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Bette Midler (1945)

Bette Davis Midler

Type :  

  Summary  

Bette Midler is an American singer, actress, and comedian, also known by her informal stage name, The Divine Miss M. She became famous as a cabaret and concert headliner, and went on to star in successful and acclaimed films such as The Rose, Ruthless People, Beaches, and For The Boys. During her more than forty-year career, Midler has been nominated for two Academy Awards, and won four Grammy Awards, four Golden Globes, three Emmy Awards, and a special Tony Award. She has sold over 30 million albums worldwide.

  Biography  

 career
 Theater work
In the summer of 1965, Midler relocated to New York City, using the money from her work in the film Hawaii. She landed her first professional onstage role in Tom Eyen's Off-Off-Broadway plays in 1965, Miss Nefertiti Regrets and Cinderella Revisited, a children's play by day and an adult show by night. From 1966 to 1969, she played the role of Tzeitel in Fiddler on the Roof on Broadway. After Fiddler, she joined the original cast of Salvation in 1969.

In the summer of 1970, Midler began singing in the Continental Baths, a gay bathhouse in the city. During this time, she became close to her piano accompanist, Barry Manilow, who produced her first album in 1972, The Divine Miss M. It was during her time at the Continental Baths that she built up a core following. In the late 1990s, during the release of her album Bathhouse Betty, Midler commented on her time performing there, "Despite the way things turned out , I'm still proud of those days. I feel like I was at the forefront of the gay liberation movement, and I hope I did my part to help it move forward. So, I kind of wear the label of 'Bathhouse Betty' with pride".

In 1971, Midler starred in the first professional production of The Who's rock opera Tommy, with director Richard Pearlman and the Seattle Opera. It was during the run of Tommy that Midler first appeared on The Tonight Show.

 1972–1980: The Divine Miss M and success
Midler released her debut album, The Divine Miss M, on Atlantic Records, in December 1972. It reached Billboard's Top 10 and became a million-selling Platinum-certified album, earning Midler the 1973 Grammy Award for Best New Artist. It featured three hit singles, with "Do You Want To Dance?", "Friends", and "Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy", which became Midler's first #1 Adult Contemporary hit. Her self-titled follow-up album was released at the end of 1973. It reached Billboard's Top 10 and eventually sold close to a million copies in the United States alone. Midler returned to recording with the 1976 and 1977 albums, Songs for the New Depression and Broken Blossom.


In 1974, she received a Special Tony Award for her contribution to Broadway, with Clams on the Half Shell Revue playing at the Minskoff Theater. From 1975–1978, she also provided the voice of Woody the Spoon on the PBS educational series Vegetable Soup. In 1977, Midler's first television special, Ol' Red Hair is Back, premiered, featuring guest stars Dustin Hoffman and Emmett Kelly. It went on to win the Emmy Award for Outstanding Special — Comedy-Variety or Music.

In 1979, Midler made her first motion picture, starring in the 1960s-era rock and roll tragedy The Rose, as a drug-addicted rock star modeled after Janis Joplin. That year, she also released her fifth studio album, Thighs and Whispers. Midler's first foray into disco was a commercial and critical failure and went on to be her all-time lowest charting album, peaking at #65 on the Billboard album chart. Soon afterward, she began a world concert tour, with one of her shows in Pasadena being filmed and released as the concert film Divine Madness .

In 1979, she was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Actress for The Rose, a role for which she won the Golden Globe for Best Actress . The film's acclaimed soundtrack album sold over two million copies in the United States alone, earning a Double Platinum certification. The single version of the song held the #1 position on Billboard's Adult Contemporary chart for five consecutive weeks and reached #3 on Billboard's Hot 100. It earned Midler her first Gold single and won the Grammy award for Best Pop Vocal Performance, Female.

