Talk:Harry Nilsson

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Note: "Harry Nilsson" is his real name. That's the name he was born with. Please don't update this page to state that his real name was "Nelson", because it wasn't. Some reporter in the 1970's said that once, and the mistake refuses to die. According to all my sources (which include his half-brother Gary Nilsson and his son Zak Nilsson), the family name is Nilsson. Bjimba 17:29, 2005 Mar 2 (UTC) The Family name is indeed NILSSON, no other spelling or variation has ever been used, Harry's Father, Grandfather were all Harry E Nilsson.

Shouldn't there be a mention of "For the love of Harry: Everybody sings Nilsson"? Stevie Nicks sang one of the tracks and lists the rest of them. RussNelson 06:43, 4 September 2005 (UTC)

The song Everybody's Talkin' was also used on an episode of King Of the Hill, involving the character Bobby taking a journey on a Greyhound/Trailways/etc bus. Aug 7, 2006.—Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 13:12, 7 August 2006 (UTC)

I think Everybody's Talkin' has been used countless times in countless TV shows, usually with a sense of ironic comedy. It might be impractical to note every instance. Froggywentcourting 20:14, 23 August 2006 (UTC)

What ever happened to the embezzeling thief, Cindy Sims? Is the bitch alive or dead? Has she done time for her crimes?—Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 18:11, 16 February 2007 (UTC)

According to Wikipedia's main article on Harry, the despicable wench was out of jail in some two years and did not have to pay the money back. I left law school because of this sort of injustice. Whoever the the most money wins. All the rest is BS. Sims obviously used Harry's money to buy the best defense lawyer in town. She's probably still spending Harry's money and perhaps looking to steal more. Our legal system is a travesty. I pictured an OJ case before I left Law School. Lawyers will say it's not perfect, but it's the best we've got. Well, if this stinky manure is the best you've got, you'd better start working to fix it!

I am sorry to interject, but could there, and shouldn't there be a small discussion about his personal life. This page mentions a son, but there is no intimation that there may be an ongoing legacy for this artist. - --Theavey 00:21, 2 August 2007 (UTC)

Run-on, words missing[edit]

Under the heading Early Years, something has gone wrong with the sentence that begins "Harry grew up with his mother Bette..." The next sentence seems to say that Harry's Uncle John taught Harry's brother Drake to sing properly. Is that correct? Also, not clear who was left behind and who moved. Froggywentcourting 20:14, 23 August 2006 (UTC)

What about his songs for the documentary The Story of Eric?[edit]

What about his song Lamaze for the documentary The Story of Eric? Didn't he do the soundtrack for it? I know that he wrote "I Am Waiting" and "Lamaze" for it. Did he do additional incedental music for it also? Ferris Urbanowski was quoted in The Journal of Perinatal Education Vol. 10, No. 2, 2001 as saying, "...Harry Nilsson, composer, musician, and Lamaze parent, who wrote the music for the film." Antmusic 15:53, 21 December 2006 (UTC)

I do not consider the Carey cover of Nilsson's version of Without You "irrelevant"[edit]

Recently, "In the meantime, Mariah Carey had a worldwide hit in 1994 with her remake of "Without You," featured on her album Music Box" was removed from the article because the user thought it was "irrelevant." I don't consider Mariah Carey's cover of Nilsson's arrangement of "Without You", irrelevant. I think it was very important in exposing what a great and timeless arranger Harry Nilsson was. It is actually why I sought out Nilsson's version (and everything else he did), and it may be why many other people did too. Should this be voted on whether or not it gets put back in? Antmusic 03:11, 30 June 2007 (UTC)

  • It is irrelevant to the Harry Nilsson article as he was not the composer of "Without You," nor did he record and release the original version (it was composed by Pete Ham and first released on his group Badfinger's LP No Dice). The inclusion of the information about Carey's version should be in the "Without You" article instead. 23:17, 20 September 2007 (UTC)
It was his arrangement of the song that she re-made... not the Badfinger arrangement (yes they wrote it, but we know how much Nilsson played with his re-makes). Antmusic 23:47, 20 September 2007 (UTC)

Should there...?[edit]

Should there be a mention that although Nilsson initially got his reputation for his compositions, his two biggest hits, chart-wise and sales-wise, were composed by others? 23:25, 20 September 2007 (UTC)

