About The Song

Background

Que Sera, Sera (Whatever Will Be, Will Be) is a song that captured the hearts of listeners in 1956. Introduced by the iconic Doris Day in Alfred Hitchcock’s suspenseful thriller “The Man Who Knew Too Much,” the song’s lighthearted melody and optimistic message provided a surprising yet effective counterpoint to the film’s dark plot.

The song’s origins lie with songwriting duo Jay Livingston and Ray Evans, a successful team known for crafting memorable tunes for Hollywood musicals throughout the 1940s and 1950s. Livingston and Evans received the Academy Award for Best Original Song for “Buttons and Bows” in 1948, showcasing their ability to create catchy and heartwarming music.

While the exact inspiration behind Que Sera, Sera remains unclear, some speculate it might have been influenced by the philosophy of stoicism, an ancient Greek school of thought emphasizing emotional control and accepting what is outside of our control. The song’s title phrase itself comes from the Spanish “Que será, será,” which translates to “What will be, will be.”

Musical Style

Que Sera, Sera is a delightful example of popular mid-20th century American music. The song features a bright and cheerful tempo, driven by a steady piano accompaniment. Warm strings and a tasteful saxophone add depth and texture to the melody. Day’s signature vocals, known for their sweetness and clarity, perfectly capture the song’s optimistic spirit.

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The music is structured in a simple yet effective verse-chorus format. The verses introduce a question about the future, sung from the perspective of a young girl and then a woman in love. The response, delivered in the catchy and memorable chorus, is the titular “Que Sera, Sera,” emphasizing acceptance and faith in the unknown.

Lyrics

The lyrics of Que Sera, Sera are deceptively simple, yet hold a profound message. The song opens with a child’s curiosity about the future:

When I was just a little girl I asked my mother, what will I be Will I be pretty? Will I be rich?

The mother’s response is the core of the song’s philosophy:

Here’s what she said to me Que Sera, Sera Whatever will be, will be The future’s not ours to see

The question about the future is repeated in the second verse, this time from the perspective of a woman in love:

When I grew up and fell in love I asked my sweetheart, what lies ahead Will we have rainbows day after day

The sweetheart echoes the mother’s message of acceptance:

Here’s what my sweetheart said Que Sera, Sera Whatever will be, will be The future’s not ours to see

The final verse reveals the woman, now a mother herself, passing on the same philosophy to her children:

Now I have children of my own They ask their mother what will I be Will I be handsome will I be rich

The song concludes with the mother’s reassuring response:

I tell them tenderly Que Sera, Sera Whatever will be will be The future’s not ours to see Que Sera, Sera

Cultural Impact

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Que Sera, Sera transcended its origins as a film song to become a cultural phenomenon. The song’s positive message resonated with audiences, offering a sense of comfort and hope in a time marked by Cold War anxieties. Day’s charming performance further solidified the song’s popularity.

Que Sera, Sera became a staple on radio playlists and sheet music sales skyrocketed. The song has been covered by countless artists across various genres, a testament to its enduring appeal. It has also made appearances in numerous films and television shows, solidifying its place in pop culture history.

Beyond entertainment, Que Sera, Sera has been used in various contexts. It has served as a source of inspiration and encouragement for individuals facing uncertainty. The song’s message of acceptance has resonated with self-help movements and even political campaigns.

Conclusion

Que Sera, Sera (Whatever Will Be, Will Be) is more than just a catchy tune. It is a timeless message wrapped in a delightful musical package. The song’s enduring popularity lies in its ability to offer comfort and hope in the face of an uncertain future. Que Sera, Sera serves as a reminder to embrace the present and trust that whatever will be, will be.

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Video

Lyrics

🎵 Let’s sing along with the lyrics! 🎤

When I was just a little girl
I asked my mother, “What will I be?
Will I be pretty? Will I be rich?”
Here’s what she said to me

Que sera, sera
Whatever will be, will be
The future’s not ours to see
Que sera, sera
What will be, will be

Since I am just a boy at school
I asked my teacher, “What should I try?
Should I paint pictures? Should I sing songs?”
This was her wise reply

Que sera, sera
Whatever will be, will be
The future’s not ours to see
Que sera, sera
What will be, will be

When I grew up and fell in love
I asked my lover, “What lies ahead?
Will we have rainbows day after day?”
Guess what my lover said

Que sera, sera
Whatever will be, will be
The future’s not ours to see
Que sera, sera
What will be, will be

Now I have children of my own
They ask their mother, “What will I be?
Will I be pretty? Will I be rich?”
I tell them, “Wait and see.”

Que sera, sera
Whatever will be, will be
The future’s not ours to see
Que sera, sera
What will be, will be
Que sera, sera

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