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  1. #51
    If we as fans are in disagreement about what constitutes a good Diana Ross album how on earth was she expected to get it right?.
    Diana could have worked with the hottest producer in town and still USA music buyers would have turned their backs.
    It says a lot that a comparatively weak album such as “I Love You” reached 32 USA Billboard, 16 R & B. While a very decent album such as TMH scraped in at 114, 38 R & B.
    It does rather confirm that her fall from grace was not entirely about the music.

  2. #52
    How where the sales of those 2 albums? Chartlistings these days dont say much.

  3. #53
    Quote Originally Posted by Nitro2015 View Post
    My perception is that songs like If You're Not Gonna Love Me Right, Keep It Right There, Don't Stop and Swing It sounds very contemporary for 1995. They even sounded fresh in the early 00's and could go along with anything that was being played on R&B Radio.

    I Never Loved a Man Before was very reminiscent of Gloria Estefan's ballads, with that latin feel, that still sounded fresh and extremely radio-friendly through the entire 1990's. It could have been a great AC hit.

    Gone sounded fresh too.

    Take Me Higher, the lead single, was reminiscent of early 90's dance but still sounded contemporary through the mid-1990's.

    I remember I discovered TMH in 1997 [[I was barely 13 y.o.) and was shocked with the freshness of it all and I wondered why it wasn't a big hit in U.S. For me, the album sounded perfect. The production was absolutely amazing, in my opinion, and very United States. You could see that she made the album aiming at the north american market.

    For me, TMH is the perfect Diana album, the one that was expected by an artist of her caliber, that sang 18 #1 U.S. hits.

    If You're Not Gonna Love Me Right deserved to be at least a Top 10 R&B hit. It sounded very 1994-1995-1996.

    Take Me Higher was # 1 on the Dance chart and deserved a better performance on the Pop chart.

    Keep It Right There, Don't Stop and Swing It were perfect for the Urban market.

    I Never Loved a Man Before was perfect for the AC format at the time.

    I don't care for her I Will Survive cover but I understand that it was a song that had an easier appeal for a larger audience, especially older fans and people who lived the disco era. I remember playing the entire album in my father's car and he wasn't very impressed [[he wasn't particularly a fan), but when IWS played he said: "This is the best song on the record!". Probably because it was the only one he was familiar with [[who didn't know the original?!). I didn't feel the same way, it was and it still is my least favorite track of the album.
    i remember getting this album when new. it wasn't that it sounded out of date or bad. as a die-hard fan, i liked it. but for the average public, it was just ok.

    when the Supremes were first hot, it wasn't just that they were contemporary but that they were totally new. there was nothing like them before. both the sound and the look.

    when Diana had her big hits, typically that too was her doing something totally new. Mountain, Touch Me, Love Hangover.

    not only was this music contemporary but it also changed the music scene. it broke new ground and made people pay attention

    TMH was perfectly fine content but no new ground was broken, in terms of the general pop and r&b hits of the time. As for AC, was the album ever really positioned to tackle that market and chart? did any promotional money get spent to give her air time or hits on that chart?

    that's sort of my point. given what was already being released in 95 and 96 on the pop and r&b charts, they didn't properly plan the production. so they ended up with a more AC set but doesn't seem they planned the promotional work to take it there either

  4. #54
    Quote Originally Posted by Ollie9 View Post
    If we as fans are in disagreement about what constitutes a good Diana Ross album how on earth was she expected to get it right?.
    Diana could have worked with the hottest producer in town and still USA music buyers would have turned their backs.
    It says a lot that a comparatively weak album such as “I Love You” reached 32 USA Billboard, 16 R & B. While a very decent album such as TMH scraped in at 114, 38 R & B.
    It does rather confirm that her fall from grace was not entirely about the music.
    i'll reiterate my last post - what was Diana's, her management's and her label's strategy with Take Me Higher? what were they looking to do? Score a big pop hit? reintroduce her to the younger Gen X record buyers of pop and r&b? score big in the AC market?

    what we got was a mixed bag of perfectly nice songs but nothing strong enough to break out of the nucleus of fan base. it was fresh and totally new pop, it wasn't hard r&b and rap. it wasn't a full-on dance album. it was more a set of enjoyable AC but seems they didn't focus on that market with promotion

  5. #55
    Quote Originally Posted by Ollie9 View Post
    If we as fans are in disagreement about what constitutes a good Diana Ross album how on earth was she expected to get it right?.
    Diana could have worked with the hottest producer in town and still USA music buyers would have turned their backs.
    It says a lot that a comparatively weak album such as “I Love You” reached 32 USA Billboard, 16 R & B. While a very decent album such as TMH scraped in at 114, 38 R & B.
    It does rather confirm that her fall from grace was not entirely about the music.
    By the time I love you was released Diana was beginning to gain renewed love and respect in the States. I think that was a major reason why such a mediocre album charted much higher than the far superior 90's albums.
    As you have previously stated Ms Ross was often her own worst enemy. Her temper tantrums and diva behaviour did her no favours whatsoever.
    Thankfully she is far more relaxed these days and has acknowledged past mistakes. I just wish i could transport her 2021 personality and swap it with her rather challenging early 80's personality.
    She is way more patient co-operative and kinder these days. Those qualities could have made such a difference back in the day.
    With age comes wisdom.....

