Tuesday, September 6, 2016

STAR SISTERS-Hooray For Hollywood (1984)

ORIGINAL POSTING DATE: September 6, 2016

Hooray indeed! Feels great to be back to my old music self, and I began celebrating the occasion today with yet another delightful, guilty pleasure from my favorite decade. "Hooray For Hollywood" served as my second stint with the Dutch girl group, THE STAR SISTERS, and I certainly had lots to cheer about once my forty-minute excursion with it was complete! Well, I was already cheering as soon as I took in the opener, "A Tribute To Marilyn Monroe", because it has a very stylish, showgirl-ish cutesy flash about it that made it seem like I was watching one of the old classic movies from the 1950's A respectful Marilyn Monroe tribute indeed—the STAR SISTERS trio playfully sing about a special sugar daddy who spoils them with whatever jewels and riches their hearts desire (I love it when they chime in with that 'poo poo' line). Partway through this first particularly showgirl-ish performance, I'd quickly recalled the whole dramatic story told to me about the STAR SISTERS' origins as the former STARS ON 45, where I learned that their sound had changed to a more mainstream dance-pop style by the time their 1985 effort, "Danger", was produced. So my ears were more than prepared to receive the remaining equally theatrical, showgirl-ish performances that would follow. It had to be sometime during the follow-up, "Alexander's Ragtime Band", where a wave of nostalgia hit me. Besides me not having enjoyed some nice classy ragtime music in ages, I was somehow reminded of the theme song music to the 80's television sitcom, "Mama's Family"; I suppose it had something to do with the noticeably 80's-produced ragtime rhythm. Once that image popped into my head, my mind wandered off on any number of tangents that had me conjuring up memorable episodes from that show and its related series, "The Golden Girls" and "The Carol Burnett Show". But before I got too deep in my 80's flashback nostalgia, I managed to forge onward, finding even more music pleasantries in "Mister Sandman" (classy jazz-pop at its finest!), followed by the timeless dreamy, Broadway-caliber classic, Cry Me A River" before I was treated to an all-instrumental showcase with "This Is The Only Beginning" (I like how the arrangement alternates four different times between the classy ballroom jazz-pop to the extended majestic horns to the day-dreamy, disco-inspired orchestral overtures and finally to the bouncy piano ragtime rhythm). One performance that I especially adored: "Hawaiian Summer". The whole island feel of the song is accented by an Instantly catchy ragtime beat with my personal highlight being the fun bits of Spanish dialogue quipped by the guest male vocalist midway through. And how can you not adore these lovely ladies while listening to their collectively sweet,charming voices on "Drivin' With My Baby (Thru' The Valley)"? The title track serves as the first signal of theatrical triumph—highlighted by the introductory majestic drum beat, then the familiar ' there's no business like showbusiness ' line that I have surely heard in old theatrical presentations so many times—with the concluding track, in essence, serves as the simple full-length reprise of what these STAR SISTERS were once all about:

1. A Tribute To Marilyn Monroe
2. Alexander's Ragtime Band
3. Mister Sandman
4. Cry Me A River
5. This Is The Only Beginning
6. Hooray For Hollywood
7. Sentimental Gentleman
8. Lullaby Of Broadway
9. Hawaiian Summer
10. Drivin' With My Baby (Thru' The Valley)
11. Showbusiness

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