Try and keep up with the incomparable Barbra Streisand and her inspired take on “Jingle Bells.” How can you not love this? Continue reading “Christmas Music: Barbra Streisand “Jingle Bells””
Legendary actress/singer/director Barbra Streisand has released a new video for her recording of “You’ll Never Walk Alone” created as a tribute to the medical staff, UPS drivers, grocery store clerks and essential workers who are risking their lives keeping the U.S. going through the COVID-19 crisis.
“I sang this song almost 20 years ago after 9/11,” writes Streisand at the beginning of the video. “Today we face another crisis but I think the words still apply. With love and gratitude, Barbra.”
I found myself tearing up in the first minute as I saw the slideshow of frontline workers in private, emotional moments. Not only because of their heroic efforts but at the other end of the spectrum I considered the selfish protesters showing up at various state capitols mad because they can’t get a haircut or go to a park.
Every time one of them screams and yells without a face mask at a police officer they could be undoing all of those hours of sweat poured into trying to save lives by medical personnel and essential workers.
Penned in 1945 for the Rodgers and Hammerstein musical Carousel, Babs first recorded the song in 1997 for her 27th studio album, Higher Ground.
She memorably performed the song live as a surprise finale at the 2001 Emmy Awards.
Streisand closes the video with an appeal for donations to Direct Relief, which “supplies protective gear to all our heroes in the United States.”
Some news items you might have missed:
• InstaHunks: Woofy Wes Dupree (above) answers the eternal Sondheimian question “Does anyone still wear a hat?”
• The Atlantic: John McWhorter does a better job expressing what I tried to say last week about that Pete Buttigieg ‘Lying MF’
hit piece essay.
• NY Post: A woman in Brazil was sentenced to 25 years in prison for stabbing her gay son to death after the hitmen she hired didn’t get it done.
• Tweet of the Day: Paul Rudnick re-captions this photo from the White House in perfect form.
Melania’s unveiled this year’s WH Christmas decor. The theme is Soap Opera Star Striding Through An 80s Department Store Looking For A Restroom pic.twitter.com/Y9te7IheqE
— Paul Rudnick (@PaulRudnickNY) December 2, 2019
• White House: For the third year in a row, Donald Trump did not mention LGBTQ people in his World AIDS Day proclamation. It goes without saying that, while not a ‘gay’ disease, HIV/AIDS disproportionately affects LGBTQ people.
• The Hill: Donald Trump loves to nickname his political opponents and he’s decided the latest entrant in the Democratic primary will be called “Mini Mike Bloomberg.” For the record, Bloomberg is 5’8″ tall.
• Esquire: Still handsome, confident and charming at 82, Billy Dee Williams comes out as gender fluid in a new interview. Williams returns to the role of ‘Lando Calrissian’ in the upcoming Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker.
Amid all the political angst I’m scrolling through today on social media, I came across Barbra Streisand who took to Twitter today to remind us all of this iconic moment in the annals of entertainment when two powerhouse artists gave us reason to feel uplifted.
When La Babs guested on The Judy Garland Show 56 years ago today, and they sang a duet of Streisand’s take on “Happy Days Are Here Again,” with Garland’s “Get Happy” that would go down in television history as musical magic.
Such a special moment in my career. She was incredible. Totally unique. Just been reminded this aired 56 years ago today on CBS. pic.twitter.com/3hrUUjo4hY
— Barbra Streisand (@BarbraStreisand) October 6, 2019
Mel Tormé, in his book The Other Side of the Rainbow: With Judy Garland on the Dawn Patrol, explained that it was Garland who called him into her dressing room, played Streisand’s record of “Happy Days Are Here Again,” and sang a counter-melody of her signature song, “Get Happy.”
“The result was electrifying, one of those chance discoveries in which two great songs jell into one extraspecial opus,” Tormé wrote.
|Terron Beckham (via Instagram)|
Some news items you might have missed:
• InstaHunks: Terron Beckham (above), the ridiculously jacked cousin of the Cleveland Browns’ Odell Beckham Jr., shows off some gym humor along with his ‘big-is-best’ everything else. #thosecalves
• OUT: A new study shows some men may be reticent to recycle because it might be perceived as ‘feminine.’
