Monday, September 29, 2014

The Queen...



To put the debates to rest, once and for all, Guinness World Records has confirmed what we have all known for decades: who the REAL queen of music is:

Madonna (USA, b. Madonna Ciccone) has sold more than 300 million albums in her career since debuting with her self-titled release in 1983.

As of October 2013, Madonna had sold an estimated 305,600,000 albums. Her best-sellers are The Immaculate Collection (1990, 30 million copies sold) and True Blue (1986, 25 million copies sold).

Although precise sales figures are difficult to obtain and are often disputed, it is acknowledged that only The Beatles, Elvis Presley and Michael Jackson have conclusively sold more albums worldwide than Madonna.

Among female artists, Mariah Carey (USA), Celine Dion (Canada) and Whitney Houston (USA, 1963-2012) all have total worldwide album sales estimated at 200 million units.


In addition to her phenomenal album sales, Madonna's earnings of $125 m (£82 m) for the period from June 2012 to June 2013 were the highest annual earnings ever for a female pop star, dwarfing those of previous record holder Celine Dion, whose earnings amounted to $56 m ($80 m, or £49 m, today) in 1998.

Outtakes...



Some newly leaked Madonna outtakes.









Rosanna Arquette and Madonna photographed by Herb Ritts for Rolling Stone magazine in 1985.
madonnascrapbook:

Madonna Like a Prayer session outtake by Herb Ritts 1989

Show...



The full show Kylie Minogue did at the iTunes Festival this weekend!

Thursday, September 25, 2014

The Showgirl Returns!...



Kylie Minogue launched her Kiss Me Once tour last night. Head over to the amazing Shine On And On fansite for all the coverage!

The setlist:

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

It's The Girls!...



New Bette Midler album, It’s The Girls! coming out in November!

As most of you know, I have an absolute mania for harmony and vocal groups – I'm mad for the melodies, I’m cuckoo for the chords! I have been a rabid fan of these groups since I was a mere sprout, (which was so long ago I’m practically a beanstalk now!) and although I have jumped feet first into this kind of music many times, I decided to devote an entire record to some of the girl group music that I have loved since I was a kid. Yes, Virginia, I MADE A NEW ALBUM!! It’s my 25th album, which I really can’t believe. How did I manage that? Have I been recording albums I didn’t know about in my sleep?

My old friend Marc Shaiman and I went into the studio last spring. We started out by choosing nearly 50 of our favorite songs and then went through the agonizing process of editing the list down to only 17; I swear, making some of those decisions, I felt like Meryl in Sophie’s Choice! We then invited some of our favorite people in to play. A great album is like a fine wine, it’s not half as good unless you're sharing it with good friends. While I did a lot of the background chores myself, we also had some great backing singers in as well. It’s always been a particular thrill for me to watch and listen to background singers work their magic; the great ones are great artists. The experience was a thrill and the result is overwhelmingly happy, except for a couple of ballad surprises, because what’s a Bette Midler record without little kleenex, right? Hey! It worked for Piaf! We’ve stuffed so many glorious girl groups into this album - it’s an exquisite explosion of estrogen! You’ll croon, you’ll cry, and you’ll walk away craving more.

Yes, I love the music these women made, but I also love the world of the groups themselves. The legends, the rumors, the hair!! How many movies and books have come out of that world? Not enough, if you ask me!! Some of the groups were formed and trained at home, like the Boswells and the Andrews Sisters, some were put together by the labels themselves, and some met on street corners or subway staircases, looking for an echo. But whether they were sister acts or musical arranged marriages, they all had one thing in common – that SOUND! Well, the fantastic outfits didn’t hurt either. Or the synchronized dances. Okay, so maybe three things in common.

The 50s and 60’s were their heyday, when girl groups really came into their own, putting their stamp on pop music, and having a huge influence on the music that came long after they had left the stage, especially in Great Britain, where they were lionized, imitated and covered to death...

Some girl groups survived, some didn’t; some were taken advantage of, some wrote their own rules, many went through fire just for the chance to sing. There is no denying that much of what they went through, just as women, was difficult, but there is also no denying that what they gave to the world is still relevant, and still necessary; joy, attitude, and the golden dream of a youth that will never fade.


They say behind every great man, there’s a great woman. Well I think that behind every great woman, there should be at least two other women singing and dancing in perfect unison. I hope “It’s The Girls” gives you the impulse to dig deeper into the music and the lives of the women who made it. You won’t regret a moment…



UPDATE:

Track list:

1. BE MY BABY
Originally performed by The Ronettes

2. ONE FINE DAY
Originally performed by The Chiffons

3. BEI MIR BIST DU SCH├ľN
Originally performed by The Andrews Sisters
All Vocals by Bette Midler

4. BABY IT’S YOU
Originally performed by The Shirelles
All Vocals by Bette Midler

5. TELL HIM
Originally performed by The Exciters

6. HE’S SURE THE BOY I LOVE (duet with Darlene Love)
Originally performed by The Crystals

7. MR. SANDMAN
Originally performed by The Chordettes

8. COME AND GET THESE MEMORIES
Originally performed by Martha & The Vandellas

9. TOO MANY FISH IN THE SEA
Originally performed by The Marvelettes

10. TEACH ME TONIGHT
Originally performed by The DeCastro Sisters

11. WATERFALLS
Originally performed by TLC

12. YOU CAN’T HURRY LOVE
Originally performed by The Supremes

13. GIVE HIM A GREAT BIG KISS
Originally performed by The Shangri-Las

14. WILL YOU STILL LOVE ME TOMORROW
Originally performed by The Shirelles

15. IT’S THE GIRL
Originally performed by The Boswell Sisters

All Vocals by Bette Midler

Monday, September 1, 2014

Another Place And Time...



Donna Summer - The CD Collection

This limited edition CD box set collates the six subsequent albums originally released on Geffen Records and Atlantic Records (‘The Wanderer’, ‘Donna Summer’, ‘Cats Without Claws’, ‘All Systems Go’, ‘Another Place And Time’ and ‘Mistaken Identity’), as well as the ‘initially shelved’ 1981 album (‘I’m A Rainbow’) that was first released in its entirety in 1996.

The individual re-mastered re-issues, are packaged in sumptuous case-bound books, containing the original full album credits and acknowledgements, the lyrics, as included in the original Geffen and Atlantic LP Records and newly authored liner notes by noted US writers Christian John Wikane and Justin ‘Musicology’ Kantor, with brand new interviews undertaken with, amongst others, Bruce Sudano, Brenda Russell, Greg Phillinganes, Harold Faltermeyer, James Ingram, Joe “”Bean”” Esposito, Kim Carnes, Sylvester Levay, as well as extracts from archive interviews with Donna Summer by Christian John Wikane.

 Also included within the box are six individual postcards, produced from Family approved photographs from Donna Summer’s archives, stylised to compliment the CD outer box.


Released December 1st (track list to be revealed soon). More info here
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