Darlene Love says that her induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame has been good for business.
“Oh, yes, definitely,” she tells Billboard.com. As the voice of the Phil Spector-produced holiday favorite “Christmas (Baby Please Come Home),” Love says she’s “known as the Christmas queen, and I usually work between the months of October and January.” But since she was announced as part of the Rock Hall’s class of 2011 — joining Alice Cooper, Neil Diamond, Dr. John, Tom Waits, Leon Russell and record executives Jac Holzman and Art Rupe — Love says that, “I’ve gotten a few jobs spread through the year, which really made me feel great. People are hiring me now. Before it was almost like they thought I could only sing Christmas songs, but I’ve gotten quite a few jobs since the nomination.”
As she prepares for tonight’s induction at New York’s Waldorf Astoria Hotel, Love has some other work ahead of her, too. Her Real Good Productions be releasing a live DVD, “The Concert of Love,” in April, which was filmed at a 2010 show in Bergen, N.J. “It’s actually fabulous,” Love says of the video, which American Public Television has licensed for a two-year run. “I’ve always wanted to film a concert of mine because we put a lot of time and energy into them. Mostly I just wanted to do all my songs my fans wanted to hear, and it came out fantastic.”
Also on Love’s docket is a biopic based on her 1998 memoir “My Name is Love: The Darlene Love Story.” Love says she’s currently “tweaking” the script and looking for a director, and she hopes to have things in place to begin casting in the fall.
“We’re going to use the original songs for [the actors] to lip sync… so we have a bigger list because we can go to actors and not just singer-actors,” says the California-born Love, who was the voice of hits for the Crystals, the Blossoms and Bob B. Soxx & the Blue Jeans as well as her own hits like “Today (I Met) The Boy I’m Gonna Marry” and “Wait ‘Til My Bobby Gets Home.” She won’t reveal a list about who she’d like to play her in the film, however.
“Last year we put some feelers out, and we were surprised so many people came knocking on our door,” Love says. “Number one, it’s a chance for a black actor to have a lead role in a movie. If we find the three people to play me, Phil Spector and Bill Medley, and the right director, the movie will be sensational. It’s going to tell a side of Phil Spector that nobody knows.”
Love is also thinking about a new album, her first since 2007’s “It’s Christmas of Course.” “I would love to do some duets,” she says, “and I mean duets — everybody in the same room, at the same time. I’d love to do a duet with Bruce Springsteen, but I want to be in the same room as him. His excitement, his energy, just catapults you higher.”
Love adds that Springsteen — with whom she performed at the 25th Anniversary Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Concerts last year in New York — has said that “he wants to play on everything I’m doing” at the induction ceremony. After talking with musical director Paul Shaffer she’s planning “a Lovefest” that will include the crystal’s “He’s a Rebel” and “Da Doo Ron Ron,” the Bob B. Soxx version of Disney’s “Zip-a-Dee-Doo-Dah” and “(Today I Met) the Boy I’m Gonna Marry.”
“It’s the validation of all the work I’ve done all these years,” says Love, who will be inducted by Bette Midler. “People in the (music) industry know me better than people outside of the industry. This to me is my Grammy, my Academy Award, my Tony, all in this one award. This means I’m being honored for everything that I’ve ever done.”