Singing Soap Stars - My Top 24 Countdown!

    Top 24 Australian Soap Star Countdown

    Australia must be the world leader when it comes to soap actors turned pop stars. Despite the fact that pop is almost an underground genre in the current Australian music scene, there is still no shortage of bad actresses hoping "to do a Kylie" and for that I am eternally grateful! This countdown is not meant to be an exhaustive list. I can think of at least another 10 actors who have briefly dabbled in pop but I either can't track down their music (eg. the lovely Abigail and Laura Vazquez) or simply don't want to (Israel Cannon and Guy Pearce). That said, this collection is pretty comprehensive, covering at least 7 television shows and the who's who of Australian soap stars!

    1. Kylie Minogue (Neighbours)

    Kylie was not the first soap star to discover pop music but she is by far the most successful and influential. In fact, Kylie's career has been the blue print for all who have come after her. Unless you have been living in a bubble for the past 20 years, you will of course know the Kylie fairytale. Initially starting as a guest star on the flop soap "Neighbours", Kylie's alter-ego Charlene went on to become the most popular character in Australian TV history. Who will ever forget Charlene breaking into Madge's house, Scott and Charlene's wedding or their departure for Queensland? Bless that fabulous 80s perm! The most endearing part of Kylie's journey to pop stardom is the fact that it all happened by chance. Unlike the bitches who came after her, she didn't join the show as a marketing exercise. Kylie was simply at the right place at the right time. As the story goes, Kylie sang an impromptu rendition of "The Locomotion" at a charity event and Michael Gudinski thought he might be able to score a novelty hit for Mushroom records with her. The rest is pop history!

    I've included "Look My Way", one of my favourite songs from Kylie's debut album. The other songs have all already appeared in different threads on this Blog.

    2. Dannii Minogue (Home & Away)

    Dannii doesn't really meet the criteria for this countdown because she was already a pop star when she joined "Home & Away" as the rebellious but lovable goth, Emma. However, Dannii did use the show as a platform to re-launch her music career. It was during her time on "Home & Away" that I really became a Dannii fanatic. The show is filmed about 15 minutes away from where I used to live and I regularly found the idea of watching Dannii walk around Palm Beach more interesting than going to school. Enjoy Dannii's amazing debut single, "Love & Kisses" and a selection of other Dannii material that I have already featured.

    3. Melissa Tkautz (E Street, Pacific Drive)

    Regular readers will know exactly how obsessed I am with Australia's reigning queen of trash, Melissa Tkautz. This woman is too fabulous for words - Melissa's shameless publicity whoring, role as a pre-mature ejaculation spokeswoman and employment as a gay solarium manager have made her a trash icon. Melissa began her career on "E Street" and became an instant fan favourite. It wasn't long before Melissa tried her hand at a pop career and her debut single hit #1 on the charts and because the highest selling Australian single of that year. Unfortunately, things were all downhill from there.

    I was devastated to recently learn that Melissa's new album has been scrapped. However, I'm sure it's only a matter of time before she's embarks on yet another failed comeback! I've included Melissa's number 1 hit, the brilliant "Read My Lips" and a selection of other Melissa tunes that have appeared on this Blog.

    4. Jason Donovan (Neighbours)

    Poor Jason. It must have been hard to go from every teenage girl's (and many boys) heartthrob to looking like a 55 year old, homeless serial killer. Jason might look a bit frightening and has lost all dignity by appearing in crappy UK reality TV shows, but his place in the soap star hall of fame is assured. Given everything that has followed, it is easy to forget just how massive a star Jason was in the late 80s and just how good his Stock Aiken Waterman output really was. Here are a couple of reminders:

    5. Holly Valance (Neighbours)

    I worship Holly Valance. Not only is her brief but amazing musical career a trash lover's wet dream but her subsequent forays into movies and television have been equally as brilliant. I think the thing I love about Holly the most is that there was absolutely no pretence about her move into (and out of) pop. While the likes of Dullta and Natalie Imbruglia did everything to market themselves as serious artistes, Holly was busy getting her gear off and appearing semi-naked in videos and men's magazines. In fact, there was almost something old fashioned about the way that Holly launched her musical career on the strength of a pretty face and a nice pair of tits! Holly's first album, "Footprints", was pretty average but very successful. Ironically, her follow up, "State Of Mind", remains one of the best pop albums of naughties but failed miserably. The next time you see Holly play a corpse on "CSI" or a stripper on "Prison Break", play these songs and remember her glorious pop career.

