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Monday, 28 July 2008

A Rare Political Interview With Barbra

A Rare Political Interview With Barbra
by Jeffrey Ressner Mon Jul 28, 5:31 AM ET

"She sometimes answers questions by e-mail," said one of Barbra Streisand's trusted confidants, when asked if the star would consent to an interview with Politico. Streisand, who occasionally posts political statements on her own website, rarely does print Q&As and gave her last TV interview back in 2005 with Ellen DeGeneres.

So a month ago a dozen e-mail questions were sent off, nearly all regarding the presidential race. Late last week, we received her answers on shifting her support from Hillary Clinton to Barack Obama (“immediate”), racism (“naïve to think [it] won’t be a factor”), how things might play out this year (“close”), and much more.

Here are our questions and her answers in full, minus one exchange that substantially overlapped with another.

You strongly supported Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton for the Democratic nomination. Was switching to Sen. Barack Obama difficult?

We had a very deep bench of Democratic Presidential candidates in the primary, and we were very lucky to finally have two capable, dynamic and intelligent candidates vying to be the nominee. Supporting Sen. Obama for President was an immediate decision for me after Sen. Clinton ended her bid for the Democratic nomination. Throughout this process, they challenged each other to be better. It was a historical race, with Hillary breaking through that glass ceiling for all women and Barack inspiring young kids that they can overcome their circumstances to reach greatness.

Will you be doing any concerts to support Obama and the Democrats before the election?

I would absolutely consider performing for Sen. Obama and for the Democratic Party.

What do you say to Hillary’s fans that might be moving to vote for McCain — a figure that’s been estimated to be as high as 15% of her supporters?

I would urge those voters to take a step back and realize that our country is at an extremely serious crossroad . . . . There is too much at stake right now to elect another George W. Bush to the White House. And John McCain is just that. He has stated that the issue of economics is not something he’s understood as well as he should. He does not support reproductive rights for women, increased veteran’s benefits and ending the war in Iraq. There is just no reason for Sen. Clinton’s supporters not to back Sen. Obama.

Have you spoken with Obama? If so, what did you talk about?

I have met and spoken to Sen. Obama, but I don’t discuss my personal conversations with the media.

Which Clinton policies do you think Obama should embrace, and what role would you like to see her have in his administration should he be elected?

I would like to see him embrace her universal healthcare policy. But it is ultimately up to the two of them to decide whether she will be more effective as a leader in the Senate or if she should work in the Administration. She has years of experience in public service and her work serving the needs of children and poor and working class Americans is incredibly admirable.

A lot of folks object to "Hollywood celebrities" participating in political discourse. Aside from pure disagreement over certain issues, why do you think there's such a backlash when you or other well-known performers speak your mind?

On a very basic level, many people think celebrities have too much already so we shouldn’t be entitled to our political opinions. Also, the other side objects to the fact that we might be listened to. But, I see myself first and foremost as a citizen of this country. And I am outspoken about the issues I care about like healthcare, global warming, the war in Iraq, energy independence, education, poverty and so on.

I think we are all lucky to live in a country where people have the constitutional right to voice their opinion and speak their mind without punishment or penalty. Everyone should exercise that right, because it engages people in the political process and forces our candidates to be clear about their stances on important issues affecting all Americans.

Do you have any friends or family members who are conservative and/or Republican?

I do have friends that are Republicans and we have very spirited conversations on a whole range of issues. I am often baffled by why they are Republicans, but I enjoy the dialogue and can move beyond politics to find common ground in my personal relationships.

How do you think the election will play itself out over the next four months? Do you think the subject of race will continue to be a factor?

As we head toward November, I think the race will continue to be close -- although I hope I am wrong. But this country likes tight races and I am afraid it will ultimately come down to which campaign turns out the most voters on Election Day.

I want to believe that our country can see beyond race as a factor in voting for a Presidential candidate…that instead, a candidate’s intellect, vision, political values and policies override any consideration of his skin color. But on some level, it would be naive to think that race will not be a factor. I do believe, however, that there is much less racism, sexism and homophobia among the younger generation and that we have come a very long way.

There's been a lot of discussion about Israel during this race so far. Should this issue have a major place in this year's election?

Issues of foreign policy have a place in every election for President. As a woman, a Jew, and a strong supporter of Israel, I am confident Sen. Obama is committed to Israel's safety and security.

Aside from the presidential contest, are there any other races around the country that you're following?