You Can't Do That[edit]

Could someone make a clearer sentence or sentences out of:

This may have been helped by the track "You Can't Do That", in which Nilsson covered one Beatles song but added 22 others in the multi-tracked background vocals

Are there really 22 Beatles songs in the background? (John User:Jwy talk) 22:23, 2 December 2007 (UTC)

He throws a lot of song titles (sung to their tune) in there... Off the top of my head, I know it contains: "You Can't Do That," "Day Tripper," "Strawberry Fields Forever" (but he says "Strawberry Beatles Forever" through), "Do You Want to Know a Secret," "I'm Down," "Baby You Can Drive My Car," "She's a Woman" (but he says "My Babe, don't buy me preasents" instead of "My Love"), "A Hard Day's Night," "Good Day Sunshine," "Paperback Writer," "I Want to Hold Your Hand," "Norwegian Wood (This Bird Has Flown)," "Yesterday"... so that is 13 total songs... there are some other little bits I can't remember off the top of my head... Antmusic 21:33, 3 December 2007 (UTC)

Nilsson not Nelson[edit]

I have seen in at least two current places (RateYourMusic and Martin C. Strong's The Essential Rock Discography that his birth name was Nelson, not Nilsson. This is untrue. Is correction of this misinformation notable? I have a documentary (death record) source if necessary. (I am also an amateur genealogist) Fantailfan (talk) 13:37, 9 March 2008 (UTC)

Fact tag[edit]

I removed the fact tag after providing a dozen or so citations, including the items that were individually marked for {fact}. If there are other items that users believe need to be cited, I suggest that the {fact} tag be added in-text rather than the page-level tag.Historymike (talk) 23:12, 28 March 2008 (UTC)


Was Nilsson's song 'Spaceman' in the 1997 film Contact? I am sure I heard it when I watched it on TV a few weeks back. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 22:57, 25 April 2008 (UTC)

I was just watched an old movie called "A brief Encounter". (1947-ish) The last 15 mins of the movie has a track of music, distinctly you can hear the tune "Without You"- Rockmaninoff was acknowledged in the credits for contributing some of the score. Could 'Without You' possibly have been born decades earlier? —Preceding unsigned comment added by Lightgrl13 (talkcontribs) 02:09, 21 May 2008 (UTC)

The Walkmen[edit]

The indie band The Walkmen do an entire Nilsson tribute album. It would deserve mention ever without all the other talk of legacy & tribute, but should def be there now... —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 21:07, 29 August 2008 (UTC)

About Cindy Sims[edit]

Currently this article claims that Cindy Sims embezzled funds from other clients in order to support Nilssons lavish lifestyle and subsequently he found himself bankrupt. However there are no references to this fact and other sources on the internet have another version where Cindy Sims embezzled the money of Nilsson and other of her clients. A cleanup seems to be necessary here and proper references are clearly needed. (talk) 23:55, 6 October 2008 (UTC)

^^^ Agreed. This seems to be the only place where the story is told this way. I'm going to restore the wiki to the original wording of this paragraph, but maybe it should just be removed completely? Tons of references to this elsewhere on the internet (sources ranging from fan pages to archived newspaper articles). At any rate, I'm reverting the paragraph to its original meaning since I can't find any sources to support the changes made to the paragraph, whereas I can find a multitude of sources supporting the original wording of the paragraph. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 02:39, 25 November 2008 (UTC)

Whatever you do, please have a reference - even if you are reverting to what was there previously. (John User:Jwy talk) 02:47, 25 November 2008 (UTC)

This section remains contentious. The original vandal appears to have returned and restored their edit. "adding a controversial personal opinion to an article once is not vandalism; reinserting it despite multiple warnings is." They have no reference for their claim, as before. Ample evidence exists to contradict their claim. Not sure what else can be done here--- I just removed the section. What do you guys think? —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 03:25, 27 January 2009 (UTC)

SOMETHING happened: and should be included. Is there a biography? (John User:Jwy talk) 05:25, 27 January 2009 (UTC)
Found a good source for what has been in their for a long time. Will restore and cite. (John User:Jwy talk) 06:33, 27 January 2009 (UTC)

