Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Millie Jackson's 80s Epic

I've made no secret of my Millie Jackson obsession. Few artists have dabbled as successfully in as many musical genres as Millie J. The great woman started her career with a string of highly acclaimed deep soul albums before experimenting with funk, disco, rap and country music. One of Millie's most satisfying musical adventures is her brief stint as an 80s pop queen with one of the most fabulous and foul mouthed recordings in musical history. Here is a review I wrote for Amazon:

Millie fans are divided about her 1980s material. Some think she became a parody of herself, while others (myself included) simply think she captured the zeitgeist perfectly and took her zany brand of entertainment to dizzying new heights. E.S.P. encapsulates every tawdry thing I love about the 80s, from Millie's sequined headband on the glorious cover art to her mind blowing reply to Olivia's "Physical".

The album begins with the title track, an upbeat dance number complete with 80s synthesisers. Initially I found it difficult to accept Millie's gritty soul voice with cheesy 80s keyboards but by the second verse I was completely taken with Millie's new musical direction. "Too Easy Being Easy" is both a nod to Millie's 70s output and a glance at her future direction. The song is similar in structure to older tunes like "All The Way Lover" but the witty interludes are no longer spoken, but rapped! This song is so funny, it hurts. Basically Millie is told by a female fan that she doesn't appeal to men. Needless to say, Millie J sets the bitch straight! This could also be the only song in existence that rhymes "herpes" with "V.D.s" - genius!

"This Girl Could Be Dangerous" is straightforward 80s pop, while "I Feel Like Walkin' In The Rain" is the closest thing here to an old school R'n'B number. Personally, I think the sound is very reminiscent of many of the songs on Tina Turner's "Private Dancer". This is followed by the album's undisputed highlight and perhaps the campest song ever recorded. "Sexercise" is a jaw dropping reply to Olivia Newton John's "Physical". Millie states that her bedroom is her gym and gives the listener a series of "sexercises" to perform. This song has to be heard to be believed. I love her advice to larger ladies and skinny women ("bone bruisers"). This is a camp classic.

Millie continues with the raunch on "You're Working Me", a pulsating dance number with some first class groaning. It seems Millie really had sex on the mind because the next song is dirty in the best possible way. The title, "Slow Tongue (Working Your Way Down)" says it all! This slow groove sounds like Isaac Hayes at his best. The album ends with a corker, "Why Me" is the story of a down trodden woman whose husband and son are in jail. This song is classic Millie.

Nobody does it quite like Millie J. This album is essential for any fan of 80s pop or camp lyrics. However, fans of Millie's very early output may prefer to skip this one.

I have already posted "Sexercise" but a classic of this calibre deserves a second showing. The song is not only poptastic and hilarious but also quite instructional. I've found the "a,e,i,o,u" mouth exercises most useful! One of the album's other highlights is the fabulously sleazy "You're Working Me". 80s pop music does not get much better than this burst of sonic filth. I've also included Millie's "Sexercise" for the 1990s, the delightful titled "Butt-A-Cize".

"Extra Sexual Persuasion" is highly recommended for fans of camp pop music. You can purchase your copy from Amazon.


Ro Ro said...

These were awesome! thanks. What happend to Deidre? i hope shes ok. God i loathe tony. If i had his home address i'd mail him a cow plop!

Trash Addict said...

I thought you would appreciate the magic of Millie!

Deirdre is fine. But unfortunately Cheesy Pop Music is gone for now. I think Deirdre was having bandwith problems. I'm sure the fabulous bitch will be back better than ever!

As for Tony, I hope that cunt gets struck by lightning!

Ro Ro said...

i second that i hope he dies under kelly's fat ass. what a freakin jerk..i was hoping diedre was okay i feared Tony may have hacked her. and i do love the Millie lol

Jamie_movietrip said...

80's Millie is amazing. She had a minor UK hit with Walking In The Rain, and her duet with Elton John, 'Act Of War' around this time.

I liked her stuff with Jive Records best of all though. Especially the fiesty 'You Knocked The Love Right Outta My Heart', later covered rather boringly by the Pointer Sisters. I will have to buy the E.S.P. CD right away!!!

Trash Addict said...

Walking In The Rain is the worst song on ESP. I'm sure the only reason it was chosen as a single was the hope that people would mistake Millie for Tina Turner!

You will love ESP, Jamie. It's excellent from beginning to end!

Miss Halliwell said...

Oooh i love being mysterious....I'm fine people. Just giving the blog a rest for now. I shall open up another one that won't be chewing up my bandwith!

As for Ms Millie...My god, she's an inspiration. 'Legs behind your ears'...LOL. She must be my biological mother!

I am buying 300 of her products now!

Trash Addict said...

Hi Deirdre, How are your nerves about your return to the stage this weekend? I hope you your new blog up and running soon. I'm totally devestated about the demise of Cheesy Pop Music!

Millie is my spiritual leader! Although I'm not sure how you can put your legs behind your ears and put your mouth "on the bed or other things laying around the bedroom"!!

Tommy said...

Man, I adore this album! From Millie J's sexercise grooves to the Vanity 6-esque photo on the back.. Pure class! This bitch never lets me down, ever!

Miss Halliwell said...

My return to stage went fabulous. Read all abooout it on my myspace blog. or something.

It was fabby do. All those tranny's with vulva's and chocolate starfishes hanging out! LOL.

Like a night of Priscilla without the bus.

Trash Addict said...

Tommy - I love your Blog!

Deirdre - I demand pictures!!

Miss Halliwell said...

I'm trying to get pics from the fans lol...Ed is shit with a kodak!

Ryan said...

Your essays never fail to make me LOL big time. You are so right about this album -- it's a gem! Especially "Slow Tongue". That song should be more remembered than it is. I got a vinyl copy still sealed for 3 bucks at a local store. :)

Anonymous said...

After that Millie Jackson recorded a song with Elton John: Act Of War» is a 1985 rock-flavoured duet intended originally for Tina Turner. Six mixes were available, some quite rare and hard to find now. From the original European vinyls.
The timings are:
Act of war [part 1] 7 inch vocal 4:45
Act of war [part 2] 7 inch instr 4:46
Act of war [part 3] 12 inch vocal 8:40
Act of war [part 4] 12 inch instr 5:10
Act of war [part 5] promo 12 inch vocal 7:30
Act of war [part 6] promo 12 inch instr 4:20
Links :