Adele V Bette Midler – No Contest Really………

Today has seen me in an enforced very long car journey – pulling together all the odds and sods before heading back out to the land of sand tomorrow. Yeap, I have driven from deepest darkest Cumbria to Skipton, to Manchester and then down to Heathrow.


This prolonged and at times tortuous journey has given me plenty of time to work my way through several Radio 2 DJ’s – in the nicest possible way – and when the going got tough with them several opportunities to listen to various genres of music.


So today I once again listened to the musical genius that is Adele.

Regular readers will know that I am deeply in awe of Adele, (A Near Disastrous Washing Machine Incident, More Adele Humour & Oh Yes A Good Run and Just In Case Anybody Hasn’t Seen This, It Is A Must watch….), not just for her musical prowess but also the fact that she is down to earth and despite the phenomenal level of success she is deservedly enjoying, she has kept her feet firmly on the ground.

However, as per my post of a few weeks ago, (Pedalling Like Crazy But Not Getting Very Far….) I am still not impressed that I am the same age as her Mum and as such could, in theory, be Adele’s Mum. I will continue to encourage our daughter to achieve the same level of success as her would be ‘big sister’ and so to keep her Dad and I in the style that we would like to become accustomed.


So, I listened to several Adele albums on my drive today – including the stunning album ’25’. Before I go any further I would just like to say that listening to the epic songs on the album I am slightly concerned that my heroine has a bit of a premature age issue and as she sings regularly the idea of getting old scares her. However, I would just like to state for the record that at 26 she is not old and even with her blistering success old age is way beyond the horizon.


That little snippet of advice comes from a 46 year old who is about to run her first marathon – be prepared everybody…..

Anyway, as I sung my way through ’25’ I came across the legendary song that is ‘When We Were Young’. I love this song and have listened to it what must be a million times. However, the solitary confinement of today’s drive meant I could really focus on it.

As I was singing along to it, it reached the 3 min 50 second point. The true relevance of this will become clear in a moment as I am about to become controversial. I attempt to avoid controversy on the blog – after all the whole point of this piece of amateur literature is to keep you entertained so that at some point you may be tempted to donate to the ‘Every Inch Of Tarmac Tommy’s Fundraising Campaign’ and as such I do my best not to upset anybody.

However, the 3 min 50 second point came around on several occasions, (mainly be virtue of the fact that I replayed the track over and over again….) and it was at this point that I was completely blown away by my heroine’s voice.

At this point I hasten to add that I am not musically minded and so any musical inaccuracies in the following description are done with the best intentions and I can only hope that nobody is offended.

At the 3 minute 50 second point in the song ‘When We Were Young’, Adele bursts forth with what I could call a classic and lung busting key change. It is truly mesmerising and as a result I almost crashed the car several times today on the M40.

Anyway, the mesmerising effect of this point in the song got me thinking and for some obscure reason that is still to be identified I was reminded about and got to thinking about about the horrendous and ear piercing song by Bette Midler, “Wind Beneath My Wings’.

This song has always been an anathema to me. I have never actually worked out what justification there is for it and despite it being a million years old it is still regularly played on the radio. I have to admit that when it is played if I am in vaguely easy reach of the volume button or even better the on/off switch then the opportunity is grasped. If not then earphones are utilised and failing that I will simply leave the room.


How the heck she won a Grammy with it is beyond me.

The song itself is brilliant – that is clear by the number of big names that have done versions of it. However, the Bette Midler version is pants.

You are probably wondering what this has to do with my heroine’s incredible rendition of ‘When We Were Young’.

Well, as already mentioned Adele bursts forth with an incredible, lung busting key change, (if that is the right term), at 3 minutes 50 seconds. This reminded me that Bette Midler does the same towards the end of ‘Wind Beneath My Wings’ – I do not know at what point she bursts forth as to get that information I would have to listen to it and that is one step too far.

Adele’s key change is impeccable, even to my non-musically gifted ears, Bette Midler’s is horrendous and for the last million years has always sounded to me to be off key, flat, out of tune or whatever the correct terminology is. It really makes me cringe and sends a horrendous shiver down my spine.


I am hoping that by finally jotting down my thoughts about Ms Midler’s effort there will be a cathartic effect and the song will no longer make me want to vomit every time I hear it. If not then I will use Adele’s magic to heal the wounds.

I am also hoping that next time I listen to my heroine’s magic in ‘When We Were Young’ I am no longer reminded of the screech that is Ms Midler’s rendition of ‘Wind Beneath My Wings’.

Apologies to any Bette Midler fans out there – I warned you I was going to be controversial.

Even if you are offended, don’t take it out on the Charity push, you can still donate to the cause……….??

Don’t forget to donate, this is all about raising money for Tommy’s

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