Ah, Amanda Lear - “It” girl of swinging London, muse and mistress to Salvador Dali, lover to David Bowie and Brian Jones and one-time fiancee of Bryan Ferry, though rumored to be trans… I mean, there are photos where you’d swear it must be true (top right on the album jacket, below). Word has it those rumblings quieted down…somewhat…when she posed for Playboy in the late 70s, though no one seems to be able to figure out to this day whether Dali paid for a sex-change operation for her in Casablanca in the 60s.
Yes, that’s her striking the feline pose on the cover of Roxy Music's For Your Pleasure, and she did in fact begin her career as a model. But by the mid-70s, around the time of her affair with Bowie, she decided to take a shot at music. From Wikipedia:
In 1974, disillusioned by a shallow and conservative fashion industry and encouraged by her boyfriend Bowie, who paid for singing and dancing lessons, Lear decided to launch a career in music. Bowie recommended a Hungarian voice coach Florence Wiese-Norberg, with whom he also worked, and the pair subsequently recorded a demo track called “Stars”, which remains unreleased to date.
Amanda’s debut track was a cover of Elvis' tune 'Trouble.' This here is the French version of the track, which turned out to be her breakout hit in Italian and German discos. (And the album sleeve is the German single) I would still love to hear that duet with Bowie though…
David Bowie & Marianne Faithfull — I Got You Babe (1973)
A notable duet! This song was obviously written to be performed by rock’n’roll’s two most wonderful misfits. Just so happens this was also the last ever appearance of Ziggy Stardust, as Bowie had announced his retirement several months prior. He ended up reuniting the Spiders for this performance on October 19, 1973, at London’s Marquee Club, for The Midnight Special, a program on NBC.
Holy moly this new Brian Eno/Karl Hyde album is killing me. This song sounds like Lucky Dragons took scissors to an Awesome Tapes From Africa cassette, pasted it back together, and played it back through a blown-out amp. There’s not much of Eno’s signature melodic hooks in this track, but the rest of the album has enough to go around.
The accompanying app is actually a pretty cool VR experience, too. Haven’t seen anything quite like it. Try it out…
Highly recommend this mix by dublab’s Turquoise Wisdom and Elijah Wood. Yes, “that* Elijah Wood. Lots of great dance trax from the late 70s/early 80s. Tracklist:
3eme generation - les envahisseurs - melba fern kinney - baby let me kiss you - malaco philwit & pegasus - elephant song - emi pathe marconi harmony cats - harmony cat’s theme - young yellow power - hai samurai - x records belle epoque - miss broadway - carrere felecia johnson and tsb inc - franchise on love - top’s black juniors - break - rge boney m - happy song - atlantic felix - tiger stripes - sleeping bag carmen - time to move - presents records sugar babe - sugar - niagara
Met this guy Kent Odessa the other night through a friend. He’s like an earworm factory, with a mastery of Michael Jackson and the early 80s sound. Witness his soundcloud and you’ll see what I mean.
He’s currently wrapping up his new album, Physical Genius, which should be coming out in the next few months, with a national tour not far behind. Rumor has it the record release party may be at the Knitting Factory in Brooklyn. Stay tuned…
Julian Cope, frontman of The Teardrop Explodes, really aces this New York City gig. The band is impeccable and he’s got a wild and hypnotic energy on stage. Oh to be there.
The venue, The Ritz, was a rock club in the historic Webster Hall on 11th St - today just known as Webster Hall again. MTV had a series called “Live at the Ritz,” which they aired on Saturday nights, and I believe this is one of those. Great show.
After keeping this song on near endless rotation for the past two weeks, I can claim it to be without equivocation the best pop ballad ever written. The melody just keeps ascending to more sublimely emotional air-guitar heights than one could imagine, and Twilley sings like a bell.
That it’s track number seven among ten standout anthems is a testament to Twilley’s superior songwriting abilities. This track wasn’t even a hit—that would be the spacey jumper ‘Looking for the Magic,’ which features Tom Petty on guitar. But I’ll take ‘Sleeping’ any day. I need to give it the karaoke treatment STAT.
Oldie but goodie from Montreal-based smooth crooner Jef Barbara. NYers: go see him TONIGHT at Pianos, or Sunday at Baby’s All Right in Brooklyn. PLUS: Meshell Ndegeocello learned the bass on all his songs and will be backing him for these special shows.