
And so, you know, I started writing original songs and story songs. And I kept envisioning this apartment building that I spent so much time in and I wasn't going to call it the Mayflower. But I did. And it's about, you know, not literally about those people, but it's my memories.
KING: By the way, Barry is going to be -- the last half of this program will be Barry singing at the piano. So you have a real treat in store. How did this special come about that airs tomorrow night?
MANILOW: Wonderful CBS people, Leslie Moonbas (ph) and Jack Sussman (ph), you know, said let's do it.
KING: Great guys. Now, how is it going to work?
MANILOW: We did it at the Kodak Theater, which I opened, by the way, a couple of months ago.
KING: Your first performance?
MANILOW: I was the first human being, I think. And on the stage, I did a sound check.
KING: Is it songs from all eras?
MANILOW: It's a lot of the hits and some of the stuff from the Mayflower?
KING: Was your childhood tough?
MANILOW: No. I don't say it was tough. No.
KING: Your parents were divorced?
MANILOW: Parents were divorced. I was raised by my mother and my grandparents and a lot of relatives around this Williamsburg, Brooklyn, Mayflower...
KING: Jewish neighborhood?
MANILOW: Jewish neighborhood, Jewish, Puerto Rican. It was very ethnic. I loved it.
KING: But your stepfather though was Irish, right?
MANILOW: Yes. I just saw him. He lives down in...
KING: You close?
MANILOW: Well, we're not close. He lives in Florida and I don't. But he was the guy that turned my musical motor on.
MANILOW: Well, before Willie Murphy (ph) came into my life, I was playing the accordion, and "Have Nagila" and all of the folk songs that my grandparents loved.
KING: Worked at bar mitzvahs?
MANILOW: Well, I should have been so lucky. I wasn't even up to bar mitzvahs. I was just playing folk songs on the accordion.
MANILOW: You got it. And I wasn't bad, believe it or not. But that would have been it, had Willie not come into my life.
KING: What did he do?
MANILOW: He came into my life with a stack of albums that turned my musical motor on. He brought a stereo system in that I never had and a stack of albums that had people like Stan Kenton and June Christy and Broadway show music like "The Most Happy Fella" and "Kismet" and "Kiss me, Kate" and on and on. It was a stack of gold.
KING: We'll be right back with more of Barry Manilow. His concert is tomorrow night on CBS. We have got him tonight. Don't go away.
KING: Our guest Barry Manilow has been resurrected, not that he ever really went far -- you've always worked.
MANILOW: I've always been working, I've been touring, making albums...
KING: You briefly married, got divorced. Are you married to your work?
MANILOW: I am married to my work.
KING: Does that harm other aspects of your life?
MANILOW: No. I have beautiful friends, beautiful people that surround me all the time
I have a studio in my house. I shouldn't have done that.
KING: You live in L.A., right? MANILOW: I live in Palm Springs now. And I built this studio, and I shouldn't have done that, because I never leave. I mean, have you ever seen all of these wonderful instruments that you can make music with these days?
KING: Computer things?
MANILOW: There are these modules that sound like anything you can imagine. And for an arranger like myself, a musical arranger, it's like going to heaven. It's like going to a candy store. I just never leave. I never leave. I have no hobbies.
So many people ask me what do you do to relax? I go up to the studio and I make music. It's my life. The hard part is traveling.
KING: Don't like traveling?
MANILOW: Well, it's a young man's business.
KING: How old are you?
MANILOW: I'm 75 years old.
KING: How old are you, Barry?
MANILOW: I'm in my late 50s.
KING: You look amazing. I'm sure everybody tells you that.
MANILOW: Well, it's good genes, I guess.
KING: You are not kidding me. Did your natural father live a long time?
MANILOW: Yes. And so did my mom. My whole family lived to 75, 76.
KING: Up above the...
KING: Now, the first time I saw you...
KING: You were playing piano for about Bette Midler.
MANILOW: Where, New York or L.A.?