 1981–89: Wind Beneath My Wings and Beaches
In 1981, Midler worked on the troubled comedy project Jinxed!. However during production, there was friction with co-star Ken Wahl and the film's director . Released in 1982, the film was a major flop. Midler would appear in no other films until 1986. During those four years, she concentrated on her music career and in 1983, released the album No Frills, produced by Chuck Plotkin, who was best known for his work with Bob Dylan and Bruce Springsteen. The album included three single releases: the ballad "All I Need To Know", a cover of Detroit native Marshall Crenshaw's "You're My Favorite Waste of Time" - which Midler fell in love with after flipping his 45 of "Someday Someway" - and Midler's take on the Rolling Stones cover "Beast of Burden". The rock and New Wave album went on to become Midler's third lowest charting album in the U.S.

Midler performed on USA for Africa's 1985 fund-raising single "We Are the World", and participated at the 'Live Aid' event at JFK Stadium in Philadelphia. Also in 1985, she signed a multi-picture deal with Touchstone Pictures. She was subsequently cast by director Paul Mazursky in Down and Out in Beverly Hills, beginning a successful comedic acting career. She followed that role with Ruthless People , Outrageous Fortune , and Big Business . Later in 1988, Midler lent her voice to the animated character Georgette, a snobbish poodle, in Disney's Oliver & Company, and had a hit with the tearjerker Beaches, co-starring Barbara Hershey. The accompanying soundtrack remains Midler's all-time biggest selling disc, reaching #2 on Billboard's album chart and with U.S. sales of four million copies. It featured her biggest hit, "Wind Beneath My Wings", which went to #1 on Billboard's Hot 100, achieved Platinum status, and won Midler her third Grammy Award - for Record of the Year - at the 1990 telecast.

 1990–2000: Chart comeback

In 1990, Midler's single "From A Distance" topped the charts and achieved platinum status. The next year, Midler co-starred with Woody Allen in Scenes from a Mall, again for Mazursky. She earned another Academy Award nomination for Best Actress for 1991's For the Boys, directed by Mark Rydell, who also directed The Rose. For the latter, she was awarded another Golden Globe for Best Actress . She reportedly turned down the lead role in 1992's Sister Act, which instead went to Whoopi Goldberg. In 1993, she starred with Sarah Jessica Parker and Kathy Najimy in the movie, Hocus Pocus, as Winifred "Winnie" Sanderson, the head witch of the Sanderson Sisters.

Midler's other films include Stella , The First Wives Club , and The Stepford Wives . Her television work includes an Emmy-nominated version of the stage musical Gypsy and a guest appearance as herself in Fran Drescher's The Nanny. In 1997, Midler, along with her co-stars from The First Wives Club, Goldie Hawn, and Diane Keaton, was a recipient of the Women in Film Crystal Award, which honors "outstanding women who, through their endurance and the excellence of their work, have helped to expand the role of women within the entertainment industry".

Midler won an Emmy Award in 1992 for her performance on the next-to-last episode of The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson in May 1992, during which she sang an emotion-laden "One for My Baby " to Johnny Carson. That night, Midler began singing "Here's That Rainy Day", Carson's favorite song; Carson joined in a few lyrics later. She appeared on Seinfeld in the episode "The Understudy," which was the season finale of that show's sixth season in 1995.

Her 1997 HBO special Diva Las Vegas earned her a third Emmy Award, for Outstanding Performance in a Variety or Music Program.

In 1995 and 1999, she reached the top of the US Dance Charts with remixes of her hits "To Deserve You" on Atlantic and "I'm Beautiful" on Warner Brothers Records.

  2000–01
Midler has guest-starred in various sitcoms over the years, including The Simpsons in the episode "Krusty Gets Kancelled" (she is first seen traversing a highway picking up trash when she is approached by Bart and Lisa with a request for Midler to appear on a show to revive Krusty's dying career). In 2000, Midler starred in her own sitcom, Bette. Airing on CBS, initial ratings were high but soon declined and the show did not last a full season, being cancelled in early 2001. During the show's short lifespan, Bette's daughter and her husband were recast . The show was also reportedly rocked by backstage turmoil. Also in 2001, Bette or Bust, a book chronicling Midler's "Divine Miss Millennium Tour", was released.