    6. Toni Pearen (E Street)

    Toni is the poor man's Melissa Tkautz and current host of "Australia's Funniest Home Videos". Toni began her career on "E Street" and after seeing the success of Melissa's debut album, decided to follow in her footsteps. Toni is as boring as bat shit but her album, "Intimate", is top shelf pop and includes a handful of great singles. "I Want You", "In Your Room" and "Walkaway Lover" were all hits but "Intimate" flopped. Toni has yet to record a follow-up, but I live in hope!

    7. Bec Cartwright (Home & Away)

    I think I'm the only person who enjoyed Bec's brief stint as a pop star. Released at the same time as Dullta's "Innocent Eyes", Bec Cartwright's debut album flopped miserably in comparison. However, the former "Home & Away" star, and currrent Mrs Lleyton Hewitt, produced the far better album! "All Seat's Taken" was a pretty awful first single but the rest of album is a banquet of wonderfully corny pop music. Bec needs to stop popping out babies and make a comeback. Enjoy this selection of Bec "hits" that I have previously posted.

    8. Gayle & Gillian Blakeney (Neighbours)

    Gayle & Gillian Blakeney were part of the post-Kylie gold rush that seized the "Neighbours" cast. For a while there, every cast member except Mrs Mangel and Bouncer took off for England to record a single! The Blakeney twins actually made quite a fabulous pop duo. They released a couple of flop singles but their gorgeous cover of Prince's "Wanna Be Your Lover" remains a pop classic. Enjoy!

    9. Tammin Sursok (Home & Away)

    Tammin is one of the most recent "Home & Away" stars to try her hand at pop. Tammin went for the pop-rock sound that has taken hold of the American music scene. In fact, Tammin's debut album sounds awfully similar to the likes of Hilary Duff and Lindsay Lohan. Only, it was actually quite good. Tammin's record company dumped her after the failure of her third single, which strikes me as being incredibly short sighted. She is currently shacking up with a middle aged television executive in Hollywood, so expect to see Tammin playing a corpse on "Without A Trace" in the near future! I've include my favourite Tammin song, "Whatever Will Be". The original is a kooky ballad but the remix is poptastic! I believe that the skanky American ho, Vanessa Hudgens, stole this song for her debut album.

    10. Stefan Dennis (Neighbours)

    Firstly, I need to thank the gorgeous Deirdre Halliwell for sending me an MP3 of Stefan's 80s classic, "Don't It Make You Feel Good". We all know and love Stefan as the evil Paul Robinson from "Neighbours". Like Jason, Gayle & Gillian, Craig McLachlan and Madge & Harold (!), Stefan was part of the post-Kylie Neighbours pop explosion. Stefan scored a top 20 UK hit with "Don't It Make You Feel Good", which makes him one of the more successful "Neighbours" pop-wannabes. I love this!

    11. Craig McLachlan (Neighbours)

    Check out that mullet! And I used to think he was sex on legs. Good grief! Craig took a slightly different route to pop stardom than his "Neighbours" colleagues. Instead of flying to UK, Craig assembled a band "The Check 1, 2" and tried to market himself as a rock star. It didn't work. That said, "Mona" was a big hit in Australia and I'm ashamed to say that I kind of like it! Craig has dabbled in music ever since, appearing in a musical with Dannii Minogue and even recording a duet with Debbie Gibson!

    12. Michala Banas (Always Greener, McLeod's Daughters)

    Michala is a strange example of a soap actor embarking on a pop career. She appeared on the very short lived soap opera, "Always Greener", and released a pop single almost simultaneously. The show and her single both flopped but she made enough of a name for herself to find work on several other programs. "Kissin' The Wind" is actually rather fabulous. Written by Meredith Brooks of "Bitch" fame, I get the feeling that someone shelled out quite a bit of money on Michala's brief pop career. It would have been interesting to hear a whole album of her material, I think Michala had potential.

