Friday, July 07, 2006

Annie Lennox's Revolution

Music Video Week

Annie Lennox belongs to that rare breed of pop star musicians who could also have been actors but were too married to the musical life to cheat. Like Tina Turner (Mad Max: Beyond Thunderdome) before her and Björk (Dancer in the Dark) after her when she's been onscreen (Revolution, Edward II) she's had potent screen presence. But she's just not interested.

The following two clips are two of my favorite moments from her solo career post Eurythmics. The first is her video to Little Bird. She performs on a cabaret stage while all the past famous versions of her self (played for the most part by drag queens), compete for her spotlight. It's an idea that Madonna really should have thought of first. She probably turned green when she saw it. In the second clip Annie sings the classic Queen tune "Under Pressure" with another musician who happens to makes a decent actor, David Bowie. At the end of this superb number he refers to her as "the most exquisite..." which is a very good and true call on his part.

Watch and marvel.

And finally... the reason for "music video week" in the first place. This is arguably my favorite music video of all time (yes, I argue with myself all the time. shut up). It's "Beethoven (I Love to Listen To)" from one of the least successful Eurythmics records Savage which happens to be their very best CD anyway --so screw the fickle public. The sometimes rowdy sometimes haunting always inventive Savage has an entire video album to go with it and if you can get your hands on it I highly recommend. It's the best of all "video albums" that I personally have seen. Providing more proof of the actress within, Annie plays three characters throughout: herself, a slutty chaunteuse (so stylized she's practically a drag queen herself), and a psychotic dowdy housewife.

"Some women think that they don't count..."

Annie Lennox is obviously not one of those unfortunate self-doubting women. She's been rocking the charts and amazing the world for decades. She's rumored to be ready to --or in the process of-- recording again. That news makes me smile because: Annie Lennox (I Love to Listen To)

Previous Music Video Posts:
Melissa Etheridge Wants Angelina Jolie, Missy Make Me Lose Control, To Lindsay on her 20th Birthday

tags: Annie Lennox, music, MTV, eurythmics, David Bowie


J.J. said...

Love her, 'cept for her involvement in one of the worst moments in Oscar history -- when she stole the best song award from Michael McKean and Annette O'Toole, two of the most wonderful and underrated people in the biz (who had written a beautiful song that actually played *during* a movie, instead of over end credits).

Joe R. said...

Nat, I think Madonna did lift the drag queens idea for the VMAs one year. I was after Annie's video, I'm pretty sure. So good call.

Anonymous said...

GREAT, GREAT POST. Annie Lennox is my favorite performer in the world (in any form), and her video for "Beethoven" is my favorite video ever as well. (I knew we were friends for a reason.) SAVAGE is without a doubt their best record.

As for the Oscar-winning song, J.J....give it a listen. Yes, A MIGHTY WIND was fun, but the deceptive complexity of Lennox's contribution to LOTR has won me over.

And as for drag...Annie was performing on the Grammys as an Elvis drag king in 1984. Madonna, at the time, was just releasing "Borderline."

Glenn Dunks said...

God, "Beethoven (I Love To Listen To)" is freakin' brilliant (the song). The video is loading right now, but man... that song is genius.

Anonymous said...

Mesmerising. Voice, face, body.

I saw The Eurythmics live back in the late 80's and though Dave Stewart was a talented man it was Annie's theatrical androgyny that was the star of the show.

I also saw David Bowie live back in those days and he was mesmerising too. But in the Under pressure clip it is Annie who steals the limelight as he so graciously acknowledges at the end.

All this 80's nostalgia...


Anonymous said...

thanks !

Annie Lennox is great ! beautiful human , awesome artist , brilliant woman with an authentic superstar allure , so elegant !

Blanca Bk said...

Hi!! i want to know which is the name of the "remix" song taken the video Little Bird. I love it a lot!! :D

Good blog!! ;)