Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Kelly Clarkson Goes After Pop Singers Who Use Sex To Sell…Uh Huh!

New York Daily News
Kelly Clarkson‘s ‘Piece By Piece’ review: New album is weighed down by overbearing production
NEW YORK DAILY NEWS Tuesday, March 3, 2015, 2:00 AM
by Jim Farber

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On her new album, Kelly Clarkson blows away the long line of female pop stars who use sex to sell.

“It’s too bad you can’t see what you’re worth/spreading your legs ’stead of using your words,” she sneers in the song “I Had a Dream.”

“Anyone can sell/when they’re selling out,” she quips.

It’s a good line — not to mention an echo of Bette Midler’s recent “put-down read round the world” of Ariana Grande for pushing her sexual allure ahead of her pipes. But you have to wonder why Clarkson decided to fire this broadside right now.

Clarkson, the original “American Idol,” has never used sex to sell — and never had to. It’s her battering-ram voice that excites people — that, and her team’s ability to find songs hot-wired for radio play. On the other hand, it’s a crowded diva field these days, and putting down the competition can’t help but carve you a high profile.

As it turns out, Clarkson’s new album, “Piece by Piece,” needs all the profile it can get. It’s a strictly off-the-rack affair, a cynical run through current femme-pop clichés that does everything it can to bland Clarkson’s essential talent.
Several albums ago, the singer famously went to war with her record company, chafing at their cookie-cutter approach to pop. Promotion folks went nuts and her sales suffered. But at least Clarkson made her point — if briefly.

By the time she put out her 2011 album “Stronger,” the star had seemingly thrown up her hands, giving herself back over to corporate demands. Predictably, her acquiescence resulted in a huge hit with the title track — but at a cost. The album did little to display the more nuanced talent Clarkson can reveal live.

The singer’s latest album lacks the pay-off of a guilty-pleasure hit like “Stronger.” Worse, it doubles-down on her last album’s over-heated production. “Piece By Piece” piles on the gloss and glop. It’s a fat sounding recording that fights with, rather than enhances, Clarkson’s to-the-rafters vocals.

It’s left to the lyrics to reveal some of the star’s character. Two interesting songs — “Someone” and the title track — repeat Clarkson’s flair for the passive aggressive put-down. In “Someone,” she offers a classic non-apology-apology, saying she wishes she didn’t have to say such awful things to a foe. “Piece By Piece” repeats the theme of her smash, “Because of You.” Both offer rebukes to neglectful and/or abusive parents.

Together, such songs help focus Clarkson’s persona. But the rigid music, and assembly-line production, make a sad fact clear: Clarkson has never fully escaped the “American Idol” machine.

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"Find your Light; They can't love you if they can't see you" ~ Bette Midler

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I Will Not Be Attending Any Of Bette Midler’s Shows! Color Me Disappointed!

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Due to health reasons I won’t be attending any of Bette Midler’s Bette Midler: It’s The Girls Tour 2015​ shows. No questions please! I’ve seen her in concert since the “Clams” days in 1975, so color me disappointed. However, on the upside, I will live and see the concert through your eyes. So don’t forget to share your experiences and photos with me if you so desire. I’ll post them on Bette Midler: Bootleg Betty​ or something. Thanks for listening. xx

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"Find your Light; They can't love you if they can't see you" ~ Bette Midler

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Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Kelly Clarkson Is A BetteHead Since For The Boys!

PrideSource
Q&A: Kelly Clarkson Talks Lesbian Groupies (‘Kezbos’!), Gay Bars & Her Problem With ‘Risqué’ Pop Peers
‘It’s Silly That We’re Still Talking About Gay Rights’
BY CHRIS AZZOPARDI
Originally printed 3/2/2015 (Issue 2309 – Between The Lines News)

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Before catapulting to pop stardom, Kelly Clarkson was one of us. In many ways, she still is.

The original “American Idol,” who memorably erupted into waterworks when she championed the first season of the reality show in 2002, wasn’t always able to muster the willpower she’s instilled in the gay community through her uncompromising persona and liberating pop anthems, including those on her latest album, “Piece by Piece.”

