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{CD cover} A Love Like Ours
By Barbra Streisand
Columbia Records/Sony 69601
Review by Michael Cottrell


OK, this is a little writeup about Barbra Streisand, Saint Barbra Streisand, hell I know someone who prays to her. I think the guy has forgotten you canít pray to a saint unless they are dead, had their arm cut off and chopped up in a billion trillion pieces so that old and superstitious people can slobber over the slivers... but I digress. However, if you venerate Barbra and donít want to demythologize her blessedness, then stop reading now!

Barbra, sweetie darling sweetie what the hell are you doing! I have got your new CD, "A Love Like Ours", playing in the background and I must say I have listened to it at least a dozen times trying to figure it out and I am left with one deep burning question. Barbra, sweetie darling sweetie what the hell are you doing!

"A Love Like Ours" is Barbraís compilation of, um, ah, love songs! Barbra writes:

"Iíve usually thought of love as a private matter, something experienced in that narrow space between two hearts. Yet once you find love... whenever it arrives, you somehow want to share that joy. You hope everyone in the world can feel the way you do at some point in their lives...

Happiness makes you want to sing. You know all those corny things they say in every love song youíve ever heard? Well, theyíre true! Love is what life is all about. Love is the answer. I hope this album inspires your own loving spirit... and may you be blessed with something as a love like ours."

B

Excuse me while I go running after a Gravol and bow into the porcelain altar contemplating in depth one question: Barbra, sweetie darling sweetie what the hell are you doing! I have always pictured you as strong, independent, secure -- OK so you go knock-kneed when you have to sing in public but you put on the long dress and get out there and do it and sell your single tickets for thousands of dollars so we the common folk have to rely only on your mass produced CD... oh but I digress.

Barbra, I am glad you have fallen in love, hey I even used to fantasize about bouncing Jamesí locks on the headboard, but I couldnít put together an album for him -- then again, would I want to? Falling in love is great. Heck I have fallen in love so many times friends started calling me Zsa Zsa, but after a few bad and wacko relationships I came to this epiphany that the problem was not the other guys it was me.

A year ago I would have drunk in every word from your song "If You Ever Leave Me", I was so intoxicated with codependency.

"I would rather go through any pain love puts us through than to spend one day without you by my side. If you Ever Leave Me, will you take me with you? If you are ever lonely I want to be lonely too. My homeís beside you no matter where you may go. My love is inside of you even more than you know."

Maybe it is a good thing there are no lyrics included (again!) I had to run over and stick my ear to the speaker to find out if you were actually singing those words.

"A Love Like Ours", unfortunately is a mediocre album. The duet with Vince Gill, promotion of codependency aside, is a great blend of voices and is not like the last battle of the divas. The duet gives the album a little more passion and energy which are greatly lacking in the other songs.

{The happy couple}I got the feeling with "A Love Like Ours" that I had been plunked down on some old vinyl couch and had someoneís wedding album dropped into my lap, with them yammering on and on and on. Hey, how else can one feel? The CD not only filled with syrupy, gag-me-with-a-spoon songs but it also has pictures of the bride and her dress, the bride and groomís first dance, the bride and groom frolicking on the beach... the bride and groom romping on the honeymoon sheets... hah just checking if you are still reading. The singer even writes sugary words about why she chose which songs from when she first met James, etc. etc. etc.... yawn.

"Iíve Dreamed of You", the song that Barbra sang to James at their wedding, is a nice song. The words were written for Barbra and it is simply a good song... hey I like romance and when Barbra sings, that first look in your eyes I cannot forget... she sings it like she means it.

Unfortunately St. Barbra, "A Love Like Ours", may go down into your music history as yet another occasion to mix your personal life and professional life which doesnít work. How can we forget when you decided to cut a record with the love of your life (at that moment) Don Johnston -- Oy veh!

"A Love Like Ours" simply shows us that Barbra is not infallible, that is the Pope. Blessed Barbra, enjoy your love because being in love is one of the greatest pleasures in this world; another is listening to a great album. We look forward to the second.




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