Thursday, March 29, 2012

"For Your Eyes Only" by Sheena Easton - March 29th 80's Quest Song/Band of the Day

Sheena Easton (real name Sheena Shirley Orr) was born in 1959 in Bellshill, Scotland. She was the baby of the family of 6 children. Her father, Alex, was a steel mill laborer. In 1969 when Sheena was 10 years old her father died, and her mother Annie was left to support the family. Sheena was moved to become a singer after watching the movie The Way We Were. She was so overtaken with Barbra Streisand’s vocals in the opening credits, she decided that she too wanted to be a singer and move people in the same way. Her good grades earned her a scholarship to the Royal Scottish Academy of Drama and Art. She studied to be a speech and drama teacher there from 1975 – 1979. At night during her school years she worked in nightclubs and pubs and sang with a band called Something Else. She graduated in 1979, but rather than going on to teach, she decided to pursue a singing career.
In 1979 at the age of 19, she married Sandi Easton. It was a short-lived marriage (only 8 months long), but Sheena decided to keep his last name, Easton. The same year, one of her school tutors encouraged her to audition for the BBC-TV television show, The Big Time, which was a documentary that chronicled an unknown artist’s rise to success in the music business. Easton was selected as the subject of the documentary and gained a lot of national exposure from her participation in the show. It wasn’t long until EMI Records pursued her and offered her a contract. For most of 1980 she was followed around by cameras filming the entire process of making her first single for EMI, "Modern Girl".
In February 1980 "Modern Girl" was released in the U.K. prior to the airing of The Big Time. It only rose to #56 on the charts. Her image was that of an easy listening singer like Olivia Newton John or Helen Reddy, but with a new wave twist. The song hit the Top 10 in England. In November 1980 she performed on the Royal Variety Show for Queen Elizabeth.
After the show aired her second U.K. single, "9 to 5" was released. This time her song did much better. In America and Canada the single was renamed "Morning Train" so that it would not be confused with a Dolly Parton hit, the title track for the American comedy movie 9 to 5. It became her breakthrough single in America charting at #1 in Spring 1981. "Modern Girl" was then issued in America and rose to #18 on the charts. Her 1980 album was called Take My Time and was retitled Sheena Easton in 1981.
The same year, she was asked to sing the theme song for the next James Bond film For Your Eyes Only. The song, of the same name, charted at #4 in the U.S., and was also nominated for an Academy Award in 1981 for Best Music (Original Song). The same year she also won a Grammy Award for Best New Artist of 1981.
Her second album, You Could Have Been With Me was released in 1982. Singles included the title track and "When He Shines" (#30). She also had another 1982 album called Madness, Money and Music. 
In 1983 she released Best Kept Secret which contained a dancy pop song called "Telefone (Long Distance Love Affair), which was nominated for a 1983 Grammy for Best Female Pop/Rock Vocal Performance. The second single was a ballad called "Almost Over You". The same year (1983) she dueted with Kenny Rogers on a cover of Bob Seger’s "We’ve Got Tonight". It became a Top 10 hit in the U.S. and on the country music charts.
In 1983 she also dueted with Spanish singer Luis Miguel on a single called "Me Gustas Tal Como Eres" on her album Todo Me Recuerda a Ti. which contained seven Sheena Easton recordings re-recorded in Spanish along with 3 new songs. The album won Easton her second Grammy Award for Best Mexican/American Performance.
In 1984 Easton got married a second time to a talent agent named Rob Light. Again the marriage was short-lived, lasting only 18-months.
In 1984 Easton decided to lose her clean-cut, wholesome image and take on a more sexy persona. The result was the best selling album of her U.S. career, A Private Heaven. Her next hit single "Strut" reflected her new image. It rose to #7 on the charts. Her next song really raised temperature and got her more notice. It was a very suggestive song about the inside of her vagina, written for her by Prince, called "Sugar Walls" (#9). The video for the song was banned, not for its imagery, but for the highly suggestive lyrics.
Around this time the Parent’s Music Resource Center (PMRC) was formed by a bunch of Washington wives led by Tipper Gore, the wife of then-Senator Al Gore. In 1984 Tipper Gore was with her daughter and heard the lyrics to Prince’s song "Darling Nikki" and felt frightened by the lyrics about sex and masturbation. She got other frightened Washington mothers together and formed the committee in order to force the recording industry to label or censor music and images deemed to be violent, sexual, or relating to drug use, so that parents could have more control over what their children had access to. They felt that some music contributed to the decay of the family in America and issued a list of the "Filthy Fifteen" songs that they felt were the most objectionable. Formerly clean-cut Easton made it onto the list. Here it is:
The PMRC’s Filthy Fifteen (*from Wikipedia)

#ArtistSong titleLyrical content
1Prince"Darling Nikki"Sex
2Sheena Easton"Sugar Walls"Sex
3Judas Priest"Eat Me Alive"Sex
4Vanity"Strap on Robbie Baby"Sex
5Mötley Crüe"Bastard"Violence
6AC/DC"Let Me Put My Love into You"Sex
7Twisted Sister"We're Not Gonna Take It"Violence
8Madonna"Dress You Up"Sex
9W.A.S.P."Animal (Fuck Like a Beast)"Sex/Language
10Def Leppard"High 'n' Dry (Saturday Night)"Drug and alcohol use
11Mercyful Fate"Into the Coven"Occult
12Black Sabbath"Trashed"Drug and alcohol use
13Mary Jane Girls"In My House"Sex
15Cyndi Lauper"She Bop"Sex

