This Week's R E V I E W ...

Gloria Loring
Gloria Loring

© Atlantic

September 27 - October 3, 2020

Year of Release: 1986
Rating:
  • Friends And Lovers
  • Changes Of Heart
  • Close My Eyes
  • The Goodbye
  • If You Remember Me
  • Don't Let Me Change The Way You Are
  • Since I Don't Have You
  • Smokin'
  • You Always Knew
  • What's One More Time

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    Gloria Loring may not be a household name in music, but she has three important credentials in her life: 1) She appeared on the daytime soap opera, Days Of Our Lives. 2) From this show, she achieved a popular hit, "Friends And Lovers." This song was a duet, with Carl Anderson. He had appeared on Broadway and film versions of the rock opera Jesus Christ Superstar. His other accomplishments was appearing in movies and TV shows. Also, recording for Motown; he worked with Stevie Wonder on his album, Songs In The Key Of Life. He was married to Veronica Porche-Ali, former wife of Muhammad Ali. He was diagnosed with leukemia in 2003 while on a 2002 Jesus Christ Superstar tour. He had a minor car accident, and during treatment for that, he was diagnosed with leukemia. Carl Anderson passed away from leukemia in 2004, just four days short of his 59th birthday. He was 58. The song "Nightingale" by Leonard Cohen/Anjani was made in Anderson's memory. Gloria's accomplishment #3 was she was married to actor Alan Thicke, having his popular talk show, Thicke Of The Night. They had 2 sons, one of them was Robin Thicke, who achieved a huge hit in 2013, "Blurred Lines." Alan and Gloria were married from 1970 to 1986. Alan Thicke passed away in 2016. He was 69.

    Gloria's self-titled album was released in 1986. She had previously recorded four albums prior, from 1968 to 1972, all on different labels (MGM, Evolution [2 albums], and Glitz). She was much more popular from these albums by 1986, having her hit "Friends And Lovers," as well as being popular on a soap opera. Gloria Loring was released by Atlantic Records. From 1988 to 2008, she would release seven more albums.

    Her self-titled album definitely defines 1980s Pop. "Friends And Lovers" starts out the album. "Changes Of Heart" reminds me of a '80s Pop song that could have been by The Pointer Sisters. "Close Your Eyes" is another Pop-sounding track, where many female artists of the '80s decade could have recorded it. "The Goodbye" is more R&B'ish. "If You Remember Me" has more of a Bette Midler style, a nice ballad. Another Pop sounder follows, "Don't Let Me Change The Way You Are." Whitney? Maybe. Better yet, it actually sounds more like a Christian-sounding song, as if artists such as Amy Grant could have recorded it.

    "Since I Don't Have You" is the remake of the 1950s classic, originally recorded by The Skyliners. Gloria's version gives an '80s update, and it is beautiful. It could fit the Country format, as one artist could have remade this song - Reba McEntire. "Smokin'" is a jumpy little number, and it could also fit the Country format, likewise Pop, from the 1980s decade. The soft Pop returns with "You Always Knew"; another Christian-sounding light rock track, as in "Don't Let Me Change The Way You Are." The album closes with another soft Pop/Country tune, "What's One More Time." This one I can see Dolly Parton recording this one. The Judds too. (Nice added extra vocals at the end, as the Judds would sing together.)

    Gloria was married again, to actor Christopher Beaumont, from 1988 to 1993. In 1994, she was married for a third time, to production designer Rene Lagler. She has been achieved awards, from JDRF (Lifetime Commitment Award), and from the Miss America Organization (Woman Of Achievement Award). She was featured in Who's Who In America. Her most recent album A Playlist included a re-recorded version of "Friends And Lovers" with Carl Anderson 2008, one year prior before Anderson's death. Another song from this album is a duet with her son, Robin, "The Prayer." Her website http://www.glorialoring.com has much more information.

    Gloria Loring is a very impressive album. It has Pop, Country, Christian sounding songs. It definitely has the 1980s Pop feel in all of them. For soft/light rock fans, and for those who enjoy the 1980s Pop, this one is a good listen.





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