Dirty Girl

Music By: Various Artists

Distributed by: Lakeshore Records

Reviewed by Melissa Minners


            Dirty Girl takes place in 1987 and follows the adventures of Danielle (Juno Temple), the ďdirty girlĒ of Norman High School in Norman, Oklahoma.  When her behavior gets her banished to a remedial class, she is paired on a parenting project with a friendless homosexual named Clarke (Jeremy Dozier).  The two soon discover that they have one thing in common - they want to run away.  Danielle wants to find the father she never met who supposedly lives in California.  Clarke wants to get away from his homophobic father before he sends him to military school.  The two set off on an adventure that culminates in an unexpected friendship.

            The soundtrack of Dirty Girl is filled with songs from the top female artists of the 1980s like Melissa Manchester, Pat Benatar, Teena Marie and Lisa & Wendy.  Having grown up with this music, I couldnít wait to take a listen.  It all starts with Shadows of the Night, a rocking love anthem by Pat Benatar.  This is followed up by Melissa Manchester singing You Should Hear How She Talks About You, a pop song about a surprise love.  Next is an oldie, but goody from Tammy Tucker about a lost love entitled Delta Dawn.  I had never heard this country song prior to the Dirty Girl Soundtrack, but itís catchy and now I canít get the words out of my head.

            The next song is the second by Melissa Manchester, who appears quite often on this soundtrack.  Itís a love ballad called Midnight Blue.  Then we have the pop anthem, I Want Candy, by Bow Wow Wow.  Then itís time to slow things down a bit with the Rita Coolidge love song, Only You.  Next up is an acoustic version of Your Love by Outfield.  I have to say, I think I like the acoustic version much better than the original that used to play over the radio.  Melissa Manchester follows with a ballad I hadnít remembered until now called Still Myself.

            Then comes one of my favorite songs from the 80ís: Sheena Eastonís Strut.  I still have the 45 version of Strut carefully packed away (for those who donít remember, that would be a vinyl version of the single).  From that angry song, we move on to yet another Melissa Manchester ballad entitled Rainbird.  Then comes the dance song Lovergirl by Teena Marie.  This is followed by a beautiful ballad of self discovery by Lisa & Wendy (formerly of Princeís Revolution), The Life.  Many of you out there would remember this song from the movie Dangerous Minds.

            The next track is my favorite Melissa Manchester song, Donít Cry Out Loud.  This belted out tune about moving forward in the face of adversity shows just how powerful a singer Melissa Manchester is.  Finally, we have Whenever I Call You Friend by Fyfe Dangerfield and Inara George.  This is the only song on the album that disappointed me a little.  I still remember and love the original version of this song as performed by Stevie Nicks and Kenny Loggins.  No other version can compare, but this particular version is somewhat flat.

            All-in-all, the Dirty Girl Soundtrack was a whole lot of fun for me and I believe any fan of the 80s will enjoy the music.  The tunes alternate between catchy and beautiful, but the entire album is a fun trip down memory lane.  The Dirty Girl Soundtrack is one of the better music compilation albums of the year.  Iíve already listened to it five times and am itching to listen to it again as soon as I finish writing this review.


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