    13. Abi Tucker (Heartbreak High, The Secret Life Of Us)

    Abi will be a familiar name for soap fans, having appeared in just about every soap opera to be screened on Channel 10. Abi has been around for years and is apparently still working on her music. Abi's debut album, "Dreamworld", is without a doubt the most original album released by a former soap star with its rambling lyrics and bizarre musical landscape. Abi's "Australian Kate Bush" sound is really not my thing (at all) but she definitely has a devoted cult following. The least unnerving song on her album is the ballad, "Move You". This is a chorus away from actually being quite good.

    14. Belinda Emmett (Home & Away)

    Belinda sadly passed away recently after a long battle with breast cancer, which was first diagnosed while she was starring on "Home & Away". It was during this time that Belinda decided to focus on music as well as acting. I have a feeling that Belinda might have released some solo material at the beginning of the decade but I could be mistaken. I know that she was definitely working on a solo album at the time of her death, tracks from which can be downloaded from her husband's website. I've decided to share something a little less morbid but equally heartbreaking. Belinda's duet with Marcia Hines, "Shower The People" is almost eerie in the aftermath of Belinda's death. This beautiful song is one of the highlights of Marcia's album, "Hinesight". Watch the video here.

    15. Bruce Samazan (E Street, Neighbours, Home & Away)

    Bruce has appeared on the holy trinity of Australian soap operas, which is an achievement in itself. However, it was as Max on "E Street" that Bruce first came to fame. For a while there, Bruce was the heartthrob of choice for teenage girls (and myself!) and as was par for the course in those days, decided to have a go at music. The results are so appalling that they defy belief. Bruce's spectacularly awful rap songs will go down in history as some of the worst examples of music ever recorded. I love both of his crapfests dearly!

    16. Gina Riley (Kath 'n' Kim)

    Gina doesn't really belong in the countdown because she has never embarked on a pop career and has not been in a soap opera but she makes the grade due to her long association with the Minogues and her amusing musical career. Gina Riley is best known today as Kim, from the comedy series, "Kath 'n' Kim". However, Gina began her career on "Fast Forward", sending up music videos. One her great masterpieces is "Famous Sister", a biting take on Dannii's "Love & Kisses". Watch the clip and take note of Jane Turner (Kath from "Kath 'n' Kim") as one of the mini-skirt wearing backing dancers!

    Of course, Gina's most recent Minogue experience is Kylie's cameo as Kim's grown daughter on the season 3 finale of "Kath 'n' Kim". My favourite part is the "Red Blooded Woman" karaoke! Gina has dabbled in music over the years, most often with the adorable Bob Downe. I've included Bob & Gina's cover of "Guilty" from Bob's "Greatest Hits". Streisand fans will never be the same again!

    17. Emily Symons (Home & Away)

    Emily is best remembered in Australia for playing the ditzy Marilyn on "Home & Away". I have a feeling she ended up on a British soap, but I could be mistaken. Emily's Jimi Hendrix cover version is surely one of the most misguided soap star attempts at pop music. This song comes from the "Farmland" collective which also featured Georgie Parker and Nudge from "Hey Dad"! There is just something so wrong about this that I appreciate. I may be the only one, though.

    18. The Cast Of Neighbours

    One of my most cherished belongings is the Neighbours cast album from 1989, pictured above. I love dragging this masterpiece out every Christmas, much to the annoyance of my family and friends. Anne Charleston & Ian Smith (Madge & Harold!) scored a #75 UK hit with a novelty Christmas song but their most fabulous recording is "Christmas Caring" for this album. The song begins with a throaty spoken intro from Madge herself before turning into a truly remarkable crapfest about spending time with your neighbours. It's amazing!

    19. Natalie Imbruglia (Neighbours)

    Natalie, the least talented of the Imbruglia sisters, came to national stardom on Neighbours and has been busily trying to pretend it never happened ever since. I don't mind Natalie but as far as singing soap stars go, she's pretty boring. That said, she does have her moments. I still like "Torn" and it is pretty hard to deny that "Shiver" is one of the loveliest singles of recent years. However, she really needs to ask Laura for some songwriting tips.

