Monthly Archives: September 2003

Tuesday, September 30, 2003

Updates and Tid-Bettes….

Mister D fell asleep after listening to Bette’s new CD over and over again…drunken from too much of a good thang….so does everybody like the new CD???? LOL Okay, I gotta go to bed but: Bette is supposed to be on Access Hollywood tomorrow…check your local listings (!!) Thank you Tammy for the alert! Don’t forget the second part of the Today show’s segment with Bette performing live in the plaza with guest, Barry Manilow….where the 2 BM’s will let loose on the stage…(sorry, had to go there:-)) This should be a real treat. Those that get to go, please send pics or at least share them with a friend or two… Keep checking out Bette’s new official site for more news and details about the tour….I have a link at the top of the page… =&1=& alerted me to this….Mariah Carey’s loosely-based homage to “The Rose” in her video for the song “Bringing on the Heartache” (remember the old Def Leppard song)….yeah, it’s for real. Go to Launch.com. You’ll have to endure a commercial for McDonald’s first and then some bad acting and a bad version of the song…but at least she was thinking about Bette and admitted it, for all it’s worth. Hope everybody is enjoying themselves with the new CD and all the upcoming events….it’s about time:-) Love, Mister D
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CD Review: U-Bulletin

Bette Midler, “Bette Midler Sings the Rosemary Clooney Songbook” ‘ — Rosemary Clooney is one of America’s beloved singers. With Midler on vocals and Barry Manilow working behind the scenes, the pair release a heartfelt tribute to the late songstress. Manilow does “A Slow Boat to China,” ‘ and Linda Ronstadt prepares a fun duet with Midler on “Sisters.” ‘
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The “Today Show” Appearance for Tuesday

=&0=& Thanks for the detail my little Maniloonie: It was about 8 minutes long, and had been taped sometime before today. She wasn’t in the studio today. From my scribbled notes: Bette met Rosie in the early 80s and she was wonderful to Bette. Her voice was honey. She had tremendous entonation. A great sense of humor. Just a wonderful package. She talks about the songs on the CD. Loves the duets. Always wanted to sing with Linda Ronstadt. Terrified to sing “White Christmas” because when Rosie sang it she made it almost impossible for anyone to sing it any better. Barry called her out fo the blue, and said, “I had a dream.” Bette said, “Pardon me?” He dreamed that she sang Rosie songs, and he was the producer. When he said that, everything just fell into place. He’s a terrific producer, a great friend, and a wonderful arranger. She let Barry choose the songs. This was the first time in her career when she didn’t fight. She didn’t answer back. She’s big at answering back. She was so tired of putting her two centsin she said, “Barry, whatever you say.” And he was right. The cute exchange before “On A Slow Boat…” was Barry’s idea. It’s very much like what they are. It’s like the Rosemary & Bing Crosby flirtatiousness. She said, “Barry, I don’t want to flirt with you. I really miss you as a music director, but I’m a married woman.” (She and Katie were really laughing here.) He said, “Well, we’ll make it about me coming back as your employee.” Bette said they finally buried the hatchet because he left her to have his own career. She was mad. “It was me who was P.O’d. How could he leave ME?! Then he had a career! The nerve! The crust!” But it was a big career, and he’s still going strong, and he’s had a great time, and he’s earned everything. She talks about the NY Restoration Project. People deserve and need for their own mental health, a place to recreate themselves. A place to be calm, and sit in nature because nature is the thing that recharges your batteries. The tribute to Rosie recharged her creative battery. “I think it’s a terrific record. I had the best time. I hope she’s looking down & having a big smile because it was an incredible life, an incredible career. But the main thing is she was a very successful human being. She was a big soul.” Thanks again to my little elf:-) Incredible… Love, Mister D
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CD REVIEW: Cincinatti Post

Midler delivers the songs of ‘girl singer’ pal Clooney By Rick Bird Post staff reporter Bette Midler, “Bette Midler Sings the Rosemary Clooney Songbook” The Divine Miss M is out with the first tribute album to Rosemary Clooney since Clooney’s death last year, and while the effort is not totally divine it does have plenty of pleasing moments. The effort was arranged and produced by Barry Manilow, who produced Midler’s earliest albums and also performed with Clooney on some projects in the ’90s. Manilow sings with Midler on a great campy version of “Slow Boat to China,” reprising the Clooney-Bing Crosby performance from 1958. But Manilow’s arrangments are a little too slick and over-the-top at times, frequently coming off achingly sweet and lush. To Midler’s credit, she plays it fairly straight as a pop singer, staying true to Clooney’s intimate delivery as Midler mostly resists the effort to resort to her cabaret camp roots. She does a tremendous job on “Hey There,” “Tenderly” and “White Christmas.” She rightfully gets back into hamming it up on “Mambo Italiano.” The highlight of the album is Midler’s thoroughly delightful duet with Linda Ronstadt on “Sisters,” which Rosemary originally sang with her sister Betty for the 1954 movie “White Christmas.” The nagging problem for some longtime Clooney fans may be the selection of material, which stops short of being the “Rosemary Clooney Songbook.” The emphasis is on Clooney’s ’50s hits. So it doesn’t include the exquisite arrangements she did later with Nelson Riddle, nor does it draw from Clooney’s seminal Concord jazz recordings in the ’70s. Indeed, Clooney herself was known to grow to detest some of those ’50s hits, which she felt were fluff. She hardly ever performed “Come On-a My House” or “Mambo Italiano” in the last half of her career. And Midler’s inclusion of the twangy “This Ole House” is similarly puzzling. Despite the quibbles, Midler delivers a heartfelt Clooney tribute with her voice as spirited and charismatic as ever and shows she is indeed a card-carrying member of Rosemary’s “girl singer” club.
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Monday, September 29, 2003

