Before she was a cutesy, “I Love Everybody” co-host and judge of American Idol, Paula was stealing hearts as a sexy, talented singer. I used to play “Forever Your Girl”—pretty much every song on the album, really—over and over again, loving nearly every single song on the tape. My aunt introduced me to her, and even though her dancing around with that cartoon Cheetohs-like cat was sort of stupid (okay, really stupid), it was still a fantastic song.
Beck is one of those singers whose so cool, he couldn’t be from anywhere but L.A. I bet we sing “I’m a Loser, Baby” every week in our house—not because we believe it, but because it’s just such a fun song.
Oh, how I loved Belinda Carlisle as a kid! I used to sing “I Get Weak” into my microphone every day, crooning into the vibrations of its cheap plastic and pretending I was every bit the goddess she was. I liked her better by herself than with the Go-Gos, I think, but they were fun, too. Once, we were playing that game where you think of a musician based on the last letter someone else’s musician was (for example, I say Steven Tyler, then you have a “T”) at school, and everyone was coming up with all modern performers. I had “B,” and I said, “Belinda Carlisle,” and my history teacher’s eyebrows shot up into her hair while everyone else muttered over who the heck that was. Yeah, that was fun. Funny how you remember things like that.
Billy Rae Cyrus (and daughter, Miley)
I’m not a big fan of either Cyruses, though Miley was cute enough as the voice in the Disney film Bolt. When “Achy Breaky Heart” came out, it was a huge deal; they used to play it at lunch time at school (I was in the fourth grade) and everyone but me loved it. I’d sit there with my hands over my ears, hating the crap and wishing they’d turn it off. I still don’t like it. But I’ve come to at least appreciate some of his music, especially his second album, which included “Words by Heart” and “The Heart of a Woman,” which, admittedly, I did make fun of at first (yes, “the fart of a woman” is pretty juvenile, I agree).
Zooey is my new favorite female singer—or she is, at least, one of many of them. I love her music in “She & Him,” and found her version of “Dream a Little Dream” the most beautiful I’d ever heard. She also happens to be, of course, one of the most adorable actresses ever.
For every singer in Los Angeles, it seems there are a dozen actors or actresses; click here to see more famous people from the area.