MELISSA MANCHESTER : HEY RICKY
Label : Arista Records
Release Year : 1982
Review (AllMusic) : Nearing the end of her troubled tenure at Arista, Melissa Manchester settled for cheesy but cheerful, synth-drenched dance-pop. Extraordinarily, it was this fluff that won her first Grammy, in the form of "You Should Hear How She Talks About You." But apart from a baffling re-recording of "Come in from the Rain," there are guilty pleasures to be found on Hey Ricky, not least its sassy title track. It's just that it's a world away from the unaffected, compelling artist Manchester had set out to be ten years before.
Review (Wikipedia) : Hey Ricky is the title of the tenth album release by by Melissa Manchester issued on Arista Records in April 1982. During the interim between the release of Hey Ricky and that of the precedent For the Working Girl in September 1980 Manchester had attempted to extricate herself from her recording contract, filing suit in May 1981 for contractual release from Arista. However it was announced that October that the singer and label had reached terms and the track "Race to the End" - a vocal version of the Chariots of Fire theme - was recorded for single release. The producer was Arif Mardin who had previously collaborated with Manchester in 1979 on "Theme from Ice Castles". Mardin proceeded to collaborate with Manchester on the tracks which would comprise the album Hey Ricky released in April 1982. The lead single "You Should Hear How She Talks About You" radically invented Manchester as a synthpop dance artist and was heavily promoted by the singer who displayed a new image complementing the track; "You Should Hear How She Talks About You" accrued gradual interest entering the Top 40 of the "Billboard" Hot 100 in July 1982 proceeding to the Top Ten that August with a career best peak for Manchester at #5. The single's popularity was reflected in that of its parent album which Billboard ranked with a #19 peak. The other cuts on Hey Ricky included the 1981 "Race to the End" single, a duet with David Gates: "Wish We Were Heroes"; a new version of "Come in From the Rain" introduced by Manchester on her 1976 Better Days and Happy Endings album; and "Your Place or Mine" from the soundtrack of the feature film A Little Sex. The album's title cut - written with Bernie Taupin - was issued as the followup to "You Should Hear How She Talks About You" but failed to chart. After a 1983 Greatest Hits album release Manchester would part company with Arista, retaining the dance artist focus of her "You Should Hear How She Talks About You" hit for two albums with MCA after which she seemingly retired as a career recording artist, with four subsequent album releases between 1989 and 2004.