Spotlight on… Olivia Newton John

Olivia Newton John or ONJ as I like to refer to her as – was, and still is, one of my sweetheart singers.  First, let’s address the elephant in the room.  After 25 years, ONJ’s breast cancer has returned.  In 1992, she was diagnosed with breast cancer the same weekend that her father passed away.  Talk about a double-whammy.  And now in the middle of her tour, her breast cancer has returned.  Let’s send some white-light her way to heal her of this dreaded disease.

The year was 1974 and this girl with three names came out with this soft, whispery, touching song titled “I Honestly Love You”.  I guess being a high-school kid, it’s not something you’d easily say to a girl.  But you could play the song.

From that song, I became a fan and bought some of her earlier albums when her music was somewhat “crossover country”.  And when I heard her speak during interviews with her Aussie accent – I became a fanboy.  And let’s face it – she is a cutie.

I found this early video of her looking kinda awkward, but she looked so young and nervous in this video;

I watched her as she grew with the changing music.

From the country girl look.

To the more contemporary look.

To the innocent look.

To the sexy look.

To the excerise look.

To the bad girl look.

To the mature woman look.

ONJ covered it all.  Including a couple of movies!  I’m sure all your MLCers remember this one.

And maybe not too many remember this movie.

I loved Xanadu.  In fact – my all time favorite ONJ song is from that movie.

And one of my other favorite songs is also from the same movie.

There are so many ONJ songs that I love to listen to, like “Sam“.  IIRC, I heard that the song is actually about a dog she had named Sammie.  And of course there’s “Xanadu“, “Physical“, “Hopelessly Devoted to You“, “Suddenly“, “Have You Never Been Mellow“.  Too many to list them all.

What are some of your favorite ONJ songs?

Finally, let’s not going to wait until we lose another musical icon to remember them.  Let’s pay tribute to ONJ now – while she’s still here – and pray that she’ll be here for years to come.  After all this time – I’m still an Olivia Newton John fanboy.

22 Responses to “Spotlight on… Olivia Newton John”

  1. SeekingThePast says:

    Xanadu blew my mind when it came out! And since Olivia is Australian, this movie was promoted really heavily in our local media.

    Olivia and another popular Australian singer by the name of John Farnham sang together at the 2000 Sydney Olympics, and watching them perform gave me chills. Consider all the decisions they made, all the actions they took, that led them to be performing in front of the entire world at the Olympics. John Farnham started out by singing in pubs; I know one of his roadies from that time. Little did he know that he would be singing at the Olympics decades later.

    Olivia created the Olivia Newton John Cancer Research and Wellness Centre, which is a huge public hospital. I drive past it every now and again and it’s a magnificent building and magnificent achievement.

  2. Mark Shelby says:

    Very sad to report this from my net search!

    Olivia Newton-John Says She’s Battling Cancer That Has Spread To Her Back | TODAY

  3. Mark Shelby says:

    Always wanted a girl like that! Never found one!

    ONJ one of my all time favorites! How could you not just Love her!

    “Hopelessly Devoted to You”

  4. Yv says:

    “Suddenly” is unforgettable and shows off her voice and sweet personality.

  5. KC fan says:

    Prayers go out to Olivia Newton John.

  6. walter says:

    Fly Away is the tune sung by ONJ and John Denver. I remember it during the summer of 1975.

  7. walter says:

    I remember her for If Not For You which I believe is a John Lennon song from the very early seventies. She then reappeared steadily from ’74 onward with some songs better and others not so to me. Have You Never Been Mellow was a standard AM play while we were getting stoned in the school parking lot back in ’75. Another song I liked was with John Denver but I can’t remember the name. Grease was cool. Still have fun singing those songs-er to myself that is. Hang in there ONJ. We’ll hope for the best.

  8. Rodney says:

    Here’s a cute one – Something Better To Do

  9. Rodney says:

    Here’s a beautiful song that never made the charts. She was planning to promote it on tour but had to cancel due to her first bout with cancer. Give a listen – you won’t be disappointed.

  10. Seawalker says:

    Saw the movie Grease over at the Downtown Theatre (where the BOH parking lot now sits). Man, that was some feel-good movie alright back then. Definitely a movie to take a date to, just like Blue Lagoon and Rocky. We even went to the show Grease at the Blaisdell a few years back. Not the same feeling though. Think we caught the flick Xanadu over at the Royal Theatre towards the end of Waikiki on Kuhio. Might have caught Raiders of the Lost Ark and Shawshank Redemption there too. Those were the days of catching the bus. Movies were affordable back then.

  11. sameguydifferentchannel says:

    Make A Move On Me

  12. sameguydifferentchannel says:

    Something Better To Do

  13. Russ Roberts says:

    A remarkable singer and a pretty good actor. Like many, I was and still am a “fanboy” of this Aussie performer. Hopefully, she’ll beat this new cancer. I pray for her recovery.

  14. KAN says:

    I LOVED LOVED LOVED Xanadu. It was an odd movie, to be sure, but maybe that’s one of the reasons I loved it. The ELO music from that movie was also terrific–“All Over the World” is still one of my favorites.

  15. KAN says:

    My favorite ONJ song, and applicable to her current situation:

    “Don’t Stop Believing.”

  16. sameguydifferentchannel says:

    A cool routine with Gene Kelly in Xanadu…reminiscent of the old MGM musicals

  17. 4G says:

    One of my favorite Olivia Newton-John songs – “Hopelessly Devoted to You”:

  18. 4G says:

    Loved Grease and the soundtrack.

    “You’re the One That I Want” – John Travolta and Olivia Newton-John

  19. Seawalker says:

    “And now in the middle of her tour, her breast cancer has returned. Let’s send some white-light her way to heal her of this dreaded disease.”
    Count on me. Waiving my iPhone flashlight back and forth. Now all we need is some Mary Jane smoke in the air. Sing it Sandy, sing it good! LOL

  20. mows says:

    Me too, always been a fanboy of Olivia, ever since the first time I heard “I honestly love you” on my AM alarm clock radio. Then those Grease pants put a wow in my pants. Then the “Let’s get physical” video on MTV had me spanking monkey almost every time it came on. I remember she had a concert shown on HBO that had me being the baiting master once again. She is the best, I love her man!!!

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