Music Legacy Of The Linda Ronstadt
of the most successful female vocalists of all time, Linda Ronstadt
started having hits in the late 1960s with her band Stone Ponys.
was written by Monkees' member Michael Nesmith and was enough of a
hit that she decided to go solo the next year. Staying at Capitol
Records, she had two more hits with Long
Will I Be Loved,
but soon moved to Asylum records where her career really took off.
In an era of remakes (marked by 1950s nostalgia and George Lucas'
(1974)),she was the queen with huge hits out of classics like Tracks
Of My Tears,
with Olivia Newton-John, Helen Reddy, Diana Ross, Donna Summer,
Carole King, Roberta Flack and Barbra Streisand, she was one of the
1970s top singers, continuing in the 1980s with new arrivals like
Madonna, Cyndi Lauper, Whitney Houston and so many others. By then
she was doing movie themes, duets and two ambitious albums that were
critical and commercial hits: the Trio
album with Dolly Parton & Emmylou Harris and What's
album, where she teamed with the great Nelson Riddle to do covers of
Cole Porter classics. The latter is now one of the most imitated
albums of the last 40 years.
all the artists who decided to do style/genre switching albums sent
Ronstadt a royalty for what she pulled off there, she could have
stickler for sonic fidelity, her music sounds as fresh as when she
first recorded it and usually made the songs her own, or at least
came up with remakes that made sense and made the songs popular all
over again. But it was her all out vocal effort and clever phrasing
(think how amazing her work on Blue
really is) that made her such a huge success. She loved music, had
the voice and always gave it her best efforts and then some when
cutting her music.
recently found out that due to the awful illness known as Parkinson's
Disease, she will soon no longer be able to sing. We have seen bad
health hurt many performers (Kris Kristofferson and Glen Campbell
dealing with Alzheimer's Disease among the many
should-have-been-cured-by-now illnesses hurting us all) and yet, it
is always a shock when the next person is hit with it, especially a
well known name of someone we love, grew up with and have such huge
could have only had a few hits, but people just loved her, loved her
work and she kept coming back again and again in ways that were
always great. It is sad what is happening to her and it is also
great she has such strong support from her friends and loved ones in
and out of an industry that is not as supportive of its artists as it
used to be. She is an American Original who by loving and backing
Americana and its music became a permanent part of it and that is why
we'll all always love her and her work.
was originally featired as part of the Summer/Fall 2014 Newsletter.