  6. #56
    Quote Originally Posted by sup_fan View Post
    i'll reiterate my last post - what was Diana's, her management's and her label's strategy with Take Me Higher? what were they

    what we got was a mixed bag of perfectly nice songs but nothing strong enough to break out of the nucleus of fan base. it was fresh and totally new pop, it wasn't hard r&b and rap. it wasn't a full-on dance album. it was more a set of enjoyable AC but seems they didn't focus on that market with promotion
    I think the description ‘a mixed bag of perfectly nice songs’ could be applied to many a Diana Ross album. A little something for everyone, and hope something catches the public’s imagination. Concepts and strategies have not always been glaringly obvious.
    My own personal opinion is that TMH contained some very commercial material, more then worthy of a pop hit.
    She would have been better served concentrating her promotional efforts for the album elsewhere other then in a country where she was greatly under appreciated at the time.
    Last edited by Ollie9; 02-19-2021 at 10:25 AM.

  7. #57
    Quote Originally Posted by Bluebrock View Post
    By the time I love you was released Diana was beginning to gain renewed love and respect in the States. I think that was a major reason why such a mediocre album charted much higher than the far superior 90's albums.
    As you have previously stated Ms Ross was often her own worst enemy. Her temper tantrums and diva behaviour did her no favours whatsoever.
    Thankfully she is far more relaxed these days and has acknowledged past mistakes. I just wish i could transport her 2021 personality and swap it with her rather challenging early 80's personality.
    She is way more patient co-operative and kinder these days. Those qualities could have made such a difference back in the day.
    With age comes wisdom.....
    It does indeed B. Although having said, i like to think I have always been kind if not always as patient lol.

  8. #58
    Quote Originally Posted by Bluebrock View Post
    By the time I love you was released Diana was beginning to gain renewed love and respect in the States. I think that was a major reason why such a mediocre album charted much higher than the far superior 90's albums.
    As you have previously stated Ms Ross was often her own worst enemy. Her temper tantrums and diva behaviour did her no favours whatsoever.
    Thankfully she is far more relaxed these days and has acknowledged past mistakes. I just wish i could transport her 2021 personality and swap it with her rather challenging early 80's personality.
    She is way more patient co-operative and kinder these days. Those qualities could have made such a difference back in the day.
    With age comes wisdom.....
    she also appeared on American Idol and sang More Today Than Yesterday. she coached some of the young contestants. that probably had more to do with the charting than anything else. certainly didn't chart based on the merits of the material

    i've not done my "nerd excel" work for any of the material post 1977 or so. so i don't know the chart history of I Love You. yes it peaked at a rather nice, high number. but was there for a split second? did it go from the lower reaches of the charts to that peak and then plummet back to the netherworld? don't know

  9. #59
    Quote Originally Posted by Ollie9 View Post
    I think the description ‘a mixed bag of perfectly nice songs’ could be applied to many a Diana Ross album. A little something for everyone, and hope something catches the public’s imagination. Concepts have not always been glaringly obvious.
    My own personal opinion is that TMH contained some very commercial material, more then worthy of a pop hit.
    She would have been better served concentrating her promotional efforts for the album elsewhere other then in a country where she was greatly under appreciated at the time.
    oh i completely agree with you. Diana Ross has most definitely not waxed one classic album after another. many of them, while still enjoyed by fans, are not necessarily masterpieces. Like Diana Ross 76. there are some truly historic moments - LH for instance. Mahogany is a beautiful song too. but the rest are perfectly nice for her fans but that's about it. even though it charted well it would never make a "100 most essential albums ever" list

    but the key difference is in the 60s and 70s, she was a hot commodity. Her name or the Supremes' name was all you really needed to sell content. plus she had many excellent singles which would often lead to fans buying the associated lp

    in the US in 1995, she was not a hot commodity. Missing You [[from fall of 84) wasn't just that last top 10. it was her last Top 40 on the US pop market and almost her last top 100!!!! After Missing, only Eaten Alive and Chained Reaction crept into the lowest regions of the Top 100.