Yes, Yes, Yes! I am closely following the Senate races. We need to reach a 60-seat majority in the Senate. There are 35 Senate races, of which 5 are open challenges. Democratic strategists believe with varying degrees of probability that the following states are at least a possibility for turnover: Alaska, Colorado, Kentucky, Maine, Minnesota, Mississippi, Nebraska, New Hampshire, New Mexico, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Oregon and Virginia.

If the Democrats win the Presidency, we will need a strong mandate in the Senate to break the gridlock of filibustering that the Republicans have used over the past four years. For that to happen, Democrats need to capitalize on picking up key seats in states where Republican support is waning. I can’t imagine a Supreme Court with another judicial appointment like Scalia, Thomas, or Alito.

Sunday, 27 July 2008

Updated Track Listing for Essential Streisand 3.0

Here is the correct list of the "extra" songs included on the upcoming "Essential" bonus disc. The other list was incorrect. At some point in the foreseeable future, Barbra's fans can expect a very special collection of rarities. Stay tuned!

1. Letting Go
(B. Gibb/G. Bitzer)
The Miami Symphonic Strings
conducted by Peter Graves
Produced by Barry Gibb and John Merchant
Executive Producer: Barbra Streisand & Jay Landers
[from the album, Guilty Pleasures (CK 93559), rel. 2005]

2. Love Like Ours
(D. Grusin/A. & M. Bergman)
arranged and conducted by William Ross
Produced by Barbra Streisand
Executive Producer: Barbra Streisand & Jay Landers
Publ.: Warner Bros. Music Corp./Threesome Music (ASCAP)
[from the album, A Love Like Ours (CK 69601), rel. 9/21/99]

3. At The Same Time
(A. H. Callaway)
arranged and conducted by Jeremy Lubbock
Produced by Walter Afanaseiff
Executive Producer Barbra Streisand & Jay Landers
Publ.: WB Music Corp./Halaron Music/Works of Heart Publ./
Emanuel Music (ASCAP)
[from the album, Higher Ground (CK 66181), rel. 11/4/97]

4. By The Way
(B. Streisand/R. Holmes)
arranged and conducted by Rupert Holmes
Produced by Jeffrey Lesser & Rupert Holmes
Publ.: Emanuel Music Corp./First Artists Music Co. (ASCAP) 1975
[record #3-10198, rel. 8/19/75]
[from the album, Lazy Afternoon (PC 33815), rel. 10/00/75]

5. Unusual Way
(from the B'way musical, Nine)
(M. Yeston)
arranged and conducted by William Ross
rec. 10/9/2006
Produced by Barbra Streisand & Jay Landers
[from the album, Streisand - Live In Concert 2006 (88697 70192 2), rel. 2/00/07]

6. Evergreen
(Love Theme from A Star Is Born)
(B. Streisand/P. Williams)
arranged and conducted by Marvin Hamlisch
rec. 6/21/94
Produced by Barbra Streisand & Jay Landers
Publ.: First Artists Music Co./Emanuel Music Corp./
20th Century Music Corp. (ASCAP) 1976
[from the album, Barbra - The Concert (C2K 66109), rel. 9/00/94]

7. Wild Is The Wind
(from the Paramount film, Wild Is The Wind)
(D. Tiomkin/N. Washington)
arranged and conducted by Jorge Calandrelli
Produced by Barbra Streisand
Executive Producer Barbra Streisand & Jay Landers
Publ.: Chappell & Co., Inc. (ASCAP) 1957
[from the album, The Movie Album (CK 90742), rel. 2003]

8. On My Way To You
(M. Legrand/A. & M. Bergman)
rec. 4/00/88
strings arranged and conducted by Patrick Williams
Produced by Barbra Streisand
Publ.: F Sharp Prod. Ltd./Threesome Music (ASCAP)
[from the album, Till I Loved You (CK 40880), rel. 10/00/88]

9. After The Rain
(M. Legrand/A. & M. Bergman)
rec. 8/8/79
arranged and conducted by Lee Holdridge
Produced by Gary Klein for
The Entertainment Company
Executive Producer: Charles Koppelman
Publ.: Chappell & Co., Inc./Ennes Productions, Ltd./
Threesome Music (ASCAP) 1979
[from the album, Wet (FC 36258), rel. 10/00/79]

Click here to pre-order this set.

New Collection In The Works.

A source very close to Barbra has told BarbraNews exclusively:

At some point in the foreseeable future, Barbra's fans can expect a very special collection of rarities.

More soon.

Thursday, 24 July 2008

Order your Albums + DVDs today.

You can order the forthcoming re-release of The Essential Barbra Streisand 3.0 Album, as well as any other DVD or Album by clicking here.

