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Time for Some Love for Richard!

Discussion in 'A Song For You: The Carpenters Forum' started by Jamesj75, May 25, 2015.

  1. GaryAlan

    GaryAlan Well-Known Member

    ^^True enough, it was probably instrumental in the "re-appraisal" which was to occur, subsequently to
    the airing of the Movie.
    However, it did virtually nothing to spur sales of--for instance the LP--Lovelines.
    That was in 1990--and, not only did I purchase the One and Only Copy of Lovelines, in the "record store,"
    to this day, very few members of the general public have heard of that Album !
    So, yes, a re-evaluation of the "hits" already well-known to the public definitely occurred.
    And, yes, interest in hearing more Solo songs occurred.
    Be that as it may, the onslaught of CD's was a rather huge catalyst in furthering Carpenters' sales....
    And, the onslaught of many-a-documentary in the 1990's occurred, also.
    My opinion--
    the process of rediscovery and re-evaluation the Carpenters' legacy would still have occurred,
    without that CBS Movie--however, in the United States--it probably would have taken longer .

    Concluding: I still agree with Richard Carpenter regarding the CBS-Movie.
    I did not like it at first watch--its original air-date--
    and, I dislike it even more today.

    The Music,however, remains timeless.
  2. Carpe diem

    Carpe diem Well-Known Member

    Outstanding comment!
  3. Rumbahbah

    Rumbahbah Well-Known Member

    I'd agree with you that the effect of the movie on sales in the US was more muted, partly because as the article in Randy Schmidt's collection notes, stores weren't ready for it and didn't have many copies in stock - and nor did A&M have anything 'new' to release that was ready to captalise on it. Lovelines didn't appear until nearly a year later, so any momentum created by the movie had long since dissipated by then.

    In the UK, by contrast, the effect on their music sales was immediate. The week after it was shown at the end of 1989, both Singles albums were back in the Top 50 on the albums chart and Lovelines (which had been released a couple of months earlier and had seen no chart action) also charted briefly. This growth in interest led to the release of the Only Yesterday compilation a few months later that topped the charts for several weeks and sold over a million copies. It was this renewed interest in the UK that led to many of those documentaries in the 1990s (most of them were UK produced) and several of the further compliations (Interpretations, for example, was released in the UK months before it was decided to release it in the US). I'd say all of this is directly traceable back to the screening of the movie on TV.

    It's true that the CD revolution would surely have drawn some attention to their catalogue, but without that spur created by the movie (particularly in the UK), I don't imagine we'd have seen anything like the interest that we see now.

    As it happens, it was this very movie that first made me aware of their music, and I'm sure the same is true of many people of a similar age to me who weren't alive in their heyday. Again, even though my parents had a few of their albums, I don't know if or when I'd have crossed paths with their music without it. So I'd say it's a pretty important development in their trajectory!
    newvillefan likes this.
  4. GaryAlan

    GaryAlan Well-Known Member

    ^^In the USA Lovelines LP was released October 31st, 1989....quite a while after the airing of the Movie.
    Also, I note, the Movie was re-aired quite a bit after that initial air-date.
    So, yes, I definitely agree that the CBS Movie played a part in bringing Carpenters' music
    back to the forefront of the public's mind-set.
    My point is that it also is responsible for the negative opinions aimed at the Carpenter Family.
    And, as Richard Carpenter notes, there are many "fictitious scenes."
    It is the negativity I am combating--those fictitious scenes in the Movie--
    Not the positive influence it has had on re-introducing Carpenters Music !
  5. Rumbahbah

    Rumbahbah Well-Known Member

    The movie certainly opened a can of worms in terms of the perception of the family and that's doubtless why so many scenes had to be rewritten. I'm not in a position to say whether those showing the family dynamic were fictitious or not. The awkward therapy session in 1982 with Steven Levenkron definitely happened and seemingly Richard and the family were OK with how it was portrayed in the film, as they didn't ask for changes to that scene - Mitchell Anderson is quoted in Randy Schmidt's book as saying that in fact the family seemed pleased with the scene.

    I don't know if the movie still shapes people's ideas about Karen and Richard's lives today, given that much extra information and two biographies have appeared since then providing further details. That's why I don't really have a problem with it not being 100% accurate - it more than served its purpose at the time and it's not easily available to buy now (although it is online for anyone who really wants to track it down), so it's not really the go-to source for anyone looking to find out more about them these days.
    ThaFunkyFakeTation likes this.
  6. GaryAlan

    GaryAlan Well-Known Member

    ^^I love your thoughtful responses !
  7. Rumbahbah

    Rumbahbah Well-Known Member

    Thank you! I could say the same of you. One of the best things about this board is the ability of many contributors to make insightful contributions that open up whole new ways of looking at a song, an album or a part of Karen and Richard's life and career, and to take on board ideas they may not always agree with.
    ThaFunkyFakeTation and GaryAlan like this.
  8. GaryAlan

