About The Song

Perhaps, Perhaps, Perhaps: A Song of Sweet Uncertainty with Doris Day

Background

“Perhaps, Perhaps, Perhaps” is a delightful song synonymous with the charming vocals of Doris Day. Released in 1964, the song found its home on Day’s album “With a Smile and a Song.” However, the origins of the melody stretch back a little further.

The music was composed by Osvaldo Farrés, an Argentinian tango legend, in 1940 under the title “Quizás, Quizás, Quizás.” The lyrics were penned by Enrique Dizeo. This original Spanish version translates to “Maybe, Maybe, Maybe,” capturing the same essence of indecisiveness and yearning. The song quickly became a Latin American classic, enjoying immense popularity throughout the continent.

Musical Style

The Doris Day rendition transformed “Perhaps, Perhaps, Perhaps” into a smooth and sophisticated bossa nova tune. Bossa nova, a Brazilian genre that emerged in the late 1950s, was known for its laid-back rhythms, often featuring a gentle guitar and vocals with a touch of jazz influence. This style perfectly complemented Day’s light and breezy vocal delivery, creating a song that is both sophisticated and effortlessly cool.

The arrangement for “Perhaps, Perhaps, Perhaps” features a gentle acoustic guitar strumming the signature bossa nova rhythm. Light percussion keeps the beat without being intrusive, and occasional flourishes from wind instruments add a touch of whimsy. Day’s vocals are the centerpiece, as she playfully navigates the melody, imbuing the song with a sense of playful flirtation.

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Lyrics

The lyrics of “Perhaps, Perhaps, Perhaps” capture the delightful uncertainty of a budding romance. The narrator, a woman, confesses her confusion about a potential love interest. He remains coy, offering only the non-committal answer of “perhaps” when pressed about his feelings.

The song opens with the woman directly addressing the man, highlighting his refusal to admit his love:

You won’t admit you love me And so how am I ever to know?

She recounts how she has repeatedly asked him to confirm his feelings, yet he remains frustratingly ambiguous:

A million times I’ve asked you And then I ask you over again You only answer Perhaps, perhaps, perhaps

The woman expresses her fear that their relationship will never progress due to his indecisiveness:

If you can’t make your mind up We’ll never get started

She longs for clarity and desires a definitive answer, fearing heartbreak if things remain unresolved:

And I don’t wanna wind up Being parted, broken-hearted

The lyrics then take a hopeful turn. The woman pleads with the man to be honest about his feelings, even if they are not what she desires:

So if you really love me Say yes, but if you don’t dear, confess And please don’t tell me Perhaps, perhaps, perhaps

The song concludes with the repeated refrain of “Perhaps, Perhaps, Perhaps,” leaving the listener wondering about the fate of the blossoming romance.

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Cultural Impact

“Perhaps, Perhaps, Perhaps” transcended its origins as a Latin American hit to become a global phenomenon. The Doris Day version, with its infectious melody and charming vocals, propelled the song to international fame. The song’s popularity was further amplified by its inclusion in the 1992 Australian film “Strictly Ballroom.”

The film’s use of “Perhaps, Perhaps, Perhaps” was particularly inspired. Set in the competitive world of ballroom dancing, the song perfectly captured the nervous anticipation and burgeoning romance between the film’s lead characters. The song’s association with the film introduced it to a new generation and ensured its continued relevance.

“Perhaps, Perhaps, Perhaps” has become a timeless classic. Its playful lyrics and sophisticated melody continue to resonate with audiences of all ages. The song is a mainstay in the repertoire of jazz and cabaret singers, and its influence can be heard in contemporary pop music. The song’s enduring appeal lies in its ability to capture the universal human experience of navigating the complexities of love and desire.

Conclusion

“Perhaps, Perhaps, Perhaps” is more than just a catchy song. It’s a delightful encapsulation of the sweet uncertainty that often accompanies the beginnings of love. Doris Day’s rendition, with its light and breezy bossa nova sound, perfectly complements the song’s playful lyrics. The song’s enduring popularity is a testament to its ability to evoke a sense of nostalgia and charm, leaving listeners with a smile and a touch of romantic yearning.

READ MORE  Doris Day's Musical Legacy: "Que Sera, Sera" Stands as Proof

Video

Lyrics

🎵 Let’s sing along with the lyrics! 🎤

Ba da, ba da, ba da da da
Ba da, ba da, ba da da da

You won’t admit you love me
And so how am I ever to know?
You always tell me
Perhaps, perhaps, perhaps

A million times I’ve asked you,
And then I ask you over again
You only answer
Perhaps, perhaps, perhaps

If you can’t make your mind up
We’ll never get started
And I don’t wanna wind up
Being parted, broken-hearted

So if you really love me
Say yes, but if you don’t dear, confess
And please don’t tell me
Perhaps, perhaps, perhaps

Perhaps, perhaps, perhaps

If you can’t make your mind up
We’ll never get started
And I don’t wanna wind up
Being parted, broken-hearted

So if you really love me
Say yes, but if you don’t dear, confess
And please don’t tell me
Perhaps, perhaps, perhaps
Perhaps, perhaps, perhaps
Perhaps, perhaps, [giggle] perhaps

By admin

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