    20. Stephanie McIntosh (Neighbours)

    Jason Donovan's half-sister, Stephanie, is the most recent soap star to try her hand at music. I think she sounds like the poor man's Tammin Sursok but some people are obviously buying her music because her album has done reasonably well. Like Tammin, Stephanie sounds like she's channelling Hilary Duff. Her debut single, "Mistake", is rubbish but I like the remixed version of her follow-up, "Tightrope".

    21. Georgie Parker (A Country Practice, All Saints)

    One of the most amusing things I have ever read appeared in Georgie's weekly column in a certain well known women's magazine last year. Georgie took it upon herself to comment on Jessica Simpson's cover version of "These Boots Are Made For Walking". Georgie rightly stated that Jessica's version is complete shit but the nerve of the woman is quite astounding given the dire nature of her own attempt. Georgie was also part of "Farmland" with Emily Symons but Emily sounds like Maria Callas in comparison to Georgie. This is almost unbearably awful, but also rather amusing!

    22. Russell Crowe (Neighbours)

    People tend to forget that Russell began his career in 1987 with a brief appearance on "Neighbours" as Kenny. It is quite amazing how many big stars cut their teeth in Ramsay Street. When he's not beating up people with telephones and winning Oscars, Russell plays small pubs with his quite appalling band, "30 Odd Foot Of Grunt". Russell's music is so tragic that I actually kind of enjoy it on some masochistic level. Watch Russell in a rare non- 30 Odd Foot Of Grunt appearence, singing a duet with the lovely Marcia Hines at the Australian Film Industry Awards. Marcia certainly does get around!

    Watch - Russell Crowe & Marcia Hines

    23. Natalie Bassingthwaite (Neighbours)

    I don't have anything nice to say about this dreadful old cunt. Apart from making "mutton-dressed-as-lamb" attire an artform, this dire bitch is good for nothing. If you think the Rogue Traders stink, wait until your eardrums are raped by this cover of "Don't Give Up" with Australian Idol reject, Shannon Noll.

    24. Delta Goodrem (Neighbours)

    Dullta is a walking pro-abortion advertisement. If Mrs Goodrem had just made use of that wire coathanger, the world would be a better place and poor Kerry Katona would still have a husband. Dullta's entire output has been vile with the exception of "Predictable", which I begrudgingly admit to liking. The cunt probably stole it from Holly Valance's locker in the "Neighbours" change room!Source URL:
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Carrie Underwood - Before He Cheats

John Mayer - Waiting on the World to Change

Candice Alley Returns

    Candice Alley has the honour of releasing the first new Australian pop single of 2007. Candice is probably best remembered for the song "Falling", which was a massive Australian hit in 2003. For a while there Candice was hailed as the next big thing until her follow-up single, "Dream The Day Away", and her debut album, "Colourblind", both flopped miserably. Candice was abruptly dropped by her record company and completely fell off the pop radar - until now.

    "Before You Go" follows the "Falling" blue print very closely; the only change to Candice's sound is an ever so slight move towards lite-pop/rock and a new glamorous image. Candice looks amazing but I'm still not taken with her as an artist. She makes pleasant music but it is a little too sedate for my liking. However, it is nice to have her back. As far as dull singer-songwriters go, Candice is entirely bearable! The "Before You Go" CD single also offers a wonderfully trashy remix, which I have uploaded for your listening pleasure. I've also included Candice's previous singles, "Falling" and "Dream The Day Away".

    If you like what you hear, help keep Candice in fake eye-lashes by purchasing her single from Sanity. Hopefully, a new album will follow in the near future.

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Laura Imbruglia - Mind Reader?

    A psychiatrist would have a field day analysisng my obsession with craptastic pop siblings. My CD collection (and this Blog) is littered with La Toya Jackson, Dannii Minogue and now, Laura Imbruglia. Yes, Laura is Natalie Imbruglia's younger sister. Although, a surname is about the only thing the sisters have in common. While Natalie galavants around the world making bad movies and selling face cream, Laura has been playing gigs in small pubs all over Sydney and slowly building up a devoted following. It only took one concert for me to fall under Laura's spell and I've been addicted ever since.

