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Results 1 to 12 of 12

Thread: The Carpenters

  1. #1
    I couldn't find a thread about The Carpenters so I've decided to make one instead.

    OK so I'm a massive fan of Todd Haynes and I therefore decided to watch his film - Superstar: The Karen Carpenter Story. It's unusual as the characters are played by dolls (Yep, that's right, DOLLS!) instead of actors but the film does a fantastic job of detailing The Carpenters' rise to fame as well as Karen's battle with anorexia. The thing I loved the most about the film was the music. Todd chose songs that would illustrate the events of Karen's life as well as give the film another dimension. These particular songs were all Carpenters songs.

    Now that I've watched the film, I'm really interested in Karen's life and a little bit obsessed with The Carpenters' music.

    I've been listening to "We've Only Just Begun" a lot lately and although it's a chirpy pop song, the lyrics are so heartbreaking. The lines - 'We've only just begun... to live' and 'So much life ahead' brings tears to my eyes. I don't know, I guess so many young people kill themselves nowadays without realising their potential or that life does eventually get better.

    Karen was also a fantastic vocalist. I prefer The Carpenters version of "I'll Never Fall In Love Again" to the original.

    Is anyone else a fan of The Carpenters and their music?
    Last edited by KAG; January 20, 2014 at 14:36.

  2. #2
    She had the voice of an angel.

    I'm not exactly a fan, but I do like a lot of their work. A 2CD best of plus a couple of studio albums is the extent of my love for them. Her 1979 solo album needs to come back into print as well....mp3 isn't what I want.
    Eric's Generic World: http://ericsgenericworld.blogspot.com/

  3. #3
    I find a lot of The Carpenters work far too saccharine and cloying, but 'Superstar', 'Rainy Days & Mondays', 'Goodbye To Love' and 'Calling Occupants...' are all amazing and get plonked straight on whatever new piece of music playing technology I get.

    KAG, The recent-ish 'Little Girl Blue: The Life Of Karen Carpenter' by Randy L. Schmidt is an essential read for you from both The Carpenters musical output and Karen's personal life perspectives (Agnes boo! hiss!)
    last.fm // reviews blog :: "Overall key with Flo Rida is to be masculine, macho, and iconic."

  4. #4
    Karen Carpenter is one of the greatest pop vocalists ever. Similar qualities to Agnetha Fältskog, but I'd rank Karen as superior.

    Was listening to Solitaire on the tram earlier today, and it almost brought a tear to my eye then and there.
    Born to run, get ahead of the rest.

  5. #5
    I love them. I had a horrible few months many years ago and I some how ended up listening to them a lot. It really sort've spoke to me, which sounds lame but sometimes the most bizarre things can have an effect on you. I bought all their albums (the 90s remasters), Karen's solo album, the compilations, the outtakes, a 4CD box set (from Britiania Music Club - that's how long ago it was!)and the Christmas albums. Oh, and the 90s grunge/indie covers album, which is a bit hit or miss (Sonic Youth did good). They were never fashionable, but they wrote some killer songs. Stone cold classics. I like a lot of the naffer ones; (Want You) Back In My Life Again, for example. Very dated production... and I will well-up at the opening bars of Breaking Up Is Hard To Do and/or Can't Smile Without You... but my personal favourite track is This Masquerade.
    Last edited by anfunny2003; March 20, 2013 at 21:19.

  6. #6
    Karen Carpenter had one of the most devastating voices I've ever heard in my life. And yet she always sounded so hopeful and positive in her songs.

  7. #7
    Originally Posted by anfunny2003 View Post
    I love them. I had a horrible few months many years ago and I some how ended up listening to them alot. It really sort've spoke to me, which sounds lame but sometimes the most bizarre things can have an effect on you.
    I know exactly what you mean. I went through a bad break-up years ago and my friends wanted to stage an intervention to take my Carpenters Gold CD away from me! Karen Carpenter had such a beautiful, expressive and somehow mournful voice.

    My favourites are Superstar, Yesterday Once More, For All We Know, Rainy Days and Mondays, (They Long To Be) Close To You and Calling Occupants... But the one that had the most effect on me was, bizarrely, Ticket To Ride. They turned a jaunty little pop song into something truly heartbreaking. I watched a TV movie about Karen and she had such a sad life which makes the songs even more poignant to listen to now.

    I've always been intrigued by Karen's disco album - is it any good and worth seeking out?

  8. #8
    Originally Posted by idratherjack View Post
    I know exactly what you mean. I went through a bad break-up years ago and my friends wanted to stage an intervention to take my Carpenters Gold CD away from me! Karen Carpenter had such a beautiful, expressive and somehow mournful voice.

    My favourites are Superstar, Yesterday Once More, For All We Know, Rainy Days and Mondays, (They Long To Be) Close To You and Calling Occupants... But the one that had the most effect on me was, bizarrely, Ticket To Ride. They turned a jaunty little pop song into something truly heartbreaking. I watched a TV movie about Karen and she had such a sad life which makes the songs even more poignant to listen to now.

    I've always been intrigued by Karen's disco album - is it any good and worth seeking out?
    I know the film you mean - it's one of those made-for-TV movies from around 1989-90 isn't it? Quite bad, but quite interesting at the same time. Worth a Saturday afternoon viewing. I must look it up again... there's a very similar film from the same time all about the Charlie's Angels story. It's actually funny to watch the actor playing Steve Majors "mistreat" the actress playing Farrah Fawcett. There's a one called The Jacksons Story as well, I think. All telling "The truth" but you suspect it's all been spiced up... Anyway, that's a whole other thing entirely...

    I have a soft spot for the solo album - it's missing Richard clearly, and it's a bit hard to get into, not as rich or warm as you might expect, but if you stick with it, it's not bad. I wouldn't pay a lot for it, if it's rare these days (I got it in the 90s for a few pounds).

  9. #9
    Yeah it was a dodgy made for TV film, the kind of thing they show on Channel 5 in the afternoons. But I got strangely drawn in and I didn't know much about her life so it was very watchable. I need to make a Carpenters playlist now! You have to be in the right mood to listen to them but they were outstanding at what they did. I'd go as far as to say songwriting to rival Benny and Bjorn.

  10. #10
    Considering the strength of their own songs I found it odd to find quite a lot of covers in their discography.
    But yes, her voice is absolutely lovely, and I really should get a good compilation album of them some day.

  11. #11
    I was drawn in by the Karen Carpenter story as a young gay, then again when Claire from Steps did Superstar.

    Her life story was horribly tragic. Such a shame for someone so talented.
    Warning: The above post may contain sarcasm...
    So the sensible thing for me to do was to travel with Britney.

  12. #12
    And that t-shirt, LEAD SISTER, was amazing.


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