Flashdance……What a Feeling – Irene Cara

THIS DAY IN MUSIC……………………………..on May 29th of 1983 Irene Cara sits atop Billboard with the theme from the hit film “Flashdance”. Irene Cara wrote the lyrics with the songwriter Keith Forsey, and Giorgio Moroder composed the music. Moroder and Forsey wrote many songs that became hits when they were used in ’80s movies: Moroder wrote “Danger Zone” and “Take My Breath Away” for Top Gun, while Forsey wrote “Shakedown” for Beverly Hills Cop II and “Don’t You (Forget About Me)” for The Breakfast Club. The word “Flashdance” never appears in the lyric, but the song still relates to the movie, as it’s specifically about dancing. Irene Cara was an accomplished dancer who not only sang the title song to Fame, but also starred in the film as an aspiring dancer. Said Cara: “‘What a feeling’ was a metaphor about a dancer, how she’s in control of her body when she dances and how she can be in control of her life.” The movie Flashdance was released on April 15, 1983. This song hit #1 US, where it stayed for six weeks. On June 25, the soundtrack when to #1 and stayed for two weeks, interrupting the run of Michael Jackson’s Thriller, which had been at the top spot for 17 weeks and would return for another 20 (eventually knocked off by the Footloose soundtrack). On September 10, another song from Flashdance, Michael Sembello’s “Maniac,” also went to #1 US. According to Giorgio Moroder, he wrote this song with Irena Cara in mind to sing because he loved what she did with the theme song to Fame. Irene Cara won the 1983 Grammy for Best Pop Vocal Performance, Female, for her work on this song. She and her co-writers also were awarded the Oscar for Best Original Song, beating out two songs from Yentl, one from Tender Mercies, and another Flashdance tune: “Maniac.” The dance scenes in the video (and the movie), were performed by body double Marine Jahan. It was a well kept secret that Jennifer Beals did not dance in the film. The song was also a huge hit in the UK peaking at #2.