That’s just the charm of Clarkson, who opens up in our new interview about overcoming teen inferiorities, diehard lesbian fans who call themselves “Kezbos,” driving Bette Midler to “suicide,” and that night she sipped some wine, felt “sad” for our generation and wrote a powerful song about it.

OK, Kelly, take my hand. I wanna go back with you.

The imagery!

Tell me the moment in your career you first knew gay people worshipped at your altar.

(Laughs) Oh my god – that’s amazing! It was the Breakaway World Tour (in 2005) – the first tour for the “Breakaway” record – and it was so awesome. One girl on tour came up and just introduced herself and was like, “I’m a Kezbo,” and I was like, “What?!” She was like, “A Kezbo – your lesbian fans.” And I was like, “Wait – there’s enough of you to have a group? That’s amazing! Awesome! Go me!” And she was like, “Yeah, we just love you. We’re gonna bring you to the other side.” And I was like, “All right, well, keep trying!”

Then, on the same tour, I had this guy, and he was so funny! Because, you know I’m a huge fan of Bette Midler and have been since I saw “For the Boys” when I was a kid, and he’s like, “You’re our new Bette!” (Laughs) I was like, “You need to aim higher. Bette Midler just shot herself! I’m not that cool, but I will work on gaining the respect of that compliment.”

Is it hard to fathom yourself a gay icon?

I guess it’s hard to fathom you can be an icon in general. I don’t consider myself an icon at all, but no – I have a lot of gay and lesbian friends and they like my stuff, so I guess it’s not so hard for me to think (the gay community) might like my music. But I don’t know … I’m not an icon. I’ve only been doing this for 13 years. You’ve gotta be doing it for a good 20 to gain that status.

When it comes to your strong bond with the gay community, how do you explain that connection?

I have a connection, but I don’t look at it differently. I don’t ever look at a fan as a gay fan or a lesbian fan or a straight fan – I don’t ever look at that. Fans are fans, and no matter what our lives are like, no matter what path we’re on, music is the one thing that connects us. I mean, I had so much fun at this club recently. It’s called G-A-Y – this club in London – and everybody knew all the words to every song. Even the new one! And they were gay and straight and lesbian – everybody was there. It didn’t matter, and it was just really cool. It was a cool event, and it was fun. And it’s what I love about music – that it doesn’t matter. That’s what connects us.

What was your very first time at a gay bar like?

Oh gosh – that would’ve been in LA, and I was probably 22. I went with some of my friends and a couple of my gay friends, and they were like, “You’re gonna love this! But you’re gonna need to wear a hat.” They played “Since U Been Gone,” and it was so funny because nobody knew I was there. I had a blast!

The awesome thing, for girls especially: Because most gay bars that I’ve been to – and I guess I’ve been to four or five – are all gay men and not lesbians, and being a straight female, you don’t get hit on the whole time, you don’t get people grabbing you or, like, being gross. There’s no judgment, and it’s just fun. You’re not worried about going, “No, thank you, I can buy my own drinks.” It’s the most fun club and fun time you’ll ever have in your life.

The song “Invincible” alludes to overcoming self-doubts and insecurities. In your own life, when did you most experience those hurdles, and when did you finally accept yourself for who you are?

In high school, and you know, I was having a hard time. I guess all people go through it – it’s just a different time period for all of us. When I was a sophomore in high school, it was the one time (in my life) I felt like I was insecure. It was just an awkward stage for me. Well, as was junior high, but I just wasn’t aware of it yet. (Laughs)

I’ve always been different. I’ve never been the girl that has to feel like she has to get all dolled up every day. I’ve always been kind of a tomboy. I’ve always been very outspoken, and, you know, my mom is too. I don’t know any other way to be. It’s just my personality.

In my sophomore year of high school, I got a little insecure about (my personality), because girls can be mean and I got the lead in this role in choir. No sophomore was ever supposed to get it, so people were just really mean about it. And, like, mean. Worse than the movie! (Laughs)

It made me insecure, and not so much (in regard to) my music or as a singer or an artist – just me as a person. I was like, “Is there something wrong (with me)?” I would go, “But I think I’m a good friend.” That was the only time that I was really doubtful of my person. But I got over that real quick!

