broadway musical

Music Monday: Gloria Estefan 1989

Posted on Updated on

Gloria Estefan Image One
Photo Credit: 45cat.com

Thirty years ago, today, Get On Your Feet by Cuban-American singer/songwriter/actress/businesswoman Gloria Estefan debuted on the Billboard Adult Contemporary chart, entering at #29. Released from the album Cuts Both Ways, it was written by John DeFaria, Jorge Casas and Clay Ostwald. It peaked at number five after seventeen weeks on the chart.

From Songfacts:

DeFaria is a guitarist/composer who has worked on a number of movies and TV shows. Casas and Ostwald are longtime collaborators with Gloria and Emilio Estefan and members of the late ’80s iteration of Miami Sound Machine (Casas the bass player, Ostwald on keyboards).

Estefan had several bigger hits but, Get On Your Feet became her signature song and the name of her 1989 tour, her first as a solo artist. That tour was cut short in March 1990 when she was badly injured in a tour bus accident. Estefan fractured vertebrae in her spine and had two metal rods placed in her back during surgery. During her recovery, this song took on new meaning, as it was a long struggle for Estefan to literally get back on her feet.

Trivia Bits
♦ The song was covered by Fantasia Barrino on the third season of American Idol during a Gloria Estefan-themed episode.
♦ The song was on the soundtrack to the movie Let It Be Me, starring Campbell Scott and Jennifer Beals (1995).
♦ The song was used in the fourth season episode of Parks and Recreation: The Comeback Kid.
♦ Gloria performed this song with Sheila E. during the seventh season edition of the American Idol charity fundraiser Idol Gives Back.

The Broadway Musical
Interview With John DeFaria


 
Lyrics (via LyricFind):
You say I know it’s a waste of time
There’s no use trying
So scared that life’s gonna pass you by
Your spirit dying
Not long ago
I could feel your strength and your devotion
What was so clear, is now overcast
With mixed emotions
Deep in your heart is the answer
Find it, I know it will pull you through

Get on your feet
Get up and make it happen
Get on your feet
Stand up and take some action

I think it’s true that we’ve all been through
Some nasty weather
Let’s understand that we’re here
To handle things together
You gotta keep looking onto tomorrow
There’s so much in life
That’s meant for you

Get on your feet
Get up and make it happen
Get on your feet
Stand up and take some action
Get on your feet
Don’t stop before it’s over
Get on your feet
The weight is off your shoulder

Get up and make it happen
Stand up, stand up, stand up and take some action
Gotta get on your feet, yeah, yeah
Don’t stop before it’s over
Get on your feet
The weight is off your shoulder
Get on your feet
Get up, get up, get up and make it happen
Get on your feet
Stand up, stand up and take some action
Get on your feet
Get up, stand up
Don’t stop before it’s over
You got to get on your feet yeah yeah
The weight is off your shoulder

Tune Tuesday: Eddie Cantor 1929

Posted on Updated on

Eddie Cantor Image
Image Credit: radziwill.us

Ninety years ago, today, the #1 song playing was Makin’ Whoopee, a jazzy-blues piece performed by Eddie Cantor from the Broadway musical comedy Whoopee! The musical was written by William Anthony McGuire, composed by Walter Donaldson (Carolina In The Morning & My Mammy), with lyrics by Gus Kahn (It Had To Be You & Dream A Little Dream Of Me). It was based on the 1923 play The Nervous Wreck by Owen Davis.

American Theatre critic Brooks Atkinson of The New York Times praised Cantor for:

“…a comedian of deftness and appealing humor. He is sad. He is preoccupied. He is apprehensive or insinuating with those floating eyes… In the past he has been funny, clever and ludicrous. But, he has never been so enjoyable.”

Of the music, he states:

“Walter Donaldson has composed an appropriate score worthy of better singing than it falls heir to.”

Apparently, Mr. Atkinson disliked Cantor’s singing ability.

The musical was made into a movie in 1930, also pre-code and Eddie Cantor reprised his role from the musical. There was also a 1979 Broadway revival that did very well.

Synopsis From Wikipedia:

In California, Sheriff Bob Wells and the daughter of a rancher, Sally Morgan, are getting married. She is in love with Wanenis, whose part-Indian heritage presents social difficulties for their romance. Sally abandons Sheriff Bob and their wedding, catching a ride with Henry Williams. As a hypochondriac, Henry has problems of his own but, Sally adds to his problems when she leaves a note saying they have eloped. A chase ensues with the jilted Bob, Mary, Henry’s nurse (who is in love with him) and a cast of others. Along the way, they arrive at the Indian Reservation where Wanenis lives. The movie star Leslie Daw enters the proceedings and sings the torchy, sentimental “Love Me, or Leave Me.”

Trivia Bits:
♦ Eddie Cantor invented the name The March of Dimes for the donation campaigns of the National Foundation for Infantile Paralysis (polio), a play on the “March of Time” newsreels. He began the first campaign on his own radio show in January 1938, asking people to mail a dime to the nation’s most famous polio victim, President Franklin D. Roosevelt. Other entertainers joined in the appeal via their own shows and the White House mail room was deluged with 2,680,000 dimes.
♦ At one time, when the rights to The Wizard of Oz (1939) were owned by Samuel Goldwyn, Cantor was considered for the role of the Scarecrow. Goldwyn eventually sold the rights to Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer.
♦ Quote: “Marriage is an attempt to solve problems together which you didn’t have when you were on your own.”

Five Awards

Tune Tuesday: The Charleston 1924

Posted on Updated on

The Charleston Dance Image
Photo Credit: flavorwire.com

Ninety-five years ago, today, (as best as I can tell) the #1 song playing was The Charleston. Composed by James P. Johnson with lyrics by Cecil Mack, it was originally featured in the Broadway musical Runnin’ Wild that premiered in New York on October 29, 1923. It was first recorded by Arthur Gibbs & His Gang and was released November 23, 1923.

This is some fancy foot work.