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American singer, Lesley Gore, died on Monday (Feb 16th) aged 68. Her partner, Lois Sasson, confirmed that Gore died at New York University Langone Medical Center in Manhattan after a long battle with lung cancer.
Gore will be best remembered for her 1960s hits such as “It’s My Party (and I’ll Cry if I Want To)” and “You Don’t Own Me”. The latter, written by John Madara and David White, became a feminist anthem, with its assertive lyrical content in obvious contrast to the self-pity evident in most other songs about failing relationships.
“You Don’t Own Me” – Lesley Gore
In an interview with Classic Bands, Gore said of the song:
I felt a greater connection to the lyric than anything else I had recorded before. So, yeah, I would have to say from my point of view, I felt it was a better song. You take a song like “It’s My Party” or “Judy’s Turn To Cry”…things almost become dated over the years. “You Don’t Own Me” has stood the test of time.
“You Don’t Own Me” peaked at number two on the Billboard Hot 100 and would go on to be covered by many artists, including Dusty Springfield and the Blow Monkeys. The song was resurrected in 2012 in an election campaign message about women’s rights. Gore appeared at the start to approve the message.
Born Lesley Sue Goldstrain on May 2nd, 1946, in Brooklyn, Gore was just 16 when she recorded demos that would be heard by Quincy Jones, who was then Mercury Records’ A&R MAN. Jones recognised her potential and would become her mentor and record producer. Her first hit, “It’s My Party,” was recorded in March 1963, when Gore was still only 16, and rush released when Jones became aware that Phil Spector intended to release the song with The Crystals. “It’s My Party” was Gore’s only number one.
“It’s My Party” – Lesley Gore
She followed this with the top-five hit, “Judy’s Turn to Cry,” which was an answer record to “It’s My Party” in which the narrator of the earlier song comes out on top this time. Other hits included “She’s A Fool,” “Sunshine, Lollipops and Rainbows,” “That’s the Way Boys Are” and “Maybe I Know”.
In 1964, Gore would take part in the memorable “T.A.M.I. Show film, which documented a show at the Santa Monica Civic Auditorium that also featured James Brown, the Rolling Stones, the Beach Boys, Marvin Gaye, the Supremes and others. The movie was finally released on DVD in 2010.
Though not the writer of her early hits, Gore did turn her attention to songwriting for her 1972 album, “Someplace Else Now,” and her 1975 album “Love Me By Name”. The latter saw her reconnect with producer Quincy Jones.
In 1980, Gore’s songwriting talent was recognised when she was nominated for an Oscar with her brother, Michael Gore, for writing the song “Out Here on My Own” for the soundtrack to the movie “Fame”. She continued to write, record and perform live in her remaining decades, including an appearance on Broadway in Smokey Joe’s Cafe in 1998 and the release of “Ever Since” in 2005, which was her first album for 30 years.
Gore’s recent activities included working on a stage version of her life with playwright Mark Hampton.
She is survived by her partner, Lois Sasson, her mother, Ronny Gore, and her brother, Michael Gore.
Tags: It's My Party, Lesley Gore, Lesley Gore death, Lesley Gore obituary, You Don't Own Me
Posted in 60s pop, Obituaries | No Comments »
Joe B. Mauldin, the bassist for Buddy Holly’s Crickets, died on Saturday morning (Feb 7th) in Nashville. He was 74.
Tags: Buddy Holly, Buddy Holly and the Crickets, Joe B Mauldin, Joe B Mauldin death, Joe B Mauldin obituary, Joe Mauldin, The Crickets
Posted in Obituaries, Rock 'n' roll | No Comments »
Music stars including Bruce Springsteen, Tom Jones, Neil Young and Willie Nelson paid tribute to Bob Dylan as he was named the MusiCares Person of the Year for 2015 at a gala on Friday night.
Dylan was introduced by former President Jimmy Carter. During his 30-minute acceptance speech, he paid tribute to those who had inspired him and covered his work, including Jimi Hendrix, Johnny Cash and Joan Baez.
Tags: Bob Dylan, Bob Dylan - MusiCares Person of the Year for 2015, MusiCares, MusiCares person of the year
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Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens and the Big Boppper died 56 years ago today in a plane crash, following a gig in Clear Lake, Iowa. The Rock ‘N’ Roll Hall of Fame’s “The History of the Winter Dance Party” documentary features Dion DiMucci’s interesting recollections of that final tour, “The Winter Dance Party”.
Tags: Big Bopper, Buddy Holly, Buddy Holly anniversary, Dion, Dion DiMucci, History of the Winter Dance Party, Ritchie Valens, Winter Dance Party
Posted in Films, Rock 'n' roll | No Comments »
Paul McCartney and Paul Simon will be present to help “Saturday Night Live” celebrate its 40th anniversary on February 15th.
The three-hour “SNL 40″ show will also feature musicians Kanye West and Justin Timberlake, actors such as Alec Baldwin and Tom Hanks, and returns for some of the show’s most famous alumni, including Eddie Murphy.
Tags: Paul McCartney, Paul McCartney on Saturday Night Live, Paul Simon, Paul Simon on Saturday Night Live, Saturday Night Live, SNL, SNL 40
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