    So while perfectly nice material was acceptable at other points in her career, here she needed something much bigger. something to really grab people's attention. something either so new or so different or so shocking or so something.

    TMH is quality music. but it isn't groundbreaking, it isn't terrible new or different from the general music of the time. it certainly wasn't shocking. it certainly wasn't "something"

  10. #60
    Look at Cher in the late 90s

    in 95 she released In A Man's World. it failed. So the label said "hey why don't you focus on a strong dance album to appeal to your gay fans and clubbers."

    what we got was Believe

    the lead single on that song was so new, so different, so surprising, so interesting. Even if you don't personally like the song or like Cher, you can't deny its uniqueness or pop appeal. And while much of Diana's singing on TMH is much more artistically challenging than the studio and electronically gimmicked Believe, we aren't necessarily talking about quality here.

    the question posed was why TMH didn't hit in the US? that's not a question about quality of content. that's a question about why didn't people buy it.

    People didn't but TMH because:

    1. the music on the album was frankly too AC oriented yet the project wasn't positioned heavily towards that market

    2. DR was too far removed from any recent pop activity so djs and programmers weren't really that interested in her or following her

    3. same old, same old image - in 1995 [[and frankly even today) she's still looking basically like she did in 1979. a wild mane of hair, sparkling teeth surrounded by red lipstick, some sparkly ball gown. The only time she did anything with her image was Workin Overtime and that was NOT the right look.

    4. lack of public sympathy - by this time, there was enough actual evidence [[combined with urban myth) about her bitchy diva persona. People just don't like her and so they don't root for her. they don't care about her succeeding. this is a partially inaccurate depiction of her but she has been responsible for quite a few shenanigans that Berry Gordy would NEVER have allowed her to either do or to let leak to the press.

  11. #61
    Quote Originally Posted by sup_fan View Post
    oh i completely agree with you. Diana Ross has most definitely not waxed one classic album after another. many of them, while still enjoyed by fans, are not necessarily masterpieces. Like Diana Ross 76. there are some truly historic moments - LH for instance. Mahogany is a beautiful song too. but the rest are perfectly nice for her fans but that's about it. even though it charted well it would never make a "100 most essential albums ever" list

    but the key difference is in the 60s and 70s, she was a hot commodity. Her name or the Supremes' name was all you really needed to sell content. plus she had many excellent singles which would often lead to fans buying the associated lp

    in the US in 1995, she was not a hot commodity. Missing You [[from fall of 84) wasn't just that last top 10. it was her last Top 40 on the US pop market and almost her last top 100!!!! After Missing, only Eaten Alive and Chained Reaction crept into the lowest regions of the Top 100.

    So while perfectly nice material was acceptable at other points in her career, here she needed something much bigger. something to really grab people's attention. something either so new or so different or so shocking or so something.

    TMH is quality music. but it isn't groundbreaking, it isn't terrible new or different from the general music of the time. it certainly wasn't shocking. it certainly wasn't "something"
    Shocking peep's isn’t always the best musical direction to head in. Remember “Fool For Your Love” and ‘Workin Overtime lol.
    Back to 86, and the fact a worldwide hit such as “Chain Reaction” proved yet another American flop indicates to me it was not just about her needing a musical rethink.

  12. #62
    Quote Originally Posted by Ollie9 View Post
    It does indeed B. Although having said, i like to think I have always been kind if not always as patient lol.
    I like to think i have always been kind too, and i generally regard myself as a patient and understanding person.
    When you have to put up with ridiculous behaviour from needy divas and would be divas it provides the best possible training!

  13. #63
    Quote Originally Posted by Bluebrock View Post
    I like to think i have always been kind too, and i generally regard myself as a patient and understanding person.
    When you have to put up with ridiculous behaviour from needy divas and would be divas it provides the best possible training!
    I guess it would....LOL.

  14. #64
    Quote Originally Posted by Ollie9 View Post
    Shocking peep's isn’t always the best musical direction to head in. Remember “Fool For Your Love” and ‘Workin Overtime lol.
    Back to 86, and the fact a worldwide hit such as “Chain Reaction” proved yet another American flop indicates to me it was not just about her needing a musical rethink.
    lol oh yes. those are valid points. shocking absolutely does NOT mean success.

    but neither does artistic accomplishment. while many of us really like diana 80, i don't know that we'd list it as her most challenging or amazing vocal work. but it was something new. it wasn't standard chic. they had progressed as producers and started to move away [[somewhat) from disco and for a more urban sound. and it was just highly appealing

    Mountain was shocking, i'd say. sooooooo different from anything prior. it was a big hit for Marvin and Tammi and Diana's version just was so different, so dramatic, so long, so amazing of vocals, so intriguing with all of those speaking sections. totally new and different

    Love Hangover was quite different for disco. this merger of sultry slow and erotic fast. this totally ad lib and off the cuff performance by Diana.

