Barney Fife Sings on Andy Griffith

Don Knotts portraying Barney Fife on the Andy Griffith Show is asked by the choir director to be the featured tenor for the choir in an upcoming program.

In an earlier part of the show not shown in this clip the choir director decides to use Barney as the featured tenor in an upcoming program. However that was before he actually heard Barney sing.

When the choir has their first practice with Barney singing the choir director notices someone is singing offkey and Barney volunteers to move around in the choir to help find out who the culprit is that is singing so badly.

Then the choir director finds out it is Barney singing offkey and is perplexed about how to solve the situation since Barney is ruining the song he is to be featured on.

Andy and the choir director decide to use another singer who will be offstage to sing Barney’s part. Only problem is how to keep Barney from actually singing.

Then Andy comes up with the perfect solution by telling Barney that when the microphone and speakers are on that Barney will be singing too loud for the audience. So Andy tells Barney to practice singing quieter and quieter till Barney can’t be heard and Andy tells him that is perfect.

When the choir starts singing the song the singer who will be actually singing sneaks out of the choir to a place where he can’t be seen by the audience.

Then when it is time for Barney to sing his featured tenor solo part Barney is actually lip syncing while this booming voice is heard from the actual singer. The singer doesn’t sound like a tenor to me though and sounds more like a baritone.

This is some dialogue from the show posted at that tells what Barney’s girlfriend Thelma Lou thinks of Barney’s singing:

(Thelma Lou hears that Barney is going to join the choir)
Thelma Lou: Barney’s going to be in the choir? My Barney?
Andy: That’s right.
Thelma Lou: But Barney can’t sing.
Andy: I know.
Thelma Lou: He’s a warm, wonderful person and I love him dearly; but he can’t sing.
Andy: That’s true.
Thelma Lou: He’s kind, considerate, good-hearted – the most gentle person I’ve ever known; but he can’t sing.
Andy: You’re right.
Thelma Lou: He’s the man I want to marry – the man I want to be the father of my children…
Andy: But he can’t sing.
Thelma Lou: Not a lick!

This episode is one of my alltime favorite Andy Griffith shows and it showcases the comedy talent of both Andy Griffith and Don Knotts.

Author: Andrew Godfrey

Retired from newspaper work after 38 years. Had served in the Army in Hawaii and Vietnam in the 60's. Am now retired and living in Sulphur, Louisiana.

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