Entertainers — and in many cases that includes politicians! — do not make any more mistakes than anyone else, but theirs are amplified by intense media scrutiny and glaring spotlights.
This week we are looking at some of the “faux pas” of celebrities.
IN THE AFTERMATH of the passing of Michael Jackson, La Toya
Jackson and Jermaine Jackson have been among the most vocal and
emotional in expressing their (understandable) grief.
However, La Toya came down pretty hard on Michael in her autobiography, “La Toya: Growing Up in the Jackson Family,” as did Jermaine in a song he recorded and cowrote titled “Word to the Badd.”
In it he made statements such as, “You only think about number one,” “You forgot where we started from” and “I ain’t thinkin’ about you.”
It makes sense to “leave the nest,” so to speak, when an artist feels it is time to spread their artistic wings. However, sometimes it happens faster than it should have.
The Brothers Johnson were having huge success in terms of record sales, with the great Quincy Jones at the helm. Then they decided to produce themselves and their sales and popularity dipped.
As B.B. King said in one of his songs, “Never make a move too soon.”
Someone should have told Dorothy Morrison that. She was the lead vocalist on “Oh Happy Day,” a huge hit for the Edwin Hawkins Singers in 1969 that crossed over into the Top 10’s of both the R&B and Pop charts as well. But right when the song was at its peak, Morrison left for a solo career, made one album, and was never heard from again.
EARVIN “MAGIC” JOHNSON is, of course, one of the greatest
basketball players of all time as well as a shrewd businessman. But
whoever thought it would be a good idea for him to host a late-night talk show was not thinking clearly. Johnson was way out of his element. “The Magic Hour” was canceled in 1998 after airing for only two months due to low ratings.
Before the Supremes suddenly skyrocketed to megastardom, Mary Wells was the queen of Motown, with superhits to her credit such as “My Guy” and “Two Lovers.” But she let another record company, and her husband at the time, talk her into leaving. Away from Motown, and Smokey Robinson who produced and wrote nearly all of her hits, her popularly sharply declined.
At one point in her career, when the hits had slowed down, a well
known astrologer told Dionne Warwick that if she added an “e” to her
last name, the hits situation would change. She did and it didn’t, so she dropped the “e” in a hurry, and later had more big hits such as
“I’ll Never Love This Way Again” and “Deja Vu.”
FORMER CHANNEL 7 news anchor Dayna Eubanks went public with the fact that she strongly disliked Bill Bonds and having to work with him. Bonds quickly responded (also publicly), “If she doesn’t like it, she can leave.”
Not long after, the station replaced her, at which time she went to Channel 2 where she and Kathy Adams had major personality differences. The bottom line is that the ladies just didn’t care for each other.
After homespun Bill Withers, much to everyone’s surprise, married
glamorous actress Denise Nicholas, he wanted her to give up her career. That proved to be a major point of contention. They divorced after realizing that each was not what the other needed.
WHITNEY HOUSTON is a spectacular singer, but when she sang
“And I Am Telling You I’m Not Going” on national television, she came up short. It is reported that she sang Jennifer Holliday’s signature song because she and Holliday were feuding.
Speaking of failed attempts at songs, Wilson Pickett completely ruined the beautiful Christmas classic, “Silver Bells.” He screamed just as if he was singing “Land of 1000 Dances” or “In the Midnight Hour.”
Jim Brown once posed full frontal nude for Playgirl magazine. Most of his fans were dismayed, but many were titillated. Big Daddy Kane wanted to do the same thing, but the record company he was with at the time said no way. So he had to settle for rear shots.
When the group DeBarge first became popular in the early ’80s, it was obvious that their background didn’t consist of the finer things in life.
The promotion man hired to work with DeBarge when they came to Detroit took them to an upscale restaurant (paid for by the record company). One of the DeBarges ordered a sirloin steak, and when it arrived, cut his dinner role in half and ate it like a sandwich. The promotion
man was embarrassed.
TO EACH HIS OWN, but in my opinion “Beloved,” based on Toni Morrison’s novel of the same name, was one of the most unpleasant, confusing and longest movies I have ever seen. I couldn’t wait to get out of the theater.
Oprah Winfrey’s company produced “Beloved” and Winfrey was one of its stars. Not surprisingly, it failed to do well at the box office. That was bad enough, but Oprah said it was embarrassing for “Beloved” to be badly beaten at the box office by “The Bride of Chucky.”
No doubt Dionne Warwick made a lot of money doing those once omnipresent Psychic Friends Network commercials. For a while you could hardly turn on the television without seeing a Psychic Friends commercial or one by one of its many imitators.
Although it has all subsided as the years have passed since many, if not most, of the psychics were discovered to be frauds or semi-frauds, Warwick, for some, will always be associated with the Psychic Friends Network.
It was so disappointing when Esther Rolle and Philip Michael Thomas got involved in the psychic madness.
DIANA ROSS literally shoved Mary Wilson during the taping of the highly anticipated Supremes reunion segment of the historic “Motown 25: Yesterday, Today, Forever” television special. She wanted Mary to stay behind her, but Mary wouldn’t do it. The audience gasped.
To keep this Supreme battle from getting out of control, Smokey Robinson was sent out to cut the reunion short and launch into the next segment, which was the finale. Of course, the skirmish was edited out.
Where did their love go?
Digital Daily Signup
Sign up now for the Michigan Chronicle Digital Daily newsletter!