    Reflections was so new at the time. the avant garde psychedelia music at the time was so different. and frankly so white. few black performers had delved into it in mid 67. but here comes some psychedelic soul from the glamour girls of the supremes. totally new and different for them.

    Same with Love Child, WDOLG and many others.

  15. #65
    Blue - were you involved in the early work around TMH? wasn't sure if you had any info you could share about what was some of the strategy, what they were going for, decisions on which producers to use or content. Was the released album similar or quite different from original design?

  16. #66
    here's an interesting perspective. from Wikipedia and the Critical Response segment on the album


    In a retrospective review for Allmusic, editor William Ruhlmann wrote that "combining the work of four separate producers who mostly tried to fit Ross into contemporary dance trends, the album did feature a club bit in the title song, while the ballad "Gone" made the Top 40 in the UK. But Ross herself seemed to have spent more time posing for the many fashion shots in the booklet than singing tbe pedestrian songs."[1] Vibe critic Elysa Gardner found that Take Me Higher was "mired in excess. There are too many collaborators, too much synthetic production and heavy-handed sentiment [...] the only palpable vision is a firm eye on the middle of the road."[1]

  17. #67
    I loved Take Me Higher, the song. There was a remix I got on a promo cassette that was fantastic [[wish I could find it now!). I wanted more uptempo on the album instead we got some lovely ballads. In the US. we didn't get Swing it. I was not enthused with I Will Survive. To me, that song was overdone by that point. I Thought That We Were Still In Love was a fantastic track, but not really radio friendly. As sup_fan said above - the album was too AC oriented. I enjoy it the most out of her return to Motown albums, but it was a typical Diana Ross album which sells to her fans but probably wouldn't make new ones or get played on radio.

    Regarding I Love You, as Bluebrock said, it is a mediocre album. It had commercials and lots of TV exposure, which probably accounts for it's larger than normal sales. But, truthfully, for all the advertising i saw for it, it should have sold many more copies than it did.

  18. #68
    Quote Originally Posted by thommg View Post
    I loved Take Me Higher, the song. There was a remix I got on a promo cassette that was fantastic [[wish I could find it now!). I wanted more uptempo on the album instead we got some lovely ballads. In the US. we didn't get Swing it. I was not enthused with I Will Survive. To me, that song was overdone by that point. I Thought That We Were Still In Love was a fantastic track, but not really radio friendly. As sup_fan said above - the album was too AC oriented. I enjoy it the most out of her return to Motown albums, but it was a typical Diana Ross album which sells to her fans but probably wouldn't make new ones or get played on radio.

    Regarding I Love You, as Bluebrock said, it is a mediocre album. It had commercials and lots of TV exposure, which probably accounts for it's larger than normal sales. But, truthfully, for all the advertising i saw for it, it should have sold many more copies than it did.
    i think her doing an AC album is perfectly fine. and while it might not have broken her into the Pop top 40, that's ok. But did Motown promote and push TMH in the AC market? i don't see any AC chart details on it. but doesn't seem like they made a big play for it there.

    according to the wikipedia article on Cher and Believe, they seemed to focus from the start on targeting her gay fan base and club scene. and what they delivered seem to play right into that strategy. it then made the jump from Dance/Club to pop. and became a sensation.

    seems like the sound and style of Everyday was more geared to Dance/Club too. not sure if that was the real goal here or what was driving the production and planning.

  19. #69
    Quote Originally Posted by Ollie9 View Post
    It does indeed B. Although having said, i like to think I have always been kind if not always as patient lol.
    I like to think i have always been kind too, and i generally regard myself as a patient and understanding person.
    When you have to put up with ridiculous behaviour from needy divas and would be divas it provides the best possible training!

  20. #70
    Quote Originally Posted by Bluebrock View Post
    I like to think i have always been kind too, and i generally regard myself as a patient and understanding person.
    When you have to put up with ridiculous behaviour from needy divas and would be divas it provides the best possible training!
    Strange. Your post is duplicated and my reply has disappeared??.

  21. #71
    Quote Originally Posted by Ollie9 View Post
    Diana could have worked with the hottest producer in town and still USA music buyers would have turned their backs.
    I guess we'll never know. She did it once -- 1980's "diana" -- and it worked spectacularly. I don't know why the "hottest producer" of the day couldn't have given her another commercial jolt -- at a time Cher, Tina and Patti Labelle were still having chart hits. I think Jam & Lewis or Babyface could have given her the crossover hits she longed for, and her fans wanted for her. Luther certainly could have given her some magic moments that could have been hits. There was so much urban-oriented talent making hits -- Teddy Riley, Dallas Austin, Kyle West, Simon Law, etc. Was there was no one at Motown, or in her orbit, who could direct her to a solid commercial strategy?

