Melissa Manchester reflects on her own 'Road'

October 30, 2008

CHAMBERSBURG, Pa. -- It was 1982.

The top songs of the year were "Physical" by Olivia Newton-John and the "Rocky III" anthem "Eye of the Tiger" by Survivor.

The Cardinals beat the Brewers in the World Series. "E.T.: The Extra-Terrestrial" and "Tootsie" were tops at the box office.

And Melissa Manchester won best female pop vocal performance at the Grammys for "You Should Hear How She Talks About You," a song she performed on TV's "Solid Gold."

Manchester said she doesn't remember much about that "Solid Gold" appearance.

About five years ago, after going through some career changes and taking about 10 years off to raise her children and work on and off, Manchester, 57, who lives in Northern California, returned to recording music and is on tour singing some of the old and some of the new.


On Saturday night, she and keyboard player Stephan Oberhoff will perform at The Capitol Theatre.

"I love to sing songs and tell the back story of how the songs were written, then come in the lobby and sign CDs and chat with fans," said Manchester.

Manchester expects to sing songs from her latest album, 2004's "When I Look Down That Road," and older hits such as "Don't Cry Out Loud."

Manchester had several hits from the mid-1970s through the early 1980s, including "Through the Eyes of Love," the theme to the tearjerker "Ice Castles."

Since the music industry has gone through many changes recently, Manchester said she had trouble recognizing it. She used her singing and songwriting talents to tackle different creative endeavors -- national theater tours and writing music for animated films such as "Lady and the Tramp II."

She raised her children while working occasionally -- portraying the beggar woman in a "Sweeney Todd" production that featured Kelsey Grammer, and writing for theater -- until around 2003.

"My son -- he was 16 at the time -- he walked into my office and said, 'You can go back on the road now. ... We're good,'" Manchester said.

Manchester's thinking about making another

CD, but "as long as nobody's putting the thumb on me, I'm not going to rush," she said.

If you go ...

WHAT: Melissa Manchester

WHEN: 8 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 1

WHERE: The Capitol Theatre, 159 S. Main St., Chambersburg, Pa.

COST: Tickets cost $33 to $40, including the service fee.

CONTACT: For tickets, call the 717-263-0202 from 11 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. weekdays or buy them at the door.

MORE: Melissa Manchester's Web site,

o See Melissa Manchester perform "You Should Hear How She Talks About You" on an 1982 broadcast of "Solid Gold."

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