Olivia Newton-John, the Grammy-winning celebrity who reigned on pop, nation, grownup up to date, and dance charts with such hits as Bodily and You’re the One That I Need and received numerous hearts as everybody’s favorite Sandy within the blockbuster movie model of Grease, has died. She was 73.
Newton-John, a longtime resident of Australia whose gross sales topped 100 million albums, died Monday at her southern California ranch, John Easterling, her husband, wrote on Instagram and Fb. “We ask that everybody please respect the household’s privateness throughout this very troublesome time,” the message stated.
From 1973-83, Newton-John was among the many world’s hottest entertainers. She had 14 prime 10 singles simply within the US, received 4 Grammys, and starred with John Travolta in Grease and with Gene Kelly in Xanadu. The fast-stepping Travolta-Newton-John duet, You’re the One That I Need, was one of many period’s greatest songs and has bought greater than 15 million copies.
Bodily, the bouncy, R-rated smash launched in 1981, was No 1 for 10 weeks and was named Billboard’s tune of the 12 months regardless of being banned by some radio stations. An aerobics-friendly promotional clip, filmed within the early years of MTV, received a Grammy for greatest video.
Co-star of “Grease” John Travolta shared his condolences on Instagram.
“My dearest Olivia, you made all of our lives so significantly better. Your influence was unbelievable”, Travolta wrote.
Each musically and image-wise, she reinvented herself throughout these years. The blonde, ever-smiling Newton-John initially favoured delicate pop-country songs comparable to Please Mr Please and Have You By no means Been Mellow and soft-breathing ballads like I Actually Love You, which in 1975 received Grammys for greatest feminine pop vocal and document of the 12 months.
However she picked up the tempo in Grease, particularly after Sandy ditched her white sweaters and blouses for waist-high, black leather-based pants. Bodily even made Newton-John blush as she informed her would-be lover, “There’s nothing left to speak about/Until it’s horizontally” and eventually known as out, “Let’s get animal! Animal!”
“I recorded it after which instantly thought, ‘Goodness, possibly I’ve gone too far!’” she informed Leisure Weekly in 2017, recalling how the tune had been urged by supervisor Roger Davies. “I known as Roger and stated, ‘We’ve bought to drag this tune!’ He stated, ‘It’s too late. It’s already gone to radio and it’s working up the charts.’ I used to be horrified!”
She had just a few hits after Bodily, however her profession declined and Newton-John grew to become extra prone to make information due to her personal life. In 1992, as she was making ready a live performance tour, her father died and he or she was identified with breast most cancers.
Her marriage to actor Matt Lattanzi, with whom she had a daughter, actor-singer Chloe Lattanzi, broke up in 1995 and a years-long relationship with cameraman Patrick McDermott ended mysteriously. McDermott went lacking throughout a 2005 fishing journey in California, and his destiny remained unknown years later. Quite a few studies alleged he was dwelling in Mexico with a brand new girlfriend.
“He was misplaced at sea, and no one actually is aware of what occurred,” Newton-John informed Australia’s 60 Minutes in 2016. “It’s human to marvel. However you understand, these are the issues in life it’s a must to settle for and let go. As a result of everytime you undergo troublesome instances, there’s all the time these issues.”
Newton-John’s current albums included Stronger Than Earlier than; a vacation collaboration with Travolta, This Christmas; and the autobiographical Gaia: One Girl’s Journey, impressed by her battle with most cancers and by the lack of her father.
Newton-John married John Easterling, founding father of the Amazon Herb Firm, in 2008. She was concerned in quite a few charitable causes, serving as goodwill ambassador for the United Nations Surroundings Programme and as nationwide spokeswoman for the Youngsters’s Well being Environmental Coalition. She additionally based the Olivia Newton-John Most cancers and Wellness Centre in Melbourne, Australia.
Newton-John was the daughter of German literature professor Brin Newton-John and Irene Bron, whose father was Nobel Prize-winning physicist Max Bron. The Newton-Johns moved to Australia when Olivia was 5, however she returned to England in her teenagers and lived along with her mom after her mother and father broke up.
She had early desires of changing into a veterinarian however was successful singing contests in highschool and earlier than age 20 had toured military bases and golf equipment and recorded her first single, Until You Say You’ll Be Mine. In 1971, she lined Bob Dylan’s If Not for You and commenced a detailed partnership with a good friend from Australia, John Farrar, who produced the tune and later wrote You’re the One That I Need, Magic, and a number of other different hits for her.
She had cherished nation music, particularly the data of “Tennessee” Ernie Ford, since childhood, however her early success didn’t impress critics or some fellow musicians. A Village Voice evaluate likened her to a geisha who “makes her voice smaller than it truly is simply to please males”.
When Newton-John beat out Dolly Parton and Loretta Lynn for the Nation Music Affiliation’s prime artist of 1973, Tammy Wynette helped based the Affiliation of Nation Entertainers, a membership designed to exclude Newton-John and different crossover performers.
However Newton-John had a present enterprise admirer who along with her grew to become one in every of moviemaking’s most unforgettable groups. Travolta had starred within the stage model of Grease and, for the deliberate movie, thought Newton-John can be the “final Sandy, the good woman who will get robust within the last act and will get her man”.
“I fearful that at 29 I used to be too previous to play a highschool woman,” Newton-John, who insisted on taking a display check earlier than accepting the half, informed The Telegraph in 2017.
“All the pieces about making the movie was enjoyable, but when I needed to choose a favourite second, it was the transformation from what I name Sandy 1 to Sandy 2. I bought to play a special character and put on totally different garments, and after I placed on that tight black outfit to sing You’re the One That I Need, I bought a really totally different response from the blokes on the set.”
She is survived by her husband; daughter Chloe Lattanzi; sister Sarah Newton-John; brother Toby Newton-John; and a number of other nieces and nephews.