Today is Olivia Newton John’s birthday. My first major musical idol, Newton-John is a singer, songwriter, actor, breast cancer survivor (three times!) and activist. I was young when Grease came out but I absolutely remember seeing it in the theater; I remember what I wore that day, and the movie they previewed before the show (The Swarm, for the record). Why do I remember that day so vividly? Because that was the day I fell in love with Olivia Newton-John. All of America fell in love with her too; Grease was a box office behemoth. Newton-John was the #1 pop star in the early 80s, thanks to Physical. Several years ago, I had the opportunity to see Olivia in concert, and it was a blast. Her voice couldn’t quite hit those “Xanadu” high notes anymore – but she was still rocking those black leather pants.
Netflix released the third teaser for Stranger Things 4 yesterday, and it is a doozy. We still don’t have a release date, but the fourth trailer (due November 6th) should answer that question.
The Brady Bunch premiered on this date in 1969. The series aired for five seasons on ABC, and infinity in syndication. My college bestie/sometime roommate Shari (who also premiered on this date in 1969 – happy birthday, Shari!) would catch the 4:05 and 4:35 airings on TBS and make a game out of who could guess which episode it was the fastest.
Dirty Harry (along with its first two sequels, The Enforcer and Magnum Force) is now available to stream on HBO Max. I’d never seen Dirty Harry, so hubby and I watched it last night. Its casual racism and male-gaze voyeurism are hugely problematic, but it is entertaining as hell. Eastwood is iconic, Andrew Robinson is delightfully unhinged as the Zodiac-inspired “Scorpio” killer and Lalo Schifrin’s score is killer.
Leonard Bernstein and Stephen Sondheim’s West Side Story opened at the Winter Garden Theater on this date in 1957. The production was nominated for six Tony Awards, including Best Musical (it lost to The Music Man) and was adapted into an Oscar-winning movie.
And last but not least, The Beatles’ Abbey Road (the final album they recorded together, it was released prior to Let It Be) was released on this day in 1969. The album, my personal favorite by the band, contains my favorite Beatles song, George Harrison’s “Here Comes the Sun”.