Growing up in small-town Texas, when did you get your first taste of gay culture? Did you even know gay people then?

Oh yeah. Yeah! I don’t think nobody was outspoken like they are now. I think it’s a more comfortable – well, I don’t know. A couple of friends of mine just recently came out to their parents and one was just about the most horrible situation ever. So I think that still happens, unfortunately. But when I was a kid, I had a couple of my friends in choir with me. I think everybody knew (they were gay), but it wasn’t talked about or anything.

Honestly, I grew up in such a creative environment. Even in our choral group – even with my friends – nobody really talked about it, nobody was against or for it. There were no flags of any kind – of race, of who liked who. I feel like I grew up in a really incredibly good bubble. I never experienced people hating – no hate crimes or anything like that – until well into the industry. With “Idol,” people would say hateful things about certain contestants on the show, and I was like, “What in the world?!” I, fortunately, grew up in a world where that wasn’t a huge issue.

But you were raised Southern Baptist, a denomination that condemns homosexuality. What was the journey like to get to where you are now – a staunch supporter of gay marriage?

At my church, whenever I did attend Sunday service, that was never talked about. I know that is what the doctrine of Southern Baptist is, but they also said don’t drink and dance, but we drank and danced! (Laughs) I don’t think I grew up in some hardcore community where people were like that. I grew up in a very accepting household. I was taught to accept everybody how they are, and I admire my mom for that. She’s never taught me hate.

I gotta ask about your baby girl, River Rose.

Because she’s magical. She’s a magical unicorn.

You know, in some circles, the unicorn is a gay symbol.

Oh, I didn’t know that! But I love it. That’s what I call my baby!

Speaking of which, how might you and your hubby handle it if River turned out to be lesbian?

Oh, I don’t care. I mean, here’s what I hope for her: I just hope she finds love. It took me a while, man. And there was a lot of heartache throughout those years. You know, as long as she’s happy, I don’t care either way, and neither does my husband. And we have two other kids as well, and we don’t care either way for all of them.

If one of them were to come out to you, what would you say?

I’d be like, “Awesome! When do we meet him or her?” Honestly, it’s so funny, it doesn’t even register in my world as different. I don’t know why. But yeah, it doesn’t. I’m glad it doesn’t!

During the song “I Had a Dream,” which you wrote about setting an example for future generations, you say, “Spreading your legs instead of using your words.” Older generations often criticize the industry for peddling so much sex. When you look out at pop culture currently, where do you stand concerning its use of sex? And how satisfied are you with the examples these artists are setting for people like your kids and future generations?

There’s a reason why women have been revered as long as we have been – even back in the day most statues are of us; most paintings are of us – (and it’s because) we’re a beautiful form, and I get it. I get that that is sexy and I’m so in support of that. I love a sexy video. I don’t even mind raciness. I don’t mind that at all.

I just mind when people use that as the entire basis of their career. The only reason that I say that is because I feel those people are short-sighting themselves. I’m like, “You’re far more talented than that.” Yes, you can be sexy and risque, but some of these women have these amazing voices and these amazing ideals, and they have more to offer than just that.

The song actually came about because I was sitting around with some friends – we were all drinking some wine – and I was like, “Man, when you were 10 were you not just so excited about our generation and what we were gonna accomplish?” And then you look now and we’re still talking about race and we’re still talking about equal rights for everyone – didn’t you think we’d be past that? Didn’t you think we’d be more? I ended up writing a song about that because it’s just kind of a sad thing. I just felt like our generation – I think we could’ve been more. It was just a sad moment for me, reflecting.

Gosh. That’s real deep, Kelly.

(Laughs) I can go dark real quick!

Why was it important for you to include a gay couple getting engaged in the “Heartbeat Song” video?

What’s funny is, I wasn’t even actually the one who picked all the people! Marc (Klasfeld), the director, and his team did. But it was funny, because I was doing an interview here in Nashville at one of the radio stations and one of the DJs there was like, “I’m gonna be in your video tomorrow!” And I was like, “Whaaaat?” And he was like, “Yeah! I asked if I could bring my boyfriend and they said yes.”