• Variety: At her Madison Square Gardens concert over the weekend, Barbra Streisand offered up a tweaked version of “Send in the Clowns” that trolled the current clown in the Oval Office.
• Twitter: A police officer busts some moves to Steps’ 2017 hit “Scared Of The Dark” while attending Brighton Pride in the UK. The clip went viral after his police department shared the clip on social media.
Did you see our #DancingCop in the @PrideBrighton Parade yesterday. Officers volunteered their time to represent @HertsPolice along with Officer from across the UK. 🕺 @SXP_LGBT @LGBTpoliceuk #BrightonPride @HertsPRIDE @hertslgbtq_nh @LGBTHerts pic.twitter.com/eP5PfCVPAG
— Herts Police LGBT+ 🚔 (@HertsPoliceLGBT) August 4, 2019
• Red Flag Bill: Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) is collaborating on a “red flag” bill with Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.) that would start a federal grant program to help encourage states to create “‘red flag’ protection order” laws, which are meant to make it easier for law enforcement to identify mentally ill people who should be banned from purchasing guns.
• NY Magazine: A new profile on Ivanka Trump quotes a friend who says the Trumpette, “Has no idea she’s privileged. She genuinely thinks she’s earned everything she has. She goes on and on all the time about how hard she works.”
The visual, directed by the fab Mike Ruiz, is a fast and furious, animalistic affair featuring a nearly naked Deney locked inside a glass case.
“I wanted to convey that feeling of being trapped in a situation; when just at the moment that you think you are finally free from it, you find yourself right back where you started,” says Deney.
Musically, the track continually switches gears resulting in a visceral, heart-pounding (or should that be ‘heart-dropping?’) ride. Hit play below.
Earlier this week, Barbra Streisand raised eyebrows with comments to the Times of London regarding Michael Jackson and the new documentary Leaving Neverland, which details allegations of sexual abuse of children by the late King of Pop.
Streisand has now released a statement clarifying the comments.
“To be crystal clear, there is no situation or circumstance where it is OK for the innocence of children to be taken advantage of by anyone. The stories these two young men shared were painful to hear, and I feel nothing but sympathy for them. The single most important role of being a parent is to protect their children. It’s clear that the parents of the two young men were also victimized and seduced by fame and fantasy.”
La Streisand added on her Instagram:
“I am profoundly sorry for any pain or misunderstanding I caused by not choosing my words more carefully about Michael Jackson and his victims, because the words as printed do not reflect my true feelings. I didn’t mean to dismiss the trauma these boys experienced in any way.”
In the Times of London interview, after being asked her thoughts on the documentary, the EGOT-winner said:
“It’s a combination of feelings. I feel bad for the children. I feel bad for him. I blame, I guess, the parents, who would allow their children to sleep with him. Why would Michael need these little children dressed like him and in the shows and the dancing and the hats?”
“His sexual needs were his sexual needs,” she added. “Coming from whatever childhood he has or whatever DNA he has.”
“You can say ‘molested,’ but those children, as you heard them say [the grown-up Robson and Safechuk], they were thrilled to be there. They both married and they both have children, so it didn’t kill them.”
BARBRA WHAT ARE YOU DOING https://t.co/1Zy797kred
— andi zeisler (@andizeisler) March 23, 2019
Oh this is a very very very bad take Barbara. https://t.co/GENvZclsf7
— Molly Jong-Fast (@MollyJongFast) March 23, 2019
It is with the heaviest of hearts that I cancel Barbra Streisand. https://t.co/h5mmHhKZN4
— Alan Henry (@AlanHenry) March 23, 2019
|James Corden and Barbra Streisand|
Music and film legend Barbra Streisand joined in the ‘Carpool Karaoke’ fun with The Late Late Show’s James Corden last night as she releases her latest album, Walls.
