Options Acid Jazz Hands with Bronwyn Bishop: Playlist from December 28, 2021 Options

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Musical theater from off the beaten path. Obscure and unusual show tunes from within the canon and without, flops, failures, and the newest works from up-and-coming artists—plus tried-and-true hits. Also, occasional appearances from songs that are not show tunes (but only if they go really well with show tunes).

Friday 7 - 9pm (EDT) | On WFMU's Give the Drummer Radio
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Options December 28, 2021: Straight from Frank Rich's nightmares, it's the theatrical season of 1981!

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Artist Track Album Label Year Comments Images
The Pirates of Penzance Ensemble  With Cat-Like Tread, Upon Our Prey We Steal   Options The Pirates of Penzance  Elektra Entertainment  1981  Music: Arthur Sullivan Lyrics: W.S. Gilbert 
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Pump Boys and Dinettes Ensemble  Highway 57   Options Pump Boys and Dinettes (Original Broadway Cast Recording)  Masterworks Broadway  1982  Music & Lyrics: Jim Wann 
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Jane Lapotaire  La Vie En Rose   Options Piaf (bootleg)  No Label  1981  Music: Louiguy Lyrics: Edith Piaf (translated into English by Mack David) 
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Phyllis Hyman  It Don't Mean a Thing   Options Sophisticated Ladies (live recording)  No Label  1989  Music: Duke Ellington Lyrics: Irving Mills 
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Chita Rivera  Well I'm Not   Options Bring Back Birdie (Original Broadway Cast Recording)  Original Cast  1981  Music: Charles Strouse Lyrics: Lee Adams 
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Lauren Bacall & Rex Everhart  One of the Boys   Options Woman of the Year (Original Broadway Cast Recording)  Masterworks Broadway  1981  Music: John Kander Lyrics: Fred Ebb 
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George S. Irving & Barrie Ingham  Up the Ladder   Options Copperfield (bootleg)  No Label  1981  Music & Lyrics: Al Kasha & Joel Hirschhorn 
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Cats Original London Cast  Prologue: Jellicle Songs for Jellicle Cats   Options Cats (Original London Cast Recording)  Polydor Records  1981  Music: Andrew Lloyd Webber Lyrics: Trevor Nunn & Richard Stilgoe 
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Lena Horne  Life Goes On   Options Lena Horne: The Lady and Her Music  Qwest Records  1981  Music & Lyrics: Paul Williams & Craig Doerge 
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Stephen Bogardus, Michael Rupert, Chip Zien & Jonathan Kaplan  Four Jews in a Room Bitching   Options March of the Falsettos (Original Cast Recording)  DRG Records  1991  Music & Lyrics: William Finn 
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Nic Rouleau  Say Hello to Harvey   Options Live at 54 Below  No Label  2017  Music & Lyrics: Leslie Bricusse 
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David Byrne  Five Golden Sections   Options The Catherine Wheel  Sire Records  1981  Music: David Byrne 
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How to Eat Like a Child Ensemble  Like a Child   Options No Album  No Label  1981  Music & Lyrics: John Forster   
The Marvelous Land of Oz Ensemble  I'm Your Son   Options The Marvelous Land of Oz (live recording)  No Label  1981  Music: Richard A. Dworsky Lyrics: Gary Briggle   
The Life and Adventures of Nicholas Nickleby Ensemble  Wedding Anthem   Options The Life and Adventures of Nicholas Nickleby (Original Cast Soundtrack)  Jay Productions Ltd.  2000  Music & Lyrics: Stephen Oliver 
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Harry Chapin  Goin' to Atlanta   Options Cotton Patch Gospel  Chapin Music  1982  Music & Lyrics: Harry Chapin   
 
Joe Morton  My World's Comin' Unwrapped   Options Oh Brother! (Original Broadway Cast Recording)  Bruce Yeko  2014  Music: Michael Valenti Lyrics: Donald Driver 
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Ann Morrison, Jim Walton & Lonny Price  Old Friends   Options Merrily We Roll Along (Original Broadway Cast Recording)  Masterworks Broadway  1982  Music & Lyrics: Stephen Sondheim 
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Sheryl Lee Ralph, Loretta Devine & Deborah Burrell  Hard to Say Goodbye, My Love   Options Dreamgirls: Original Broadway Cast Album  Geffen  1982  Music: Henry Krieger Lyrics: Tom Eyen 
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Chip Garnett  Power Comes, Power Goes   Options The Little Prince and the Aviator (audience recording)  No Label  1982  Music: John Barry Lyrics: Don Black 
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Bill Carmichael & Nora Mae Lyng  Pirates of Penzance Sequence   Options Forbidden Broadway - Volume 1  DRG Records  1991  Music: Arthur Sullivan Lyrics: Gerard Alessandrini 
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Original Broadway Cast of Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat  Prologue- You Are What You Feel/Jacob and Sons - Medley   Options Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat  capitol records, llc  1982  Music: Andrew Lloyd Webber Lyrics: Tim Rice 
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Marti Webb  The Last Man in My Life   Options The Last Man in My Life from Song and Dance  Polydor  1982  Music: Andrew Lloyd Webber Lyrics: Don Black   
 