We had no idea that his boyfriend – I mean, he didn’t know either – was gonna propose to him on the set! At first he thought it was part of the video. He didn’t get it at first, and that’s why he was like, “Are you for real? I don’t get it.” But it was the coolest thing that ended up happening, but none of that, honestly, was planned. It just kind of happened, and it was a beautiful thing.

And it’s sending an important message, don’t you think?

I think it’s silly that we’re still talking about gay rights. I just live in this world where people are accepted, so it’s very hard for me to even realize that that still exists. It’s hard for me to wrap my brain around it. That (gay couple) was a no-brainer, and I didn’t even think, “Oh, I’m making a statement for gay rights.” I was making a statement for the loss of love and the hope that you can still find it, regardless of what form that comes in. It wasn’t a purposeful thing. Love is love in whatever relationship it may be in.

Chris Azzopardi is the editor of Q Syndicate, the international LGBT wire service. Reach him via his website at http://www.chris-azzopardi.com.

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"Find your Light; They can't love you if they can't see you" ~ Bette Midler

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Monday, March 2, 2015

Bette-Toons by Scott Clarke

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"Find your Light; They can't love you if they can't see you" ~ Bette Midler

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Madonna: Womens’ Feuds Result Of A Sexist Society

Madonna Says Her Supposed Feud With Lady Gaga Is A Result Of Our ‘Sexist Society’
The Huffington Post | By Matthew Jacobs
Posted: 02/25/2015 12:44 pm EST Updated: 02/25/2015 12:59 pm EST

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The media has had a field day assessing Madonna’s alleged feud with Lady Gaga, which fermented when the latter’s 2011 hit “Born This Way” faced accusations of ripping off “Express Yourself.” In a new interview with Rolling Stone, Madonna dismisses the notion that the two singers are at odds, saying any conflict perpetuated beyond that one song is promoting sexism.

“I don’t think she wants my crown,” Madonna said. “We live in a world where people like to pit women against each other. And this is why I love the idea of embracing other females who are doing what I’m doing. The only time I ever criticized Lady Gaga was when I felt like she blatantly ripped off one of my songs. It’s got nothing to do with ‘she’s taking my crown’ or ‘she’s in some space of mine.’ She has her thing. I do think she’s a very talented singer and songwriter. It was just that one issue. And everybody’s obviously run with it and turned it into a huge feud, which I think is really boring, quite frankly. And you know what? I don’t care anymore. Here’s the thing: one day everyone’s going to shut up about it. You’ll see! I have a plan.”

Of course, this is hardly the only recent example of two female pop stars getting caught up in a supposed imbroglio. That narrative defined Britney Spears and Christina Aguilera’s ascent to fame, and similar ones have surfaced regarding Katy Perry and Lady Gaga, Lorde and Selena Gomez, Perry and Taylor Swift and Bette Midler and Ariana Grande. Some accused the Madonna-Gaga battle of raging on late last year when a leaked demo from Madonna’s forthcoming album, “Rebel Heart,” contained the lyrics “You’re a copycat, get back / I’m always on your mind.” Madonna has taken multiple measures to squash the rumors since famously calling Gaga’s music “reductive” in 2012, including appearing in a tongue-in-cheek “Saturday Night Live” sketch and posting a “Rebel Heart”-inspired photo of the younger singer on Instagram in December.

“It’s still the one area where you can totally discriminate against somebody and talk shit,” Madonna, 56, told Rolling Stone. “Because of their age. Only females, though. Not males. So in that respect we still live in a very sexist society.”

For more from the interview, head to Rolling Stone.

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"Find your Light; They can't love you if they can't see you" ~ Bette Midler

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Sunday, March 1, 2015

BetteBack January 13, 1989: Midler Steals The Show In Beaches

Washington Post
January 13, 1989

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No bikinis. No blankets. No bingo. “Beaches” is a bosom-buddy movie about a friendship that was destined to be — like surf and turf, M&Ms, Laverne and Shirley, Lucy and Ethel, Cagney and Lacey.
As the buddy movie rule requires, it is a tale of abiding love between disparate souls, a friendship formed against the odds — only here differences are overcome at Bloomingdale’s, not in a squad car.

