What the hell is going on with “Moon River”? Why is this song, of all possible songs, experiencing a sudden rebirth in 2018? “Moon River” is one of those songs that never entirely goes away. Henry Mancini and Johnny Mercer wrote the song for the classic 1961 movie Breakfast At Tiffany’s, and it’s been covered many times over the years — most famously by Andy Williams, but also by Louis Armstrong, Aretha Franklin, Elton John, Morrissey, and R.E.M., among so many others. But this year it seems to have extra juice. Frank Ocean released a lovely version of it in February. And now we get a new take on it from the deeply unlikely pair of Harlem rapper A$AP Ferg and movie star Elle Fanning.
The Fanning/Ferg version starts like the one that Audrey Hepburn sang in the movie, with Fanning cooing softly over an acoustic guitar. Suddenly, though, drums burst in, and it turns into a Ferg song. (This is almost certainly the first version of “Moon River” ever to feature the line “don’t drool on my drip.”) The two got together to record the song for a new ad for the jewelry retailer Tiffany & Co. The ad starts out referencing the movie, with Fanning drinking coffee and window shopping outside the store, then it bursts into a colorful and slightly cringey dance routine.
In a statement, Ferg had to say this about the song and the ad campaign:
I come from Harlem, which is a long way from the famous Tiffany flagship on Fifth Avenue. But because I went to the High School of Art and Design in Midtown, I’d have to walk past the Tiffany store every single day on my way home. It was just years and years of me walking past Tiffany, never dreaming one day my face, my voice, and my lyrics would be part of their story. That’s a real dream, in real life.
Here’s both the song and the ad, via Miss Info:
The Fanning/Ferg version is out now at iTunes.