Her next album, 1985’s Do You was produced by Nile Rodgers (formerly of Chic, and now a hot producer) and went Gold. Later that year Easton contributed a song, "It’s Christmas (All Over the Word)" to the holiday film, Santa Claus the Movie.
Prior to the release for her next album, 1987’s No Sound But a Heart a single was released. The song, Eternity was again written for her by Prince, but failed to chart, so the release of the album was pushed back from February to June. EMI Records was going through changes, which delayed release even further. In the meantime, songs from the album were recorded by other artists such as Crystal Gayle, Celine Dion, Patti LaBelle, and Pia Zadora. No Sound But a Heart eventually ended up being released in the United States in 1999 with four bonus songs.
In 1987 Easton also teamed up with Prince again, this time recording a song with him called "U Got the Look" (she also appeared in the video). It became a #2 hit for Prince, and both of them were nominated for a Grammy Award for Best R&B Vocal Duo or Group in 1987. Eventually the two would record together again in 1989 on a Prince song for the soundtrack for the movie Batman, called "The Arms of Orion". Prince and Easton began co-writing songs together including "Love ‘89" for Patti LaBelle, and "La,La, La, He, He, Hee" which Prince recorded himself. Although she denies it, tabloids linked Easton and Prince together romantically.
The same year, 1987, Easton made her acting debut in several episodes of the American action television show Miami Vice. She played a singer named Caitlin Davies who Don Johnson’s character, Sonny Crockett, was hired to protect until a court appearance she was scheduled to make to testify against corrupt music industry executives. Her character eventually married Sonny Crockett, but then got killed. In 1988 a soundtrack to Miami Vice was released and the song Easton’s character had sang just before being killed on the show, "Follow My Rainbow" was included on the record. It also appeared on Easton’s next album, 1988’s The Lover In Me which contained collaborations with Prince, Jellybean Benitez, Angela Winbush, LA and Babyface. The title song of the album also charted at #2 on the Billboard Hot 100. The next singles were "Days Like This" and "101".
In 1990 Easton went to her homeland of Scotland to sing at The Big Day festival in Glasgow. When she got on stage she said that it was "good to be back home", but said it with an American accent rather than a Scottish one, and as a result while she was singing her song the audience pelted her with bottles (some filled with urine). She cut her set short, left the stage shaken, and vowed never to perform in Scotland again.
Easton’s next album, 1991’s What Comes Naturally did not do as well as previous albums and only charted at #90 in the United States. The title song was her last Top 40 hit. The other two singles released from the album failed t chart.
In the 1990’s Easton appeared in the movie Indecent Proposal, on Broadway in The Man of La Mancha (1992) and Grease (1996), and on television shows Jack’s Place and The Highlander. She played several characters in an animated show called Gargoyles and did the voice for the character Annah-of-the-Shadows for the computer game Planescape: Torment.
She designed a line of ceramic angels and began working doing voice-overs for animated feature films such as 1996’s All Good Dogs Go to Heaven 2, and provided songs for the 1993 animated film Ferngully The Last Rainforest, as well as the film Shiloh (1997). She appeared in an episode of the sci-fi show Outer Limits (Season 2/Episode 19). At the end of the 90’s she was signed to MCA Japan and released numerous albums there including Freedom (1997) and a greatest hits collection. In 1999 she released a self-produced acoustic album on Universal/Victor Records called Home.
In 1992 Easton was granted United States citizenship. In 1994 she adopted a son, Jake, and in 1996 she adopted a daughter, Skylar and moved to Las Vegas. In 1997 she was filming an episode of sport’s channel ESPN’s Canon Photo Safari in Yellowstone National Park and met producer Tim Delarm, who was to become her third husband. They were married in Las Vegas in 1997, but the marriage only lasted 1 year. As she concentrated more on the duties of motherhood, she began performing less, focusing on performing casino gigs, and corporate shows. In 2000 she appeared with former 1970’s heartthrob, David Cassidy, in the Las Vegas musical production At the Copa for one year at the Rio Hotel.
In 2000 Easton released an album of disco cover songs called Fabulous. It was released only in Europe, Japan, Australia and Argentina. In 2001 Easton traveled to Australia to sing songs from the album at the Sydney Gay & Lesbian Mardi Gras celebration. In 2001 she completed a successful headlining run at the Las Vegas Hilton. In November 2002 she married her fourth husband, Beverly Hills plastic surgeon John Minoli. They got divorced in 2003. That same year Easton hosted a local talk show called Vegas Live with Clint Holmes, who was later replaced by Brian McKnight.
In 2005 she performed as the narrator in the Raleigh North Carolina theater production of Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat. She contributed two songs that she composed with Nobuo Uematsu for the video game Lost Odyssey in 2008. In 2008 and 2009 she recorded songs for the Disney Channel animated television program Phineas and Ferb. Today she is a single mom living in Henderson, Nevada. She denies claims that she made good investments in Florida property that have served her well financially


For your eyes only, can see me through the night.
For your eyes only, I never need to hide.
You can see so much in me, so much in me that's new.
I never felt until I looked at you.

For your eyes only, only for you.
You'll see what no one else can see, and now I'm breaking free.
For your eyes only, only for you.
The love I know you need in me, the fantasy you've freed in me.
Only for you, only for you.

For your eyes only, the nights are never cold.
You really know me, that's all I need to know.
Maybe I'm an open book because I know you're mine,
But you won't need to read between the lines.

For your eyes only, only for you.
You see what no one else can see, and now I'm breaking free.
For your eyes only, only for you.
The passions that collide in me, the wild abandoned side of me.
Only for you, for your eyes only.

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