Tuesday, August 11, 2020

"Be There" by The Pointer Sisters

Song#:  3222
Date:  08/08/1987
Debut:  81
Peak:  42
Weeks:  9
Genre:  Dance-Pop, Soundtrack

Pop Bits:  The sisters hit a bit of a slump with their 1986 album Hot Together. It failed to go gold and contained only one minor charting single, the #33 "Goldmine." As they were getting ready to record their next LP, they got another opportunity to supply a song to a film soundtrack. Their first one, "Neutron Dance" from the Beverly Hills Cop soundtrack, was a winner reaching #6. So when Beverly Hills Cop II came about, the sisters were asked back for another song. This time they went into the studio with producer Narada Michael Walden and recorded "Be There." By this point in time, three singles from the soundtrack had already reached the Top 10 including the #1 hit "Shakedown" by Bob Seger. The Pointer Sisters' track would then be selected as the fourth single. The tune just missed out on the Pop Top 40 and failed to reach the R&B and Dance charts. Unfortunately, it would be the trio's last song to reach the Pop chart.

ReduxReview:  This energetic track was not all that different from the material the trio had been slinging out with Richard Perry for the past few years. Not surprisingly, it comes from Allee Willis who also co-wrote "Neutron Dance." Like the movie, this track nearly played like a sequel. Unfortunately, it wasn't as hooky, kooky, or memorable as "Neutron Dance." It just sounded like any other track from the trio. Even Walden, who took the place of the trio's regular producer Richard Perry, couldn't do much to boost the track basically imitating Perry's production style. The fact of the matter is that the sisters and Perry beat their formula to death and folks were tired of it. After the failure of Hot Together (actually it should have been before that LP), the sisters should have dumped Perry and sought a new, hip producer who wouldn't have relied on the same old songwriting pool. Or done something different like a set of R&B covers or a standards LP. Instead, they slogged on with one more Perry album that tanked. After that, it was too late for the trio. Kinda sad, but at least they had a really good run of terrific hits in the 80s.

ReduxRating:  4/10

Trivia:  The trio's next album, Serious Slammin', would be their ninth and last with producer Richard Perry. None of its singles reached the Pop chart and only one made the R&B Top 40. The album tanked and it really signaled the end of their charting days. They moved over to Motown for an album and then one for SBK, but neither charted or contained hit singles. They continued to perform over the years, but by 2002 they were experiencing some inner struggles with June leaving the group (she would pass away in 2006). Ruth's daughter, Issa, would be her replacement. Ruth's granddaughter Sadako would join the group in 2009. In 2015, Anita would decide to retire. As of this posting, Ruth, Issa, and Sadako were still performing as The Pointer Sisters.