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Thriller's Sounds Of The 90s - Part 3

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  • Thriller's Sounds Of The 90s - Part 3



    THRILLER'S SOUNDS OF THE 90S
    PART 1: 7 JUNE 2020

    In this thread I'll showcase four songs I love from a decade I love - the 1990s*. I'll try to make it as less obvious as possible, but some of the bigger hits will inevitably appear. Please comment, agree or disagree!



    Released in March 1994, peaking at #11 in the UK, this was the first solo single for Marcella Detroit (real name Levy, she took her stage name from her birth city) post-Shakespears Sister. The lead single from her second solo album, Jewel, it remains her most successful solo track and earned her a top 10 hit in Australia. Despite not achieving mainstream success until the late 80s as one half of Shakespears Sister (alongside ex-Bananarama member Siobhan Fahey), Detroit's music career began a decade earlier as a writer and backing singer for artists such as Eric Clapton, Aretha Franklin and Chaka Khan; she eventually released her debut album in 1982 after a false start in the late 70s. I Believe is a rousing ballad which shows off Detroit's impressive vocal range and it was covered in 2005 by German singer Joana Zimmer, whose version hit the top 10 in both Germany and Austria.



    Closer Than Close became a top 5 hit in May 1997, peaking at #4 for Californian funk/soul singer Rosie Gaines. The title track of her 1995 album, the song started life as a slow-jam before being given a garage-house remix by American producers Mentor in 1997, propelling it into the US Billboard Hot Dance Club Play top 10. This track aside, Gaines remains best known as a member of Prince's New Power Generation between 1990 and 1992, during which time she provided vocals to the US smash Diamonds And Pearls. With its bouncy style and smooth vocal, Closer Than Close is regarded as a club classic and picked up a MOBO award for Best International Single at the 1997 ceremony, beating Puff Daddy and R. Kelly.



    After a series of flops since his 1989 UK breakthrough hit, Right Here Waiting, Richard Marx returned to the upper reaches of the chart in summer 1992 when Hazard peaked at #3 after an eight-week climb from its debut. Hailing from Chicago, Marx started singing aged 5 and was discovered by Lionel Richie in the early 80s, eventually releasing his debut album in 1987 which spawned four US top 3 hits. Hazard (named after a Nebraska town) is a sombre ballad about a man who finds himself the suspect of his wife's murder - it was a #1 hit in Australia peaking at #9 in the US.



    Disco Cop was the only top 40 hit for Blue Adonis, charting at #27 in October 1998, however, it remained a staple of British primetime television for six years as the theme tune to ITV'S Record Of The Year. Comprising of Dutch producers Dirk De Boeck and Wim Perdaen, Blue Adonis ushered in Lil Miss Max (vocalist on Amen UK!'s Passion) to front the video edit of their Disco Cop, which started life as an instrumental sampling the intro to 1975 schlager song Ich Bin We Du by Marianne Rosenburg. A late 90s dance belter, but the act failed to follow it up and swiftly moved on to other projects.


    *I've stolen this idea from Fearne Cotton's BBC podcast/show

  • #2
    'Hazard' is a masterpiece, one of my favourite songs of the 90s. I love the song's darkness, the lyrics, Richard's voice, the video - everything is just perfect!
    My YouTube Channel - The best songs of the 80s, 90s and 2000s

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    • #3
      Hazard is a brilliant single.

      I love the ambiguity in the lyrics - is the narrator innocent or guilty of murder?

      Marx has always insisted he deliberately left the question unresolved, and that the video contains no clues!

      According to the Billboard book of Number One Adult Contemporary Hits, the population of Hazard, Nebraska was just 54 when the song was written....

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by Metalweb View Post
        Hazard is a brilliant single.

        I love the ambiguity in the lyrics - is the narrator innocent or guilty of murder?

        Marx has always insisted he deliberately left the question unresolved, and that the video contains no clues!

        According to the Billboard book of Number One Adult Contemporary Hits, the population of Hazard, Nebraska was just 54 when the song was written....
        I had no idea that Hazard, Nebraska is a town that really exists - I always thought that Marx made it up!

        Just googled it and the town had 70 inhabitants in 2010.

        Some further information from Wikipedia:

        "Hazard was the setting of the Richard Marx song "Hazard".[10] Marx arrived at the name because he liked the lyric "this old Nebraska town." He wrote to Nebraska Chamber of Commerce, asking for a list of Nebraska towns with two syllables and found Hazard ideal for its double meaning. (The lyrics refer to a river, which the real Hazard does not possess; however, there is a muddy creek.)

