Tag Archives: Chaka Khan

Tuesday, February 5, 2019

The Grammy Swag Curator: Who was his favorite musical artist over his 20 years?

Hollywood Reporter
The Curator Behind 20 Years’ Worth of $30,000 Grammys Gift Lounge Swag Bags
By Nick Williams

LOS ANGELES, CA - FEBRUARY 12:  Founder of Distinctive Assets, Lash Fary (L) and Hip-hop artist LL Cool J attend the GRAMMY Gift Lounge during The 58th GRAMMY Awards at Staples Center on February 12, 2016 in Los Angeles, California.  (Photo by Vivien Killilea/WireImage)
LOS ANGELES, CA – FEBRUARY 12: Founder of Distinctive Assets, Lash Fary (L) and Hip-hop artist LL Cool J attend the GRAMMY Gift Lounge during The 58th GRAMMY Awards at Staples Center on February 12, 2016 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Vivien Killilea/WireImage)

Mister D:  Grammy’s Celebrity Swag:Not trying to provoke or anything, but celebs seem to have enough money, so I don’t understand why they get bags of what I’m sure are wonderful things, but why? I mean they already have so much stuff. Why not use the money to help out charities? But then I guess Mr. Fary, then, wouldn’t have a job, so we don’t want that either. Priorities! Priorities!

Lash Fary, the co-founder of Distinctive Assets, talks about two decades of gifting everything from custom pet portraits and psychic readings to family circus training and 24-karat gold lollipops on music’s biggest night.
Lash Fary basically invented awards show swag bags. The A-list L.A. gifting guru’s marketing firm Distinctive Assets launched in 1999 as a private showroom servicing costume designers of top television series and has since bloomed into a full-service entertainment marketing agency. Its tentacles span the industry’s wide swath of glitzy red carpets — the Tony Awards, the American Music Awards, the Kids’ Choice Awards, the BET Awards, The Country Music Awards and the Grammy Awards — including the 61st show on Feb. 10. ...  Read More

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Friday, August 3, 2018

BILLBOARD HOT 100 celebrates 60 YEARS with the List of the 60 FEMALE ARTISTS of ALL TIMES

Billboard Magazine BILLBOARD HOT 100 celebrates 60 YEARS with the List of the 60 FEMALE ARTISTS of ALL TIMES August 1, 2018 Bette Midler List BASED on DATA from August 4, 1958 … to July 21, 2018 AAA 60. Juice Newton 59. Carole King 58. Stevie Nicks 57. Amy Grant 56. Missy Elliott 55. Faith Hill 54. Chaka Khan 53. Jody Watley 52. Avril Lavigne 51. Pat Benatar 50. Anne Murray 49. Ashanti 48. Bette Midler 47. Aaliyah 46. ??Natalie Cole 45. Fergie 44. Petula Clark 43. Miley Cyrus 42. Brandy 41. Carly Simon 40. Sheena Easton

39. Debbie Gibson ...  Read More

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Thursday, October 27, 2016

BetteBack January 18, 1974: 1974 Grammy Nominations Announced – Bette Up For Three

Delaware County Daily Times January 18, 1974 51098lL52ZL._SS500_ LOS ANGELES (AP) —Singer and composer Stevie Wonder has received six nominations in the 16th annual Grammy awards preliminaries, the most ever given to a recording artist. The blind musician was nominated four times as a performer and twice as a composer. His song “You Are The Sunshine of My Life” was among nve nominees tor 1973 record of the year, and his album “Innervisions” was nominated for album of the year. Winners in the recording industry competition will be announced in a televised awards presentation on March 2. The nominations were announced Thursday at the Hollywood Palladium by singer Andy Williams who will preside over the awards show. Other record of the year nominees announced were: “Bad, Bad Leroy Brown,”, sung by the late Jim Croce; “Behind Closed Doors,” sung by Charlie Rich; “Killing Me Softly With His Song,” sung by Roberta Flack; and “You’re So Vain,” sung and composed by Carly Simon. Croce, who was killed in an airplane crash last year, was one of the few artists ever nominated posthumously. Multiple mentions for female vocalists went to Miss Flack. Miss Simon and Bette Midler, whose rendition of “Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy” was nominated for best female vocal performance. Miss Midler was also nominated for best new artist of 1973. In nonmusical segments of the record industry awards, comedian David Frye was nominated for a record satirizing President Nixon. “Richard N’ixon, A Fantasy,” and actor John Wayne was nominated for a spoken word record titled, “America, Why I Love Her.” Paul Simon won two nominations for his solo album. “There Goes Rhymin’ Simon.” It was nominated as album of the year and the single record of the same title was entered in competition for best male pop vocal performance. Other nominees for album of the year were: “The Divine Miss M,” Miss Midler;’ “Behind Closed Doors,” Rich; “Innervisions,” Wonder, and “Killing Me Softly,” Miss Flack. Newcomers named for best new artist of the year were Miss Midler, Eumir Deodato, Maureen McGovern, Marie Osmond and Barry White.. Nominees for best pop vocal performance were Miss Flack, last year’s winner; Miss Midler, Miss Simon for “You’re So Vain,” Anne Murray for “Danny’s Song,” and Diana Ross for “Touch Me In The Morning.” Singers nominated for best male pop vocal performance were: Croce for “Bad, Bad Leroy Brown,” Wonder for “You Are The Sunshine of My Life,” Elton John for “Daniel,” Simon for “There Goes Rhymin1 Simon” and Perry Como for “And I Love You So.” The 20 amazing Bette Midler facts you can share with your mates at the SSE Hydro Good News Dept: The Divine Miss M Re-Issue Bette Midler Reveals How She Got Her Nickname with Release of Deluxe Edition of ‘The Divine Miss M’ BetteBack December 14, 1973: Bette Midler Hits Sophomore Slump

