Tag Archives: The Wizard of Oz

Wednesday, June 20, 2018

35 of the most iconic movie songs of all time

Mister D: Honestly, if we are being fair, “The Rose” should have made this list, too. But good job Brinkwire! Brinkwire 35 of the most iconic movie songs of all time June 19, 2018 by Brinkwire Bette Midler, Barbara Hershey, Dyed Hair, Beaches “Footloose” by Kenny Loggins (“Footloose”) The movie musical quickly became one of the biggest hits when it was released in 1984, in no small part thanks to Loggins’ now-iconic song. It’s impossible not to dance when you hear it, which is probably why the song topped the charts for three weeks in a row on the US Billboard Hot 100, becoming such a massive hit that Loggins himself was blown away by its success. In 2014, he revealed in an interview, “It became the biggest movie of the summer. We didn’t see it coming. But I remember going to the premiere and watching the opening scene of the movie, … using “Footloose” (the song) over the dancing feet. My wife turns to me and goes, ‘This is gonna be huge.’” Audiences furiously kicked off their Sunday shoes in agreement, of course. “Kiss From a Rose” by Seal (“Batman Forever”) Seal originally released the song in 1994, but it hit icon status when it was featured on the “Batman Forever” soundtrack a year later, earning the singer three Grammy Awards for Record of the Year, Song of the Year, and Best Male Pop Vocal Performance. It might feel like an unlikely song for a superhero movie, but that’s what makes it work so perfectly. “Kiss From a Rose” is no doubt Seal’s biggest hit, cementing Val Kilmer’s Batman as one of the most memorable of all. “I Will Always Love You” by Whitney Houston (“The Bodyguard”) Houston was already a bona fide music legend by the time she made her acting debut in the 1992 romantic thriller, but the song rapidly became one of her most remarkable hits, thanks to those searing high notes and her flawless delivery. It’s often forgotten that the ballad is actually a cover of a Dolly Parton song, and it made music history as the only country song to reach No. 1 in three separate decades. It topped the charts around the globe upon its release and did the same within hours of Houston’s death in 2012. “Lady Marmalade” by Christina Aguilera, Pink, Lil Kim, Mya, and Missy Elliott (“Moulin Rouge!”) With its suggestive chorus and a medley of high notes from the biggest pop stars of the early aughts, “Lady Marmalade” had new life breathed into it when Aguilera, Lil Kim, Mya, Pink, and Elliott covered it for Baz Luhrmann’s whimsical romantic musical in 2001. Few likely expected it to become such an iconic soundtrack song, but you’d be hard-pressed to find a karaoke bar or wedding reception where the song isn’t playing. It’s fun, it’s campy, and it brought together a group of powerhouse pop stars in a way that happens all too rarely, topping the Billboard charts for nine consecutive weeks, the only all-female collaboration to do so. “Happy” by Pharrell Williams (“Despicable Me 2”) If you have kids, know kids, or have ever met a kid, you’ve definitely sung along to “Happy,” which was first featured on Williams’ album “Girl” before becoming a massive global hit thanks to a feature spot on the animated film’s soundtrack. “Happy” became the biggest-selling song of 2014, and even years later, it’s impossible to go anywhere without hearing the infectious anthem. So when you do, be sure to “clap along if you feel like a room without a roof” … we’re not entirely sure what it all means, but we’re, ahem, to comply. “Stayin’ Alive” by The Bee Gees (“Saturday Night Fever”) It takes a rare film and song to define an entire era, but “Stayin’ Alive,” which served as the iconic opening scene to the 1977 coming of age tale starring John Travolta did just that, becoming one of the most classic disco songs of all time. The film’s soundtrack featured a slew of hits by the group of brothers and other disco acts, but “Stayin’ Alive” is the one that inspired a generation to strut down the street in their best disco duds.

“Over the Rainbow” by Judy Garland (“The Wizard Of Oz”) ...  Read More

Posted in Articles/Essays, Music | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment


Wednesday, February 1, 2017

BetteBack December 10, 1973: Bette Midler Worried About First Night Stiffs At The Palace

Middlesboro Daily News December 10, 1973 img1211 New YorkBette Midler‘ll haul down about $,100,000 for three weeks of doing her “Irash willi flash” act at the Palace Theater. I^as Vegas salaries have come to New York. Thnt’s $100,000 a week. Six shows a week, $26,000 a show. Jimmy Nedcrlandcr, Ihe personable proprietor of the Palace, said as we wnlclicd the unbelievable opening night lobby stone, “Bette Midler is the biggest grosser in the history of Ihe Palace.” “I was here in ’67 when Judy Garland came in and 1 think this is bigger,” I agreed. We watched the remarkable people shoving in, some normals, some celebrities like Dyan Cannon, Peter Boyle and Julie Newmar. . .some bearded ladies, men in gowns, a barebacked man who stood up and waved, one who had to be hauled off stage. But Judy Garland had cultists too, people with a revival meeting fervor. “You paid 15 dollars!”shreiked the energetic 28-year-old redhead who said she was the only Jewish girl in a Samoan neighborhood in Hawaii and always like the red light districts to walk in because Ihey were interesting. “You could have bought 3 gallons of gas for that kind of money.” “She was worried about the first-night stiffs in the front row. She mimicked them “Dirty girl. . I don’t get it . . .Gross. . .very gross.” She went after Nixon; (old the well known “Deep Throat” story to huge applause Got several standing ovations. Had Ihe greatest stage presence, warmth and personality of any new performer in years. She said she was very tired. “I’ve been standing in line all day trying to get tickets to Ihe Winter Garden lo see Liza Minnelli.” “Went to great expense to get these Hawaiian girls here tonight,” she said. “Had to pay their fare all the way from Broadway and 50th St.” “Listen,” she said once, “whose idea was it to play this dump?” A great one, whomever it was. Slill, Bette Midler, after that madhouse, went over to Improvisation with Peter Boyle and gloomed all over the place that those trussed-up first night stiffs weren’t her people and didn’t appreciate her. I trust the thought of $300,000 for the three weeks will help her accept her fate

