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Charted: Nov. 23, 1985

Rating: 4.456 (average of 9 ratings)

Genre: AC/standards

Quotable: --

Album Tracks:

  1. Putting It Together
  2. If I Loved You
  3. Something’s Coming
  4. Not While I’m Around
  5. Being Alive
  6. I Have Dreamed/ We Kiss in a Shadow/ Something Wonderful
  7. Adelaide’s Lament
  8. Send in the Clouds
  9. Pretty Women/ The Ladies Who Lunch
  10. Can’t Help Lovin’ That Man
  11. I Loves You Porgy/ Porgy, I’s Your Woman Now
  12. Somewhere

Sales (in millions):

sales in U.S. only 4.0
sales in U.K. only - estimated --
sales in all of Europe as determined by IFPI – click here to go to their site. --
sales worldwide - estimated 6.0


peak on U.S. Billboard album chart 1 3
peak on U.K. album chart 3

Singles/Hit Songs:

  • Somewhere (11/30/85) #43 US, #5 AC
  • Send in the Clowns (3/8/86) #25 AC

Notes: A reissue of the album included “I Know Him So Well” from Chess.

The Broadway Album
Barbara Streisand
“Barbra Streisand’s abandonment of Broadway was the worst thing that happened to the theater in the ‘60s. Her retreat from theater music on record was less of a loss, if only because she had tended to focus on second-rank composers and obscure songs by first-rate ones, while practically ignoring, for example, Stephen Sondheim, who, as of the early ‘70s, became the pre-eminent Broadway songwriter. When she returned to show songs in 1985, she reversed these failings. Now, the singer who had never done much with Rodgers and Hammerstein, Frank Loesser, George Gershwin, or Jerome Kern finally felt confident enough to take on If I Loved You from Carousel, Adelaide’s Lament from Guys and Dolls, Can’t Help Lovin’ That Man from Showboat, and a medley from Porgy and Bess, and she did them well.” WR

“Even better, on seven tracks with Sondheim’s name on them, she proved the perfect intepreter of the most contemporary and intellectual of Broadway’s writers, whether singing his lyrics over the music of Leonard Bernstein (another composer she’d largely neglected) from West Side Story or making the most of material drawn from shows like Company, A Little Night Music, Sweeney Todd, and Sunday in the Park with George. Sondheim collaborated with Streisand, penning special lyrics for songs like Putting It Together and even his standard, Send in the Clowns,” WR the latter of which “may be one of her finest ‘80s moments.” EV

“Also on board was Streisand’s arranger from the early and mid-‘60s, Peter Matz. The result was an album that repositioned some of Broadway’s best in a pop context (doubtless many people heard these great songs for the first time) and showed that Streisand was still at her best when presenting the dramatically satisfying story songs of the theater. Apparently, many long-time fans agreed: …The Broadway Album was Streisand’s most commercially successful album in five years.” WR

The album also garnered largely positive reviews. New York Times reviewer Stephen Holden said “shortly after the album’s release that Streisand had ‘just released what may be the album of a lifetime.’” WK Even Francis Davis, a reviewer for Rolling Stone agreed that even though she thought the album suffered from “self-consciousness and overproduction, …the album ‘works somehow, if only as a reminder of what a neglected wealth of riches Broadway offers and what a marvelous singer Streisand is when she’s not trying to pass herself off as a rock star.’” WK “Significantly, she had dropped her pop-period Guilty perm and returned to straight hair.” EV

However, “this may also be one of Babs’ most dated albums, due to typically ‘80s synthesizer-heavy arrangements that simply don’t work with the material. Company’s Being Alive is scarred by a preening alto sax, while West Side Story’s Something’s Coming features what sounds suspiciously like syndrums. But – and it’s a pretty big ‘but’ – Streisand sounds more buttery than ever…so much so that she often manages to overcome the cheesy production. Now that’s a singer.” EV

Review Source(s):

Last updated January 26, 2011.