Bette Midler Re-Issuing Remastered ‘The Divine Miss M,’ Mentoring on ‘The Voice’ ...  Read More

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Monday, November 23, 2015

BetteBack July 24, 1992: Are Barbra Streisand and Bette Midler sisters? (LOL)

Harrisonburg Daily News Record July 24, 1992 20141118-125955-g Are Barbra Streisand and Bette Midler sisters? — C.L , Port Orange, Fla. No. Streisand has one half-sister, Rosalind Kind, and one brother, Sheldon Streisand. And, in answer to a question from D.A. in Shreveport, La., Streisand’s real given name is Barbara. She changed the spelling.
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Monday, May 18, 2015

EDM artist Carol Hatchett part of Bette Midler’s ‘Divine Intervention’

My San Antonio EDM artist Carol Hatchett part of Bette Midler’s ‘Divine Intervention’ Posted on May 18, 2015 | BY HECTOR SALDAÑA The-Bareroot-featuring-Carol-Hatchett-Carol-Hatchett-headshot-480-x-720 SAN ANTONIO – Three hours to the east, Bette Midler’s “Divine Intervention” tour rolls into Houston’s Toyota Center for a concert tonight. Anyone who’s seen the Divine Miss M knows that Midler doesn’t pull off those fabulous,highly entertaining multi-costume shows all by herself. Especially noteworthy is one of her backup singers and dancers — Carol Hatchett. Hatchett is an EDM artist in her own right and part of a duo with Daniel Pearson called The BareRoot featuring Carol Hatchett. The duo have a new EP called “Born to Love.” It’s the follow-up to “Dance Under the Lights.” Tracks like “Turn Up the Night,” “Born to Love” and “Breakthrough” offer a sophisticated take on EDM and trance with jazzy R&B flourishes that recall the best of Donna Summer, Diana Ross, Michael Jackson and En Vogue and manages to be trippy, playful and sultry at the same time. Odds are Hatchett is one of the talented crew in a whacky outfit tonight — from mermaids to 1940s fly girls — dancing behind the star of the show. That’s a Harlettes’ gig. But “Born to Love” shows there’s much more to this talented choreographer and actress once the curtain goes down and the house lights go up. Learn more at thebarefootmusic.com
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Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Arif Mardin: ‘The Greatest Ears in Town’

