“a woman who could think like a woman”

From: Little Girl Blue (2010), by Randy L Schmidt:

“Karen had gradually reached a point in her career where she wanted to be known as Karen Carpenter, not just the lead singer from the Carpenters

Initially, Herb Alpert and Jerry Moss supported the idea of a solo project for Karen, as did manager Jerry Weintraub. It was Alpert who recommended producer Phil Ramone…

…During these initial stages, Ramone extended an invitation to friend Rod Temperton to come to New York to write for Karen…Temperton offered Karen several of his own compositions, including “Off the Wall” and “Rock with You,” but at that point the songs were just grooves at the piano, still in their most raw form. She declined both…Within a few months, Ramone introduced Temperton to Quincy Jones when the two attended a barbecue held at the home of the pop music titan, and the songs were soon pitched to Michael Jackson…

The two Temperton songs Karen passed on became huge hits for Michael Jackson on his Off the Wall solo album. Also featured on the album was his recording of “She’s Out of My Life,” a song by Tom Bahler long rumoured to have been written in response to the end of the composer’s own brief relationship with Karen Carpenter in 1978. “Some believe that I had written that as a result of mine and Karen’s breakup,” Bahler says. “The fact is, I had already written that song by the time Karen and I became romantic. That song was written more about Rhonda Rivera, who later married my friend John Davidson. Rhonda and I had been together for two years, and it was after we broke up that I started dating Karen.”…

According to Ramone, “Karen was twenty-nine, but she couldn’t be a woman who could think like a woman and express herself…”…According to (Karen Ichiuji), “Everybody had input as far as the album was concerned…I remember Billy Joel coming in the studio and saying, ‘Uh, excuse me, but why am I not doing keyboards?’” Paul Simon stopped in as well. “They treated her like a major mega artist,”…

…Phil Ramone was surprised by the negative response from the family and, in time, those at A&M as well. “I feel like I’ve taken your daughter out on a date and was supposed to be home by midnight but came in at 12:01 A.M., he told Jerry Moss. “It’s like you met me at the door saying ‘I hope you didn’t change my daughter.”…”

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