Will there be sunshine shinin'
will we find a silver lining?
Come along. Sing a song
When today becomes tomorrow
will we find joy or sorrow?
Sing a song..."
Shelby Flint (born September 17, 1939) is an American singer, songwriter, and musician with a distinctive, airy, and emotive soprano voice. She is arguably best remembered for her song performances in films such as Breezy, Snoopy, Come Home and The Rescuers, the latter of which was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Original Song in 1977. Notably, her serene, heartfelt vocal delivery and born-and-bred folk sensibilities were a huge influence on Joni Mitchell, who in turn influenced countless female singers to come. Shelby has recorded music in a variety of styles, from doo wop and folk pop, to disco and jazz.
Initially, Flint became known during the '60s for minor hits such as "Angel on My Shoulder" and "Cast Your Fate to the Wind". Never one for fame and fortune, after three albums she put her musical career on hiatus in order to raise a family. Her career started afresh with her aforementioned '70s soundtrack appearances, and during the '80s, with a genre shift to jazz, Shelby gained significant critical acclaim, with her self-titled jazz ensemble becoming one of the most in-demand jazz groups in the greater Los Angeles area. Since, Shelby has appeared as a session vocalist for a number of artists, and more recently, a reunion of her old jazz group took place, ostensibly with an album on the way.
- Shelby Flint [The Quiet Girl] (1962)
- Shelby Flint Sings Folk (1963)
- Cast Your Fate to the Wind (1966)
- Don't Stop the Music [with Ian Jack] (1978)
- You've Been on My Mind (1982)
- Providence [with Tim Weston] (1993)
- The Complete Valiant Singles (2011)
- Yesterdays (TBA)
Tropes associated with Shelby Flint:
- Added Alliterative Appeal: Shelby Flint Sings Folk. Whoever designed the cover caught on and made a nice little creative logo.
- Award-Bait Song: "Lila's Theme (Do You Remember Me?)" and "Someone's Waiting for You" both qualify. In the latter case, they took the bait. Enough for a nomination, at least.
- Beautiful All Along: "Ugly Duckling", combined with She Is All Grown Up.
- Break-Up Song: "Softly, as I Leave You".
- Christmas Songs:
- She appeared on smooth jazz pianist Gregg Karukas' 1994 seasonal offering Home for the Holidays, both as a re-interpreter of Christmas classics, as well as the writer/performer of some original compositions.
- Rudolph and Frosty's Christmas in July (in which she also voices the character of Laine) features a performance of "Rockin' Around the Christmas Tree".
- Conscription: "Pipes for Keith".
- Corpsing: In her cover of "Winter Wonderland" she flubs a line of the second bridge (perhaps due to some over-exuberant scatting) and begins to laugh, forcing her to skip several syllables to catch up.
- The Cover Changes the Gender: "I've Grown Accustomed to His Face".
- The Cover Changes the Meaning: Her version of "What's New, Pussycat?" is, as you'd expect, Lighter and Softer than the hit Tom Jones version. But having the lyrics rendered by a demure-voiced woman rather than a macho guy changes the song from The Casanova brazenly coming-on to his love interest to a meek woman who's being playfully seductive.
- Cover Version:
- Quite a few, most of them standards. Notably, "Cast Your Fate to the Wind" was the first (and arguably, most) successful vocal version of Vince Guaraldi's instrumental jazz classic. Furthermore, there's "Yesterday", "I've Grown Accustomed to Her Face", and "What's New, Pussycat?", among a host of others.
- Together with guitarist Tim Weston, with whom she had earlier recorded her first album in a decade, she recorded a cover version of "The Warmth of the Sun" for a Brian Wilson tribute album.
- Cut Song: She recorded a song, "I Remember Me", for classic 1976 psychological drama Film/Sybil, which was not only cut from the film, but remained unavailable to the general public until the 2012 release of a compilation of composer Leonard Rosenman's previously unreleased scores.
- Driven to Suicide: The "Ugly Duckling" was so teased for her looks that she wanted to die. She got better, but damn.
- Early Installment Weirdness: Her first single was a doo-wop rendition of "I Will Love You", with none other than the legendary Jordanaires as her backing singers. The single failed to catch on, and Shelby was summarily dropped by her label.
- Have a Gay Old Time: Plenty on Sings Folk, since the lyrics have been left unaltered.
- "Buzz Off" and "The Blue Dolphin" off of Don't Stop the Music.
- Her jazz albums also tend to include a few.
- The Ingenue: The persona she projected on her material in the The '60s, with her calm singing style and song lyrics that conveyed innocent yearning.
- Innocent Soprano: Her image in the sixties, as her airy soprano voice fit well with her innocent, romantic lyrics.
- Irony: Vince Guaraldi, who composed "Cast Your Fate to Wind" as noted elsewhere, was known as the primary composer for the Peanuts animated features and specials. Snoopy, Come Home (for which Shelby performed Lila's theme, "Do You Remember Me?") was the only one he did not score during his lifetime, due to series creator Charles M. Schulz opting for a Disney Animated Canon approach to the whole thing. And that's not all; five years later, Shelby would ply her trade in a real Disney film.
- List Song: "Angel on My Shoulder" is rather famous for its laundry list of good-luck charms, including wishing wells, fortune cookies, and even the oft forgotten mustard seed.
- Murder Ballad: "Lady Isabel".
- New Sound Album:
- Cast Your Fate to the Wind shifts the focus from guitar-oriented folk pop to contemporary, sort of baroque pop with some touches of proto-new age meditative moods. And that's not to mention the change in Shelby's voice itself.
- You've Been on My Mind marks Shelby's style shift towards cool, dreamy West Coast jazz, which is mostly what she's been doing ever since.
- Rearrange the Song:
- Shelby first recorded "I Will Love You" as a doo-wop style number on Cadence Records, before it was re-recorded in a style similar to "Angel on My Shoulder" for her first album.
- Record Producer: Barry De Vorzon, who went onto a long career in virtually every aspect of the music business, discovered her, produced all of her Sixties material, and even owned the label she recorded for (Valiant Records).
- Refrain from Assuming: No, that song from The Rescuers is not called "Be Brave, Little One" or any derivation thereof.
- Scatting: As a jazz singer.
- Self-Titled Album: Though neither is a completely straight example.
- "Setting Off" Song: "Tomorrow Is Another Day", a Disney classic on the subject, and that's saying a lot!
- Shout-Out: Several of her songs feature lyrical references to Disney movies, or at least the original material they were adapted from.
- Shrinking Violet: "Ugly Duckling", "Lonely Cinderella".
- Standard Snippet: "Pipes for Keith" makes use of "Scotland the Brave" for its chorus, on real bagpipes even.
- Surprisingly Gentle Song: "The Blue Dolphin" and "Chameleon" are the two chill-out cuts on Don't Stop the Music, more closely resembling poppy jazz than the disco stylings of the rest of the album.
- The Quiet One: Her first album's liner notes nicknames her "The Quiet Girl", which has become sort of an official subtitle for the album upon re-release.
- Three Chords and the Truth: Basically all of her pre-mid '60s work, but particularly Sings Folk, which invokes this trope quite literally at times.
- Vocal Evolution: It was around the mid-'60s that Shelby's voice acquired that airy "whispering wind" quality that made "Cast Your Fate to the Wind" so haunting.
- Wanderlust Song: "Far Away Places".