blatantly bad 70s songs: lovin’ you (minnie riperton)

imagine the sound of me trying to hit an extremely high note here. a sound not unlike a cat screaming for help.

the talented, multi-octave ms. riperton left this world all-too-soon after a fight with breast cancer. i have absolutely no quarrel whatsoever with her, and i know the world lost an amazing talent when she passed.

that being said, loving you is not a song i remember fondly. at age 10, i didn’t like anything mushy. this song is all bells and flowers. birds sing; angels take wing; all that sappy crap that i’ve never bought into.  (i was pretty much dumbfounded when my 1st rutgers roommate, jean jean the dancing machine, played depeche mode’s somebody for me. now THAT hit my ideas about love a lot more closely. jean. wherever you may be, you were right.) all that jingly, magical bell-like sounds in the background — it sounded to me like something the muppets might sing. and the birds?? who trained the birds to chirp on cue??

moreover, i didn’t appreciate the sound of a person screaming in my ears. riperton may have had a whistle-octave virtuouso voice, but when i was 10, i thought that someone was having their fingernails pulled out during the song. or maybe she was screaming because a bird crapped on her? in any event, someone kindly put together a bunch of her whistle-octave moments in case you want to break a few windows or annoy your dog. (or even fish. as i play this, Hellboy’s fish is literally beating himself against his fishbowl. do fish have ears?)

so for me, the song is a juxtaposition of moods — mushy gushy or screetchingly excruciating. it just didn’t compute for me. and the la la la la la‘s drove me over the edge.

i will say, though, that now that i’m a mother, i can appreciate one part of the song. it’s hard to hear, but riperton is singing to her little daughter, maya, who is there with her during the recording. maya, for you trivia fans, would be SNL comedian maya rudolph.


5 Responses to “blatantly bad 70s songs: lovin’ you (minnie riperton)”

  1. I was wondering if this song would make the list. This one even managed to annoy me as a youngster when, as should be obvious from my earlier posts, I would listen to just about anything. I used to play it just to irritate my mom (in a funny way, not because I was purely irritating, although that may have been true, too). Singing up in the whistle register is an awesome skill… just don’t do it near me, please.

  2. Minnie’s vocal range was nothing short of astonishing. With that said, I could never abide by that stratospheric melisma in the song. My brain hurts just thinking about it. However, I did not know that Minnie was singing to Maya during the song. How far into the track do you hear this?

  3. i think at the end. unfortunately, i think it is clipped on this version. but its sweet.

  4. Kevin Chouinard Says:

    During the time it played, it was a sad, cheesy song. After Minnie Riperton died, it became a tearjerker. I recall going through some depression at the age of 15-17, and songs like Lovin’ You didn’t help me one bit!

    Wrekehavoc, I came across your website while searching for something else, but I’m glad I came across it. Love your comments with its great replies.

  5. welcome kevin 🙂 glad you’re enjoying the blog! i’m enjoying your comments, too!

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