Sunday, November 03, 2013

Music Sunday: The "Acting Singers" Edition

Still recovering from a very long Saturday (I had another SCA event to attend), so Music Sunday is going to be short and sweet today, and with a little help from Wikipedia in the for of birthdays for the day.

As it turns out, the singer of one of my favorite movie songs was born on this day in 1948. Lulu sang the title song from "To Sir, With Love" (1967), as well as playing a featured role in the film as Barbara Pegg, a student in a class of working-class kids in one of the poorer parts of London. The film starred Sidney Poitier and was one of the top money-makers 0f 1967. Here is how the song appears in the film:

It is also the birthday today of Adam Ant, another British singer who has dabbled in acting as well as music. Hew as born on November 3, 1954, and was at his most popular in the early 1980s, first with Adam and the Ants and then as a solo act. "Goody Two Shoes" (1982) was his first solo single, and a hit. It is an interesting song, upbeat and trendy for the time while it contained some pointed social commentary about the press and its intrusion on and speculation about the lives of celebrities:

Don Henley covered pretty much the same territory the same year in a song that was more serious and maybe more cynical, but which I like a lot better, "Dirty Laundry". This song tackles the whole issue of how the news media seem to have turned into one big tabloid and, by extension, it's intrusion into the lives of the rich and famous. The song was a solo hit for Henley, but in this clip he performs it with the Eagles in a live show earlier this year:

And, pulling back from that tangent...

Other British singers have dabbled in acting. One of the most notable is Sting. Besides being quite successful both as a member of The Police and as a solo act, he has appeared in several films. But, since this is Music Sunday and not Movie Monday, here is a clip of the video for "We'll Be Together" (1987), from his album "...Nothing Like the Sun". In the video, he calls on his acting as well as his musical abilities, playing two characters:

There are many more musicians who have appeared in films, sometimes as themselves, sometimes in smaller or larger roles and portraying others. Which, of course, means that there could be a second installment of "Acting Singers" in Music Sunday's future.

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