Friday Night Forgotten Oldie: “Tell me again, Mommy”

Tonight’s feature is a slightly revised post from 2017:

This week’s oldie first appeared on this album.

Williams and Ken Ascher wrote the second track on the album.

“I wrote it as a man-woman song,” said Williams.

Enter the woman who would have a dozen top 40 hits in the United States, the first Australian to win a Grammy Award. Though she changed the approach of the song in 1974, the meaning stayed intact.

“I loved the song and I wanted to sing it, but when I sang it as a woman-man love song, it didn’t feel right for me so I made it a mother-child love song. It proves that love is universal.”

Helen Reddy, she of “I am Woman” fame included her then 10-year old daughter Traci on the single that made the Top Ten. Appropriate for Mother’s Day weekend.

Reddy did it all: recordings, TV, movies, Broadway. She was a bona fide superstar.

Then in 2002 she stopped doing everything to live a simple, frugal life away from all the limelight. USA TODAY wrote in 2008, “She rents a 13th-floor apartment with a 180-degree view of the Sydney harbor. When her apartment was recently appraised, she feared she would no longer be able to afford the rent. To her surprise, the New York-based landlord learned he had a celebrity, and wrote to tell her: ‘I had no idea it was the Helen Reddy who was living in my unit. Because of what you have done for millions of women all over the world, I will not sell or raise your rent. I hope you’ll be very happy living there for years to come’.”

Reddy returned to performing at concerts in 2012. Now 75, Reddy told an Australian interviewer, “I don’t care if I’m remembered or not. The important thing is that any good that I’ve done lives on.”

—Friday Night Forgotten Oldie, March 12, 2017

Reddy died on September 29, 2020. She had been diagnosed with dementia five years earlier. Reddy was 78.

Traci Donat, seen in the above video, is the daughter of Helen Reddy and Kenneth Weate. Traci’s parents divorced shortly after she was born, and she was raised by her mother. Now 60, Donat is a television director and herbalist. 

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