    Laura Imbruglia's music is a strange mix of gorgeous harmonies, Indie minimalism and witty lyrics. Laura is kind of like the Australian Jenny Wilson, only she doesn't try as hard and has a better voice. I'm not sure why I love Laura so much because I usually can't stand the kind of music she makes. I would rather stick needles in my eyes than purchase an album that "The Drum Media" recommends but I have bought both of Laura's EPs and her album. Laura simply has an ability to write songs about topics that I identify with - like being a homebody, dreaming about white goods and working with gay vegans! Not only that but anyone who dedicates their music to The Carpenters is obviously not your typical Indie troll. I'm convinced Laura Imbruglia is reading my mind. In fact, I think Laura would make my perfect fag hag. We could snuggle up under her Oxfam rug, eating Tim Tams and listening to The Carpenters. I would try to politely suggest she do something with her hair, while she would berate me for liking Karen's disco album. However, we would get over it in time to sing along to the chorus of "Calling Occupants Of Interplanetary Craft". Call me, Laura!

    This post will only focus on Laura's debut EP "It Makes A Crunchy Noise". I'll cover her amazing album and other material soon. I love every song on "It Makes A Crunchy Noise", so it's difficult to decide what to share. I already posted Laura's internet dating opus, "Don't Stray From My Site" in one of my resolution posts. I'm sure I'm not the only person who shares Laura's fear of ending up an MSN buddy! Another favourite song is "Ornithophobia", otherwise known as "The Cicada Song". Do kids still collect Cicadas? The song reminds me of being 8 years old and walking around with an ice-cream tub full of chirping insects... maybe it's an Australian thing. In any case, I'm sure this is the only song to ever rhyme "exoskeleton parts" with "insect heart"! If that sounds too weird for you, I highly recommend Laura's ode to gay vegans, "Lettuce & Anarchists". It's gorgeous and hilarious.

    If you like what you hear, you can still buy "It Makes A crunchy Noise" from Chaos. Laura's debut album is also out now and is available from all the usual places.

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Corinne Bailey Rae - Put Your Records On

Sharing The Love Of Jason Prince

    Jason Prince is a pop trash icon. I love everything about this poptastic poofter; from the retro blond highlights in his hair, to his amazing vocals and spectacular inability to dance. Jason is like the English Lorenz, only without the muscles and with an even smaller promotional budget. Obviously, he is pretty fucking fabulous! Over the past few years, Jason has been busy churning out tragic trance cover versions of current hits for Klone Records. In fact, such is Jason's standing among lovers of tragic dance music that you will be hard pressed to find a Klone compilation without at least one of his masterpieces.

    I don't know a lot about Jason Prince, mainly because he has next to no internet presence. He used to have a website but it has either been taken down or is out of order. I assume that Jason is gay because he sings love songs about men, and well, because I have eyes. In case there is any doubt, I think this short clip of Jason covering the "Wonder Woman" theme song with two trannies provides conclusive evidence! I also get the feeling that Jason is a bit of a recluse, he's been using the same photo for his singles and albums since 2002 and the mind-boggling video of "Electric Dreams" has been filmed with more vaseline on the camera than a Madonna photo shoot. I'm not sure why Jason is hiding, I think he's gorgeous in a chav-next-door kind of way! As much I enjoy rudely speculating on the private lives of Z-grade celebrities, I really should get to the music.

    I still remember the first time I heard Jason's cover version of "You're Beautiful". I was completely overcome by the magnitude of someone turning James Blunt's woeful piece of shit into a fabulous Hi-NRG dance number, which is surely the most amazing transformation since Jesus turned water into wine! Interestingly, Almighty tried their hand at covering the song too and the resulting catastrophe reinforces just how brilliant Jason Prince really is. "You're Beautiful" was a shameful omission from my best of 2006 countdown. This gem should have been top 10. The maxi-single is also notable for containing a rare non-cover version. "Jaded Lover" was written by Jason and is fun, in a craptastic kind of way. It's a welcome change for a gay artist to actually sing about a guy.

