Barbra Streisand

Barbra Streisand...and Other Musical Instruments

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Barbra Streisand...and Other Musical Instruments, an album drawn from Streisand's fifth and last network TV special, has the dubious distinction of being the worst-selling Barbra Streisand record in the Columbia Records catalog. The idea of the special was to have Streisand sing many of her best-known songs and other pop standards over musical accompaniment from a variety of national origins, most of them tied into the Gershwin song "I Got Rhythm." "People," for example, was sung over a Turkish-Armenian backing as a medley with "I Got Rhythm," "Don't Rain on My Parade" was played on American Indian instruments, etc. While the result was eclectic by definition, it was more gimmicky than inventive, especially when "The World Is a Concerto" was set against the sounds of household appliances! Barbra Streisand...and Other Musical Instruments was a forgettable misstep that thankfully was erased by the appearance, the same month, of Streisand's biggest hit single yet, "The Way We Were," which reestablished her as a contemporary pop singer.

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