The 1982 hit song “Gloria” has found new life as a postgame victory ballad for the NHL's St. Louis Blues, but newer fans of the platinum hit don’t seem to realize that the singer who made it famous died in 2004 -- and keep trying to book her for gigs, according to reports.
Laura Branigan’s signature song from her debut album “Branigan” stayed on the Billboard pop charts for 36 weeks and earned her a Grammy nomination for best female pop vocalist. She was 52 when she died of a brain aneurysm in her home outside New York City.
In January, the Blues began playing “Gloria” in the locker room whenever they won, which coincided with an 11-game winning streak that ended with a Thursday night 5-2 loss to the Dallas Stars. Before that, the team played the 1961 hit “Runaround Sue” by Dion.
"Most of the time, when you try to figure out a song to play, it has something to do with the team or something that happened throughout the year," Blues left wing Alexander Steen told NHL.com. "We started with 'Runaround Sue,' which is a happy song. It's like the feeling you get after wins in our building now (with 'Runaround Sue' playing). It was the same vibe with 'Gloria' - it's an old-school song and it puts the boys in a good mood."
The song became so popular, Blues fans keep calling and emailing Branigan's family and old bandmates with requests for live performances.
“One out of every two people do not know that she even passed (after) all these years,” Tommy Bayiokos, Branigan’s former boyfriend who was a drummer in the band, told the New York Daily News.
Kathy Keto Golik, Branigan’s former manager, said in a Facebook post that it was bittersweet that some fans were unaware of Branigan's death but that she would have been thrilled nonetheless that her signature song has regained popularity with a new generation of fans.
“Absolutely LOVE this, and it’s getting a LOT of press!” Golik posted along with an explanation of why the platinum-selling artist is in demand after all these years. “Bittersweet part if that some fans and such are unaware of Laura’s passing and have been requesting that she come sing ‘Gloria’ at one of their games or the playoffs… so wish she were her for that, as I know she’d be thrilled.”
Aside from “Gloria," Branigan also found success in 1984 with “Self Control,” which reached No. 4 on the U.S. charts.