Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Black History Month: Taylor Dayne

Blacks and Jewish people have a lot in common. Slavery. Oppression. Whoopi Goldberg. During the Civil Rights Movement, Blacks and Jews marched and worked side-by-side to end discriminatory Jim Crow Laws in the south.  But, while Black people are appreciative for the gift of friendship, the greatest gift the chosen people have ever given us, besides Adam Sandler movies (womp, womp), was a nice Jewish girl named Leslie Wunderman, who is better know as the blonde bombshell, Taylor Dayne!

I'm trying to get my 1987 Taylor drag just right! Red lipstick? Check! Ripped jeans? Mega-check! Crimped hair? Do you smell something burning? Awww, snap! I just fried my hair with my crimping iron from 11th grade that I dug out of a box labeled, "High School Nightmares.". I miss Alabama, because in Alabama, them Arabs and them Koreans are experts on Black hair care products. Don't believe me? Just ask your own personal Black Friend who she buys her weave from. Trust me, she is not going to say from "ShaQuanna's Weave Emporium" or "Skippy McAlester's Weave Galleria." You see, people are coming from China, Korea, Pakistan, and those other far-a flung countries in search of the American Dream. They are financing their American Dream one weave at a time! I'm singing Neil Diamond's
"(They're Coming to)America" right now. Neil's Jewish, too, and if you don't like that song; you're not a patriot...and you should self-deport to like Micronesia. Is that racist? No, silly, it's Black History Month! It is not Micronesian History Month...that's in August.

Sorry for the rant, but the side of my head looks like a blown out tire, and oddly enough, it smells like the infield at a NASCAR race. Yes, I know what that smells like from personal experience. I'm a race-mixer like that. Shout out to my boo, the #88, Dale Earnhardt, Jr.

Taylor Dayne burst onto the music scene in 1987 with the funky! infectious! "Tell It to My Heart". I love that song, but I have to say her love songs were beautiful. "I'll Always Love You" and "Love Will Lead You Back" solidified Taylor Dayne's place as a Pioneer of Black History. "Love Will Lead You Back" was one of my Mama's FAVORITE songs. Every time that song played, Miss Ella would drop everything and wave her hands up in the air. She waved 'em like she just didn't care. Then she would say, "That girl know she can SANG!" Notice I didn't say that white girl. We had cable then, so we knew Taylor was white, but she got the "Miss Ella Seal of Approval", and that's enough for me.

Today, I salute Taylor Dayne, Pioneer of Black History, for a voice as rich as Joe, the janitor/shareholder at Facebook World Headquarters. I also salute Taylor Dayne for giving me wonderful memories of my Mom. My Mom loved music, and she instilled a love of music in all of her children. Growing up in Montgomery, Alabama, where there are so many spoken and unspoken rules, Mama taught us that there was no such thing as Black music or white music. She just taught me to listen without prejudice...(thanks, George Michael for totally ripping me off)!!!!! Miss Ella taught us that good music was good music, and Taylor Dayne, you made us all believe that the one that got away would come back. Mazel Tov, My Sista!

My parents divorced when I was ten.  My parents had seen each other three times in the 35 years they were a non-couple. On the day my Mom died, one of the last people she saw was my Dad, who came from D.C. to say goodbye. She never remarried after they got divorced. Their marriage was filled with a lot of pain, mostly because of what Viet Nam did to Daddy. But, Mama never got over him. I'll never know what was said in that sterile room on September 10, but I do know that Mama held on long enough to see him.  Hours after he got there, she let go, and let the cancer take her. In an act of kindness and grace, never displayed by my father (at least to me or in my presence) my Dad paid for my Mom's funeral.

 Mama and I loved watching soap operas together.  I suspect that if her death had been scripted, Dad would take Mama's hand before she died, "Love Will Lead You Back" would be playing in the background. He'd say, " Please forgive me for ruining your life." She'd say, " I forgave you a long time ago." Then her hand would fall slowly by her side, her eyes would close with a look of peace on her face.  The screen would fade to black, and Taylor's amazing voice would swell, ushering my Mom into heaven.

For more info about Taylor go to her website:


  1. hi I'm from germany and 1988 the song by taylor dayne reached #1 on the charts and it sold nearly 500,000 copies in germany alone

    in the us it only reached # 7

    but that was before my childhood.
    Some can listen to this song regularly on german tv and i like this song

    im not sure what happened to this woman !

    I saw her video and she reminds me of both the 1980s TINA TURNER and the young and slim KIRSTIE ALLEY

    and i found out, that by 1987 the mangers of her wanted her to be a whitney houston ripoff

    you know whitney houston was everybody's darling since 1984-.

    she was young+ beautiful and african american

    whole USA loved her then.

    white and black girls wanted to be like her
    and white and black boys wanted to date her in their dreams

  2. Your story about your parents was very beautiful.
    Thank you for sharing that with the world.

  3. Beautiful story and it just showed that real music is made like that anymore. I also could see your moms saying those words to your dad because men don't know how to say I'm sorry or how they truly feel.

  4. This song held me together and gave me hope until our love did lead him back.