OK, first things first again. Anyone here not know Raquel Welch?
I gotta ask because two younger co-workers had no idea who I was talking about last month when I mentioned she’d died. Both were like “Um, I’ll have to Google her.” One of those co-workers — a guy in his early 30s — did so, and then concurred with my description of her as a Hollywood sex symbol who was “smoking hot.”
Raquel Welch was so much more than that, of course. Single mother of two for most of her early Hollywood career, litigant (wonder how 1982’s “Cannery Row” would be different had she gotten the female lead), entrepreneur, author.
A singer and a nightclub performer, too.
Not long ago, I found “This Girl’s Back in Town,” a 12-inch dance single released in 1987. It is of its time, peak late ’80s, full of synths and drum programming. It’s OK. It just didn’t stand out from everything else that was being heard in 1987.
I dig crossover finds like this. I also have LPs by actresses Goldie Hawn and Teresa Graves and hope someday to find another copy of the Lynda Carter record I had but inexplicably sold. Each has moments that are better than you might have thought.
The video above is just the music, not the music video you might have seen on MTV. Though so much of Raquel Welch’s appeal was visual, the music video for “This Girl’s Back in Town” just ain’t it.
The ’80s were a challenging time for Welch — she did no films and just a handful of TV appearances — but Raquel Welch always was royalty. The music video doesn’t reflect that. You can find it on YouTube if you’re curious.
Discogs shows just two other music releases credited to Raquel Welch.
One is a 1977 French single, “L’Animal,” from the film of the same name. Whether that’s actually Raquel singing toward the end of this clip (it’s cued up to when the music starts), well, you be the judge. That French action comedy was her last film appearance until an uncredited cameo in “Naked Gun 33 1/3: The Final Insult,” 17 years later, in 1994.
The other is a DVD of “Raquel!” the 1970 CBS-TV special in which she covered a bunch of hit pop songs from that time, duetted with Bob Hope on “Rocky Raccoon” and did a Little Richard medley with Tom Jones. (The video is the entire show, but is cued up to that medley.)