Helen Reddy

Helen Reddy  (born 25 October 1941) is an Australian singer, actress, and activist.  In the 1970s, she enjoyed international success, especially in the United States, where she placed 15 singles in the Top 40 of the Billboard Hot 100.  Six made the Top 10 and three reached No. 1, including her signature hit “I Am Woman”.  She was the first Australian to have three No. 1 hits in the same year.  In television, she was the first Australian to host her own one-hour weekly primetime variety show on an American network, along with several specials that were seen in more than 40 countries.  In 2011, Billboard named her the No. 28 adult contemporary artist of all time (No. 9 woman).  (More from Wikipedia)



As I remember, the interview that was spread across the cover of Living in the Streets was where I first learned that Kim Fowley had worked with Helen Reddy, of “I Am Woman” fame – specifically, her albums Ear Candy (1977) and We’ll Sing In The Sunshine (1978).  Of the long list of musicians and bands who worked with Kim – and there have been dozens of them that I have learned about myself – she is the most surprising. 


About Ear Candy, the album that I have, Stephen Thomas Erlewine writing in Allmusic says:  “Ear Candy qualifies as a genuine oddity in Helen Reddy’s catalog, a record that finds the queen of Australian soft rock paired with the king of L.A. sleaze, Kim Fowley, and his henchman Earle Mankey, a pair who were just coming off of the teenage kicks of the Runaways.  Fowley and Mankey pushed Reddy toward unusual territory, but that doesn’t mean they lead her toward the gutter:  They encouraged Reddy to write, prompting a surprising five originals on this ten-track album, let her dabble with synthesizers on the lurching ‘Long Distance Love’, and had her do a Cajun stomp with ‘Laissez Les Bon Tempts Rouler’ [French for “Let the Good Times Roll”, and a frequent slogan down here in Mardi Gras country]. . . .  [W]hile there are no big hits here, there are few dull spots, and the odd moments help make this one of Reddy’s most interesting LPs.” 


(January 2015/1)


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Last edited: March 22, 2021