The Look of Love (1967 song)

"The Look of Love" is a popular song composed by Burt Bacharach and Hal David and originally popularized by English pop singer Dusty Springfield. The song is notable for its sensuality and its relaxed bossa nova rhythm.[2][3] The song was featured in an extended slow-motion interlude to the 1967 spoof James Bond film Casino Royale. In 2008, the song was inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame.[4] It also received a Best Song nomination at the 1968 Academy Awards. The song partially inspired the film Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery (1997).[5]

"The Look of Love"
Song by Dusty Springfield
from the album Casino Royale Soundtrack
B-side"Give Me Time (L'Amore Se Ne Va)"
ReleasedApril 1967 [1]
RecordedJanuary 29, 1967 [1]
StudioPhilips Studios, London
GenreBossa nova, pop
Composer(s)Burt Bacharach
Lyricist(s)Hal David
Producer(s)Phil Ramone
Audio sample
The Look of Love

Songwriters edit

The music was written by Burt Bacharach, and was originally intended to be an instrumental. But later Hal David added the lyrics, and the song was published in 1967. According to Bacharach, the melody was inspired by watching Ursula Andress in an early cut of the film.[6]

Recordings edit

Early recordings edit

Stan Getz made the first recording of the song, an instrumental version, in December 1966 for his album What the World Needs Now: Stan Getz Plays Burt Bacharach and Hal David.[7] The first recording featuring the song's lyrics was by Dusty Springfield, for the Casino Royale soundtrack. Phil Ramone, the soundtrack's engineer, recorded the song separately from the rest of the film tracks. The film version received an Oscar nomination for songwriters Bacharach and David.[8] Springfield re-recorded the song the same year for Philips Records with an arrangement about half a minute shorter than the soundtrack version. Both Springfield versions feature a breathy tenor saxophone solo similar in style to Stan Getz's playing on his early-1960s bossa nova hit recordings like "The Girl from Ipanema" and "Corcovado (Quiet Nights of Quiet Stars)". Her Philips single version reached #22 in the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 in November 1967. Springfield's Philips version was later featured in the 2002 film Catch Me If You Can.[9]

Claudine Longet recorded the song on her 1967 album of the same title. Lainie Kazan also recorded "The Look of Love" (arranged by Pat Williams) on her 1967 album Love Is Lainie. Nina Simone also recorded "The Look of Love" in 1967 on her album Silk & Soul. Morgana King recorded "The Look of Love" on her 1967 album Gemini Rising.

"The Look of Love"
Single by Sérgio Mendes & Brasil '66
from the album Look Around
B-side"Like a Lover"
GenreBossa nova[10]
Songwriter(s)Burt Bacharach, Hal David
Sérgio Mendes & Brasil '66 singles chronology
"My Favorite Things"
"The Look of Love"
"The Fool on the Hill"
"The Look of Love"
Song by Isaac Hayes
from the album ...To Be Continued
A-side"Ike's Mood I"
RecordedSummer 1970
GenreFunk, soul[11]
Composer(s)Burt Bacharach
Lyricist(s)Hal David

Sérgio Mendes' hit rendition on the Sérgio Mendes & Brasil '66 album Look Around reached #4 on the pop charts after their performance in the Academy Awards telecast in April 1968. The lead vocal on this single was handled by Janis Hansen, not Lani Hall, a rarity in the early Brasil '66 canon. Andy Williams released a version in 1967 on his album, Love, Andy, while Nancy Wilson included the song on her 1968 album Easy. Soul group The Delfonics also covered the song in 1968 on their album La La Means I Love You, while the legendary Motown quartet Four Tops gave the song a sweeping Broadway-like treatment on their 1969 album Soul Spin. Brazilian threesome Som Três recorded an early instrumental version on their album Show (Odeon, 1968). Dorothy Ashby included the song in her 1968 album Afro-Harping. An instrumental version of the song was included on the 1967 Burt Bacharach album Reach Out,[12] which was also featured on the soundtrack for the film The Boys in the Band.[13]

Impact edit

Actor and comedian Mike Myers said his film Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery was partially inspired by "The Look of Love". Myers said hearing the song on the radio led to him reminiscing about the 1960s, which helped inspire the movie.[5]

References edit


  1. ^ a b
  2. ^ Howes, Paul (2012). The Complete Dusty Springfield. Titan. ISBN 9781781165409..
  3. ^ Goldschmitt, K.E. (2019). Bossa Mundo: Brazilian Music in Transnational Media Industries. Oxford University Press. p. 79. ISBN 9780190923525.
  4. ^ "Grammy Hall of Fame Award Archived February 19, 2011, at the Wayback Machine. Retrieved December 21, 2012
  5. ^ a b McEvoy, Colin (February 9, 2023). "What It Was Like to Work with Burt Bacharach, in the Words of his Collaborators". Biography. Retrieved February 11, 2023.
  6. ^ Dominic, Serene (2003). Burt Bacharach, Song by Song: The Ultimate Burt Bacharach Reference for Fans, Serious Record Collectors, and Music Critics. Music Sales Group. p. 182. ISBN 978-0-8256-7280-4. Retrieved December 2, 2014.
  7. ^ Churchill, Nicholas (December 15, 2004). Stan Getz: An Annotated Bibliography and Filmography, with Song and Session Information for Albums. McFarland. p. 224. ISBN 978-0-7864-1949-4. Retrieved August 2, 2015.
  8. ^ "The 40th Academy Awards 1968". - Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. Retrieved January 3, 2021.
  9. ^ Peña-Acuña (2018), p. 56.
  10. ^ Stanley, Bob (September 13, 2013). "Pop Gets Sophisticated: Soft Rock". Yeah Yeah Yeah: The Story of Modern Pop. Faber & Faber. p. 250. ISBN 978-0-571-28198-5.
  11. ^ "Isaac Hayes – The Look Of Love (1971, Vinyl)". January 1971. Retrieved April 22, 2021.
  12. ^ "Reach Out - Burt Bacharach | Songs, Reviews, Credits | AllMusic". AllMusic. Retrieved April 22, 2021.
  13. ^ "Boys in the Band - Original Soundtrack | Songs, Reviews, Credits | AllMusic". AllMusic. Retrieved April 22, 2021.


  • Peña-Acuña, Beatriz (2018). Understanding Steven Spielberg. Cambridge Scholars Publishing. ISBN 9781527508187.

External links edit