Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Retro Video of the Week: "Flashdance . . . What a Feeling" by Irene Cara

This morning, we happened to be listening to the radio during breakfast.  For some reason, Jester refuses to listen to grindcore in the morning, so she put the radio on a station that plays more variety from the '90s til now.  Despite the station's slogan, they also play songs from the '80s now and then.

This morning, they played the inimitable "Flashdance . . . What a Feeling" by Irene Cara. My two-year-old son, Son, is unable to hear any song without dancing or moving his body in some manner, so when this song came on, he threw his sippy cup of orange juice across the room, swiped his waffle off the table, and got out of this chair.  He then proceeded to gyrate to the song, and pump his fists in the air back and forth as if he had just learned that a Paw Patrol marathon was about to start on Nick, Jr.

I wish I had taken video of that, but I didn't, so you'll have to settle for the actual music video to "Flashdance . . . What a Feeling," which was the de facto theme song from the 1983 Jennifer Beals-Michael Nouri vehicle Flashdance.  Flashdance, of course, was the story of a typical Pittsburgh young woman in the early '80s.  Her name was Alex, but it may as well have been any other female name because you've heard the same story a thousand times.  By day, she works as a welder in a steel mill.  At night, she pursues her dream of becoming a dancer by performing in a cabaret and dousing herself with buckets of water.  Despite having no formal training in dance, with the help of her boss at the steel mill, she manages to get an audition with the Pittsburgh Conservatory of Dance and Repertory.  I don't want to spoil what happens next, so you'll just have to watch the movie to find out how things end up for Alex. Spoiler alert: she makes it in!

"Flashdance . . . What a Feeling" was Cara's only #1 hit, and it was a pretty huge song.  Not only did it top the Billboard Hot 100 for six weeks in a row in 1983, but it also hit #1 in ten other countries, was in the top 5 in four other countries, and was in the top 25 in three other countries.  It won the Academy Award and Golden Globe for Best Original Song, and the Grammy for Best Female Pop Vocal Performance.  It was even ranked as the #26 song on Billboards All Time Top 100.  Enjoy.

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