What kind of jingles did Barry Manilow write
In an episode of the British cult series "The Young Ones", one of the flat share residents dreams of hell. There two funny dwarfs torture a poor soul. First they hit her face with a cream cake, then rinse it off with beer and remove the remains with steel wool. But the worst comes to the end: You put headphones on the victim and play Barry Manilow. The suffering that follows is unbearable.
It's just one of many stories, because hardly any musician has had to endure as much malice in the course of his career as the "cuddly singer" from the USA. He is a superstar who has been on a barely interrupted wave of success since the 1970s.
He was born in Brooklyn in 1943 under the name Barry Alan Pincus. As a teenager he learned to play the piano. After graduating from school, he began studying at the New York College of Music. He also works at CBS, where he is given the job of arranging the play "The Drunkard". Without further ado, he writes all of the music and has a first success with it. He spends the next several years writing jingles for commercials, including toilet cleaners, pimple remedies, Kentucky Fried Chicken, and band aid manufacturer Band Aid.
In the first half of the 1970s, Manilow, who took his mother's maiden name after his parents' divorce, worked as a pianist and producer for Bette Midler. His first, self-titled album (1973) initially interests only a few, until a year later "Barry Manilow II" appears with the single "Mandy". The songwriter celebrates his first big success with a piece that he did not write himself.
This is followed by one hit record after the next. His best known songs include "Looks Like We Made It", "Daybreak", "Can't Smile Without You", "Copacabana (At the Copa)" and "I Write The Songs" (though by Bruce Johnston from the Beach) Boys originates). With "Greatest Hits" Manilow made his breakthrough in Great Britain in 1978. In London at the beginning of the 1980s he played in the sold-out Wembley Arena and in the Royal Albert Hall, which was also sold out.
Impressive successes, but which earned him a reputation for writing sappy, insignificant ballads, as many critics note. Mother-in-law's darling, so to speak, but largely ridiculed by the youth.
A judgment that endures in the decades that followed. Like Rod Stewart, Manilow only recorded cover versions from the 1990s onwards, and it wasn't too bad to cheer Christmas carols and Broadway classics on its fans. In 1999 he appeared on a television show in which figure skaters dance to his music. The two musicals he creates are a little more serious: "Copacabana", named after one of his most famous songs, and "Harmony", which is about the Comedian Harmonists.
After a facelift, Manilow has been booked as a permanent entertainer at the Las Vegas Hilton since 2005. In February 2006, with "The Greatest Songs Of The Fifties", he surprisingly climbed to number one on the Billboard charts - a position he had not held since the 1970s.
A few months later in Australia, however, it became clear that his music still did not suit everyone's taste: In order to prevent youth gangs from gathering in a residential area at the weekend, Australian authorities sounded the area with his songs from 9 p.m. to midnight.
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