|Hollywood Palace, Ed Sullivan, Dean|
Martin, Carol Burnett: Gorme was a
glammed-up guest on them all.
But when I think of the glamor of show business, I think of the 60s and 70s, when I was glued to the television, watching entertainers such as Eydie Gorme on variety and talk shows. It was an era when singers were in tuxedos for the gents, and evening gowns for the ladies. It was not uncommon to see a star walk onto Johnny Carson's set in formal evening attire; such a thing would be fodder for comedy on today's talk show circuit. But I loved watching the glamorous stars of that era singing their tunes on the variety shows of the day, and Gorme was a regular visitor to such programs.
|I'm sure the first time I ran across Eydie Gorme, it was as a guest on The Carol Burnett Show. She appeared regularly throughout the show's run, sometimes with her husband, but just as often solo.|
In addition to performing with her husband, Eydie had an ongoing solo career (Steve did, too), including her massive popularity in Latin American culture. Her recordings with Trio Los Panchos were big hits south of the border, and she was arguably a bigger star in Spanish speaking countries than in the states.
|Eydie's bilingual talents led to a job interpreting at the U.N.|
She soon left the diplomatic life to become a star. In Latin
America, she's huge.
She did fine here, though, beginning with a splashy hit called "Blame It On The Bossa Nova" in 1963. The song became an enduring part of pop culture once Gorme made it famous. It was covered numerous times over the years; Annette Funicello's recording made a surprisingly hilarious appearance in this moment from The West Wing:
|The Gorme belt turned many a Broadway tune into a|
There are numerous clips out there of her renditions of such songs, so many that I could not choose which to use for this week's Dance Party. If you care to, you can go here for her version of "What Did I Have..." from On A Clear Day..., go here for "As Long As He Needs Me" from Oliver, go here for "What I Did For Love" from A Chorus Line, and go here for the title number from The Way We Were (yes, I know that's a film, but what the hell...).
|Our gal's biggest hit from her repertoire|
of Broadway Ballads was surely "If He
Walked Into My Life" from Mame. She
won the Grammy for that recording.
Though it was not a hit on the Billboard charts, "This Could Be The Start of Something Big" is probably the signature song for the Steve and Eydie duo, and the clip below illustrates exactly what I mean when I write of Old Show Business: our gang includes Dinah Shore, Steve Allen, and Ann Southern, all of whom are dressed to the nines and having a ball with this cheesy routine. I can just imagine all these stars going out to the hottest nightclub after taping their shows, hobnobbing with the other glamour stars of the day; that's what Show Business meant to me back then.
|Frank came through in a time|
of crisis for Eydie.