Deep Blue Something – Breakfast At Tiffany’s (1995)

The cover for Breakfast At Tiffany's by on hit wonder Deep Blue SomethingBreakfast At Tiffany’s by Deep Blue Something totally blew me away. At this point in time I was working in a record store and saw the music video on MTV one evening. As the record store did have it on stock I called all labels the next day to find out where to get it. It turned out that the song was not yet released in Europe so I had to order it from the US – and so I did because I had to have it fast.

When the Deep Blue Something album “Home” arrived to me a week later it did not impress me much but the song Breakfast At Tiffany’s was fantastic and on repeat for quite a while. Hope my downstairs neighbours liked it as well because it was played out loud.

Breakfast At Tiffany’s is also a well known movie with Audrey Hepburn which also takes a part in the music video.

Breakfast At Tiffany’s is on the album Home by Deep Blue Something and must be considered as a one hit wonder.

Highest chart position: #5 on Billboard Hot 100 and #1 on UK Singles Chart.

Deep Blue Something was a one hit wonder

Leonard Cohen – First We Take Manhattan (1988)

First We Take Manhattan by Leonard CohenIn 2012 I attended a Leonard Cohen concert. I did not know that many songs by him but I knew First We Take Manhattan which I liked. My girlfriend and I just went to the concert because two colleges cancelled two days before and we got their tickets. OH LA LA what a night. Going to the concert without any expectations at all and going home with one of the very best concert memories of my life. Totally fantastic evening with Leonard Cohen meeting the audience in the sunset like a gentleman holding his characteristic hat to his chest to greet the audience and saluting the musicians on stage. At this time Leonard Cohen was not a young man running around the stage (doubt that he has ever done that) but he does not have to. Cohen has that something special that just drags the audience to him and maintain a so special feeling though his songwriting and his lovely voice. So when the three hour concert was over I was totally blown away because I had not seen this coming – I have been to many concerts in my life but this was truly a special one. My feelings were all over from very emotional to excited to disbelieve in what I just had seen. From that day I was a fan of Leonard Cohen and monday morning I was at the local record store when it opened to get some Leonard Cohen CDs. Actually there where so many great songs that I did not find First We Take Manhattan the very best – it was overtaken by songs like Take This Waltz, Closing Time and Alexandra Leaving among others. So if You are like I was and only knew First We Take Manhattan I can highly recommend that You spend some time to explore the universe of Leonard Cohen.

Leonard Cohen in his classic outfit

 

Bachman-Turner-Overdrive – You Ain’t Seen Nothing Yet (1974)

Bachman Turner Overdrive made a classic rock song with You Ain't Seen Nothing YetWhen You Ain’t Seen Nothing Yet by Bachman-Turner-Overdrive was released in 1974 I was only two years old and therefore has heard it long after its massive hit status. I can remember hearing this track on the radio thinking that this sound was very different from what I used to hear. As I still was a kid my brother helped me call the radio to find out who the artist was. A few days later he came home with the single and I screamed “You Ain’t Seen Nothing Yet” many times a day until my family had enough.

This is perhaps my first experience with going back in time to search for music that I like. This is something I like and still do; when I hear a great song I go back to find the album the song was originally on to experience more from the band. Sometimes it reveal hidden gems and sometimes not.

The classic rock song You Ain’t Seen Nothing Yet appears on the album Not Fragile by Bachman-Turner Overdrive.

Highest chart position: US Billboard Hot 100 #1 and UK singles chart #2.

Bachman-Turner-Overdrive made You Ain't Seen Nothing Yet a classic rock song

 

Beach Boys – Surfin’ U.S.A. (1963)

Surfin' U.S.A. by the Beach Boys is a great summer hit and a Californian classic.Scenery: On my summer holiday I was standing on a beach with sand between my feet looking after my kinds not going to far out at sea (never got in the cold water myself). Standing there freezing and looking out on the blue ocean I find myself humming Surfin’ U.S.A. by the Beach Boys. Actually the music is Chuck Berrys Sweet Little Sixteen changed to a surfing extraordinaire hit by the Beach Boys. Strange but true. Why this song pops into my mind I do not know because no surfers were in sight. Maybe I was longing for a visit to the USA or my mind try to convince me to learn how to surf. I do not know but I like the song Surfin’ U.S.A, it is a great summer hit.

Highest chart position: US Billboard Hot 100 #3 and UK singles chart #34.

Another reminder from this summer holiday  is Mungo Jerrys In The Summertime.

Beach Boys with their perfect hair

Mungo Jerry – In The Summertime (1970)

In The Summertime by Mungo Jerry is a nice summer hit.Just returned from my summer holiday I came to think of Mungo Jerry and the song In The Summertime. Probably because the wetter was quit bad with lots of wind and rain and too little sun I needed a positive music fix. In The Summertime bring me happiness because you can “Have a drink, have a drive, go out and see what you can find” as they sing. This line make me believe that although the wetter might be bad you can still find some nice experiences out there – all you have to do is to go out and find them, it is all up to you.

