American pop/rock singer Gloria Gaynor was undoubtedly a creature of 1970's disco, and many would agree, a creation of her producers. She wasn't as big, or as important a disco star as the recently-deceased Donna Summer, and some would call her a one-hit wonder. But she was there, she survives, as does her work, and this 2-disc CD album is a great way to get it for her most devoted fans; it gives us more of her hits, and her covers of similar material, although it unaccountably skips some of her most popular recordings.
However, the album's got a great, intensely danceable 8-minute track of her signature song, "I Will Survive," and that should be reason enough for some fans to buy it. That song surely is great dancing; and is a worldwide anthem as well, and that not just for women. I recall once having seen a segment on the mid-East country Lebanon, at war with itself, on CBS's "60 Minutes." That segment included a night club scene: Gloria Gaynor there, singing in person, and her beleaguered fans, male and female, dancing their hearts out. And who can forget Kevin Kline's joyous dance to this song in the movie In & Out . I was once lucky enough to catch Gaynor in person myself, under the stars, one muggy summer evening at New York's World Financial Center, that used to lie alongside the World Trade Center. on the Hudson River. Seemed like half New York was there, most of them younger than me, dancing the sweat away, and they set up a syncopated call-and-answer: "Go Gloria, Go Gloria." I'd never heard anything like it before. Touching, unforgettable? You bet. In fact, it leads me to believe that any female, between the ages of fifteen and sixty-five, in the English-speaking world, at least, who claims to be unfamiliar with singer and song is not to be trusted on any other matter, either.