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A Star is Born

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Star, London, 1976
(price: 1.75; 240 pages)

dedication: For Spike, who had a taste of Honey
For Honey, who had a taste of Spike

The blurb on the back:

HE was a rock star glittering in the spotlight, shivering in the darkness as his talent disappeared into a bottle and his dreams vanished into the blank sleep of pills.
SHE was a singer-songwriter struggling for success. In the sudden brilliance of the lights, she discovered in one man both danger and love.
THEIRS was a love story beautiful in the twilight as one star faded and another burst into view.

In 1937 they had Janet Gaynor and Fredric March. In 1954 they had Judy Garland and James Mason. In 1976 we got Barbara Streisand and Kris Kristofferson. Is it any wonder that the generation that grew up in the 1970s turned into the most cynical ever?

The third version of A Star is Born was a product of white American pop in the 1970s, and was thus by definition a joint venture between Beelzebub and Mammon. If you ever have the misfortune to see this showbiz tale of Streisand-on-the-way-up falling for Kristofferson-on-the-way-down, reflect on this thought: 'Evergreen', the theme to the movie, was in the charts at the same time as the Sex Pistols' 'God Save the Queen'. A moral victory for British music, I think (if not for British taste).

Alternatively, you could have a read of this book, which is much better than the film:

'Why did you do this? You son of a bitch! You don't know how to live!' she screamed at John Norman. 'You don't know how to keep promises! You don't know anything, you don't feel anything! You're dead! You fucking coward, you big shit! I'm going to live forever, fucker! Liar! You lied to me!' (p.232)

I like that lots. They should have used that as the slogan for Fame: 'Fame! I'm gonna live forever, fucker!'

Babs & the Big Shit

Note: There are some references on the 'Net to our old friend Leonore Fleischer having written the novelization of A Star Is Born. Not according to my copy, she didn't, but I'd be happy to hear that Alexander Edwards is a nom-de-trash.


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