“Beaches” is a bicoastal crowd-pleaser, a tenderhearted, two-hanky melodrama brightened with Bette Midler‘s sass and sweetened with her songs. Barbara Hershey (formerly Barbara Seagull) lends class to the unlikely equation.

The movie follows CC Bloom (Midler) and Hillary Whitney (Hershey) from Atlantic City, where they meet as 11-year-olds, to the beach house on the Pacific, where they share their final sunset three decades later. In 1957, CC is a torch singer in embryo, a determined child chanteuse (the kid played with pizazz by Mayim Bialik) who already has an act in a cheesy vaudeville show. Her vamped version of “The Glory of Love,” complete with bump, grind and feather boa, would do the Divine Miss M proud.

The finishing-schooled Hillary (young Marcie Leeds), a well-bred San Franciscan, is fascinated by this exotic girl whom she meets sneaking a cigarette under the pier. “Want a drag? It’ll calm your nerves,” says CC, who likewise is taken with Hillary. Blessed with a generous spirit, elegance and brunet beauty, Hillary is a miracle to CC. “Bread and butter,” agree the perfect little odd couple, pledging their fidelity before going their separate ways.

The girls agree to write and theirs is a soul-baring correspondence that continues till they meet again more than a decade later. “Dear WASP queen, I have a can of Mace, a flat and a subscription to Variety,” writes CC. “I guess I’ve made it.” The pen pals become roommates when Hillary joins the New York staff of the ACLU. CC bleaches her hair, and Hillary dyes hers the same color. They giggle retroactively and bolster each other — mostly CC. She’s still a struggling actress, but she’s as certain as a Busby Berkeley showgirl to make the footlight parade.

It’s fortunate, not to mention expected, when along comes John Pierce (John Heard), the dishwater blond director of an experimental theater company, who serves as shared love interest and litmus test of the women’s relationship. CC saw him first, but it’s Hillary he wants. Citing a lack of character, Hillary apologizes when she takes her best friend’s man. “Sexual attraction has nothing to do with character,” scoffs CC, “unless you are Eleanor Roosevelt.”

It’s CC’s humor, and Midler’s brass, that save the episodic “Beaches” from overflowing with suds. CC’s career rises and crashes, Hillary sells out and becomes a docent, husbands come, cads go, babies are born and diseases caught in a predictable screenplay by Mary Agnes Donoghue. An adaptation of the bestseller by Iris Rainer Dart, the story line is “Terms of Endearment” played again with so much zest and sentiment all is forgiven.

Unfortunately, it’s got more endings than Beethoven’s Ninth. Just when you think it’s over, Midler comes back for an encore of “The Glory of Love.” A charismatic warbler from her Sunkist-orange corona to the hem of her wine-velvet gown, Midler steals the show again. Even with new collagen-engorged lips, Hershey can’t take a scene from her. She’s a stretch of empty sand for Midler’s bouncy beach ball.

Midler is not only the star but also a producer of “Beaches,” the premier project of her All Girl Productions, which did hire Garry Marshall, a definite male, as the director. As the brains behind “Laverne and Shirley” and “Mork and Mindy,” Marshall was a natural for a team effort. But “Beaches” most closely recalls Marshall’s “Nothing in Common,” a father-and-son tear-jerker that fit like a loose shirt.

Whatever its failings, “Beaches” speaks to women. It makes girlfriends think of calling girlfriends they haven’t seen in 10, 20, 30 years. You can live without love, but “you’ve got to have friends,” as Midler sings.

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"Find your Light; They can't love you if they can't see you" ~ Bette Midler

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Saturday, February 28, 2015

THE 25 BEST BITCHY REMARKS OF ALL TIME

PaperMag
THE 25 BEST BITCHY REMARKS OF ALL TIME
by Michael Musto
February 25, 2015

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Most famous people generally mind their P’s and Q’s and try to not to make waves with their public utterances for fear of bad press. But occasionally, they slip up–thank God–and blurt their true hateful feelings. And when famous people uncork their mouths, it makes your everyday bitch look like an amateur. Here are my 25 favorite nasty comments of all time, courtesy of notable names dishing a variety of things (like each other). I’m too in awe of these remarks to even be jealous.

