Tuesday, October 10, 2017

"Private Dancer" by Tina Turner

Top 10 Alert!
Song#:  2187
Date:  01/19/1985
Debut:  58
Peak:  7
Weeks:  18
Genre:  Pop, R&B

Pop Bits:  Turner's Private Dancer album brought her career back in a huge way. It featured two major hits including the Grammy-winning #1 smash "What's Love Got to Do with It." With folks still wanting more, this title-track was issued as the LP's fourth single. The sultry accompanying video was a hit on MTV and it helped to drive this song into the Pop Top 10. It did even better at R&B getting to #3 while reaching #30 at AC.

ReduxReview:  Sometimes lengthy albums tracks are edited down into a concise single and it works out to the benefit of the song. However, this track is the opposite. While the single is still solid and edited well, I think the full album version is better. The additional passages work to enhance the mood and meaning of the tune. It's an excellent song and Turner reads it beautifully. She embraces the character and sounds like she lived the lyrics. It's a stunning performance.

ReduxRating:  9/10

Trivia:  The composer of this song, Mark Knopfler, originally wrote it for his band Dire Straits. It was considered for a spot on their 1982 album Love Over Gold. However, after getting the backing track to the song all completed, Knopfler had second thoughts about the tune. He felt that the song should be sung by a woman, not a man. Therefore, the track was shelved. Through a manager connection, it was suggested that Turner should give the song a try for her upcoming album. Turner heard the tune and loved it. At first, since the track was completed and had not been released, Turner was just going to perform her own vocal over the Dire Straits track. Unfortunately, pesky legal issues arose (most likely label tangles) and she was unable to use the completed recording. To achieve a similar sound, it was decided to have Knopfler produce the tune for Turner and bring in some of his Dire Straits bandmates to play on the song. The newly finished version would anchor the album and serve as the LP's title.


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