  22. #72
    i think it's just a "maybe" as to whether Diana would have achieved a pop hit in the 90s. You mention Tina, Cher and Patti but all 3 of them, frankly, had stronger public images in that people like them and their personality. they hadn't had the damning PR backlash that Diana experienced. They also had a bit of underdog on their side.

    having a hot producer is also just part of it. they would have had to come up with something really compelling to generate interest. simply having DR sing a Luther or Babyface song wouldn't have done it, IMO. that could have been written off like a Mom trying to be young.

    I wonder if a stronger return to film and tv wouldn't have done it. she was wonderful in Out Of Darkness. perhaps another project like that. or a big hit film. something that might help share her for comedic and personable side. Darkness displayed her talent but you don't walk away from it thinking "diana is just like me - we could be best friends!" like you would with a great comedy or a more fun movie.

  23. #73
    Quote Originally Posted by sup_fan View Post

    I wonder if a stronger return to film and tv wouldn't have done it. she was wonderful in Out Of Darkness. perhaps another project like that. or a big hit film. something that might help share her for comedic and personable side. Darkness displayed her talent but you don't walk away from it thinking "diana is just like me - we could be best friends!" like you would with a great comedy or a more fun movie.
    This is an interesting point.

    As great an actor as Diana is, she hasn't really taken advantage of that area of her talent. Back in the 80s, Ron Miller said something like Diana could be a great actress if she really put in the work, did small jobs for little or no money, to learn her craft. Diana started at the sky with LADY and maintained the star role in every film project she did since.

    By comparison, Cher moved to NYC, did some theater, films like JIMMY DEAN and SILKWOOD, where she didn't have the starring role. She kept growing, culminating with an Oscar for her role in MOONSTRUCK. After that, her recording career picked up again. Of course, her career has had her peaks and valleys since then. At one point, she was doing an informercial. But she always bounces back with a BELIEVE or MAMMA MIA.

    I think Diana's devotion to her family probably made delving seriously into acting a lesser priority.
    Last edited by reese; 02-19-2021 at 03:04 PM.

  24. #74
    and given the timing of things too. the word was always that Diana in the 80s was too demanding on what control and role she would play in the overall production. and she seemed pretty razor focused on the Josephine Baker concept.

    it's always a SUPER sensitive issue as to who will receive top billing in a film. by this time, Diana was an overall superstar and been nominated for an Oscar. But you're right, she hadn't invested years of work and study to the craft. now she might be a very gifted actor but if she's working with another very gifted actor who HAS put in those years, it would be tough to argue she gets second billing.

    there was some rumor about a project that could have potentially involved Jack Lemmon back in the 70s. perhaps that could have been an interesting property but who stars?

    as we've all said, sometimes Diana could be her worst enemy and that she got in the way of many of her own goals and projects.

  25. #75
    in Call Her Miss Ross, Randy discusses the idea of Diana in Witches of Eastwick. i don't think he was implying that she was a candidate for a role but more around the point that she probably wouldn't consider a strong ensemble cast like that. one where the central story didn't focus on her. and you know with Susan Sarandon, Cher, Jack Nicholson you'd have a real challenge arranging billing.

  26. #76
    Quote Originally Posted by sup_fan View Post
    in Call Her Miss Ross, Randy discusses the idea of Diana in Witches of Eastwick. i don't think he was implying that she was a candidate for a role but more around the point that she probably wouldn't consider a strong ensemble cast like that. one where the central story didn't focus on her. and you know with Susan Sarandon, Cher, Jack Nicholson you'd have a real challenge arranging billing.
    Randy actually was referring to an interview with former Motown Productions producer Rob Cohen.

    Cohen said that if he was able to convince Warner Bros. to cast Diana opposite Cher in THE WITCHES OF EASTWICK, he didn't think she would have done it because it was ensemble. So it sounds like Cohen might have really been interested in having Diana in the film. He went on to say that he read hundreds of scripts every year and Diana was always on his mind. But he didn't know what he could do with her because she was very rigid in what she would and would not do.

    I remember Eddie Murphy saying something like he wanted Diana and Billy Dee to play his parents in COMING TO AMERICA. The roles eventually went to James Earl Jones and Madge Sinclair but it could have been cute with Diana and Billy Dee. A small, fun role with no pressure. Or even Diana and James Earl Jones reunited years after TARZAN. So many ideas...