Jewel, Arif, and Bette

Los Angeles Times Producer Arif Mardin celebrated in documentary ‘The Greatest Ears in Town’ June 29, 2010 | 1:00 pm It’s a remarkable on one level that a man who played a critical role in shaping a boatload of hit records by Aretha Franklin, the Bee Gees, Bette Midler, Carly Simon, Phil Collins, Dusty Springfield, Chaka Khan, Norah Jones and countless others isn’t a household name. On the other hand, it’s not surprising that longtime Atlantic Records staff producer-arranger Arif Mardin is overshadowed in the pop music history books by the larger-than-life executives he worked for at the label: Ahmet Ertegun and Jerry Wexler. Mardin “was more responsible than he has ever been given credit for many of the successes that we’ve had,” Ertegun himself says in “The Greatest Ears in Town: The Arif Mardin Story,” an illuminating documentary filled with as much humor as pathos that received its first L.A. screening Monday night at the Grammy Museum as part of the facility’s “Reel to Reel” film series. The two-hour film is built around footage shot in 2006 while Mardin was at work on what would become his final recording, “All My Friends Are Here,” a star-studded collection featuring artists he guided to some of their finest performances, singing songs he’d written over the years. He died of pancreatic cancer that year at age 74, shortly before finishing the album, which was released June 15 after being completed by his son, Joe Mardin, who also co-directed “The Greatest Ears in Town.” The documentary traces his life from his birth in Turkey to an aristocratic family and his early fascination with American jazz through his move to the U.S. to study at the Berklee College of Music to landing a job as a studio assistant at Atlantic in the early 1960s. It was there that he eventually brought the full scope of his skills as a composer, arranger and producer to bear after charting his first hit in 1966: the Young Rascals’ “Good Lovin’.” It was Mardin who crafted many of Springfield’s blue-eyed soul sessions in the late 1960s, who put the Bee Gees on the dance-minded, falsetto vocal sound that put them on track for their extraordinary “Saturday Night Fever” success and who surprised Khan with the hip hop-laced treatment of Prince’s “I Feel for You” in 1984 that became her biggest pop hit. Monday’s screening was followed by a brief Q&A with Khan, Quincy Jones — a mentor who secured him the Berklee scholarship that allowed him to move here — Joe Mardin and the film’s co-director, Doug Biro. Mardin’s widow and Joe’s mother, Latife Mardin, who spoke sweetly in the film of their 50-year marriage, was in the audience, and Recording Academy President Neil Portnow was on hand as emcee. All spoke of Mardin as a man of exceptional grace and wit, one who never attempted to overlay his own musical identity onto the artists he worked with. Instead, he tapped a broad-based set of musical skills to shepherd each to new creative heights. Longtime Beatles producer George Martin appears in the film expressing admiration for Mardin’s work, and reflecting on the common aspects of their jobs as producers who were classically trained composers and arrangers. Discussing the advantages such training gives a producer over those without compositional and arranging skills, 26-time Grammy winner Jones noted that in today’s computer and ProTools-driven world of record making, “If you don’t know music, you work for ProTools. If you know music, ProTools works for you.” “The Greatest Ears in Town: The Arif Mardin Story” will get additional theatrical and television screenings before it is slated for release later this year on DVD, according to a spokeswoman for the project. — Randy Lewis Enhanced by Zemanta
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Thursday, June 17, 2010

CD Review: Various Artists, “All My Friends Are Here” (NuNoise). 2 ½ stars

MassLive.com Various Artists, “All My Friends Are Here” (NuNoise). 2 ½ stars. It’s tough to argue with the sentiment behind this posthumous tribute to the legendary late producer Arif Mardin, though the music ranges from incredibly tasty to incredibly trite. Completed after Mardin’s death in 2006, it celebrates the Istanbul-native’s lasting legacy on the international music scene, with a collection of songs he composed and co-produced with his son Joe Mardin, all performed by an all-star cast. The exception is the amusing, swingin’ opening cut, “The Greatest Ears in Town,” which is sung and co-written by Bette Midler. Many of Mardin’s other admirers can also be heard, including Diana Reeves’ rather disappointing “No One;” the very tasty “Goodbye to Rio,” by Raul Midon; the lackluster drag of Amy Kohn’s “Dual Blues;” and the borderline discordant “Chez Twang’s,” featuring Dr. John in a song Mardin wrote while still a student at the Berklee School of Music. Carly Simon, Norah Jones, Willie Nelson and Chaka Khan are among the many others on board for the CD, which is the companion piece to the documentary “The Greatest Ears in Town.” Tracks to download: “The Greatest Ears in Town” “Goodbye to Rio.” Enhanced by Zemanta
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Monday, June 14, 2010