There is no there there.” — Gertrude Stein about Oakland

She looks like a truck driver in drag.” — Truman Capote on Valley of the Dolls author Jacqueline Susann

She doesn’t write, she types.” — Gore Vidal on Valley of the Dolls author Jacqueline Susann.

“Every word she writes is a lie, including ‘and’ and ‘the’.” — author Mary McCarthy, about author Lillian Hellman

Faye Dunaway needs a step ladder to sniff Bette Davis’s ass.” — James Woods, who worked with both of them

Lindsay Lohan said she wouldn’t mind being under oath because she thought Oath was a Norwegian ski instructor.” — Joan Rivers

“Madonna has just lost 30 pounds–she shaved her legs.” — Joan Rivers

Let’s be blunt. Yesterday’s Evita is tomorrow’s Velveeta.” — Fashion critic Mr. Blackwell on Madonna

“A Botox’d cockatoo in a painting by Dali.” — Mr. Blackwell describing Melanie Griffith

This is not a novel to be tossed aside lightly. It should be thrown with great force.” — Dorothy Parker reviewing Ayn Rand’s Atlas Shrugged

“You can lead a whore to culture, but you can’t make her think.” — Dorothy Parker

“She runs the gamut of emotions, from A to B.” — Dorothy Parker about Katharine Hepburn

“Congratulations are in order for Woody Allen. He and Soon-Yi have a brand new baby daughter. It’s all part of Woody’s plan to grow his own wives.” — David Letterman

“She’s so dumb it takes her two hours to watch 60 Minutes.” — Joey Adams joke

Unfortunately, he was about as deep as a melted ice cube” — Times reporter Gail Collins on failed politico John Edwards

“She’s so white, she’s invisible.”– Bette Midler on milky singer Karen Carpenter

Keir Dullea, gone tomorrow” — Noel Coward on the survival probability of a then-hot actor

Fashion is a form of ugliness so intolerable that we have to alter it every six months.” — Oscar Wilde

“Isn’t it fascinating to think that probably the only laugh that man will ever get in his life is by stripping off and showing his shortcomings?”– David Niven after a surprise streaker ran by, flashing everything, on the 1974 Oscar telecast

“Linda arrives at first rehearsal with cosmetic surgery tape over and under her eyelids and underneath her chin. She also has the weirdest collagen-enhanced lips I’ve ever seen. They make her look like a gargoyle when she smiles.”– Joan Collins on rehearsing the play Legends with Linda Evans in 2006

“She’s been hit with the ugly stick. You just want to say ‘God bless and here’s a Gillette razor’.” — Sharon Osbourne on Susan Boyle

“If Amanda Bynes finally takes the earrings out of her cheeks and blows a guy, there must be geysers of jizz shooting out of her face!” — Kathy Griffin

“She’s a vacuum with nipples.” — Otto Preminger on Marilyn Monroe

“She speaks five languages, and can’t act in any of them.” — John Gielgud on Ingrid Bergman

All God’s children are not beautiful. Most of God’s children are, in fact, barely presentable.” — Fran Lebowitz

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"Find your Light; They can't love you if they can't see you" ~ Bette Midler

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Friday, February 27, 2015

Review: Bette Midler and Darlene Love rock on ‘He’s Sure The Boy I Love’

Digital Journal
Review: Bette Midler and Darlene Love rock on ‘He’s Sure The Boy I Love’ SPECIAL
By Markos Papadatos February 27, 2015

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Read more: http://www.digitaljournal.com/a-and-e/music/review-bette-midler-and-darlene-love-rock-on-he-s-sure-the-boy-i-love/article/427078#ixzz3Sx5reFDW

Rock and Roll Hall of Famer Darlene Love and Bette Midler are absolutely incredible on their duet “He’s Sure The Boy I Love.”

