Betty Wright – Music for all the (W)right moments

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Let’s just get one thing straight: Betty Wright is great, she is just plain awesome! Topic not open to discussion…

Since Betty appeared on the musical scene in the mid-1960s, she has carved out a niche all of her own in popular music. She writes music, lyrics, she produces, arranges and most importantly – she sings. As a singer she can be regarded as a soul singer, a pop singer, for a brief time she was a disco singer…. Her lyrics deal with anything from love via love gone really bad to social injustice and abuse, sometimes she even preaches on record. But whatever her message might be, all of it is performed with a voice that is one of the most stunning instruments to ever pop up in the history of music.

Betty Wright, photo from 1975

Coming soon: a closer look at the fabulously talented Miss Betty Wright, and my views on most of her musical legacy from the 1960s and up until today….

2018 actually marks the 50th anniversary of Betty Wrights break-trough as a recording artist; Her first tracks, “Thank you, baby” and “Paralyzed” were both local hits in her native Miami way back in 1965, when Betty was all of 12 years old! But Betty’s first album, “My First Time Around” came out 1968, the cover showing off a pretty young girl of 15, wearing a fancy hairdo and a knowing smile. The music was quite a revelation also….

More about Betty Wright soon to appear on this site!

 

 

 

Guilty pleasures – part one

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If you are one of my many devoted readers, you already know that I like a lot of different music, and that my taste sometimes can seem a little widespread….

In this post I will just show some video clips of singers that I like – doing their thing!

 

Siw Malmkvist: The all round queen of Swedish entertainment! This clip from 1995 shows a 58 year old Siw in concert, doing an acoustic, beautiful ballad with a title that translates as “Memories of my life” Siw Malmkvist made her first record in 1955, she was the very first Swedish singer to have a chart placing on the US charts. She was Sweden’s first musical export to Germany – where her career is still blooming. Musically, Siw has done it all – from duetting with Lee Hazelwood to covering the Scorpions classic rock ballad “Still Loving You”…. Enjoy some Siw:

Click the link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Up1C0fDZLB8

 

Chris Farlowe: This guy is perhaps the most soulful guy ever to hail from the UK. Chris was born 1940 and is 66 years old in this clip, from a concert in 2006. He sings an ultra soulful, extended version of his old hit from 1967, “Handbags & Gladrags”. You all set for some goose pimple inducing singing??

Click the link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TqPnYJRUbgo

 

Mona Grytöyr: A TV-performance from my teens. Mona was a few days short of her 12th birthday, when she did this song on Norwegian television in the spring of 1982. You have never heard an eleven year old girl sing anything like this! Mona, despite all the talent she displays here, never turned into a big star although she has released music independently. She instead went into politics and has been a profiled candidate for the Norwegian Labour party in her home district Ullensaker. But the clip will show you why she was considered sensational back then!

Click the link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o2qn7RkuXs4

 

Betty Wright: An all time favourite of mine – here on stage, a 40-year-old Betty does her hit song “No pain, no gain” live. And what awesome singing! Pay attention from the 2:30 mark – I am not sure anyone else can reach notes such as these, totally incredible!!

Click the link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ryM4ZK1OyYo

 

There! – some of my guilty pleasures and favourites…. Hope you like them too! More clips and golden nuggets to follow on this site later on.

 

 

 

Up next – A closer look at Betty Wright

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She has been labeled the “Queen of Miami Soul”, she just as well may have been labeled the Queen of awesome singing, because anything that Ms. Wright has comitted to tape or done on stage so far, is destined to thrill you to bits!

 

Betty Wright, photo from 1975

Betty Wright, photo from 1975

 

Betty Wright was born in December 1953, and was thus only 14 when her first album “My First Time Around” came out 1968. Since then, Betty Wright has released a long line of albums, and her music is almost a category all of its own. Miami soul it is, but she pours soul into everything she does, whether it is Miami flavoured, reggae infused, disco inspired or neo soul-y….

During the last six decades (yay!!) Betty has recorded many truly stunning albums, and I will soon give you all a closer look at those…. Album titles like “Explosive!”, “Danger – High Voltage” and “Wright Back At You” should give some clues about what this lady is all about. That she vocally can do anything from a deep, slurred whisper and then extend her voice up into the whistle register, is also proof that Betty Wright is one of the most amazing singers to appear on the scene during the last 50 years. (For more info about that, check this link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Whistle_register )

 

Betty Wright - photographed in 2010

Betty Wright – photographed in 2010

 

Stay tuned, a profile on the great work of Betty Wright coming up on this site in a short while….

 

 

 

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