KING: It was New York. You played a song, she'd sing, you'd stand up. OK, band, finish.
MANILOW: I was conducting.
KING: (UNINTELLIGIBLE) conductor and arranger, Barry Manilow. When did you come front on the stage? MANILOW: On the third or fourth year that I was with Bette, I got an offer to make my own album. Don't ask me how. I wasn't pushing myself as a singer.
KING: You didn't sing with Bette.
MANILOW: Not at that time. But I was pushing my song writing. I wanted other people to record my songs. And I got an offer to record my own songs as a singer. And I did, I accepted it, because nobody else seemed to be recording my songs.
And I made this first album. They said, we'll give you the first album deal if you go out and promote it, like on a tour, like put a band together and actually go out on the road. And I was conducting for Bette, so I asked Bette if I could open her second half, and then I could conduct for her, for the whole show, but I would also be able to promote this album as singing three songs before her second act.
She graciously said that I could.
KING: It was nice, by the way. Didn't have to do that.
MANILOW: It was beautiful of her to do that. It was the beginning. I thought these people would go out for orange juice when I came on. They should have. They really should have. Bette was so unbelievable.
To have her piano player come out and say now I'll do three songs, they shouldn't have stayed. But they did, and they were so beautiful to me, always. They were so gracious. They never heckled, you know, never yelled we want Bette, they were great.
KING: Are you a writer who sings?
MANILOW: I'm a writer who sings. That's great. Although I have made quite a career as a performer, and I think I have gotten better at it, but I was never really comfortable doing it. I'm still comfortable behind the piano as a musician.
KING: When you do an album, since you are also an arranger, do you work well with arrangers, or do you arrange your own?
MANILOW: I lay out all the songs that I sing. Then I ask the orchestrator/arrangers to write it out for the musicians. I used to do that for Bette, but I stopped doing it for myself.
KING: You performed for Princess Di, didn't you?
MANILOW: In Britain, at the Royal Festival Hall the first time, and then -- I forget.
KING: Is it more nervous when someone very famous is out there, like a president or princess or a king?
MANILOW: I usually don't want to know that there is anybody out there. I don't want to know who is out there until I'm done.
KING: Did you know she was there?
MANILOW: I did. I did know she was there.
KING: Does it affect performance?
MANILOW: Yes, I was better. I was better because I knew she was there. For some reason it didn't bother me. I just was so thrilled they were there.
KING: Did she come backstage?
MANILOW: She did. She was so young. They were young and in love then. It was like -- must have been...
KING: She was with the prince?
MANILOW: Yes. Must have been the first couple of months. She was a fan, you know, and she had trouble talking to me. Both of us, like, stumbling over our words. It was great. Then I saw her, frankly, I did the royal, everything is royal, and I did the royal something performance over there, and she and Prince Charles were there, and we met again, and the next morning they announced their divorce.
So I guess I met them at the beginning and met them at the end.
KING: Where were you when she died?
MANILOW: I was home.
KING: Were you performing that night?
KING: It was a Saturday night.
MANILOW: I was home. We all remember that night. I'm sure you do.
KING: As we all remember 9-11. Where were you?
MANILOW: I was home that morning, too. And I spent the morning, just like everybody else, with my hand over my mouth not believing what I was watching.
KING: Were you scheduled to work anytime right after that?
MANILOW: Yes, I was going to do a benefit for Dick Gephardt. But everything was canceled. Two days after that, I was to do a benefit for Congressman Gephardt. But they whisked him away.
KING: Are you a politically involved person?
MANILOW: Not really.
KING: You were scheduled to do it, you were going to do it...
MANILOW: I did it because I think that he is a good guy.
KING: We'll be back with more of Barry Manilow. And do not forget you will be entertained by his voice as well.
KING: Back with Barry Manilow. He will be singing the next three portions of LARRY KING LIVE. You didn't like pop music, right?
MANILOW: Well, in the beginning I didn't. I mean, the first time I listened to pop music was when I was on the radio.