  Music
Midler has won four Grammy Awards. , Best New Artist, Best Female Pop Vocal Performance for "The Rose" and Record of the Year for "Wind Beneath My Wings". Two of her recordings, "Wind Beneath My Wings" and "From a Distance" won the Grammy Award for Song of the Year. From a Distance became her longest running #1 - six consecutive weeks - on Billboard's Adult Contemporary chart. When the American Film Institute announced "The 100 Years of the Greatest Songs" on June 22, 2004, two of Midler's recordings were selected by the board: "Wind Beneath My Wings" (#44) and "The Rose" (#83). However, after years of erratic record sales, Midler was dropped from the Warner Brothers label in 2001, after nearly three decades with Warner Music Group.

After a reported long-standing feud with Barry Manilow, the two joined forces after many years in 2003 to record Bette Midler Sings the Rosemary Clooney Songbook. Of the project, Manilow said he'd had a dream that he was recording with Midler again, so he called her up with the idea and she agreed that it was due time to work together again. Manilow duetted with Midler on the song "(I'd Like to Get You on a) Slow Boat to China", after a little dialogue between the two artists at the start of the track. Now signed to Columbia Records, the album was an instant success, being certified gold in only a few weeks. One of the Clooney Songbook selections, "This Ole House," became Midler's first Christian radio single shipped by Rick Hendrix and his positive music movement. The album was nominated for a Grammy the following year.

In 2003–04, Midler toured the U.S. in her new show, Kiss My Brass, to sell-out audiences. In early 2005, an Australian tour, Kiss My Brass Down Under, was equally successful. Midler joined forces again with Manilow for another tribute album, Bette Midler Sings the Peggy Lee Songbook. Released in October 2005, the album sold 55,000 copies the first week of release and returned Midler to the Top 10.