In The Summertime by Mungo Jerry was a massive hit all over the world reaching Billboard Hot 100 #1 and UK singles chart #1. A really classic summer hit that make me want to go out with my friends and have a good time.

Listen to the fantastic In The Summertime here and find some great beards and shirts too.

Björk – It’s Oh So Quiet (1995)

It's Oh So Quiet single cover by BjörkIt’s Oh So Quiet is in my opinion no less than a fantastic cover version by islandic Björk (and a song from her without too much screaming). And without doubt her biggest hit. I am not a big Bjork fan but the sound on It’s Oh So Quiet is great. I like the way the song gets on the way with a kind of lazy mood in a childish tone and in the middle almost stops completely. Simply a music masterpiece that made Björk an international star. I really like this song and have thus also tried to explore the Björk universe but I just can not find the love in it. But never the less It’s Oh So Quiet is one of my favourite songs that I listen to now and again.

Highest UK chart position was #4.

It’s Oh So Quiet is on the Björk album Post and the song may also be remembered for the music video by Spike Jones that set an almost musical mood with dancing all around the streets.

Björk
Björk

Blur – Parklife (1994)

Parklife by Blur was my gateway into BritpopParklife by Blur hit me hard and as I remember it was my primarily gateway into loving the Britpop music scene. The song has a fantastic laidback mood with a great melody and of course the voice of Damon Albarn. Also the video to the song is great fun giving us the life in an English suburb. The lyrics also present the daily life saying:

I get up when I want except on Wednesdys

When I get rudely awakened by the dustmen

I put my trousers on, have a cup of tea

And I think about leaving the house

A fun way to show tell the story about a person with very doll life. Or maybe Blur what to point the attention to the huge amount of unemployed people? But this is as I see it what many Britpop groups do – tell about the life of people living “ordinary” life witch is more daily routines then exciting lifes.

Parklife was a big hit in my country and can be found on the album with the same name.

Highest chart position: UK#10

Blur was one of the most important Britpop bands

 

John Cougar Mellencamp – Jack & Diane (1982)

Jack & Diane by John Cougar Mellencamp was a huber one hit in the USJack & Diane is John Cougar Mellencamp’s biggest hit I guess and by many considered to be a classic rock song. I came to know John Cougar Mellencamp on his later album Scarecrow and therefore looked at the earlier work which led me to Jack & Diane. I like the lyrics for Jack & Diane taken place in the ‘heartland’ with ‘ chilli dogs’ and the young loving couple. Great song with a characteristic guitar intro and a classic rock song in my house!

For some unknown reason none of my friends are into John Cougar Mellencamps music. And when I try to describe it to them I always say something like “He is like Bruce Sprinsteen both in style and lyrics, classic rock and American living in the lyrics”. Is this fair to any of them? Probably not but the best I can do but still my friends say no thank you to John Cougar Mellencamp. Incredible to me.

Jack & Diane by John Cougar Mellencamp is from the album American Fool if you are into classic rock from the 1980s.

Highest chart position: US#1 and UK#25. The tough lineup at The Billboard Hot 100 chart as it looked in october 1982:

#1 John Cougar Mellencamp – Jack & Diane

#2 The Steve Miller Band – Abracadabra

#3 Chicago – Hard To Say I’m Sorry

#4 The Alan Parsons Project – Eye In The Sky

#5 Men At Work – Who Can It Be Now?

John Cougar Mellencamp in his 1980s dress

Mamas And The Papas – California Dreamin’ (1965)

Mamas And The Papas massive hit California Dreamin' coverCalifornia Dreamin’ – oh yes I do dream about it. Never been to California but dream about blue skies, nice beaches and just sitting in the sun with a glass of wine watching the days go by. This song I hear sometime during the winter time when I get a little depressed about the bad weather. I use it to escape to a nice place in my mind where there is pretty and the weather is always nice and warm. And this is what I think music is capable of – that is getting you into a specific mood and escape the real life for just a few minutes.

California Dreamin’ is a cover version but even more know is of course the cover by Beach Boys though I like the Mamas And The Papas better.

Highest chart position: UK# 23 and US#4.

Band photo Mamas And The Papas

Earth Wind & Fire – Shinning Star (1975)

Shinning Star by Earth Wind & Fire is a classic funk songShining Star by Earth Wind & Fire is one of my favourite funk songs. The sounds are incredible combining vocals and instruments perfectly to result in a funky classic. In retrospect perhaps I should not be surprised about the high standard knowing that the founder of Earth Wind & Fire was Maurice White who bad been a studio musician at Chess Records playing on recording with legends like Chuck Berry, The Supremes and Muddy Waters among others.

If you ask me the lyrics should be taught in schools to cure all low self-esteem:

“You’re a shining star, no matter who you are

Shining bright to see what you can truly be”

All people should have the right to be a Shining Star in there own lifes.

Listen to Shining Star and get in a better funk mood . The song is on the album That’s The Way Of The World by Earth Wind & Fire. And please find a video with Earth Wind & Fire just to see the fantastic colorful outfit they wear.

Highest chart position: US#1

Earth Wind & Fire - please watch out here come the color family