Back in the late eighties, Paula Abdul’s song Straight Up was one of those tracks that could make me jump up and dance no matter what I was doing when it came on. But though I always enjoyed it, I haven’t thought about it in many years. Until now, that is. Abdul was on The Late, Late Show with James Corden last week, and her live performance of the song was just wonderful. To be clear, I realize she is likely not singing live, and maybe she’s not dancing as hard as she did back in the day, but girlfriend is looking fierce!
Then Abdul and JC (the other one) did a really entertaining remake of the Opposites Attract music video:
Just for fun, here’s the original:
Back when her debut album Forever Your Girl first became popular, poor Paula (who was really more of a dancer than a singer) was slammed by critics who claimed her pop tracks weren’t “real music.” There was even a Milli Vanilli-type accusation by the singer of the rehearsal tracks who claimed that Abdul had used her vocals to beef up her own singing on the singles. In spite of it all, the album sold 7 million copies in the U.S. and set a record for the most number-one singles from a debut album on the Billboard Hot 100 charts.
Abdul went on to win a music video Grammy and countless other awards for her work. She’s had a robust choreography career, and in 2002, she became one of American Idol’s most memorable and iconic judges. She’s since judged on X Factor and a number of dance competition shows, and has really shown her staying power. You can watch her interview on The Late Late Show below, wherein she reveals how she managed to get her first performance job as a Laker Girl (where she was discovered by The Jacksons).
Is Paula Abdul a guilty pleasure? Maybe, but I’m still going to dance…