Andy Williams

Andy Williams
John S. Stewart / Associated Press


Andy Williams
Music: North side of the 6600 block of Hollywood Boulevard
Born Howard Andrew Williams on Dec. 3, 1927 in Wall Lake, IA
Died Sept. 25, 2012 of bladder cancer in Branson, Mo.

Andy Williams, whose signature song was "Moon River," began performing professionally as a youngster in the 1930s. He landed 15 gold albums from 1962 to 1972.

Over the years Williams embraced his all-American image, cheerfully admitting that "blandness" is part of his appeal.

"I don't think I have a Pat Boone or Johnny Mann image — I'm not quite that white-bread," he told The Times in 1988. "But I'm not [a sophisticate like] Frank Sinatra either. I think I am on stage what I was on TV — a family kind of guy."

Williams hosted his own variety show on NBC for seven years. He also anchored the first live telecast of the Grammys in 1971 and went on to host six more, the most in Grammy history.

In 1992, he moved his act to Branson, Mo., becoming the first non-country performer to build a theater in the then-burgeoning music destination. At the time, Williams sold off his La Cienega office building where his many separate businesses were headquartered and his New York residence and put more than $10 million of his own money into the Andy Williams Moon River Theater.

Williams died Sept. 25, 2012, of bladder cancer at his home in Branson, Mo. He was 84.

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