Son Of Dracula[edit]


no mention whatsoever of Son Of Dracula ?

i see that it is listed in the filmography, and there is also a seperate page for the movie, but shouldn't it be included in the basic text on Harry's career ? possibly with a link to the Son Of Dracula Page ?—Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 20:40, 22 September 2009 (UTC)

Diana Ross[edit]

At the height of her fame and power, Ross worked a large portion of The Point into her mid-1970's stage show, which was also extensively included in her double live album in 1976, a whole LP side devoted to it, in fact. This was major exposure of Nilsson's work, on a par with, or even beyond anything the Beatles did for him, not to mention bringing his music to black and soul music-loving audiences who normally would never have sought out or heard much of Nilsson's music. Ross should be given credit for this, (assuming she paid the royalties!) and I was surprised it was not mentioned here. Likeamanshand (talk) 20:38, 29 January 2010 (UTC)

Oh dear[edit]

Sorry, I appear to have wiped the whole page. I suppose the moderator has a backup somewhere, yes? It can't be that easy to delete a whole page, can it? Likeamanshand (talk) 20:42, 29 January 2010 (UTC)

Early life (father)[edit]

I'm new to Nilsson but came across a link today that refutes the assertion that his father abandoned him. Would this be considered a reliable source? I'd "be bold" and all that and re-write the section if I had more knowledge of the subject. Ponydepression (talk) 19:02, 17 April 2010 (UTC)


How do you properly pronounce his name? Is it Neal-Son. Nils-Son, Nil-Son? or what? This should be noted (talk) 13:50, 6 July 2011 (UTC)Brian Middleton

Nils son, as in VaNilla, with a short "s" sound at the end followed by "son" - It's a very common Swedish name (at least in my family ha ha) obviously meaning the son of Nils. (talk) 13:14, 29 December 2011 (UTC)

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Abuse of [citation needed][edit]

The statement that the song Lime In The Coconut was performed with the chord of C7 all the way through was inappropriately marked with a citation challenge. Almost any person conversant with music and the simplest music notation (millions of them) would either already know this or verify it for him/herself immediately. Those for whom this basic musical knowledge is lacking wouldn't know or care if the song was labeled as being in C Major or E flat minor, but even the most musically ignorant could tell when a chord changes; or not, in this case. What the key or chord is 'claimed' to be has no effect whatsoever on the subjective perception of the song by anyone. If you have no clue whether this song or Ravel's Boléro was in the key of C major (which they both are) or not, and never could understand anyway, what's it to you? If there is no hope of the questioner understanding the answer (as is obvious here) then don't be such a nuisance. In any case, there are many competent musicians (millions of them, including thousands of music professors) who would have corrected this statement (by edit) very soon had it been in error. In the subsequent abuse of [citation needed], the naming by the author of the drummer and the bass player in the song Jump Into The Fire was challenged. Here is the link for verification of the author's 'claim': I am not well versed in Wiki editing, but I hope someone will insert the citation soon, thank you in advance. Or not.

The 'Spirit of the Law' as explained in Wiki's ground rules for [citation needed] is that it only be used to prevent obvious indications of false pretense or misdirection, attempting to insert opinion as fact, that the author might be incompetent to the subject, and suchlike. The author of this article is obviously competent to the subject, and obviously has no 'agenda' regarding either the chord used in the one song or the personnel used in the other. I propose that this [citation needed] abuser is in clear violation of Wiki's policy in this regard. I have seen this same abuse across a variety of subjects on this site, and it is quite annoying. In this instance, both the chord used in Coconut (and it's use throughout) and the personnel used in Jump Into The Fire are either readily acknowledged by many or so easily verified as to not require hyper-academic treatment. This not far behind "Ringo was the Beatles drummer" [citation needed].

This site is run rampant with academia shucksterism, rife with citations unavailable to anyone but professors or their temporary students (or otherwise with a ready credit card), and their incessant 'demands' from honest and knowledgeable contributors to feed that process. — Preceding unsigned comment added by 2001:558:6011:34:C075:759B:A1E2:BD7B (talk) 07:02, 23 February 2015 (UTC)

— Preceding unsigned comment added by Ewissen (talkcontribs) 03:16, 23 February 2015 (UTC)