KING: You weren't a fan of Steve Lawrence?
MANILOW: Oh, yes, I was. When you mention that, I was. Who wasn't?
KING: What generally didn't you like?
MANILOW: The early rock and roll of the '60s, the late '50s, early '60s didn't do it to me. That's when I was telling you about Willie Murphy coming into my life. I was discovering Lambert (ph), Hendrix, Ross.
MANILOW: More jazz. Even classical music. Like I said, Broadway show music.
KING: Were you seriously trained?
MANILOW: I took piano lessons. I went to music college for a while, I went to the New York college of music, switched to Juilliard for a little bit, and then I went on the road because we couldn't afford to do college those days. We couldn't afford to do it.
KING: What about the contemporary singers? You like Billy Joel?
MANILOW: Who doesn't?
MANILOW: Absolutely. They are the ones. They are the ones that are keeping good music alive, I think.
KING: Because there's a lot of not good music, right?
MANILOW: There's always been a lot of not good music. There's always been the one-hit wonders, the stuff that you just -- it comes and goes. Then there's suddenly -- Prince happens. And you go, whoa! That is...
KING: Why is he great?
MANILOW: He is an original. He is an original. He breaks all the rules and he is so musical.
KING: You didn't like the early '60s. Did you like the Beatles?
MANILOW: That's when things changed for me. When I heard -- but, you know, as much as I love their song writing and loved their performing, I was really listening to George Martin.
George Martin was their producer-arranger. That's where my heart lies as producer and arranger and songwriter. My ears were going to the strings behind Eleanor Rigby. I couldn't figure out whose idea was that. Here is a pop song, beautifully written pop sing, a rock and roll band and there is a string quartet behind it. That is what was like knocking me out about the Beatles.
KING: You listened to music differently than we listen to music.
MANILOW: Those are the people that influenced me. The George Martins of the world. These brilliant Nelson Riddle, David Rose. These people in the background supporting the singers. That's the people that really influenced me. I collected autographs for a while. It was all Henry Mancini, Nelson Riddle. Those were the autographs I collected.
KING: We're going to hear you in a little while play some commercials.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
(Barry Manilow singing "You Deserve A Break Today")
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KING: How did you get to do that gig, to write commercial songs like McDonald's?
MANILOW: I didn't write -- I sang it. I'll play for you the ones I did write. It was lucky. I was trying to sell my songs. I wanted to be a songwriter in New York during those years.
And I would send my demos out to singers and producers, and somebody heard my demo of something, I don't know what. Maybe it's one of the ones I'm going to sing -- and called me and asked if I wanted to go up for a commercial. They gave me a lyric, "Dodge, depend on it." They give you a lyric. That's what they do. They say you got 30 seconds to write a melody to "Dodge, depend on it."
KING: That's an unusual craft.
MANILOW: Oh, man! My first commercial came in at four minutes. So, you know, I didn't know what I was doing. But they did like the melody, and whittled it down to 30 seconds. And I got it. I got the first one.
KING: John J. Lerner (ph) told me that songwriters are craftsmen. You agree?
MANILOW: Yes. And I learned how to write pop songs from my days in the commercial industry, because really you were going up against a lot of other song writers. And you had to write the catchiest melody in 30 seconds. Otherwise you wouldn't get it, somebody else would get it.
And I learned how to do that, and I really give credit to those years in the commercial industry to everything I know. Once I did get them, then I would go into the studio and work with the top of the line musicians, because they pay the best for these commercials. I would get to work with the top oboe players, top string players.
KING: So when we hear commercials like that, you're hearing the best?
MANILOW: The best, and the studio singers, the background singers taught me how to do harmonies, how to sound different. It was a great three-year learning experience. It was college for me.
KING: When you had to do the act on your own, the concert like we are going to see tomorrow night on CBS, was that hard to put that together? It's not just singing songs. It has to have a theme, an act?