    Jason finally got around to releasing his debut album last year and it was worth the wait. It is basically an album of cover versions but these covers are all so insanely ridiculous that "The Jason Prince Collection" sounds highly original - in a twisted kind of way. One of my favourite tracks is Jason's cover of the Pet Shop Boys' "What Have I Done To Deserve This". Forget about those slutty West End Girls. This is THE SHIT! Amusingly, Jason sings Dusty's part, while an inebriated tranny takes over for Neil Tennant. Bliss! Other highlights include a great version of Feargal Sharkey's "A Good Heart" and a camp rendition of "Together In Electric Dreams".

    If you like what you hear, please support Jason and buy the album from Amazon or directly from Klone Records. I can't wait to hear what Jason does next, he deserves to be bigger than Elvis!

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Rest In Peace - Sally Spectra

    Amidst the hordes of reed thin, blond bimbos littering the odious daytime television landscape, one woman stood out as a true original. I'm talking about the recently deceased Darlene Conley, who will be forever remembered as embodying one of television's greatest characters, the inimitable Sally Spectra. Darlene died from stomach cancer on the 14 of January and this Pop Trash Addict has been in mourning ever since. "The Bold & The Beautiful" has been one of my favourite shows since the early 1990s. I remember coming home from school to watch it during lunch time and it was staple viewing while I was "studying" at University. As much as I love Taylor, despise Brooke and fantasise about having a threesome with Dante and Hector; the reason I keep coming back for more is Sally Spectra.

    Darlene turned Sally Spectra into a cultural icon. Darlene had charisma, personality and the kind of curves that would make Sir Mix-A-Lot cum in his pants. That combined with Darlene's love of big hair and deep voice, ensured that Sally Spectra would become an instant gay icon. In fact, I don't think I've been to a single Mardi Gras without running into at least one Sally Spectra drag impersonator. However, there was a lot more to Darlene than Sally. Darlene had bit parts in films such as "The Birds" and "The Valley Of The Dolls" and, as was only recently pointed out to me, had a brief but fabulous musical career in Holland.

    My gorgeous Dutch friend, Jeroen, pointed out that Darlene made a wonderfully tragic pop song to publicise "The Bold & The Beautiful" in the Netherlands. "Botch A Me" is bright and brassy, much like Darlene herself. The lyrics are almost impossibly awful and Darlene basically talks her way through the song - but I love it. I could listen to that voice all day and any song that actually includes the words "tra la la la" is ok by me. Jeroen was also kind enough to share a song that Darlene recorded with the cast of "Bold & The Beautiful" for a Christmas album, as well as Darlene's solo version of "Santa Claus Is Coming To Town". "Love Is The Gift" is actually quite a pleasant ballad, while Darlene's take on "Santa Claus" is divine. I know, I will be dragging it out for many a Christmas to come.

    These songs are a sweet reminder of an incredibly talented and vivacious woman, who lived for the moment and never took herself too seriously.

    Darlene, you will be missed.
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My La Toya Dictionary

    La Toya Jackson is one of the patron saints of Pop Trash Addicts - as the multitude of posts devoted to Queen Toy clearly attest. I've had a couple of queries about some of the Toy terminology that I use, so I have decided to put together a La Toya Dictionary. As La Toya's new single, "Armed & Famous", is apparently ready to hit radio and propel La Toya to international superstardom, there is no time like the present for a little La Toya education!

    La Toya Dictionary

    AmyJa-Tail’s technologically challenged secretary.

    Baby Sister – A formal nickname for La Toya’s sister Janet. Stems from La Toya’s 1986 song about Janet, called “Baby Sister”.

    Back door – La Toya’s anus. This term became popular with Toy Soldiers after La Toya sang about rubbing her big back door in “Just Wanna Dance”.

    Chicken Fajitas – La Toya’s favourite vegetarian meal.

    The Church – An abbreviation for The Church of La Toya, which is the spiritual home of La Toya fans.

    Do a chest-to-chest – A reference to lyrics in “Just Wanna Dance”. Literal meaning is to rub one’s breasts against someone else’s breasts in a sexual manner.