Lee Wilkof & Franc Luz  Now (It's Just the Gas)   Options Little Shop of Horrors  The David Geffen Company  1982  Music: Alan Menken Lyrics: Howard Ashman 
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Barry Manilow  The Kid Inside   Options Showstoppers  Arista Records  1991  Music & Lyrics: Craig Carnelia 
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Listener comments!

Avatar 🎭 9:58pm Listener Gregory:

Oh my God, Bronwyn, what are you doing up this late??
Avatar 10:00pm ARB:

Hi kittens!
Avatar Swag For Life Member 10:02pm Bronwyn Bishop:

Hello Gregory and ARB and welcome to 1981!!!!!
Avatar Swag For Life Member 10:02pm solo mon:

Ohh the opera box, great seats!
Avatar Swag For Life Member 10:02pm StringOFperils:

I don't think Cornwall is like this anymore.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 10:02pm Bronwyn Bishop:

Hi solo mon!!!!
Avatar 🎭 Swag For Life Member 10:02pm WR:

Cat-like tread of pirates? I hear heavy ballistics.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 10:03pm Bronwyn Bishop:

Hi StringOfPerils and WR!!!!
  10:04pm Listener Gregory:

This is a fine start to 1981. What could go wrong?
Avatar Swag For Life Member 10:05pm StringOFperils:

20 lb.. shot across the port bow?
Avatar 10:06pm ARB:

The year of the flopera
Avatar Swag For Life Member 10:06pm solo mon:

I love a flop.
Avatar 10:07pm ARB:

Bronwyn, what is the best year for theatre?
Avatar Swag For Life Member 10:07pm StringOFperils:

Times Square in 1981 was the show on the way to the theatres
  10:08pm Listener Gregory:

I don’t think you’re cheating at all on the year. Theater goes in seasons, not calendar years.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 10:12pm solo mon:

I wanna see this show so bad hahah!
Avatar 🎭 Swag For Life Member 10:13pm WR:

Me too, soli mon, I love it when they sang, we're here to serve you.
  10:15pm Listener Gregory:

Strange to hear this thick French accent and then the (weak) English words. Ah, here come the original lyrics!
  10:17pm Listener Gregory:

OK, this is too fast! (Don’t Mean a Thing)
Avatar Swag For Life Member 10:19pm Franco Twinkie:

Hi Bronwyn! This deep dive into 1981 on WFMU has me unsettle in ways I could not have anticipated. Since I know squat about musical theater, I'm hoping for some redemption from the synthesizer gloom everyone seems to be crapping their pants over.
  10:21pm Andres:

My radio just burst into flames!
  10:23pm Listener Gregory:

BB, was Bring Back Birdie part of a previous “worst of” show? It seems familiar.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 10:25pm solo mon:

Poor Chita Rivera
Avatar Swag For Life Member 10:25pm Bronwyn Bishop:

@ARB: That is a really great question!!! A lot of people say 1964 and it's hard to argue with that
Avatar Swag For Life Member 10:26pm Bronwyn Bishop:

@Gregory: I played that song once, not as part of a "worst of" thing though, it's a pretty good song even though the show flopped
Avatar Swag For Life Member 10:27pm Bronwyn Bishop:

Hi Franco and Andres, welcome!!!! Franco, rather than synthesizer gloom I have synthesizer razzle dazzle on offer
Avatar Swag For Life Member 10:28pm solo mon:

How many drag shows in 1981 used this as a number?
Avatar Swag For Life Member 10:32pm Franco Twinkie:

Razzle dazzle and razz -a-matazz is something I could use in spades. I'm here for the fireworks! And did you say public urination!?
  10:34pm Andres:

Slime tutorial. That’s great! My kids don’t teach me useful stuff like that.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 10:34pm solo mon:

Give em the old …. Public urination!
  10:36pm Listener Gregory:

I like when you say “No one asked for” the sequel to Bye-Bye Birdie. I imagine people asking for Cats or the Spider-Man musical.
And I really think you talked about it before… maybe on your best of-worst of series? You are the entire source of my knowledge of musical theater, so anything that I know probably comes from your show.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 10:38pm solo mon:

I mean Cats is insane, and barely makes sense, so of course its popular.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 10:39pm Little Danny:

hi bronwyn hi all!
Avatar 🎭 Swag For Life Member 10:40pm WR:

Has anyone else pondered over the Cats and Logan's Run connection?
Avatar Swag For Life Member 10:41pm solo mon:

I see the connection WR. See Also, Midsommer.
Avatar 🎭 Swag For Life Member 10:42pm doctorjazz:

Hi Bronwyn and Tuesday night Jazzers!
Avatar Swag For Life Member 10:46pm solo mon:

Yes! Falsettos!
Avatar 🎭 Swag For Life Member 10:46pm doctorjazz:

I remember seeing Cats ages ago, trying to figure out what the hell it was about/for!
Avatar 🎭 Swag For Life Member 10:46pm doctorjazz:

I've done this (the Four Jews part...)
Avatar Swag For Life Member 10:47pm Bronwyn Bishop:

Hi Little Danny and doctorjazz :D
Avatar 10:48pm ARB:

me too docjazz
Avatar 🎭 Swag For Life Member 10:49pm doctorjazz:

My home COVID test just arrived in the mail today (didn't need to test myself, though we've tested all the rest of my family in the past few days, negative. Just wanted to have it for when I need it, which I'm sure will happen).
  10:50pm Tusalava:

Oh my! Jonathan Kaplan is my cousin. So odd to be puttering around the house and hear twelve year old him on the radio.
  10:51pm Listener Gregory:

@doctorj, I waited too late to get one before holiday travel. I’ll have to order one now and wait.
Loved that Lena Horne, btw.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 10:51pm Bronwyn Bishop:

Oh wow! He's wonderful on that cast album
  10:54pm Listener Gregory:

Harvey was a Hitchcock film, no? I liked the song.
  10:57pm Tusalava:

He was later nominated for a Tony for that role, but the thing that really thrilled me was to see him drawn by Al Hirschfeld.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 10:58pm solo mon:

Dancing junkyard kitties in spandex bodysuits.
Avatar 🎭 Swag For Life Member 11:00pm WR:

Harvey was first a play and then a movie
en.wikipedia.org...
Avatar Swag For Life Member 11:00pm solo mon:

I think the Marvin trilogy one of the best. In trousers was especially weird!
  11:01pm Listener Gregory:

I remember The Catherine Wheel album, which I thought was awesome and surprising from someone I thought of as a pop musician. Haven’t heard it in years, so glad to be reminded of it.
  11:02pm julie:

I'm late. but I saw woman of the year!
Avatar 🎭 Swag For Life Member 11:03pm WR:

Had not know about Frank Rich, "the butcher of Broadway" before.
en.wikipedia.org...
Avatar 11:05pm ARB:

Please tell me this kid was also one of the Annie orphans
  11:06pm Listener Gregory:

Thanks, @WR. I confused Harvey with The Trouble With Harvey. I remember Harvey as being pretty good. Jimmy Stewart never hurts.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 11:07pm Franco Twinkie:

Okay, the Catherine Wheel. This was the record that some people pretended to like more than they really did. When you were flipping albums at someone's house, The Catherine Wheel was always suspiciously underplayed.
Avatar 🎭 Swag For Life Member 11:08pm WR:

I didn't know about The Catherine Wheel at all.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 11:14pm Franco Twinkie:

WR, the assumption was that David Bryne's fans would follow him anywhere. They didn't.
Avatar 🎭 Swag For Life Member 11:14pm doctorjazz:

On my speakers, the background/bed music is overwhelming your announcements, Bronwyn
  11:15pm Listener Gregory:

Any musical that is under 8 hours is not really serious.
Avatar 🎭 Swag For Life Member 11:15pm doctorjazz:

What Franco said-I remember when Wheel came out, had been a big Talking Heads fan, had no interest in The Catherine Wheel (might have been to my detriment, but hey)
Avatar 🎭 Swag For Life Member 11:18pm doctorjazz:

Gotta take off my tie (long day...)
Avatar Swag For Life Member 11:23pm Bronwyn Bishop:

@Gregory: That's why my musical about Ashman and Menken is 9 hours long
  11:27pm Listener Gregory:

Franco, I think you’re right about Byrne’s fans, but The C. Wheel was where he began to accumulate his classical and avante-garde cred, continued in his ECM album Music for the Knee Plays (all instrumental) and Brian Eno collaboration.
  11:30pm Listener Gregory:

Also, songs from Catherine Wheel appeared in Talking Heads concerts, including the Stop Making Sense film (What A Day That Was). Sorry if I am obsessing. It has been a long day.
Avatar 🎭 Swag For Life Member 11:33pm WR:

Were there any musicals other than Cats from 1981 that had some success? I had thought that Wikipedia had list of musicals by year but not finding it.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 11:34pm Franco Twinkie:

No worries Gregory, extrapolate. David Byrne was not going to be confined by the constraints of a four piece rock band. His destiny was calling. None the less, his best stuff was the early stuff.
  11:34pm Listener Gregory:

Yikes!
  11:35pm Listener Gregory:

Bronwyn, I will gladly wear a mask for 9+ hours for your musical.
Avatar 🎭 Swag For Life Member 11:44pm doctorjazz:

Here's that hit WR was looking for...
Avatar 11:44pm ARB:

LOL Doc
Avatar Swag For Life Member 11:46pm Bronwyn Bishop:

Whoops- we accidentally got two songs from Joseph for the price of one! I'm super tired guys
Avatar 🎭 Swag For Life Member 11:46pm WR:

As you said, Dreamgirls has some longevity, probably due to the movie. Joseph... was more of a revival. It had been around since 1971.
  11:47pm Listener Gregory:

I wore out the Joseph album as a teenager, but this performance has much new material not on that (British?) record.
Avatar 🎭 Swag For Life Member 11:47pm doctorjazz:

Nice to get the two...
  11:50pm Doug Schulkind:

Thanks for this wonderful show, Bronwyn!
Avatar Swag For Life Member 11:52pm StringOFperils:

Thanks, Bronwyn
Avatar 11:52pm ARB:

Brownwyn I loved this special, thank you!
Avatar Swag For Life Member 11:53pm Franco Twinkie:

The temperament of Joseph is so decidedly different than everything else sampled tonight. Did it have a lot of truck with the born again crowd?
Avatar 11:53pm ARB:

More year specials, they are fun!
Avatar 🎭 Swag For Life Member 11:53pm doctorjazz:

Thanks, Bronwyn, fun show!
  11:53pm Listener Gregory:

Tim Rice played Pharaoh on the British recording, I am informed.
Avatar 🎭 Swag For Life Member 11:53pm WR:

It's been an interesting episode Bronwyn! Thank you!
Avatar 11:54pm ARB:

I like this one!
Avatar Swag For Life Member 11:54pm Franco Twinkie:

I'm a big dunce. You're a good teacher Bronwyn. Thanks.
Avatar 🎭 Swag For Life Member 11:55pm WR:

Saved the best for the last!
Avatar Swag For Life Member 11:55pm Bronwyn Bishop:

Don't worry, nothing in the musical I wrote about the guys who wrote this is quite this scary
Avatar 🎭 Swag For Life Member 11:55pm doctorjazz:

Not much of a lulling us to bed choice, Bronwyn...
Avatar Swag For Life Member 11:56pm StringOFperils:

Glad I remembered to water the plants.
  11:57pm Listener Gregory:

Can’t believe you didn’t end with the line “Death!”
Thanks a lot, BB. Great show.
Avatar 🎭 Swag For Life Member 11:58pm Ken From Hyde Park:

Thanks for closing out the 1981 calendar, Bronwyn.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 11:59pm Franco Twinkie:

Oh, this is where Jack Nicholson gets his teeth yanked out in the original movie?
Avatar Swag For Life Member 11:59pm Bronwyn Bishop:

thank YOU darlings!!!!! happy new year 1982, i mean 2022!!!
Avatar Swag For Life Member 12:00am Bronwyn Bishop:

@Franco: Yes! That was cut from the stage show, but reinstated in the 1986 film with Bill Murray in the Nicholson role
  12:00am Listener Gregory:

Barry, we miss you.
Avatar 🎭 Swag For Life Member 12:00am doctorjazz:

I used to deliver kosher barbecue chicken to Manilow's mom ready back when...
Avatar 🎭 Swag For Life Member 12:01am WR:

Thank you thank you, muah!
Avatar 🎭 Swag For Life Member 12:03am WR:

Cats and Little Shop of Horrors. Good bookends for considering the range of a year.
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