    GaryAlan Well-Known Member

    Oh, by the way, please keep in mind my personal perspective:
    By the time this Movie (CBS) aired, I was already in my late 20s and had been following
    Carpenters career since around 1973 (I being 11 years old, then).
    Thus, the CBS Movie did not introduce, or reintroduce, me to the Carpenters.
    (I already had every conceivable Carpenters' output).
    I was thrilled--at that time--that a major TV Movie was even being aired in America !
    (I still have my original VHS recording).
    But, I do recall being disturbed--at that time--by the inaccuracies in the movie.
    Those inaccuracies, I would say, still (especially because it is Youtube available)
    perpetuates misinformation (to the general public).
    At the time the movie aired, it was great to see Carpenters remembered.
    As time has unfolded, the movie is not to be viewed as representative of Karen or Richard, or their family.
    (Try selling that to the general public, though).
  9. newvillefan

    newvillefan Well-Known Member

    Correction - he asked for changes to the movie because he felt that it reflected badly on Agnes specifically. I remember an interview in which he was very emphatic about that, saying there was no way he would allow them to pin the blame on their mother. I do however believe that was done to shield his mother from acute criticism, rather than because the content or portrayal was factually incorrect. The crew and cast were left pretty horrified after filming the very emotional scene in Levenkron’s office and yet Richard and Agnes felt it left the doctor looking like the bad guy. Work that one out if you can.
    Last edited: May 1, 2018
  10. Rick-An Ordinary Fool

    Rick-An Ordinary Fool Well-Known Member

    That scene actually left me feeling just the opposite, it was mostly Cynthia's body language that moved me it was as if she was saying inside no one understand how I'm feeling and pulling it out of you isn't working. Cynthia's body language was like she was closing herself inside without a voice to speak out how or what she was feeling because it would do no good anyway. I wasn't blaming the dr at all for that scene. That's what I got out of that scene.
  11. Mark-T

    Mark-T Well-Known Member

    Me too, Rick.
  12. GaryAlan

    GaryAlan Well-Known Member

    An instance that irritates me in the CBS Movie:
    At time 4:57 in, the scene of the Downey Talent Contest...
    Karen is turning the sheet music for Richard--while he is playing for the crowd--
    then, the sheet music falls to the ground (or, gets blown there),
    and, Karen is left fumbling around for the fallen sheet music,
    all the while the crowd is laughing, parents embarrassed.....we are up to 5:09....

    This entire scene...no.....
  13. Harry

    Harry Charter A&M Corner Member Moderator

    Please people. This forum is for celebrating the music of Karen & Richard Carpenter. We've been down this road and we don't permit discussions of autopsies, graveyards, and other personal topics. Please confine your discussions to the topics at hand.

    Harry...and the A&M Corner Moderating Staff
  14. David A

    David A Well-Known Member


    Is there any kind of official list of topics that are verboten? I don't like posting things you have to take the time to read and delete, apologies.
  15. Harry

    Harry Charter A&M Corner Member Moderator

    Let's just say that this is a music forum, celebrating the music of mostly A&M artists, which of course has its own special place for Carpenters.

    Artists are people. They don't particularly care to have their personal details thrown out into the public. I know that they are public figures and as such, they are subject to all sorts of gossip and innuendos. Just imagine how you'd feel someday if you found a thread here discussing your doctor's records.

    Well, we don't want to add to the awful stuff that one can find on the web. Indeed, there are plenty of places to go and talk about all kinds of sordid stuff - but not here. Use your good judgment, and I know most of you HAVE good judgment. Before you hit [Post Reply], think about what it is you're trying to say, and imagine that it was a post about you, your brother, your sister, your mother, your psychiatrist, your doctor, your coroner. Does it really have to do with the music and the careers of the subject your writing about?

    That's it. Carry on. Remember this was a thread about some love for Richard?
  16. GaryAlan

    GaryAlan Well-Known Member

    I love this....
    Jamesj75 and David A like this.
  17. Harry

    Harry Charter A&M Corner Member Moderator

    David A likes this.
  18. Carpe diem

    Carpe diem Well-Known Member

    Absolutely correct Harry. Keep us honest! I believe most of the members of this forum value your opinion and respect your job as Moderator of this forum (I know I do). Sorry for getting SO off-topic with my earlier post today. PEACE
    Jamesj75 likes this.
  19. David A

    David A Well-Known Member

    My usual caveat - for those that have been here a long time this may be "old news". I had never seen this and it gives an interesting look into how Richard crafts a song (along with some other stuff that's long been known). It seems to be a written account of a radio or studio interview with NPR.

    Richard Carpenter Weighs In On How To Craft The Perfect Pop Song

    Snippet: [Richard says] "And so I kept that in mind while I was arranging it. But even that was a little bit of a tip of the hat. Well, not only to Burt with, say, the little tag on the end of "Raindrops Keep Falling On My Head" that really has nothing much to do with what preceded it, but it's really magical. So when I got through the first chorus of "Close To You," I felt it should modulate. And I pictured the trumpets and yeah, it's Bacharach-esque. But I wanted a little what's called a doit."
    newvillefan, Geographer and Jamesj75 like this.
  20. Jamesj75 and newvillefan like this.
  21. tomswift2002

    tomswift2002 Well-Known Member

    I didn't realize that Richard had remixed "all" of the Carpenters catalog. I would say that he's remixed the majority (as far as I know), but not all of them. Otherwise, where are the remixes of "Sweet, Sweet Smile" and "Prime Time Love"!
    Simon KC1950 likes this.
  22. That's true, most of the later tracks. Does anyone know why he hasn't ever remixed them ?
  23. Harry

    Harry Charter A&M Corner Member Moderator

    Well he hasn't remixed all, for sure. For example, using the Resource as a guide, go ahead and try to assemble any one Carpenters regular studio album using only remixes.

    Can't be done.

    Later songs weren't remixed because Richard was very much satisfied with the way they were originally recorded, studios, available tracks, etc.
    Simon KC1950 likes this.
  24. tomswift2002

    tomswift2002 Well-Known Member

    Closest album would seem to be “Now & Then”, with just ‘Heather’ not having a remix. (Even the YOM (Reprise) got a remix in 90).

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