"Moon Over Naples" is a 1965 instrumental composed and originally performed by German bandleader Bert Kaempfert and was the first track on his album, The Magic Music of Far Away Places for Decca Records.
A vocal version by Sergio Franchi with lyrics by Charles Singleton was recorded in 1966, but did not chart. It would become a hit single in 1966 for Al Martino when a new set of lyrics were written by composer Eddie Snyder, and the title changed to "Spanish Eyes". (All versions now list both Singleton and Snyder among the credits.)Released in late 1965 in the United States, this recording reached number 15 on the Billboard Hot 100 and spent four weeks atop the Billboard Easy Listening chart in early 1966. This vocal version was also a hit in Europe, where it sold an estimated 800,000 copies in Germany and made the UK Singles Chart twice, peaking at number 49 in 1970 and then reaching number five in August 1973.
In 1968, "Moon Over Naples" earned Kaempfert one of five BMI Awards that year; the other awards were for his compositions "Lady," "Sweet Maria," "Strangers in the Night" and "The World We Knew (Over and Over)" with a posthumous BMI Award given September 16, 2003.
As "Spanish Eyes", the song would go on to be performed by the likes of Elvis Presley, Engelbert Humperdinck, Willie Nelson & Julio Iglesias, Wayne Newton and Faith No More; it was even sung by Homer Simpson in The Simpsons episode, Homer vs. Dignity. The song was sung, initially by Geoffrey Hutchings and Sheila Reid in the characters of Mel and Madge as the finale to the third season of the British TV comedy Benidorm.
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