Another Review: Midler/Clooney CD

BETTE MIDLER Bette Midler Sings the Songs of Rosemary Clooney (Columbia Records) SEATTLE POST-INTELLIGENCER Gene Stout The late Rosemary Clooney — yep, George Clooney’s aunt — was among the top female vocalists of the 1950s. Bette Midler pays tribute to the warm and sometimes swinging songstress in an album that reunites Midler with her original piano accompanist and musical director, Barry Manilow. Together, M&M offer a sentimental look at the Clooney era with well-orchestrated versions “This Ole House,” “Hey There” and “Mambo Italiano,” as well as pop classics “Tenderly,” “Come on-a My House,” “In the Cool, Cool, Cool of the Evening,” and, of course, “White Christmas” — just in time for the pre-Christmas buying season. (Gene Stout) GRADE: B+
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First Review From A True Blue Fan: Herb

Seems Herb got a early present from some generous friends that know he’s a little nutso for our gal Ms. M:-) Here are his exact words on the new CD: “Oh my God, the new CD is just incredible. Bette uses her really husky voice ala her first two CD’s and really stretches her long vowels. You’ll Never Know opens with a beautiful occapella and then brings the orchestra slowly into it. The sound quality is better than any other Midler CD and there are notes of admiration about Clooney and each other from Bette and Barry. It is just incredible. Herb” So I guess you liked it Herb????:-) Herb also mentions that www.bettemidler.com is mentioned twice in the CD…so keep your eyes peeled for that! Love, Mister D
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Tidbit from the Manilow Message Board…

Snipped from the BarryNet board Sept. 29: Katie and Matt referring to Barry being on with Bette for Wednesday, and that they were interviewing Bette Tuesday, and performing with Barry on Wednesday. They discussed how the two started out together, then had a tiff, and reunited since and now collaborated on the tribute album. Thanks to my very own private Maniloonie ( I hope that’s a term of endearment…I saw that somehere in a club:-))
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More Reviews: Barnes and Noble

=&0=& Bette Midler and Barry Manilow — contemporary musical legends touched by the personal warmth and grand vocal artistry of the late Rosemary Clooney — have come together to pay homage to one of the greatest and most beloved American singers. Although he does sing on one of the album’s tracks (“A Slow Boat to China”), Manilow mainly sticks to behind-the-scenes roles as producer and arranger; the spotlight remains on Midler’s still strong, spunky, and affecting vocals. Clooney put her stamp on some endearing and enduring material over the years, and here Midler turns her sights on such signature numbers as the touching ballads “Hey There,” and “Tenderly,” as well as the humorous hits “Come On-a My House” and “Mambo Italiano.” (Linda Ronstadt has fun dueting with Midler on “Sisters”). As heartfelt as it is well executed, this pleasurable tribute reflects well on Midler, Manilow, and the absent lady of the hour, Rosemary Clooney. William Pearl
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Sunday, September 28, 2003

Tour Update: More Cities on The Tour List, but No dates

bb.jpg Photograper Bob Scott, who has photgraphed Ms. Midler in the past, sent this ad taken from a California newspaper and sent it to Darrell, who forwarded it to me…..it’s hard to read the writing from the ad so Mr. Scott wrote them down, but this is what it says…: =&0=& Of course, more cities will be announced as they are confirmed. D.C. I still am not so positive about, but it seems quite likely! Love, Mister D Thank you so much, Mr. Scott for taking the time… P.S. Don’t forget to watch Bette on the Today show, Sept 30th and Oct 1, 2003…and set your VCR’s for those of us who always screw up….:-) Read my damn article on Bruce, Hairspray, and Baltimore! Look for the image of Mr. D’s Baltimore Vacation on either this Bette site or We Got Bruce…www.wegotbruce.com The article should place you right there with me….also check out the easy access Hairspray schedule at the top pf his latest news weblog….Rochester, NY….tickets go on sale tomorrow!!!! I have a new Bette interview up from Today’s NY Daily News…so read it, dammit….. There’s so much going on, nobody has the right to be whining…period!:-) I also have the reviews page ready for Bette’s new CD in Music and Concerts…I’d just like to take a moment and say “fuck you” to EW magazine…it ‘s evident they will never be fair, and it’s all about being cynical and hip…their version of it anyway…:-) One more thing…More Christopher Walken action on the set….girlfriend don’t wanna die, but his head be rolling now!!!,,,LOL Okay, Mister D has left the building for his beauty sleep…
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Add Another Tour Date to the List…Columbus, OH

We’ve heard about the Washington New Years Eve date…but I just received this from a BLB reader…Joe W., whom I am so grateful, too. He has a friend that is a promotional director for a radio station in Columbus, OH who states that the “Bette Tour is confirmed for Saturday, December 13th at the Nationwide Arena in Columbus.” So there you go….thank you for the info, Joe! (and thank you’re friend) Love, Mister D
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