Related articles ...  Read More

Posted in BetteBack | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment


Wednesday, July 22, 2015


Broadway World BWW Reviews: A Divine BETTE LIVE AT THE CONTINENTAL BATHS by Misha Davenport July 22, 2015 10987757_10153057839745852_5836869193278199846_o If you’re talking iconic performances on stage, Bette Midler‘s early performances at New York’s Continental Baths surely rank up there with Judy Garland at Carnegie Hall and Woodstock. Many people claim to have attended these performances, but let’s face it: the venues just weren’t that big. In the Divine Miss M‘s case, not much survives of her earliest performances at the baths, save for a few grainy, black and white film clips. Fans will definitely want to check out Hell in a Handbag’s loving tribute to Midler’s earlier days, BETTE LIVE AT THE CONTINENTAL BATHS: A TRIP DOWN MAMMARY LANE. If nothing else, it gives you a sense at how she first began to connect with and build her core audience. Her humor comes through a little more blue than nowadays (though no one would ever claim Midler’s tours are exactly kid-friendly). This is Midler before Midler became the superstar. One shouldn’t discount the historic significance that the Continental holds. In addition to Bette Midler and her accompanist Barry Manilow, its cabaret attracted the likes of Gladys Knight & the Pips, The Manhattan Transfer, Elaine Stritch and The Andrews Sisters (just to name a few). The baths became more than just a place where gay men came for anonymous hook-ups, but rather a full-fledged entertainment center. Straight white people who only decades earlier trekked up to Harlem when they were feeling adventurous, came to the Continental on the Upper West Side of New York. The Continental catered to both the towel-clad men there for all the amenities the bath house had to offer and the fully-clothed patrons who were just there to see the talent. The straight and gay communities came together with the common purpose of being entertained; kind of like “Will & Grace,” only a bit more blue and with a towel-clad ensemble cast. Set in 1971 as Midler was making her “800th final appearance” at the baths, the evening is very much an origins story of the Divine Miss M. Caitlin Jackson has the daunting task of re-creating Midler -for which she is very much up to the challenge. Simply put, Jackson is divine as the Divine Miss M in a Jeff-worthy performance. Her Bette is a ballsy, take-no-prisoners performer. Some of the stage banter is taken from existing videos, but Jackson also proves adept enough to ad-lib here or there and is completely believable as her. The end result is less caricature and more of a well-rounded character. She is accompanied on the piano by Jeremy Ramey as Midler’s accompanist at the time, Barry Manilow. There are a few jokes thrown in for Manilow fans (I won’t ruin them here) and Ramey (who also provides musical direction) deserves applauses for committing to Manilow’s signature hairstyle (that wig of feathered hair has got to be hot). The cast is rounded out by a pair of towel-clad bath house patrons, TJ Crawford andWill Wilheim. In addition to being eye candy, the pair act as emcees and back-up singers. Each is given a solo at the top of the show (Miss Midler is still getting ready, they tell us) and a duet at the top of the second act. All three songs fit nicely into Midler’s set list and the pair succeed in warming up the crowd for the main event. The night belongs to Jackson -and rightfully so. Her rendition of the Midler standard “Friends” is pitch-perfect in terms of matching Midler’s vocal styling. She displays some fine comedic work in “Chattanooga Choo-Choo” and gets to the heart and soul of Midler in a haunting “Superstar” and “I Shall Be Released. If there is any criticism to be made, it is that the show’s 90 minute runtime with intermission leaves you wanting more. It’s a trip down memory lane for Midler’s fans and a reminder to everyone else of a time when gay life and culture was evolving. Midler was there and, in some ways, was leading the way. Or in the very least, she was entertaining the troops. Set List ACT I Too Many Fish in the Sea – (TJ Crawford) Leader of the Pack – (Will Wilhelm) Friends Long John Blues Chattanooga Choo-Choo Superstar Empty Bed Blues ACT II He’s the Boy I Love (Crawford and Wilhelm) Mambo Italiano Do You Wanna Dance? Great Balls of Fire Chapel of Love I Shall Be Released Friends (Encore) BETTE LIVE AT THE CONTINENTAL BATHS runs through Aug. 21 at Mary’s Attic, 5400 N. Clark. Tickets $12-$35. Tickets available at www.handbagproductions.org.
Posted in Barry Manilow, Bette Related | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment