The ‘Grease’ star celebrates the song’s 40th anniversary
Olivia Newton-John celebrates the 40th anniversary of the release of the most successful song of her career, “Physical”.
It was their fifth No. 1, single from their 11th studio album of the same name and became certified platinum. Now, looking back, Newton-John told Granthshala News that the song allowed her to “reestablish” her image from good girl to sultry mermaid.
Regarding the change in how fans felt after the song became a hit, he said, “They call it reinventing yourself.” “I wasn’t doing it intentionally. It was just the song that attracted me and the album. But I feel so lucky that I had the opportunity to record it.”
At the time, in September 1981, “physical” was considered too blasphemous for some markets and banned from running on some radio stations.
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The “Grease” star admitted, “I felt a little embarrassed to be banned.” “But now I look back, ‘That was great.’ It got noticed. And compared to what I’m hearing on the radio now, it’s like a lullaby.”
Newton-John acknowledged that the lyrics were a bit “vulgar”, but “I don’t think I really knew how lousy it was by the time I was recording it, and that’s when I passed out. “
The 73-year-old singer/actress recalled how “Physical” was originally written for Rod Stewart and then later offered to Tina Turner who turned it down.
“I heard the song and I thought, ‘Wow, that’s a great song.’ I didn’t really know what it was about. I don’t think it was until I finished it and panicked,” she said. “[I thought then] ‘I think I’ve gone too far, I think I’ve gone too far.’ But it worked for me, so I’m very happy that I took the chance.”
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A deluxe edition of “Physical” will be out on October 22. To celebrate, Newton-John has partnered with Third Love for Crunch Fitness and a Guinness World Record effort and TikTok “Physical” challenge to raise awareness for its foundation and plant medicine research. To find compassionate ways to treat cancer. The goal is to set a world record for the number of people doing famous leg lifts from a “physical” music video.
Newton-John also spoke about her ongoing battle with cancer and how she is feeling today.
“I feel so lucky to be here,” she told Granthshala. “And you know, I have my days. I take a lot of cannabis and it really helps me a lot. My husband grows it for me and it helps me with pain and sleepiness and bloating.”
She said through her foundation, the Olivia Newton-John Foundation Fund, they are conducting scientific research into how cannabis can provide relief for cancer patients.
“So I dream that in my lifetime, we will find the answer,” Newton-John said. “Since cannabis is not something you can overdose or die from, many other drugs that you have to go through your cancer journey are not safe. So that’s my long-term dream.”