    Feel somebody’s funk – To be attracted to someone. A reference to La Toya’s debut single, and Dutch top 20 smash hit, “If You Feel The Funk”.

    Front door – La Toya’s vagina. A reference to lyrics in the song “Sexbox”.

    Get correct – A reference to lyrics in La Toya’s New Zealand mega-hit “You’re Gonna Get Rocked”. Another way of saying “wisen up”.

    Gordon Years – The years La Toya spent married to Jack Gordon.

    Ja-Tail – La Toya’s useless record company – which has still managed to not release a single commercially available item in 5 years.

    Ja-Tail Gate – The scandal that ensued when a Toy Soldier discovered that Ja-Tail’s office is a post box.

    Jack Gordon – La Toya’s psychotic and abusive ex-manager, who is currently burning in hell.

    Janft - Janet Jackson

    Jeffre Phillips – La Toya’s incompetent manager and rumoured gay husband.

    Manet – Janet Jackson. This nickname brings attention to Janet’s masculine appearance.

    Manita Ho – A play on Janet Jackson’s middle name, Damita Jo. This nickname brings attention to both Janet’s masculine build and the fact that she is a slut.
    Toy Toy, The Tranny & Manita Ho

    Psychic Toy – References to La Toya’s reputed psychic power and supernatural abilities come from La Toya fronting a psychic hotline.

    Put someone in check - A threat of violence. This is another reference to "You're Gonna Get Rocked".

    Rub one’s big back door – A reference to the lyrics in “Just Wanna Dance”. Means to rub one’s buttocks in a sexual fashion.

    Sexbox - La Toya's vagina. A reference to lyrics in La Toya's Dutch smash hit "Sexbox".

    Throw it down – La Toya claims to be “throwin’ it down with a new sound” in “You’re Gonna Get Rocked, meaning to “show what one’s got”.

    Toy – A more formal version of La Toya’s nickname.

    Toy’s Haven – La Toya’s fan chatroom.

    Toy Soldiers – La Toya’s fans.

    Toy Toy – La Toya’s nickname. Fans use it as a term of endearment.

    Toygasm – An orgasm experienced while reading about, watching or listening to La Toya.

    Toygate – The scandal that followed La Toya claiming that Michael Jackson was a child molester.

    Toyriffic – Terrific but in a camp, outrageous or fabulously unsuccessful way.

    Toytacular – Spectacular but in a camp, outrageous or fabulously unsuccessful way.

    Toytastic – Fantastic but in a camp, outrageous or fabulously unsuccessful way.

    The Tranny – Michael Jackson. A reference to Michael’s cross-dressing antics.

    Trial Toy Toy – A reference to La Toya's fabulous publicity whoring antics at Michael Jackson's trial.

    The Universal Love Of La Toya – The original place of online worship for La Toya fans.

    Walls – La Toya’s vaginal opening. A reference to lyrics in La Toya’s Euro-house classic “Sexual Feeling”.

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Gwen Stefani - Wind It Up

Ethel Merman's Disco Album

    For some people, Ethel Merman's disco album sounded the death knell for the entire disco movement. It seems that everyone from Mickey Mouse to Barry Manilow was entitled to jump on the disco bandwagon with impunity, except Ethel. Disco was considered beneath the Broadway legend by her fans, while disco junkies just couldn't get their heads around Mama Rose jumping into her best sequined boots and belting out a selection of showtunes under a mirrorball. The album sank without a trace and was considered a sad career low for one of the greatest vocalists of the 20th century. Thankfully, this opinion is being revisited with the passing of time.

    If you don't know who Ethel Merman is then you're either very young, not gay or completely out of touch with your cultural heritage! Ethel is an old school gay icon, a contemporary of Judy Garland, who experienced her hey day in the 1950s. Ethel was the queen of Broadway, before moving into films and television. As with most ageing gay icons, Ethel's choice of material became increasingly camp with age. She became a regular on "The Love Boat", had a recurring role on "That Girl" and most fabulously, played a villain on "Batman" called Lola Lasagne! With that career trajectory, it was only a matter of time before Ethel tried her hand at disco and the result is quite spectacular. Despite the backlash the album received on release, "Ethel Merman's Disco Album" is finally being recognised as an outrageously camp monument to a true legend.

