Album:Dreamgirls: Music From The Motion Picture
Of course most folks are familiar with Eddie Murphy through his hit films of the 80s like 48 Hrs and Beverly Hills Cop. But he has also dabbled in music and Party All The Time was a top five hit in 1985. His performance as James "Thunder" Early in the 2006 film Dreamgirls earned him an Oscar nomination. He was born Apr. 3, 1961 in Brooklyn, NY. He started out as a stand up comic. But I think a lot of folks first heard of him when he was a Saturday Night Live regular in the early 80s. This led to his film debut in the 1982 film 48 Hrs. It was a hit and this led to several hits including Trading Places, Beverly Hills Cop and Coming to America. Murphy had recorded comedy albums on Columbia. But he recorded his first music album in 1985. Party All The Time was written and produced by Rick James and reached #2 on the Billboard Hot 100. Today it is considered to be one of the worst songs of all time. Murphy recorded unsuccessful albums in 1989 and 1993. His film career continued but by the mid-90s he seemed to be doing a lot of vanity projects where he would write, produce, star and sometimes direct. By the mid-90s, things weren't going so well. Murphy revived his career by starring in the 1996 film The Nutty Professor followed by Dr. Doolittle and Shrek. But his films intended for adult audiences did not perform well. DreamWorks decided to turn the 80s Broadway musical Dreamgirls into a film after Chicago was a big hit. Chicago director Bill Condon was hired to direct. Murphy was hired to play singing star turned villain James "Thunder" Early. The producers knew that both Murphy and Jamie Foxx could do their own singing. Cadillac Car is early in the film and is the song that establishes Early as a star. The Dreamgirls soundtrack is available in a single CD edited version or a 2CD unedited version. Murphy won a Golden Globe and was nominated for an Oscar for the first time. Unfortunately Murphy's success in Dreamgirls was overshadowed by Jennifer Hudson's Oscar win. I think his performance is overlooked. Since then, Murphy's films have been terrible. The 2007 film Norbit bombed and Murphy has been a regular nominee for Golden Raspberry Worst Actor. His most recent film A Thousand Words was produced in 2008 but sat around and was released in 2012. That's usually a bad sign. In this case, it was due to the Paramount Pictures DreamWorks split. Now Murphy is planning to star in Beverly Hills Cop 4 directed by Brett Ratner. Seems a little desperate to me. And he's back making music. Murphy's single Red Light was released in Sept. 2013 and there are plans for a new album. It's a reggae song featuring rapper Snoop Lion. I doubt that Eddie Murphy can regain his 80s stardom. But you never know. Here is Eddie Murphy performing Cadillac Car in the 2006 film Dreamgirls.