My Celebrity Life

Every Song On The Glorias Soundtrack Tells A Story


The new Gloria Steinem biopic The Glorias stars Alicia Vikander, Julianne Moore, and the music that made Steinem a feminist icon.

Every song on The Glorias soundtrack helps tell the story of Steinem’s life. From a Hollywood obsessed tap dancer to a follower of Gandhi to the co-founder of Ms. Magazine with Dorothy Pitman Hughes (Janelle Monáe) these songs represents Gloria through the years. It’s the kind of mix you’d want to play as you drive cross country. Fitting, since the film, out on Amazon Prime Video now, is based on Steinem’s memoir My Life On The Road.

The film, directed by iconic Broadway helmer Julie Taymor, takes viewers on a surreal journey alongside a few different Glorias. All of whom have their own era-appropriate taste in music. Young Gloria (Ryan Kira Armstrong) grew up with Irving Berlin and Louis Prima playing on the jukebox her eccentric dad found curbside. A teenage Gloria (Lulu Wilson) plans to tap dance her way out of Toledo to the sounds of Guy Lombardo and Fred Astaire. Steinem’s time as a Playboy bunny is soundtracked by the music of the swingin’ ’60s, while her later years are a funky mix featuring Labelle, The Isley Brothers, and Rick James.

The film’s best musical moment might be the real footage of Mahalia Jackson singing at the 1963 March on Washington. That moment helps usher in Steinem’s political awakening, as well as so many others in America.

Irving Berlin, “Blue Skies”

Gloria’s dad (Timothy Hutton) whistles along to the 1926 hit as it plays on his car radio.

The Andrews Sisters, “Sing, Sing, Sing”

Written by Louis Prima, this 1936 swing song plays on her father’s jukebox. It might not be the real Andrews Sisters playing, but little Gloria and her dad don’t seem to mind.

The Andrews Sisters, “(I’ll Be With You) In Apple Blossom Time”

The sisters put their own spin on the 1920 song in 1941. In The Glorias, it plays as Gloria and her dad share a slow dance in the rain.

The Jubalaires, “Noah”

The American Gospel group’s ode to Noah and his ark plays as the Steinems make their way cross country.

Count Basie, “Every Tub”

Turns out, the 1958 jazz song is perfect to tap dance too — especially if you have linoleum floors.

Pasadena Roof Orchestra, “Puttin’ On The Ritz”

Written by Irving Berlin in 1930, the California orchestra’s cover plays as a young Gloria daydreams about tap dancing her way out of Toledo.

Fred Astaire, “Let Yourself Go”

This popular Irving Berlin song was written for the 1936 film Follow the Fleet starring Astaire and Ginger Rogers.

Louis Prima, “Pennies From Heaven”

The 1936 song soundtracks Gloria’s trip to Las Vegas with her swindler dad who needs more than a few pennies to make it to New York.

The Castells, “I Get Dreamy”

The California quartet’s 1961 song plays while she eats a hot fudge sundae for breakfast. The perfect reward for quitting her sexist job.

Guy Lombardo & His Orchestra, “Baby!”

When her dad offers little Gloria a scoop of ice cream for dinner, it’s this 1928 orchestral number that plays.

Dave Pike “Blind Man, Blind Man”

Three years after Herbie Hancock released this song, Pike put his own spin on it. His swingin’ 1966 rendition plays as Gloria goes undercover as a Playboy bunny.

“We Shall Overcome”

The gospel song became a protest song during Steinem’s day. Specifically, it became an anthem for the Civil Rights Movement. In 1963, Joan Baez sang it at the March on Washington.

Mahalia Jackson, “I Been Buked”

She performed the African American spiritual before Martin Luther King, Jr., delivered his famous “I Have a Dream” speech at the March on Washington. Steinem was actually there to hear it.

Unfortunately, there isn’t an official recording of that 1963 performance, so you are listening to Mavis Staples’ 2014 take on the classic.

Labelle, “Too Many Days”

Patti Labelle, Nona Hendryx, and Sarah Dash’s 1971 hit plays as women take to the street to protest anti-abortion laws.

The Isley Brothers, “It’s Your Thing”

The 1969 soul song plays as Ms. Magazine finds itself an audience, something more than a few men said couldn’t be done.

The Jammers, “Straight To The Bone”

The 1982 funk song soundtracks one of Gloria’s more hurtful moments: the time she was on Larry King and someone told her, live on air, that she should “rot in hell.”

Rick James, “Give It To Me Baby”

The 1981 party song of course plays to usher in Gloria Steinem’s 50th birthday. Seriously, give me all the footage of Julianne Moore channeling her inner disco diva.


Credit: Original article published here.

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