Review: All My Friends Are Here

Jazz Times Mardin Magic: A Tribute to Producer Arif Mardin Christopher Loudon on All My Friends Are Here, a tribute to the late Arif Mardin Unintentionally of course, Arif Mardin crafted his own eulogy. Naturally, given Mardin’s stature as arguably the most accomplished arranger/producer of the past half-century — the genius responsible for everything from Dusty Springfield’s landmark Dusty In Memphis to Barry Gibb’s career-altering falsetto, the stratospheric launch of the Average White Band and the equally meteoritic blast-off of Norah Jones — it is shaped of music. Mardin aptly referred to what would ultimately become All My Friends Are Here (NuNoise Records) as his “life’s work.” Begun in 2005 and completed by his son and co-producer Joe after Mardin’s death, in June 2006 at age 74 of pancreatic cancer, it is an incomparably rich, atmospheric celebration of all aspects of the 12-time Grammy winner’s vibrant life and career. Indeed, it is not too early to cite All My Friends Are Here as a prime contender for album of the year honors. Mardin wrote or co-wrote all but one of the album’s 13 tracks. Some, like the exquisitely romantic “Longing for You” (written when Mardin was 23 as a ode to his then fiancée Latife) date back decades. Others are brand new. To perform this heady potpourri of songs, father and son assembled more than a dozen of the artists whose careers Mardin launched and molded, including Bette Midler, Norah Jones, Raul Midón, Barry Gibb, Chaka Khan, Danny O’Keefe, the Average White Band, Daryl Hall and Felix Cavaliere. All My Friends Are Here opens with the album’s only non-Mardin composition. Co-written by Bette Midler and Marc Shaiman, “The Greatest Ears In Town” is a rousingly upbeat, biographical number performed by Midler, with a little backing assistance from Barry Gibb. Done in a style best described as ‘Istanbul swing,’ it traces Mardin’s Turkish roots, his arrival in New York in the late 1950s, his lifelong passion for jazz (and martinis, or “mardinis,” as he called the potent concoctions that were his specialty) and his emergence as a hit- and star-making mastermind at Atlantic Records and, briefly, for EMI. The tempo slows for the misty “So Blue,” the first track recorded for the album, featuring Chaka Khan and David Sanborn. Mardin did not live long enough to hear Nicki Parrot record the slyly seductive, Lee Wiley-esque “No Way Out,” accompanying herself on bass, but he did leave detailed instructions for the slinky, noirish arrangement. Though Mardin worked with dozens of artists, he personally signed only one, Raul Midón. The blind vocalists/guitarist’s acclaimed 2005 album, State of Mind, was one of Mardin’s final projects prior to All My Friends Are Here. Here, Midón delivers a haunting reading of Mardin’s shimmering “Goodbye to Rio.” Two years prior to his discovery of Midón, Mardin did a brilliant job of placing Dianne Reeves in gorgeously minimalist acoustic settings for the petal-soft A Little Moonlight. He takes a similarly tender approach with Reeves’ cloudily melancholy “No One.” Mardin’s swirling “So Many Nights,” bordering on madness with its sinister Phantom of the Opera overtones and sly references to David Raksin’s “Laura” and Bernard Hermann’s “Jennie’s Theme,” serves as an inspired showcase for Danny O’Keefe intoxicatingly chafed rasp. “So Many Nights” provides an ideal introduction to All My Friends’ most striking cut, “Calls a Soft Voice.” Also the album’s most deeply personal track, it examines the fogged condition of Mardin’s mother during her final years. Carly Simon’s performance, caught in the restless state between dream and nightmare, is nothing short of magnificent. Norah Jones, in the estimable company of Joe Lovano and Jon Faddis, delivers a finely mellow “Longing for You” that is equal parts wistful pining and wishful fantasizing. Amy Kohn, whom Mardin dubbed “musical devil in a red dress,” lives up to her soubriquet with a brilliantly murky one-woman play set to the tune of “Dual Blues,” complete with femmes fatale and vice cops. Dr. John, whom Mardin befriended in the 1970s, is in exceptional form, growling his way through the angularly atonal “Chez Twang’s,” a dazzling, shake-off-the-funeral-rags salute to New Orleans. Saturday Night Live music director Katreese Barnes leads a loping, sensuous “Lonestar Blues,” featuring Mardin on piano and built around an astounding, down ’n’ dirty Willie Nelson guitar solo. Finally, Hall and Oates, Barry and Robin Gibb, Felix Cavaliere, Phil Collins, Donny Hathaway’s daughter Lalah, Cissy Houston, Randy Brecker and members of the AWB unite for a chanting treatment of the celebratory title tune. But one track remains. It is Mardin, alone at the piano just two months before his demise, making the most graceful and understatedly profound of exits, tiptoeing out to the gentle, somber yet sweet strains of “Wistful.” Joe Mardin has also produced a companion DVD entitled The Greatest Ears In Town. Tracing Mardin’s life from his aristocratic youth in Istanbul to his career-capping success with Norah Jones, it interweaves home movies, vintage performance video and reminiscences from Atlantic Records’ cofounder Ahmet Ertegun, Aretha Franklin, Phil Collins, Bette Midler, Daryl Hall, Carly Simon, Dianne Reeves, Marc Shaiman, Jones and at least a dozen other luminaries with track-by-track footage of the recording of All My Friends Are Here. The documentary has already earned accolades at film festivals around the globe and Joe Mardin is currently seeking a DVD distributor. Here’s hoping he locates one soon. For glorious as the album is — and it truly is the master’s masterpiece — it is that much more magical when paired with the film. Enhanced by Zemanta
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Saturday, June 12, 2010