It is a track on Midler’s newest studio album It’s the Girls! The tune was co-written by Barry Mann and Cynthia Weil, and originally performed by The Crystals. The song is infectious, with a retro vibe to it, and it is easy to sing along to. Midler and Love’s vocals blend well on harmonies together and the result is a masterpiece duet.

“He’ never be a big business man, He always buys on the installment plan, He sure ain’t the boy I been dreaming of, But he’s sure the boy I love,” the acclaimed songstresses sing.

They are able to dust off the original recording by The Crystals, make it sound fresh, and subsequently introduce it to a brand new generation of fans.

The Verdict

Overall, this duet is a gift from two musical goddesses: Bette Midler and Darlene Love. They truly knock it out of the park. It does not get any better than that. They ought to perform it live at some point in concert. It will certainly be well-received by their fans and listeners. “He’s Sure The Boy I Love” earns an A rating.

For more information on Darlene Love, check out her official website.

To learn more about Bette Midler and her new album, visit her homepage.

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"Find your Light; They can't love you if they can't see you" ~ Bette Midler

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Thursday, February 26, 2015

LADY GAGA CHANNELS BETTE MIDLER WITH ‘AMERICAN HORROR STORY’ STARRING ROLE?

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LADY GAGA CHANNELS BETTE MIDLER WITH ‘AMERICAN HORROR STORY‘ STARRING ROLE?
Feb 25 2015, 9:56pm CST | by Sidney Garland, in News | Latest TV News

2-26-2015 4-49-24 AM

In a moonstruck sort of way, Mother Monster has shaken up the minds of fans with her chameleon-esque career moves. Only Lady Gaga can go from a glamorous tribute to Sounds of Music in a Mary Poppins manner to starring in “American Horror Story.” Imagine that?
Perhaps, it’s a road less followed that explains why Lady Gaga is turning the page on her seemingly failed career. Who can forget the abysmal ratings of ARTPOP? Or perhaps she’s channeling the venerable Bette Midler who danced on both sides the isle, and emerged out of the ashes to reinvent her career. After melting the hearts of millions from her Academy Awards performance, Gaga starring in the fifth season of American Horror Story, arguably, makes logical sense, citing a Variety report.

Daily Mail calls Lady Gaga’s role in the upcoming FX season her second act. However, one only has to dig deep into the Born this Way pop singer’s past to realize that she was prepped for a lead role on the big and small screens. In short, Gaga is not a familiar face that is slated to fill a void in a film cast gone awry. Here’s why.

Gaga, real name, Stefani Joanne Angelina Germanotta, before disrupting pop culture, taking on male personas (“Jo Calderone”) and donning meat dresses, had another love: acting. Lady Gaga has a mean set of vocals, but she also has a knack for role-playing.

With a strong background at the prestigious New York University, a starring role in American Horror Story is backed by credentials. In other words, she’s not merely a knock-off artist with a dream of acting. Besides, her stage performances tell stories and captivate audiences in ways that mere vocals alone can’t pull off.

She’s starred in Machete Kills and made appearances in several other small budget films. Although they all bombed at the box office or were skewered by film critics, Gaga’s upcoming role is a lead and she has a solid franchise to build on.

Although her recent collaboration with Tony Bennett (Cheek to Cheek), which garnered her a Grammy, and her tribute to Julie Andrews signaled a tamer and more mature performer, Lady Gaga is not tossing out her inner weirdo and oddball. Her role in Horror is evidence of her ability to keep fans and critics wondering what she will do next.

Like Midler, who had a topsy-turvy career in film and music, but made a series of comebacks, Gaga is following suit. And by all early accounts, the ayes have it for her to do amazing in a fearless kind of way.

Spoiler alert: According to Huffington Post, a portion of the AHS plot may have something to do with chemical warfare – unofficially.

The fifth season of Ryan Murphy and Brad Falchuk’s American Horror Story premiere’s in October. How do you think Lady Gaga will fit in with the cast?

