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What a Wonderful World (arr Lopez)

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Bob Thiele
George David Weiss

Bob Thiele and George David Weiss (arr. Victor Lopez)

General Info

Year: 1967 / 1999
Duration: c. 2:15
Difficulty: II (see Ratings for explanation)
Publisher: Alfred Publishing Co.
Cost: Score and Parts (print) – Out of print


Full Score
B-flat Soprano Clarinet I-II
B-flat Bass Clarinet
E-flat Alto Saxophone
B-flat Tenor Saxophone
E-flat Baritone Saxophone
B-flat Trumpet I-II
Horn in F
Synthesizer (optional)
Percussion I-II, including:

  • Bass Drum
  • Bells or Vibraphone
  • Drum Set
  • Hi-Hat
  • Snare Drum
  • Suspended Cymbal
  • Tambourine


None discovered thus far.

Program Notes

Here's a great tune that sings the praises of just being alive. Some will remember the fantastic Louis Armstrong version that has become a true classic in the annals of jazz, and others have heard it immortalized in the film Good Morning Vietnam.

- Program Note by publisher

What a Wonderful World is a song written by Bob Thiele (as "George Douglas") and George David Weiss. It was first recorded by Louis Armstrong and released as a single in 1967. Armstrong's recording was inducted in the Grammy Hall of Fame in 1999.

Intended as an antidote for the increasingly racially and politically charged climate of everyday life in the United States, the song also has a hopeful, optimistic tone with regard to the future, with reference to babies being born into the world and having much to look forward to. The song was initially offered to Tony Bennett, who turned it down. Thereafter, it was offered to Louis Armstrong. George Weiss recounts in the book Off the Record: Songwriters on Songwriting by Graham Nash that he wrote the song specifically for Louis Armstrong. Weiss was inspired by Armstrong's ability to bring people of different races together. Armstrong's recording was inducted in the Grammy Hall of Fame in 1999.

According to Thiele's memoir, the recording session for this now-famous song was the scene of a major clash with ABC Records president Larry Newton, who had to be locked out of the studio after getting into a heated argument with Thiele over the song. What a Wonderful World was credited to George Douglas or Stanley Clayton. These are pseudonyms Thiele used, made from the names of his uncles, Stanley, Clayton, George, and Douglas.

- Program Note from Wikipedia

Commercial Discography

None discovered thus far.

State Ratings

None discovered thus far.


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Works for Winds by this Composer

Bob Thiele

George David Weiss