CD reviews: Mardin’s friends present a lovely tribute

Pittsburgh Tribune-Review CD reviews: Mardin’s friends present a lovely tribute By staff and wire reports Saturday, June 12, 2010 ‘ALL MY FRIENDS ARE HERE’ Arif Mardin, et al (NuNoise) Arranger-pianist-producer Arif Mardin (1932-2006) worked with an array of stars in his career, and a group of them give “All My Friends Are Here” an appropriate title. This was a project he began before his death and finally was put together by his son, Joe. The title track alone would justify the title, as it features Hall & Oates, Barry and Robin Gibb, members of the Rascals and the Average White Band, Phil Collins, Lalah Hathaway, Cissy Houston and Randy Brecker. The album also has Bette Midler singing “The Greatest Ears in Town,” Chaka Khan and David Sanborn doing “So Blue,” Diane Reeves on “No One,” Carly Simon on “Calls a Soft Voice” and Norah Jones on “Longing for You,” which also has saxophonist Joe Lovano and trumpeter Jon Faddis. That lineup doesn’t even mention “Lonestar Blues” with a guitar solo by Willie Nelson. Mardin’s friends have put together a great tribute. The album is available Tuesday. — Bob Karlovits Featuring New Track By Bette Midler
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Saturday, May 15, 2010

All My Friends Are Here

Reuters Music stars pay tribute to producer‘s love of jazz Evie Nagy Fri May 14, 2010 10:04pm EDT NEW YORK (Billboard) – Arif Mardin may not be a household name, but he worked with more than a few familiar faces who are. In his 40-plus years with Atlantic and Manhattan Records, before his death in June 2006, the Turkish-born producer/arranger was responsible for hits from stars including Bette Midler, Aretha Franklin, Chaka Khan, Hall & Oates, Norah Jones and Willie Nelson. He also won 12 Grammy Awards and is credited with encouraging Barry Gibb to use the falsetto that would propel the Bee Gees’ sound in the disco era. But his first musical love was jazz composition, a pursuit that he put on hold in 1966 after he co-produced his first No. 1 pop hit, the Young Rascals’ “Good Lovin’.” Now, four years after his death, Mardin’s jazz work will be celebrated with “All My Friends Are Here,” a collection of his compositions recorded with many of the pop stars whose careers he elevated. The set, due June 15 from his son Joe Mardin‘s NuNoise label, will have a companion documentary, “The Greatest Ears in Town,” co-directed by Mardin and Doug Biro. It was filmed during recording sessions for the album and includes interviews with such artists and colleagues as Franklin, Quincy Jones and late Atlantic co-founder Ahmet Ertegun. “When my father was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer in early 2005, he started reviewing compositions from the past, some which had lyrics, some which didn’t,” recalls Mardin, who worked with his father for many years as a co-producer and helped complete and record the selected pieces. “He always referred to this album as his life’s work.” ‘BLUE’ BEGINNINGS The first song recorded was noir ballad “So Blue,” with lyrics by Roxanne Seeman, featuring Khan on vocals and David Sanborn on alto sax. Other tracks were completed either when Mardin was too sick to work or after his death. He worked on the project until the very end of his life. “I went to visit him one night in June 2006, and he hands me score paper,” Joe Mardin says. “It was the string arrangement to ‘No Way Out.’ And my father died the next day.” Although Mardin wouldn’t live to see the song recorded with singer Nicki Parrott, the detailed instructions he left behind illustrate the forethought in his process. “He wanted some seashore sound effects, a Balinese gamelan interlude, finger snaps and Jerry Dodgion’s flute as an alter ego to the vocal,” Mardin says. Of the album’s 13 tracks, the only one the elder Mardin didn’t pen is opener “The Greatest Ears in Town,” co-written and sung by Midler as a tribute to the producer, who helped her earn a Grammy and a Billboard Hot 100 No. 1 with “Wind Beneath My Wings.” “It’s this very loving tribute to how my father came here and landed in the world of jazz, and ended up becoming this very successful creator,” Mardin says. The album’s other contributors include Jones, Nelson, Carly Simon and Dr. John. The title track’s all-star roster includes Hall & Oates, Barry and Robin Gibb, and Phil Collins. Mardin will release the companion documentary on DVD and is in talks to bring it to TV. “With the film, we obviously wanted to show his success in popular music,” he says. “But also the family side, the history from Turkey — what an extraordinary kind of American dream my parents lived, my father being the first recipient of the Quincy Jones Scholarship at the Berklee College of Music, and how that led to being hired by (Ahmet’s brother) Nesuhi Ertegun at Atlantic. And what a great father he was — because with all his accomplishments, he was a great dad.” Reblog this post [with Zemanta]
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