  27. #77
    Quote Originally Posted by reese View Post
    Randy actually was referring to an interview with former Motown Productions producer Rob Cohen.

    Cohen said that if he was able to convince Warner Bros. to cast Diana opposite Cher in THE WITCHES OF EASTWICK, he didn't think she would have done it because it was ensemble. So it sounds like Cohen might have really been interested in having Diana in the film. He went on to say that he read hundreds of scripts every year and Diana was always on his mind. But he didn't know what he could do with her because she was very rigid in what she would and would not do.

    I remember Eddie Murphy saying something like he wanted Diana and Billy Dee to play his parents in COMING TO AMERICA. The roles eventually went to James Earl Jones and Madge Sinclair but it could have been cute with Diana and Billy Dee. A small, fun role with no pressure. Or even Diana and James Earl Jones reunited years after TARZAN. So many ideas...
    yes that's the story! couldn't remember the details. and i don't know that, frankly, Diana was ever a consideration for Witches. but just an example

    also during the 80s she was VERY busy with her family, different business ventures, trying to get the RCA stuff going and then Arne. gotta remember that even for a workhorse like Diana, there are still only 24 hours in a day. a movie takes so much time and commitment that it could be she thought "unless it's a perfect role, just not worth it." Maybe she really liked acting but if she had to choose, singing on a stage would be her top pick. so if something had to go it wouldn't be music and absolutely wasn't going to sacrifice any of her family life. so maybe movies just weren't possible

  28. #78
    In the original mooted Bodyguard film who was originally cast opposite Diana?

    I had always thought it was Ryan O'Neal but I was told recently it was actually Steve McQueen.

  29. #79
    Quote Originally Posted by florence View Post
    In the original mooted Bodyguard film who was originally cast opposite Diana?

    I had always thought it was Ryan O'Neal but I was told recently it was actually Steve McQueen.
    It was actually written for Diana Ross and Steve McQueen. I really donít remember what happened with Steve. But it was then given to Ryan OíNeil. Who was begging Diana to do this movie with him.

  30. #80
    Quote Originally Posted by florence View Post
    In the original mooted Bodyguard film who was originally cast opposite Diana?

    I had always thought it was Ryan O'Neal but I was told recently it was actually Steve McQueen.
    It was definitely Ryan. Itís well documented how angry and disillusioned he felt when after much deliberation Diana decided not to go ahead with the film after all. I wish it had been Steve McQueen.

  31. #81
    Quote Originally Posted by sup_fan View Post
    Blue - were you involved in the early work around TMH? wasn't sure if you had any info you could share about what was some of the strategy, what they were going for, decisions on which producers to use or content. Was the released album similar or quite different from original design?
    Sadly i had no input whatsoever into the general direction and choice of songs and producers for TMH. Had i been given more involvement i wouldn't have changed that much about it. It remains one of my personal favourite Ross albums. I like everything on the album with the exception of IWS. Ms Ross herself wanted to record that as a personal tribute to her daughters who loved the original version.
    My job was to take care of Ms Ross and protect her in more ways than one.
    I did attend a few recording sessions when i was asked to, but i was not allowed any musical input.
    The only time i could take any credit for any song choices was for the Very Special Season album. I had put forward the idea of including Amazing Grace on the album. I had loved her Christmas In Vienna version and suggested she record it for the Christmas album. She thought it to be a great idea, and then i suggested maybe we could try and include the live version which in my opinion could not be bettered by re-recording it. To my immense delight my suggestion was taken on board, and permission was granted to include it on the Christmas album.

  32. #82
    Blue - so what did the UK do right with this album? while TMH didn't chart as strongly in the UK as Force, it still did rather well. what approach[[es) did the team there do to help break it out in the pop music scene in UK?

  33. #83
    Diana was primarily a singles artist in the UK - her studio albums apart from a few underperformed.

    diana for example with the almost #1 Upside Down, top 5 My Old Piano and top 20 I'm Coming Out although it sold around 130k missed the top 10.

    On the face of it Take Me Higher looks to have been successful reaching the top 10 but this is an illusion.

    Diehard fans bought it in the first week of release.

    Its chart performance was 10-22-48-85.

    It was one of her lowest selling albums being one of the few not to even reach Silver status [[60k).

  34. #84
    Quote Originally Posted by Ollie9 View Post
    Strange. Your post is duplicated and my reply has disappeared??.
    Gremlins at work Ollie.

