To no one’s great shock or surprise, I’ve been listening to a lot of Streisand ever since her new album came out – her 35th album! After attending the life-changing experience that was seeing her live, it’s been hard to tear me away from her music. At the concert, she sang a few songs from the deluxe version of the album that is only available at Target – “I Didn’t Know What Time It Was” and “Losing My Mind.” However, of the 4 bonus tracks, the one I was most looking forward to was the song “Fifty Percent.”
“Fifty Percent” is such a weird choice to record. It’s not like it’s a well known song from a well known show. And it’s a song that’s basically about cheating. There goes Barbra, making adultery glamorous again. (although I think that Celine Dion’s song “When The Wrong One Loves You Right” is the first song Heidi and I ever said that about.) Let’s listen to Barbra talk about the song and sing some of it. Cameo from Mr. Barbra Streisand himself, James Brolin.
I like Barbra’s take on the song, but for my money, my favorite version of “Fifty Percent” has got to be Helen Reddy’s version from her 1998 album Center Stage. I probably downloaded that back in the Audiogalaxy days when I was just grabbing everything I could like a looter during the zombie apocalypse. But it was definitely the first time I’d heard it and it’s been a favorite of mine ever since. It is also, to my great aggravation, nowhere on the Internet that I can find, so we’re going to have to settle for yet another version of “Fifty Percent” – Bea Arthur’s. Because Bea Arthur is always good in a pinch.
For those of you that will be the recipients of my Best of 2016 CD, you can pretty safely expect Barbra’s version of “Fifty Percent.”