Barbra Streisand on Her New Album, Returning to Directing, and Her One and Only Pot Smoking Incident

Barbra Streisand is in bed at three o’clock on a gorgeous day in Southern California. She says, “I’m still in my pajamas.” “I enjoy lying in my bed.”

She is, of course, accompanied by her dogs, Miss Violet and Miss Scarlett. On this episode of the “Just for Variety” podcast, Streisand tells me that “they take their naps in my bed.”

Who better to work from her boudoir than Streisand? The EGOT winner is promoting her latest album, “Release Me 2,” which is a compilation of ten previously unheard recordings from her vault. Originally produced for her 2014 album “Partners,” she sings “I’d Want It to Be You” with Willie Nelson on the recording that makes its premiere on August 6. In 1979, Kermit the Frog and I recorded “The Rainbow Connection.” Working with the late Jim Henson, Streisand says, “I did it basically for my son [Jason Gould], who was a big fan of ‘The Muppet Movie’ and watched ‘Sesame Street.'” And he cherished it.

Although she was working on the album during the pandemic, she was also able to spend more time with her family and her 23-year husband, James Brolin, because of the lockdown and restricted travel. “There’s nothing like family and home and pure love and joy and connection,” says Streisand, “and I’m enjoying my grandchildren.” “At this point, that is what matters most to me.”

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