Carpenters

Superstar

Composed by Bonnie Bramlett / Leon Russell

Song Review by

Though she may not have known it, Bette Midler was an A&R/music publishing person's dream. Her appearances on The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson served as a kind of demo session in the sense that other singers would listen intently to whatever she sang and, in some cases, actually end up recording the songs. The Carpenters' Richard Carpenter was watching when she sang the Leon Russell/Bonnie Bramlett song "Superstar." He thought that the song would be perfect for his sister Karen Carpenter. He'd found "We've Only Begun" in a bank commercial during another late-night viewing session. Produced by Jack Daugherty and included on the gold LP Carpenters, "Superstar" went gold, going to number two pop and number one adult contemporary in the fall of 1971. Richard received a Grammy nomination for Best Arranging Accompanying Vocalists. The single's B-side was the title theme of the Stanley Kramer movie Bless the Beasts and the Children and charted number 26 adult contemporary and number 67 pop. Midler recorded "Superstar" as the B-side of her "Do You Want to Dance," a Top 20 pop single in late 1972. Other covers included Luther Vandross' 1984 Top Ten R&B/pop-charting medley of "Superstar"/"Until You Come Back to Me" and the Aretha Franklin hit "Until You Come Back to Me." While "Superstar" was climbing the charts, the Carpenters hosted the NBC summer series Make Your Own Kind of Music with Al Hirt and Mark Lindsey.

Appears On

Year Artist/Album Label Time AllMusic Rating
Carpenters 1971 A&M / Polydor / Universal International 3:49
Live in Japan 1975 A&M 2:58
The Singles 1969-1973 1981 Universal
Classics, Vol. 2 1987 A&M 3:46
Only Yesterday 1990 A&M 3:45
From the Top 1991 Universal Distribution 3:46
Interpretations: A 25th Anniversary Celebration 1995 A&M 3:49
Tommy Boy (Music from the Motion Picture) 1995
Original Soundtrack
Warner Bros. 3:47
Flashbacks: Easy Lovin' 1996
Various Artists
View Video
Their Greatest Hits 1996 Universal 3:45
Love Songs 1997 Polygram 3:51
Startrax: The Best of the Carpenters 1998 Import 3:46
Yesterday Once More: Greatest Hits 1969-1983 1998 A&M 3:48
Singles 1969-1981 2000 A&M 3:47
Gold: Greatest Hits 2000 Polydor / Universal 3:48
By Request 2000 Polygram 3:50
20th Century Masters:The Millennium Collection: Best of The Carpenters 2002 Universal Distribution
The Essential Collection [1965-1997] 2002 A&M / Universal 3:50
Gold/20th Century Masters -- The Millennium Collection 2002 Pop-u.s. / Universal Distribution 3:47
Close to You: Remembering... [Video] 2002 Immortal
Twenty Two Hits of the Carpenters 2003 Universal Distribution / Japanese Import
Please Mr. Postman 2004 Angel Air Records
Chronicles 2005 A&M 3:52
Gold 2005 A&M 3:46
No Image 2006 United Recordings
The Ultimate Collection [3 CD] 2006 Universal Music 3:49
No Image 2006
Various Artists
40/40 2009 Universal Distribution 3:48
100 Hits: Super 70s Karaoke 2014
Various Artists
100 Hits
Icon 2014 A&M 3:48
The Nation's Favourite Carpenters Songs 2016 Universal 3:50
Carpenters Box Set Universal Distribution
Close to You: Remembering the Carpenters [DVD] Universal Video
Live In London Hudson Street
No Image Universal Distribution
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