Wednesday, 23 July 2008

Essential 3.0 Barbra Streisand is Due out on Aug. 26th.

Barbra's Essential 3.0 is a 3-CD set. The first two discs are the same as the original 2-CD release. The newly-created 3rd disc includes the following 7 songs:

Click here to pre-order

1. My Coloring Book

Written by Fred Ebb & John Kander

Produced by Mike Berniker

Arranged & Conducted by Robert Mersey

Taken from Columbia single #4-42648

Released November, 1962

2. Funny Girl

Written by Jule Styne & Bob Merrill

Produced by Robert Mersey

Arranged & Conducted by Peter Matz

Taken from Columbia single #4-43127

Released September, 1964

3. Before The Parade Passes By

Written by Jerry Herman

Produced by Wally Gold

Arranged & Conducted by Peter Matz

Taken from Columbia single #4-45072

Released December, 1969

4. Brezairola (Berceuse)

Written by Joseph Canteloube

Produced by Claus Ogerman

Arranged & Conducted by Peter Matz

Taken from Classical…Barbra

Released February, 1976

5. (It’s Gonna Be A) Great Day

Written by Vincent Youmans, Billy Rose & Edward Eliscu

Produced by Rick Chertoff

Arranged & Conducted by Peter Matz

Taken from Funny Lady

Released March, 1975

6. A Man I Loved

Written by Nicki Oosterveen & George Michalski

Produced by Gary Klein

Rhythms Arranged By David Wolfert

Horns Arranged by Bill Reichenbach

Orchestral Arrangement by James Newton Howard

Taken from Songbird

Released May, 1978

7. For All We Know

Written by J. Fred Coote & Sam Lewis

Produced by Barbra Streisand & James Newton Howard

Arranged & Conducted by Johnny Mandel

Taken from The Prince Of Tides

Released November, 1991

Click here to pre-order

Thursday, 10 July 2008

Report on Barbra's Tribute to Warren Beatty...

BarbraNews has caught an early screening of the forthcoming US Premiere of AFI Tribute to Warren Beatty, which will air on USA Network on July 8th.

"We became friends because we had a lot in common... acting, politics, and health concerns! Some men ask for your telephone number... he asked for my cholesterol number..."

Barbra also recalled her missed opportunities of working with Warren...

"AFI is honoring him tonight because he's made some great movies... but what I think about is all the scripts he never sent me... Bonnie And Clyde he gave to Faye... Shampoo went to Goldie and Julie... Reds to Diane... BUT I did get to be in one Warren Beatty Production... The Concert for George McGovern in 1972. I wasn't doing live performances then, but Warren is very persuasive, and impressive as a matter of fact, he masterminded everything from the invitations... to getting famous people as ushers (like Jack Nicholson, Burt Lancaster, Cass Elliott I remember, and after all the insecurity and stage fright, I was really that Warren made me perform because it for a man I truly admire... Senator McGovern. America would have been so much better off the past 36 years if you had spent just a little time in the White House! So please stand up - and let us all thank you for all you've done for our country."

Click here to watch the video...

Wednesday, 2 July 2008

New Statement From Barbra...


‘Out of many, one’ It’s the sentiment he’s repeated since the moment the world was first introduced to Senator Barack Obama at the 2004 Democratic convention. It’s the idea trailblazers before him have used to inspire a generation of people to a call to action--to shake things up and remind us of what’s possible when the American people come together to help one another in achieving bigger dreams.

Barack has awakened in many of us the notion that we can again be hopeful, enabling us to believe that we are capable of lifting our brothers and sisters out of poverty, of providing quality education for all our children, of ending this unjust war in Iraq and bringing our troops home safely. He’s reminded us ‘yes we can’…we can make the transition from fossil fuels to green energy; we can take care of our elderly and make sure that good healthcare is not just a perk for a few, but a right for every man, woman and child. We are experiencing not just a presidential campaign, but a movement; a movement of inspired young people who have been cynical about politics for too long.

For Barack, hope, change, believe…they are not just words. They are tangible ideas that make up the blueprint to building a better America for all of us. He is committed to making the road stronger for those that come after and to leaving behind something that lasts longer than his own spotlight. It’s for all these reasons that I support Barack Obama for President and look forward to November when I can make my voice heard along with millions of other Americans. I hope you’ll join me.

BarbraNews Shop + Review of 2006 Tour.

USA * Canada * UK/Europe
Click here for the European Tour Website from 2007
Click here to read our SPECIAL review of the 2006 Tour -- Excellent pictures.