Flashback Friday: "Baby Baby" Turns 25

File this under: Damn I'm Old.

Amy Grant's 1991 megahit "Baby Baby," the chart-topping gem that successfully transitioned her from Christian folk singer to bonafide pop star (for a good two or three years), turned 25 this week.

As I've reflected and written before, I first heard this song while sitting in the passenger seat of my mom's Pontiac 6000-LE and cruising up I-95 in New York. It sparked my first legit pop star obsession. Throughout most of the early 90s, Heart in Motion, the album from which this single sprang, was on full rotation in the car, in my room, and on my Walkman.

And now, to celebrate this silver anniversary, we have a sparkling new rendition of this pop gem, courtesy of rising star Tori Kelly. The credit may state "featuring," but Tori is all over this, overlapping with Amy's vocals from the original recording.

It'll do.

Listen here:

And catch some behind-the-scenes action on the making of this song HERE.

@TheFirstEcho


What I'm Reading: Roxane Gay's "Bad Feminist"

To say I'm infatuated with this book would be an understatement. (A little late to the party considering this came out in 2014.)

Writer, author, and all-American literary badass Roxane Gay is everything I strive to be: a pop culture critic who has a lot to say about our current state of affairs as well as her obsession with the trivial trials and tribulations within YA series like Sweet Valley High.

She has a f**kton of insightful things to say about gender, sexuality, race, religion, friendships...and the wonders of the Real Housewives franchise and Girls.

It doesn't matter if you have a penis or a vagina. This book speaks to everyone. Whatever gender you identify with, her collection of essays will open your mind and truly allow yourself to see things from a perspective you probably never considered before.

Below is a short piece of Roxane, introducing the book, but I also suggest checking out on YouTube some of her lengthier discussions on panels at her many speaking engagements across the country.


@TheFirstEcho


'The Invitation' Scared the Crap Out of Me


I saw Karyn Kusama's The Invitation last night at the Arclight in Hollywood (the only theater in L.A. playing this exquisite thriller -- it's also on demand and available on iTunes).

My heart was still pounding in the car ride home.

See why...when you read my review at Hotter In Hollywood.

@TheFirstEcho


My New Favorite Twitter Account is...


It's moments like this when one exclaims, "God bless the Internet!"

Introducing Paperback Paradise (@paperbckparadise), my new favorite Twitter account.

Some genius has taken the covers of classic YA novels from the 80s and 90s and unabashedly Photoshopped their titles. The result is a gloriously gut-busting reinterpretation of the teen lit many of my generation have grown up with.

Just check out these brilliant creations (the one below on the left is particularly timely given the upcoming musical festivities happening in Southern California):


@TheFirstEcho


Song of the Month: April 2016


If you caught the pilot of ABC's The Catch, then you heard this hypnotic, sexy track play at the end of the episode when Mireille Enos finds out Peter Krause totally ghosted on their relationship. And I'm all about it this month.

The track is from Brooklyn duo Bob Moses, and it's one of those grooves perfect for a late-night drive when you have no idea where you're going. (The remix from RAC is also quite mesmerizing.)

Enjoy:



@TheFirstEcho


Your Zara Larsson Obsession Should've Already Started By Now


She may share a name with a stylish-yet-affordable clothing store, but the adorable, born-in-1997 Swedish import that is Zara Larsson is quickly establishing herself on Top 40 radio. (You've heard her hit collaboration with MNEK, the earwormy "Never Forget You.") The blond singer is a one-woman pop machine. It's as if the rebooted Ace of Base decided to ditch those two creepy dudes and the brunette, and this is the result.

And if you happen to have a pop-savvy friend in your life who keeps bragging that he's been listening to her stuff since 2014, then brush up on this chick's discography, starting with her other single, "Lush Life," fun ditty with a music video that looks like it was produced in 1992 (but in a good way):

@TheFirstEcho