MANILOW: Well, that part I found easy.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
(Barry Manilow singing)
(END VIDEO CLIP)
I like putting it together. I think one of my strengths is in putting it together, like a song, like I write the songs that Clive Davis found for me.
KING: Which you didn't write and everyone thought you did.
MANILOW: Which I didn't write.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
(Barry Manilow singing)
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MANILOW: Very catchy song. What I had fun doing was building it, starting it really little and building it and changing the key and adding the orchestra and giving it a big ending. I like that.
KING: Our guest is Barry Manilow. From now to the end of the program, it's Marry at the piano, and I'll hunker over and join him. You are watching LARRY KING LIVE so don't go away.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
(Barry Manilow singing)
(END VIDEO CLIP)
We're back. As promised, it's Manilow at the piano. We begin with one of his own many compositions. This is "Brooklyn Blues" from the "Swing Street" album. It is one of your favorites songs, right?
MANILOW: Yes, and the reason I want to do it, is both of us come from Brooklyn, so this is for you, Larry.
KING: OK, baby. Go!
(Barry Manilow singing "Brooklyn Blues")
MANILOW: Only somebody from Brooklyn would get that.
KING: Do you ever think about it, JFK, flying in?
MANILOW: I do.
KING: Yeah, because they circle, they come in over Brooklyn.
MANILOW: Yes, I do.
KING: Now we're going to listen to some of the songs you either wrote or recorded as commercials. Right?
MANILOW: You know, people are fascinated by this commercial thing.
KING: Well, because we all know the tunes and we so associate with them. Now, McDonald's you just sang, but StateFarm, Band-aids.
MANILOW: Yeah -- you know this one.
MANILOW: Now, this one was kind of pretty.
MANILOW: You know, you would think that StateFarm would call me. I got $500 for that one, 30 some-odd years ago.
KING: You were once broke, right?
KING: You were bankrupt twice. MANILOW: All of us guys who get money that fast, we don't know what to do with it. And I've heard this story over and over and over again from people.
KING: You have other people handle it now?
MANILOW: I do. I'm fine now. But boy, in the beginning, though -- you come from Brooklyn, and without money, and then they start giving you these checks. Yeah. Then you hire the people that you think can handle it.
KING: And get screwed.
MANILOW: It got screwed up, yeah.
KING: Now, what about McDonald's? How did you get this?
MANILOW: Well, because I only made $500 on the StateFarm Insurance commercial, the company was so guilty because it took off and it became very popular, and you only get residuals if you sing -- if you're on the spot itself. They buy you out.
KING: You didn't sing on it?
MANILOW: No, they buy you out as a composer. And so they asked me if I would sing the McDonald's.
KING: That, you made some money on?
MANILOW: That, I did. That, I did.
KING: Now, we're going to have a fun medley of top old songs here, but your first single, 1974. It was "Mandy," but that wasn't the original title, right?
MANILOW: It was called "Oh, Brandy."
MANILOW: It was like that. That's the demo.
KING: Why did you change it?
MANILOW: Well, two reasons. Number one, I didn't sound good singing that kind of song. Although I don't sound bad doing that. But it didn't sound good on the record. And there was a record that year called "Brandy, You're a Fine Girl."
KING: Oh, I remember that. "Brandy, you're a fine girl, what a good wife you would be."
MANILOW: That's right. So we changed it, Clive and I changed it "Oh, Mandy."
KING: Let's hear it.
KING: That was a big hit, right?
MANILOW: Well, that was my first number one hit, back in 1821 that was.
KING: Tell me about the only song that you won a Grammy for -- you wrote it in less than 15 minutes, I'm told.
MANILOW: I did.
KING: "Copa Cabana." We all dreamed of going to the Copa Cabana.
KING: How did that come about?
MANILOW: Well, Bruce and I, my songwriting partner, were on the beach in Rio de Janeiro. And it was the Copa Cabana beach in Rio de Janeiro. We were sitting on it; we were staying at the Copa Cabana hotel, and we had Copa Cabana matches and Copa Cabana ashtrays and Copa Cabana towels. And Bruce popped his head up and said, has there ever been a song called "Copa Cabana?"
