This discount-priced two-fer combines two Andy Williams albums from the early '60s. Danny Boy and Other Songs I Love to Sing, as it was titled originally, was Williams' Columbia Records debut after six years with the much smaller Cadence label. The Wonderful World of Andy Williams, which followed two years later, was his sixth Columbia LP. A lot had happened in between; Williams had become a major record seller by recording movie theme songs like "Moon River," and he had become a successful television host. But Collectables is right to pair these two albums because they are both grab bags of material with no thematic consistency, unlike LPs released in between like Days of Wine and Roses. In both cases, Williams seems to have had a hit single to promote -- "Danny Boy" in the case of the earlier album, "A Fool Never Learns" for the later one -- and he simply went into the studio and cut some other material to create an album tie-in. He sang some show tunes, some old standards, and some songs that had been hits for other people recently. Danny Boy adopted a consistent style of arrangement, its songs always being performed as lush ballads with lots of strings, while Wonderful World was all over the lot, with Williams sometimes being subsumed under a vocal chorus and with the arrangements sometimes being alarmingly up-tempo. (Especially notable in this category is the bizarre reading of "Pennies From Heaven," which suddenly turns into a rock & roll performance halfway through.) For the listener encountering this compilation 40 years later, the treat is getting to hear Williams singing standards like "Come to Me, Bend to Me," "Summertime," "Misty," "Dream," and "Let It Be Me" (the last featuring an unbilled Claudine Longet on the original French lyrics) in his rich voice.
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AllMusic Review by William Ruhlmann