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"Find your Light; They can't love you if they can't see you" ~ Bette Midler

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Wednesday, February 25, 2015

BetteBack December 21, 1988: Beaches – A Friendship, On and Off the Rocks

New York Times
By JANET MASLIN
Published: December 21, 1988

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There are a few indications that ”Beaches,” the story of a long and checkered friendship between two women, takes place in the 1980’s. There is the fact, for instance, that when one of the friends, a wealthy Californian named Hillary Whitney (Barbara Hershey) announces that she plans to have a baby and raise it alone, the other friend, a vivacious singer named C. C. Bloom (Bette Midler), says this will be just wonderful.

In other respects, though, ”Beaches” is strictly a 40’s saga, complete with bitter feuds, tearful recriminations, loving affirmations and, of course, the kind of fatal illness that can drag on endlessly without altering the afflicted’s good looks.

Those who go to see ”Beaches,” which was directed by Garry Marshall and which opens today at Cinema I and other theaters, ought to know what they’ll be getting, and that they’ll be getting quite a lot of it. ”Beaches” – which has a couple of key scenes at the beach but otherwise never justifies that title except perhaps with the vague view that we are all life’s driftwood – is pure soap from beginning to end.

Though its stars work hard to hold the attention, they are asked to play this story absolutely straight. Even viewers with a taste for melodrama will doubtlessly expect more irony or perspective on the genre that ”Beaches” has to offer.

Of course, there is a flashback: C. C. Bloom, now a big star rehearsing a concert at the Hollywood Bowl (Miss Midler sings a sultry version of ”Under the Boardwalk”), suddenly receives shocking news. She drives off in a terrible rainstorm, heading we know not where. Cut to C. C.’s girlhood, to an Atlantic City sojourn during which the brassy little redhead (played by Mayim Bialik, who does a wicked imitation of the adult Miss M.) makes friends with the rich overprotected Hillary. Perhaps they do not know that this friendship will last a lifetime, but we, of course, do.

C. C. and Hillary become loyal pen pals. (C. C. in New York: ”I’m on my own now and I’ve got a flat, a can of Mace and a subscription to Variety. I’m all set.”) They keep this up until, in their early 20’s, they are reunited as New York roommates, banging on the radiators with the kind of pluck that only New York movie roommates have. As opposites, C. C. and Hillary do make an appealing if pat combination, Miss Hershey looking the demure debutante and Miss Midler brazening her way through every situation. Together, they make the friendship convincing and the story a lot more interesting than it otherwise would be.

Each of the heroines is allowed one marriage (though one of the husbands, John Heard as a theater director, manages to become involved with both of the friends). After this, though, men mostly fade out of the story, leaving C. C. and Hillary to confront age, rivalry, success and finally mortality. By the time ”Beaches” arrives at the inevitable tragic and bittersweet note, though, it seems to have run through several different preliminary endings. Any one of these would have sufficed.

Miss Midler gets to sing a lot, which is a big help. In the supporting cast, Spalding Gray looks mildly stunned at having to play the dreamboat doctor who nearly takes C. C. away from her life of glitter, but he does have one of the film’s few memorable lines. ”I don’t understand it,” he says when things go wrong. ”I mean, just yesterday she was telling me she wanted to be a nurse.”

”Beaches” is rated PG-13 (”Special Parental Guidance Suggested for Children Younger Than 13”). It includes some off-color language and one mildly risque musical routine. Water Under The Bridge BEACHES, directed by Garry Marshall; screenplay by Mary Agnes Donoghue, based on the novel by Iris Rainer Dart; director of photography, Dante Spinotti; edited by Richard Halsey; music by Georges Delerue; production designer, Albert Brenner; produced by Bonnie Bruckheimer-Martell, Bette Midler and Margaret Jennings South; released by Touchstone Pictures. At Cinema 1, Third Avenue and 60th Street; Gramercy, 23d Street and Lexington Avenue. Running time: 120 minutes. This film is rated PG-13. C. C. Bloom … Bette Midler Hillary Whitney Essex … Barbara Hershey John Pierce … John Heard Dr. Richard Milstein … Spalding Gray Leona Bloom … Lainie Kazan Michael Essex … James Read Victoria Essex … Grace Johnston C. C. (age 11) … Mayim Bialik Hillary (age 11) … Marcie Leeds

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"Find your Light; They can't love you if they can't see you" ~ Bette Midler

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