KING: And when you were the kids, wasn't the Copa Cabana the number one nightclub in New York?
MANILOW: That's where we -- you know, actually, I never really went to the Copa Cabana.
KING: I went once on a prom.
MANILOW: I'm thinking maybe, maybe, maybe...
KING: It had a big lounge.
KING: And a lot of white and gold and red.
MANILOW: But we wrote the song called "At the Copa," and we wrote it as a novelty cut, on this "Even Now" album that I recorded. And it went crazy.
MANILOW: And none of us expected this. None of us.
KING: That was huge, right?
MANILOW: It was huge. I knew that I was on to something. My co-producer Ron Dante (ph) and I went into a disco, and tested it that first week that we made it. And the people went flying onto the dance floor, doing this old fashioned '40s kind of dancing, even though it was kind of a disco thing. I said, oh, I think we're on to something.
KING: Now, another thing. The first time I heard "I Write the Songs" in 1975, I said, boy, that's a very interesting song. It's a nice tune. But isn't that a little self-aggrandizing there for Barry to say I write -- you didn't write that.
MANILOW: First of all, I didn't write it, and it's not about me. It's about the spirit of music.
MANILOW: Bruce Johnson wrote it about the spirit of music coming through composers. "I am music and I write the songs."
KING: People thought you wrote it.
MANILOW: People thought I did. They said, who does he think he is, Bob Dylan? So I would get flack for that.
KING: Did you not like the song?
MANILOW: I did. I thought it was confusing, but I did.
KING: Then you had an Oscar nomination -- you've won everything, and you had an Oscar nomination from the movie "Foul Play," the great movie with Chevy Chase.
MANILOW: That was a great movie, right?
KING: Great movie. Funny.
MANILOW: Funny movie. Great.
KING: Funny movie.
MANILOW: And when we did this theme song, I said that Goldie Hawn was going to be driving up the coast in a yellow Volkswagen. And I should do something musically. So I pulled back. And this helicopter shot went like that. Ready to take -- it was fun doing that.
KING: You're good, you know? Now, "Weekend in New England," there is an oddity about that song. I know one of the oddities about "Moonlight in Vermont" is no line rhymes.
KING: One of the oddities about "Weekend in New England" is the title is never mentioned.
MANILOW: It's never mentioned.
KING: Tell me about that. MANILOW: Well, first of all, Randy Edelman (ph) wrote "Weekend in New England." You got to ask Randy why he did that, but I think it's a very artistic way of doing it, calling it "Weekend in New England" but never mentioning it. Time in New England -- that's the only time it ever gets mentioned.
MANILOW: You know what's odd about this one? This was like in the middle of the disco era, and here's a waltz that went number one.
KING: Now, tell me about "Can't Smile Without You." You thought it was too simple at first, was that true?
MANILOW: You know, coming from Jerry Mulligan and Chet Baker -- Clive gave me this, he said, "this is huggable." I remember him saying, "it's a huggable song." I said, "Clive, it's just so simple. What am I going to do with it?" I listened to it, the demo, a lot. And I said, I think I got it. It's vaudeville.
MANILOW: When I found the vaudeville in it, I got it.
KING: I want to get in one more tune in in this medley. "Looks Like We Made It," that went to number one.
MANILOW: That did.
KING: Let's hear a little bit of that.
KING: And we'll be right back with more. Don't go away.
KING: We're back with Barry Manilow. Don't forge, tomorrow night on CBS, the Barry Manilow special. Recorded at the...
MANILOW: The Kodak.
KING: The Kodak...
MANILOW: The gorgeous Kodak.
KING: ... which he opened, which is the bright new big spot where the Academy Awards were. He -- you are a big fan of Sinatra. Did an album "Manilow Sings Sinatra."
MANILOW: Who isn't. Yeah, who isn't.