With his own car jackbooted, he calls on the EGOT winner for a lift.
Immediately reaching for some music, La Streisand initially isn’t too hip to the idea, “I just finished making an album and I don’t usually put the radio on when I’m driving.”
Corden’s sad face saves the day, fortunately for us.
Along the ride we’re treated to “Enough Is Enough,” “Evergreen,” “Imagine,” “What A Wonderful World,” “Don’t Lie To Me” and “Don’t Rain On My Parade.”
Plus, Barbra shares how she really isn’t a great driver (she failed her driving test three times recently), that performing live still makes her uncomfortable, and how she called up Tim Cook (CEO of Apple) to get Siri’s pronunciation of her name corrected.
And she talks on the theme of her new album inspired by the current political turmoil.
You can get Walls here on iTunes and you can watch the one and only Babs below.
Barbra Streisand makes her music video directorial debut with the new lyric video, “Don’t Lie To Me.”
“You can build towers of bronze and gold/ You can build castles in the sky/ You can use smoke and mirrors, all clichés/ Not today, not today,” she sings in the soaring new anthem.
The Oscar-winning music legend recently told Billboard there’s no ambiguity about who she is singing about here.
“The Liar in Chief, the Groper in Chief — yeah, I’ve written many articles about this… this person… who has no manners, insults everybody, makes fun of disabled people,” she said. “I don’t know what to say, I’ve written like 15 Huffington Post pieces. This way my way to do my record, because what else could I think about? It’s my protest, in a sense, about this unprecedented time in our history.”
The video is filled with striking imagery of Trump, environmental challenges and social upheaval.
Written and directed by Babs, “Don’t Lie To Me” is from the new album WALLS set for release November 2.
Legendary actress and recording artist Barbra Streisand has released her first single from her upcoming album, Walls, set for release November 2.
According to the famously socially conscious Streisand, she intended the new single, “Don’t Lie to Me,” to have “very subtle” references to Donald Trump.
But she just couldn’t do it.
Instead, the track includes questions and comments clearly meant for Trump.
How do you sleep when the world keeps turning?
All that we built has come undone
How do you sleep when the world is burning?
Everyone answers to someone
And then there’s the title of the album, Walls. There’s a none-too-subtle reference to Trump’s favorite subject.
In an interview with the Associated Press, the Oscar/Emmy/Grammy winner shared that the current “assault on democracy” inspired much of the new collection’s intent.
“I wanted to talk about the things that were making me feel so sad, heartbroken,” she said. “I’m a kind of fierce American.”
“I don’t know who we are anymore as a country. Are we embracing people who flee oppression? Or are we separating children from parents, putting them in cages?”
“I don’t know if people care about the planet, the survival of the planet. Do they care about clean air? Clean water? Clean food? If they do, how could they vote for somebody like Trump, who believes it’s a hoax?”
“I’m frightened for this country. And yet, I have hope.”
Streisand turned to music industry luminaries Walter Afanasieff, John Shanks and David Foster – all Grammy recipients for Producer of the Year – to help craft the arrangements and production of Walls.
And speaking of achievements, a brief review of Streisand’s career highlights is the stuff artists dream of.
With 52 gold, 31 platinum and 13 multi-platinum albums in her career, she is the only recording artist in history to achieve a #1 Album in six consecutive decades.
Streisand is the only woman to make the All-Time Top 10 Best Selling Artists list, and is also the female artist with the most number one albums in Billboard’s history.
And yes, the mantles in her home must be packed with honors considering her two Oscars, ten Grammys (including two special Grammys), five Emmys, three Peabodys, and eleven Golden Globes including the Cecil B. DeMille Award.
1. What’s On My Mind
2. Don’t Lie To Me
3. Imagine / What A Wonderful World
5. Lady Liberty
6. What The World Needs Now
7. Better Angels
8. Love’s Never Wrong
9. The Rain Will Fall
10. Take Care Of This House
11. Happy Days Are Here Again
You can check out “Don’t Lie to Me” below. The single as well as a pre-order is available at this link.