The incredible global success of Cher's "Believe" inspired a small army of gay icons to jump on the dance bandwagon. Diana Ross released the exquisite "Not Over You Yet", while Tina Turner dusted off her dancing shoes for the delicious "When The Heartache Is Over". Even Engelbert Humperdinck got in on the act, raising the bar for popular music with his amazing Dance Album! As undeniably fabulous as those offerings are, my favourite slice of middle-aged diva dance pop is undoubtedly Olivia Newton-John's unreleased masterpiece, "Best Of My Love".
Recorded in 2001 with her nephew Brett Goldsmith, "Best Of My Love" was supposed to herald Olivia's return to pop charts courtesy of a contemporary dance sound. At one point an entire album was planned but Olivia feared for her dignity and pulled the plug on the project. I respect Olivia's decision but I can't help but think she overreacted and robbed herself of a huge hit. Even as a work in progress, "Best Of My Love" stands out as the best thing the grande dame of Australian pop has done in over a decade. I love Olivia's new age chanting, drippy ballads and covers albums as much as the next fan but it's such a joy to hear her sing something as bright and catchy as "Best Of My Love". It would be amazing to hear a cleaned up version of this in a club - the adorable lyrics and shiny chorus positively force you to wave your arms in the air.
I really hope Olivia reconsiders her stance on dance in the future. Lovely Livvy still has the voice, stunning good looks and huge gay following to get away with it. There's nothing ridiculous about making your fans happy. Many thanks to Peibols for the fabulous mock cover!