Stairway To … Something

For your annual Turkey Day clip, we go back to the long-lost realm of 1980s public access TV, New York division. A friend brought Stairway To Stardom’s YouTube page to my attention some time ago, and in particular, Lucille Cataldo, whose one-of-a-kind rendition of her own song “Hairdresser” will permanently alter the way you see the world (somehow, it was never a hit).

Given the holiday, I briefly considered highlighting this food-centric gem (apparently from the real life Sweeney Sisters); instead, I present Gloria Huddle’s truly original version of the Manhattan Transfer hit “Operator”. She inexplicably kicks it off with a dramatic reading of a scene from the 1966 Michael Caine film Alfie, then recites the song’s lyrics over the recording. You be the judge as to whether she’s being totally serious or not (part of me thinks this is actually Lily Tomlin or Andrea Martin in character.) Be sure to watch all the way to the end–her facial expression at the applause is not to be missed.

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