    The album has aged surprisingly well, probably due to the fact that it didn't sounded contemporary - even on release. Ethel sings 8 showtunes which have been given a disco make-over. A couple of the disco interpretations don't quite work but many of them do. The best known track is probably Ethel's disco version of "There's No Business Like Show Business". It is wonderfully camp but, in my view, one of the weaker songs. My personal favourites are "Everything's Coming Up Roses", "Some People" and Gershwin's brilliant "I Got Rhythm". In fact, the album is worth purchasing for Ethel's outrageous take on "I Got Rhythm" alone. Disco queens and fans of all things shiny and camp will fall for disco Ethel. I know I have!

    The album can be purchased from Amazon and most other online retailers.

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Daughtry - It's Not Over

Before They Were Young Divas - Part 3

    The third and final part of my Young Divas special will focus on the magnificent Paulini. Paulini is one of the alumni of the very first season of Australian Idol. She came in fourth after being criticised on national television by one of the judges for being too fat, which is actually quite ironic given the multitude of plus-sized women to frequent later series of Idol - including fellow "divas" Ricki-Lee and Kate DeAraugo. In fact, it seems you have to morbidly obese to even make it to the final 12 of Australian Idol these days. The controversy helped raise Paulini's profile and, as clearly the most talented vocalist to appear on the show, she was quickly snapped up by Sony.

    I have already dedicated a post to Paulini's magnificent second album (or third, if you count a shitty Christmas offering), "Superwoman". That album was also recorded before the Young Divas formed but this post will focus on Paulini's number 1 debut album, "One Determined Heart". Paulini's debut single, a cover of "Angel Eyes", sets the tone of the album. "Angel Eyes" is a lovely ballad, which showcases Paulini's impressive voice. It is also pretty fucking boring. I really like "Angel Eyes" but an album of full of ballads and dodgy cover versions was never the best career move. Thankfully, there are a handful of interesting remixes.

    "Angel Eyes" hit #1 on the Australian singles chart and remains Paulini's only solo top 10 hit. The follow up, "We Can Try", was written by Audius - whose dubious claim to fame is working with Dullta Good-rim. The original version of "We Can Try" is bland crap but the remixed radio version is sensational. The song made the top 30 and, in its remixed form, remains one of my Paulini favourites. It seems far more suited to "Superwoman" than "One Determined Heart" - ie. it appeals to people under the age of 90.

    I hope I'm not sounding too critical of "One Determined Heart" because in comparison to the other Young Divas solo albums it is a work of unbridled genius. There are several excellent tracks and Paulini's vocals are exquisite. Another highlight of the album is the selection of bizarre cover versions. The album contains one of the strangest cover versions I can remember hearing. Paulini's version of "No More Tears (Enough Is Enough)" is notable for being her first cover of a gay classic and surely the only R'n'B rendition of the song. Not only has the song been turned into a mid-tempo soul ballad, it is also sung as a duet with a man - which makes some of the lyrics rather interesting! It's so wrong, it's kind of right.. if you know what I mean!

    Actually, I'm mistaken about "No More Tears" being Paulini's first cover of a gay classic. I had forgetten about this live medley from Idol which includes "Don't Leave Me This Way" and "Freeway Of Love". As usual, Paulini's voice is immaculate.

    It seems appropriate to finish any discussion of "One Determined Heart" with yet another cover version. The song selection is truly baffling and one of the most random choices is Phil Collins' "One More Night". Paulini's version is rather nice, although it is begging for a remix.

    If Paulini rings your bell, why not keep the woman in diet pills by buying "One Determined Heart" and/or "Superwoman" at Sanity, Chaos or Australian Ebay. Both albums are recommended but "Superwoman" is infinitely superior. This ends my rundown of the pre-diva careers of Paulini, Kate, Emily and Ricki-Lee. It will be interesting to see what 2007 holds for the divas. I have a bad feeling that "Right About Now" is being lined up as single number 3. I hope not because it is one of the worse tracks on their fabulous album. I hear rumours that Sony is intent on rushing out a new album with original material in 2007. That can only be good news!Source URL:
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