Show more

  Played TV shows  

  Albums 

  Tracks  

Name Duration Released
Something Your Heart Has Been Telling Me 05:10 2008
Baby Mine 02:27 2008
The Glory of Love 03:16 2008
Beast Of Burden 03:48 2008
My One True Friend (From The Motion Picture 03:50 2008
Tenderly 03:11 2003
Hey There 03:30 2003
(I'd Like to Get You on a) Slow Boat to China 02:31 2003
This Ole House 03:02 2003
In the Cool, Cool, Cool Of The Evening 02:44 2003
You'll Never Know 01:44 2003
Memories Of You 03:20 2003
Sisters 02:53 2003
Mambo Italiano 02:50 2003
Come On-A My House 01:50 2003
Big Socks 03:51 1998
Song of Bernadette 03:46 1998
Boxing 04:26 1998
One Monkey Don't Stop No Show 02:46 1998
I Sold My Heart to the Junkman 03:10 1998
Heaven 03:29 1998
I'm Hip 02:44 1998
Laughing Matters 03:54 1998
Ukulele Lady 03:34 1998
My One True Friend 03:49 1998
Lullaby in Blue 05:09 1998
That's How Love Moves 03:54 1998
I'm Beautiful Dammitt! 03:55 1998
Bottomless 05:18 1995
In This Life 04:11 1995
It's Too Late 04:42 1995
I Know This Town 03:54 1995
As Dreams Go By 05:09 1995
The Perfect Kiss 03:43 1995
Bed Of Roses 04:12 1995
The Last Time 04:52 1995
To Deserve You 05:16 1995
To Comfort You 04:44 1995
One for My Baby 04:06 1993
The Rose 03:40 1993
Hello In There 04:17 1993
Miss Otis Regrets 02:51 1990
Some People's Lives 03:29 1990
All Of A Sudden 04:33 1990
One More Round 02:03 1990
He Was Too Good to Me 04:12 1990
Moonlight Dancing 04:39 1990
From A Distance 04:37 1990
The Girl Is On To You 04:10 1990
Night And Day 05:30 1990
Spring Can Really Hang You Up The Most 05:30 1990
Uptown 00:00 1987
Da Doo Ron Ron 01:00 1987
Let Me Call You Sweetheart 01:30 1987
Vickie Eydie 04:44 1985
Marriage, Movies, Madonna And Mick 06:39 1985
Fit Or Fat 'Fat As I Am' 03:10 1985
Taking Aim 05:09 1985
Is It Love 04:43 1983
Heart Over Head 02:52 1983
Only in Miami 04:35 1983
All I Need To Know 04:08 1983
Favorite Waste Of Time 02:43 1983
Delta Dawn 05:16 1981
My Mother's Eyes 02:26 1981
Midnight In Memphis 03:44 1980
Whose Side Are You On? 04:30 1980
Stay With Me 06:24 1980
Fire Down Below 03:05 1980
Shiver Me Timbers 03:56 1980
Paradise 04:09 1980
Keep On Rockin' 04:03 1980
Sold My Soul To Rock 'N' Roll 03:42 1980
When a Man Loves a Woman 05:20 1980
My Knight in Black Leather 04:53 1979
Cradle Days 05:05 1979
Millworker 04:07 1979
Big Noise From Winnetka 06:56 1979
You're Moving Out Today 03:18 1978
Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy 02:26 1978
Hurry On Down 02:07 06/1977
In the Mood 02:09 06/1977
Birds 04:39 06/1977
Bang You're Dead 03:15 06/1977
Friends 02:28 06/1977
Mr. Rockefeller 04:05 1976
I Don't Want the Night to End 03:53 1976
Strangers in the Night 03:22 1976
Love Says It's Waiting 01:41 1976
Buckets of Rain 04:00 1976
Old Cape Cod 02:50 1976
Superstar 05:11 07/11/1972
Chapel of Love 02:55 07/11/1972
Do You Want to Dance? 02:44 07/11/1972
Am I Blue 05:25 07/11/1972
Daytime Hustler 03:34 07/11/1972
Red 03:17
Some People 03:16
All I Need Is The Girl 04:58
Billy-A-Dick 01:35
For All We Know 04:00
Daybreak 03:40
May We Entertain You 00:52
If Momma Was Married 02:56
Vickie And Mr. Valves 02:29
I Never Talk To Strangers 03:39
Overture 04:56
Dainty June And Her Farmboys 04:36
Dreamland 03:16
Say Goodbye to Hollywood 03:02
I Shall Be Released 04:56
Otto Titsling 03:13
You'll Never Get Away From Me 02:57
Baby It's Cold Outside 01:29
You Don't Know Me 03:39
Surabaya Johnny 04:54
I Think It's Going to Rain Today 03:31
Little Lamb 02:20
Rose's Turn 04:05
I Remember You 02:21
Breaking Up Somebody's Home 03:49
I've Still Got My Health 01:32
Mr. Goldstone 02:27
You Gotta Get A Gimmick 04:07
The Girlfriend Of The Whirling Dervish 01:16
Make Yourself Comfortable 03:59
Drinking Again 02:48
Wind Beneath My Wings 04:52
Baby June And Her Newsboys 02:08
Together 02:58
P.S. I Love You 03:33
In My Life 03:26
Skylark 03:02
Under the Boardwalk 04:18
Small World 03:23
Everything's Coming Up Roses 02:50
Stuff Like That There 02:50
Come Rain or Come Shine 03:30
Just My Imagination 03:54
Alright, Okay, You Win 02:48
Mr. Wonderful 04:33
I've Got My Love to Keep Me Warm 03:25
God Give Me Strength 06:31
Fever 03:38
Big Spender 02:18
What Are You Doing New Year's Eve? 03:58
In These Shoes 03:41
When Your Life Was Low 03:55
The Folks Who Live On the Hill 03:07
I'll Be Home for Christmas 03:21
That's How The Heartaches Are Made 03:08
Bless You Child 04:35
He's a Tramp 02:39
Winter Wonderland/Let It Snow! Let It Snow! Let It Snow! 02:46
Color Of Roses 04:41
I'm a Woman 02:28
Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas 03:55
Nobody Else But You 02:53
Is That All There Is? 04:26
Cool Yule 02:28
Mele Kalikimaka 02:34
Moses 04:31
Happiness is a Thing Called Joe 04:54
Merry Christmas 03:13
O Come, O Come, Emmanuel 03:12
Love T.K.O. 04:47
I Love Being Here With You 02:46
He Needs Me 04:09
I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day 02:47

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  Music track

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  Press reviews    

  User reviews

  Sources

Whole or part of the information contained in this card come from the Wikipedia article "Bette Midler", licensed under CC-BY-SA full list of contributors here.