  35. #85
    Quote Originally Posted by sup_fan View Post
    Blue - so what did the UK do right with this album? while TMH didn't chart as strongly in the UK as Force, it still did rather well. what approach[[es) did the team there do to help break it out in the pop music scene in UK?
    Due to personal reasons i missed out on some of the crucial promotion of TMH. I am convinced we could have had another major seller on our hands had i been in a position to arrange more promotion.
    I do not wish to apportion blame to anyone who worked on the promotion, but a few wrong choices were made.
    We should have repromoted it and issued a "special edition" as they were known back in the 90's. Ms Ross was willing to promote the hell out of this album, but she needed strong support which was sadly not there when it was needed.

  36. #86
    Quote Originally Posted by Bluebrock View Post
    Due to personal reasons i missed out on some of the crucial promotion of TMH. I am convinced we could have had another major seller on our hands had i been in a position to arrange more promotion.
    I do not wish to apportion blame to anyone who worked on the promotion, but a few wrong choices were made.
    We should have repromoted it and issued a "special edition" as they were known back in the 90's. Ms Ross was willing to promote the hell out of this album, but she needed strong support which was sadly not there when it was needed.
    Bluebrock - your recollections are fascinating

  37. #87
    Ross was very visable in the 60s as a supreme but in the 70s her tv appearances were rare and she didn't always perform her hits.....lady is a tramp.omg. that doesn't sell records.
    In the 90s ...Ross was only visable when TMH came out.
    Great album.
    Great tour.
    But I think Diana has an image of herself in her head.imo.
    Although I loved the Superbowl show I mostly remember her performing a medley of hits. Imo.she should of performed songs from TmH. I personally didn't need to reach out and touch again.. almost every memory I have is her singing I will survive on every tv appearances.
    If you're not gonna love me right should have been the follow up to TMH and promoted more. And why is this song not in her show . But we got I Will Survive forever. A good song but her inability to update her show hurts her record sales.just my opinion

  38. #88
    Quote Originally Posted by daviddh View Post
    Ross was very visable in the 60s as a supreme but in the 70s her tv appearances were rare and she didn't always perform her hits.....lady is a tramp.omg. that doesn't sell records.
    In the 90s ...Ross was only visable when TMH came out.
    Great album.
    Great tour.
    But I think Diana has an image of herself in her head.imo.
    Although I loved the Superbowl show I mostly remember her performing a medley of hits. Imo.she should of performed songs from TmH. I personally didn't need to reach out and touch again.. almost every memory I have is her singing I will survive on every tv appearances.
    If you're not gonna love me right should have been the follow up to TMH and promoted more. And why is this song not in her show . But we got I Will Survive forever. A good song but her inability to update her show hurts her record sales.just my opinion

    If You're Not Gonna Love Me Right >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> I Will Survive


    Her live version of IYNGLMR on Jay Leno was amazing. The song performed live is very reminiscent of Too Many Nights, a b-side from the era.

  39. #89
    Quote Originally Posted by Bluebrock View Post
    Due to personal reasons i missed out on some of the crucial promotion of TMH. I am convinced we could have had another major seller on our hands had i been in a position to arrange more promotion.
    I do not wish to apportion blame to anyone who worked on the promotion, but a few wrong choices were made.
    We should have repromoted it and issued a "special edition" as they were known back in the 90's. Ms Ross was willing to promote the hell out of this album, but she needed strong support which was sadly not there when it was needed.
    Thanks for your insights, Bluebrocks.

    Did Diana ever expressed frustration regarding to TMH's commercial performence in U.S. or U.K.? She seemed to really believe in the record.

  40. #90
    Quote Originally Posted by Nitro2015 View Post
    Thanks for your insights, Bluebrocks.

    Did Diana ever expressed frustration regarding to TMH's commercial performence in U.S. or U.K.? She seemed to really believe in the record.
    Yes she did. She was resigned to the album flopping in the USA. She knew Motown were not in her corner but she was determined to put herself in the public eye by doing the late night talk shows despite being no fan of Jay Leno.
    As regards the UK she was open to hosting her own tv special. Talks were held with the BBC but an agreement could not be reached. She eventually did the Audience with Diana Ross for ITV whilst promoting Everyday is a new Day.
    She expected TMH to hit big in the UK, and i wanted to reissue the title track in a slightly remixed version to follow IWS but i was outvoted.
    I remain convinced to this very day that it could have rivalled FBTP had the promotion been handled better from the start.

  41. #91
    Quote Originally Posted by nomis View Post
    Bluebrock - your recollections are fascinating
    Thank you for your kind words nomis.

  42. #92
    I will look at for that performance of if your not gonna love me .
    Thanks.
    Still a great album.in my top ten Ross albums

  43. #93
    Quote Originally Posted by daviddh View Post
    I will look at for that performance of if your not gonna love me .
    Thanks.
    Still a great album.in my top ten Ross albums
    You must do David. She looked and sounded great.

