Bette Midler will be releasing her first studio album in eight years, entitled It’s the Girls on November 4th via Warner Bros Records. The album will revisit many of the vocalists who have influenced her, and other girl groups, spanning seven decades of famous female groups, from the 1930’s to the 1990’s, from The Boswell Sisters trio (whose song provided the title track) to R ‘n’ B quartet TLC (whose hit song “Waterfalls” Midler gives a cabaret spin). Produced by Marc Shaiman, Midler’s collaborative producer for a long time, the album will be available in the U.K. November 10th via East West Records/Warner Music U.K.
Milder tells Billboard what the appeal of returning to girl groups was for her. “I have loved the sound of females harmonizing since I was a kid; I always sang along. Didn’t we all? I think the idea that you could become part of the group was the thing that endeared me to the girl groups. You weren’t just singing along, you were THERE!” She has definitely put her own stamp on these oldies though, by giving the songs new twists (take Midler’s country-fied version of The Supremes’ “You Can’t Hurry Love”). She goes on to say that The Boswell Sisters was the first girl group record she ever owned. “A friend of my parents gave it to them, and I played it to death,” she tells Billboard. “They killed. They are nearly forgotten today. The ’60s were the height of girl-group frenzy, so there were a lot of songs to chose from, but from the ’90s on, my favorites were TLC and Destiny’s Child. ‘Waterfalls’ was a heartbreaker, especially if you were a mom, and it had a big effect on me. I never thought I would have the nerve to sing it, but we had an idea for it that works, and I am so glad I took the chance.”
The track list for It’s The Girls includes “Be My Baby” (originally performed by The Ronettes), “One Fine Day” (originally performed by The Chiffons), “Bei Mir Bist Du Schön” (originally performed by The Andrew Sisters, but now all vocals are by Bette Midler), “Baby It’s You” (originally performed by The Shirelles, all vocals by Bette Midler) “Tell Him” (originally performed by The Exciters), “He’s Sure The Boy I Love” (a duet with Darlene Love, originally performed by The Crystals), “Mr. Sandman” (originally performed by The Chordettes), “Come and Get These Memories” (originally performed by Martha and The Vandellas), “Too Many Fish in the Sea” (originally performed by The Marvelettes), “Teach Me Tonight” (originally performed by The DeCastro Sisters), “Waterfalls” (originally performed by TLC), “You Can’t Hurry Love” (originally performed by The Supremes), “Give Him a Great Big Kiss” (originally performed by The Shangri-Las), “Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow” (originally performed by The Shirelles), “It’s the Girl” (originally performed by The Boswell Sisters, all vocals by Bette Midler). To sum it all up she says, “All in all, there is such a rich and emotional history to this music, it’s a joy to dust it off and take another listen…So Bette Midler!”