Monday, March 05, 2007

This Day In Music History: Barbra Streisand and Love Theme From 'A Star Is Born' (Evergreen)

On this day in music history March 5, 1977 Barbra Streisand had the #1 one in the country with Love Theme from ‘A Star Is Born’ (Evergreen). It was at the top of the charts for 3 weeks. Barbra co-wrote the song with Paul Williams but it had a rough beginning. She was getting a little depressed as many singers had started writing their own songs and all she did was sing. One day Jon Peters, one of the films producers, found her crying about it and he told her that if she put her mind to it she could write a song. At the time Barbra was taking guitar lessons so she could play the guitar in the film. She was getting bored and started fooling around with the chords. What came out eventually became the song for the movie. So Evergreen was, as Barbra put it, born out of absolute impatience.
The movie was even harder to make. It was the third time this story had been told. The e second time with James Mason and Judy Garland was so well thought of that many didn’t think it should be filmed a third time. Fights on the set and over the script added fuel to the fire. Barbra and Jon Peters pressed on with their version of the story.
Whereas Mason and Garland’s story took place in the movie industry, Kristofferson and Streisand’s story was in the music industry. Kris Kristofferson is a rock star on the way down and Barbra Streisand is a rock star on the way up. A concert scene was filmed on a very hot day at a real Peter Frampton concert. After doing many takes and several hours in the sun the over 70’000 crowd of people were getting very hot. They started asking for the film production to stop.
Barbra calmed them down and preformed her songs “People” and “The Way We Were.” Then she told them “Now I’ll sing a song for you that I wrote myself. I hope you’ll like it.” Uneasily she launched into the world premiere of the song “Evergreen.” The crowd gave their approval of the song and boosted her confidence. She told them “I’m glad you like it because that’s the first time I ever sang that song in front of people.”
At Oscar time the film was snubbed in almost every category. It was only nominated for best song. The Grammys were kinder. The song won the award for Song of the Year and Barbra won for Best Pop Vocal Performance by a Female.

You can click on the video above and see Barbra and Kris sing the song from a scene in the movie.

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