  44. #94
    Quote Originally Posted by Bluebrock View Post
    She expected TMH to hit big in the UK, and i wanted to reissue the title track in a slightly remixed version to follow IWS but i was outvoted.
    Sounds a really good idea to me. Great shame you were outvoted. I’ve mentioned it before, but I really wish TOTP had screened the exciting promo of TMH as opposed to her nice, but slightly dull appearance at the Motown Museum.

  45. #95
    Quote Originally Posted by Ollie9 View Post
    Sounds a really good idea to me. Great shame you were outvoted. I’ve mentioned it before, but I really wish TOTP had screened the exciting promo of TMH as opposed to her nice, but slightly dull appearance at the Motown Museum.
    She actually did a live studio performance of it that has never been broadcast. It was excellent, and in the same vein as her Letterman performance. I have requested it for inclusion in the forthcoming Diana Ross at the BBC programme, but i have been told the song was not a big enough mainstream hit to warrant inclusion. I got the same response when i asked for her Pebble Mill performance of Gone to be included.
    They should just leave it to me to compile the programme! I know Ms Ross way better than they do.

  46. #96
    Quote Originally Posted by Bluebrock View Post
    She actually did a live studio performance of it that has never been broadcast. It was excellent, and in the same vein as her Letterman performance. I have requested it for inclusion in the forthcoming Diana Ross at the BBC programme, but i have been told the song was not a big enough mainstream hit to warrant inclusion. I got the same response when i asked for her Pebble Mill performance of Gone to be included.
    They should just leave it to me to compile the programme! I know Ms Ross way better than they do.
    I’m getting less excited about this BBC show by the minute B. I’m sensing “Mountain” and “I’m Still Waiting” will be the order of the day.

  47. #97
    Quote Originally Posted by Ollie9 View Post
    Iím getting less excited about this BBC show by the minute B. Iím sensing ďMountainĒ and ďIím Still WaitingĒ will be the order of the day.
    I guess Iím a little behind and havenít heard anything about this upcoming BBC show. Previously, I thought you were discussing the recently-aired Story Of Her Songs segment. Can you provide a few details?

  48. #98
    Quote Originally Posted by Guy View Post
    I will be forever biased in favor if "Voice of the Heart." She loved the message and my heart nearly burst during this performance if it when she grabbed and embraced Whitney.


    Thanks for posting this. That racing over to hug with Whitney at the end , Whitney leaped out of her chair....it's moments like this I suddenly like Diana Ross a lot more...

    very touching

  49. #99
    Quote Originally Posted by Ollie9 View Post
    I’m getting less excited about this BBC show by the minute B. I’m sensing “Mountain” and “I’m Still Waiting” will be the order of the day.
    Indeed. Along with Baby love, Touch me in the morning, Mahogany, chain reaction, when you tell me that you love me, one shining moment and..... gulp i will survive!

  50. #100
    I'm new to the forum [[long time looker, first time poster haha). I became a fan of Diana's in 2000 when VH1 was doing Diva's Live. I was around 13ish at the time and loved the previous Diva's shows-when I saw they were doing a whole special dedicated to Diana, I was intrigued. I kept watching any and all the clips they showed of her, music videos, segments on Supremes, etc and was loving everything.

    I kept seeing clips of what was the "Take Me Higher" video and I asked my mom to take me to the music shop near where we lived and they had the Take Me Higher album along with Everyday Is a New Day. For me, I started my love of Diana's music with those 2 albums and then worked backwards and learned about "Ain't No Moutain...", "Theme From Mahogany," "The Boss," "I'm Coming Out," etc. They're still my favorite to this day because of the association and memories I have connected.

    I think "Take Me Higher" is just a really great, solid album with lots of potential that was definitely overlooked. With the right promotion, I think she could of had some great chart success. "I Never Loved a Man Before" and "I Thought That We Were Still In Love" are 2 of her most beautiful songs in her catalog. I was just listening to the Japanese release the other day and it's interesting how they omit "Let Somebody Know" which was definitely a song that fit Diana perfectly and added in "Swing It." "Swing It" is unique and while I think the lyrics don't fit her at times [["...Cause I'm the 'roni that'll give you what you need"), it still has a great R&B vibe that could have seen potential airplay. "I Will Survive" seemed like the odd song out. I enjoy it live, but I'm not a fan of her closing each show with it still to this day. "Gone" is my favorite track from the album-her voice, her emotion fit the music perfectly and I love the black and white video released with it. I think there were a lot of opportunities to propel her back onto the charts, but Motown just didn't want to give it the attention it needed and deserved. Going through and looking back at clips, she was all over promoting it, so the failure of it not being a success rests more on Motown then Diana's.

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