However, I’ll see this much for Barbra: She turned out one kick-ass cover of David Bowie’s “Life on Mars?” That this version of the song exists at all is pretty shocking, but add to that these two facts: It doesn’t suck, and Streisand released it about a year after Bowie did the original, so it’s not a case of an established artist snatching up other people’s hits to, for example, fill out a career retrospective album. Sure, she’s piggybacking on Bowie’s edgy coolness, but she’s at least doing so admirably.
Here, then, for the first and last time on this blog, I am presenting you with a Barbra Streisand song:
This particular cover is fitting, I think, because Bowie himself described the song as “a sensitive young girl’s reaction to the media… I think she finds herself disappointed with reality… She’s being told that there’s a far greater life somewhere, and she’s bitterly disappointed that she doesn’t have access to it.” Knowing what I know about Streisand, I’d imagine she probably related to that, what with the constant dissatisfaction she must feel for everything she encounters in life but also the fact that she climbed up from inauspicious beginnings to establish herself as a singer.
My joke: Barbra Streisand had it so rough as a kid that she had to sell the second “a” in her name just to afford singing lessons.