Oscar-winning composer Johnny Mandel, on how he arranged orchestral accompaniments for Barbra Streisand:
“The only thing the orchestra should do is provide a lovely cushion for her to sing against.”
Sounds good to me, Johnny.
The NPR piece on Mandel is also worth a read to learn how M*A*S*H director Robert Altman got his untalented teenaged son to write the insipid lyrics to the now famous theme song, precisely because he wanted lyrics that were, well, insipid. Irony of ironies: when the movie took off, his son became a millionaire. Which is yet more proof of Flannery O’Connor’s maxim that writing ability is not only not essential to success as a writer, but may well be an impediment to it.