KING: And this is one of Frank's great tunes. Don't you love this? Sammy Khan (ph), Jimmy Van Neusen (ph).
MANILOW: You know, I had the opportunity to record like these great standards. After the pop music, my kind of pop music, started to be eclipsed by R&B and hip-hop and stuff like that, Clive and I decided that these albums that I was releasing, instead of trying to release original albums that would try to compete with that stuff, that I should try to do what he used to call "event albums." And we came up with these ideas to do tributes to all sorts of styles of music that I grew up loving.
Like for instance, like I did this album called "Show Stoppers," where I got to sing...
MANILOW: It was such an honor to do this kind of stuff.
KING: You also did "All I Need is the Girl."
MANILOW: I did.
KING: Mel Torme.
MANILOW: It was just such an honor.
KING: But you did "Come Fly With Me," did you not?
MANILOW: I did.
MANILOW: You know, I should do this for a living. I mean, I play great for myself.
KING: And then a song from "Singing With the Big Bands."
MANILOW: Then I did this big band tribute.
KING: "Don't Get Around Much Anymore."
MANILOW: I actually worked with the Duke Ellington band on this.
MANILOW: That was such an honor to do that. And then this one, which I love. I know you love. This...
KING: Do you have as much fun singing songs you didn't write?
MANILOW: I do. You can tell, right?
KING: Yeah. You love singing them.
MANILOW: Well, I just love doing this.
KING: And arranging.
MANILOW: That's why I said, the worst thing I could have done was to get built myself a studio in my house. This is what I do all day long.
KING: Now, tell me about "Could It Be Magic." I'm going to walk off, because I want you to do this whole song. Tell me about it, 1971.
MANILOW: I was hoping you wouldn't say that. 1971.
KING: Thirty years.
MANILOW: I mean -- yeah, 30 years ago. It was based on a Chopin prelude, the Chopin prelude in C-minor. I thought I had a great idea to write a song based on this beautiful prelude. And I did. I sent this song out to everybody, and nobody wanted to record it, so I recorded it myself, and I'm glad I did.
KING: Here he is, folks.
(MUSIC, BARRY MANILOW PERFORMS "COULD IT BE MAGIC")
KING: The remaining segment of the LARRY KING LIVE scene tonight will be Barry singing two songs. Before he does that, I do want to tell you that his special will air tomorrow night on CBS. We certainly all look forward to that. He will also be playing at a concert theater near you, because he's everywhere.
MANILOW: I'm like Starbucks; you can't get away from me.
KING: And we're going to close with two songs. One is the piano standard, the piano is "Somewhere Down the Road," which you did not write, right?
MANILOW: No, it was (UNINTELLIGIBLE). It is such a beautiful song.
KING: And then you will sing your own composition from the "Mayflower" album, called "She Should Have Been Mine."
MANILOW: Thanks, Larry.
KING: Thank you, Barry. Don't forget, Barry Manilow tomorrow night on CBS. We had him tonight. There he is.
(MUSIC, BARRY MANILOW PERFORMS "SOMEWHERE DOWN THE ROAD"
MANILOW: Let me do this next one. This one comes from the "Mayflower," "She Should Have Been Mine."
(MUSIC, BARRY MANILOW SINGS "SHE SHOULD HAVE BEEN MINE") (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
KING: And why, Justin, girls?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Why?
KING: Why so many girls?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Why not?
KING: Good way to look at it. I mean, why does -- it is a kind of a phenomenon.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yeah, I don't think -- that's something I really wouldn't know how to analyze.
KING: You enjoy it?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Of course. You wouldn't enjoy, like, millions of girls screaming "Larry, Larry!"
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You're on to something there.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What's your favorite song in the whole wide world? Ever?
KING (singing): Some day when I'm awfully low...
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: OK, we'll do it.
KING: That's my love song.
KING (singing): You will feel a glow just thinking of you.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He might take your place, (UNINTELLIGIBLE).
KING: All right, go ahead, guys.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
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