        Although the song didn't cast the town in a positive light, the locals invited Marx to be Grand Marshal at Sherman County's Fourth of July parade in 1993, an invite that the singer accepted."

        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hazard,_Nebraska
        My YouTube Channel - The best songs of the 80s, 90s and 2000s

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        • #5
          Clever name and lyric! The song reminds me of being in the car and hearing it on the radio a lot when I was 7.

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          • #6
            I remember reading on old interview with Richard Marx in which he said the song was originally going to be called "The River", but he reconsidered because of the famous Bruce Springsteen song of that name.

            Good job he changed his mind - "Hazard" is a much better title.

            Comment


            • #7
              THRILLER'S SOUNDS OF THE 90S
              PART 2: 15 JUNE 2020




              After the tragic death of sister Mel in 1990, Kim Appleby launched a solo career with the help of her then-boyfriend Craig Logan, formerly of Bros. Don't Worry served as the lead single from her debut solo album (which contained several songs originally written for the next Mel & Kim record) in November 1990, climbing to #2 and spending six weeks in the top 10. London-born Appleby achieved widespread European success with this track, including top 5 hits in Belgium, Finland, Ireland and The Netherlands. An upbeat and bouncy, Stock Aitken & Waterman-esque production that has aged better than a lot of the trio's actual work, it remains her biggest solo hit and she was only able to muster two more UK top 40 entries in 1991.



              Hailing from Liverpool, Echo & The Bunnymen enjoyed most of their chart success throughout the 1980s but made a return in 1997 after a five-year absence from releasing music (and thirteen-year absence from the top 10) with Nothing Last Forever. Taken from their seventh studio album, Nothing Lasts Forever debuted at #8 in June 1997, an era where guitar music was riding high thanks to the hangover from Britpop and 80s acts such as Echo and Depeche Mode were able to score high-peaking hits thanks to fans old and new. The song was released upon the band re-forming following a turbulent few years which saw lead singer Ian McCulloch leave in 1988 (replaced by Noel Burke) and drummer Pete de Freitas die in a motorbike accident in 1989. A sombre indie-ballad, the track was also
              the last song to be played by Janice Long on her final show on Radio 2 in 2017.



              Annerley Gordon, or Ann Lee as she's known here, only came to prominence in the UK in October 1999 when 2 Times (after being a hit across Europe that summer and charting on import a month earlier) smashed into the chart at #2. After moving to Italy in the late 80s, Sheffield-born Gordon became the singer on a string of Eurodance singles under many aliases and contributed towards the composition of Corona's huge early 90s hit The Rhythm Of The Night, as well as recording the demo for Try Me Out. She has also long been rumoured to be the voice of Whigfield's hits, with Sannie Carlson being a front for the project, but this has never been officially confirmed. I personally bought 2 Times in Virgin Megastore on the Champs-Elysees in August 1999 while visiting Paris, after hearing it all over French radio for a week!



              Another band mostly associated with the 80s, but achieving a career spanning 40 years, are Manchester's New Order. Formed by the three surviving members of Joy Division following Ian Curtis's death in 1980, they were joined by keyboardist Gillian Gilbert and used their experiences of the New York club scene to incorporate dance influences into their work. Making #4 in April 1993, Regret became the band's first top 10 hit in five years (Englandneworder aside) from their sixth studio album Republic. It also became their biggest hit on the US Hot 100, peaking at #28. The song is an example of New Order at their best, combining hints of multiple genres to make a melodic radio hit.

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              • #8
                Don't Worry is such a great feel-good song, love it!
                2 Times is annoyingly catchy. It was everywhere in the summer of 99.
                My YouTube Channel - The best songs of the 80s, 90s and 2000s

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                • #9
                  YES for Marcella, Rosie and Ann Lee!! Love this!
                  thank u, next

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                  • #10
                    I have not heard that Echo & The Bunnymen song in years. Great track.

                    Ann Lee - 2 Times takes me back to the best years of my life back at college where I was out clubbing twice a week. Interesting write up too.. didn't realise the Corona/Whigfield link.

                    Must admit that I like a bit of New Order. They had some great tunes.
                    Ste's Personal Chart 2020

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                    • #11
                      I love Regret - my favourite New Order song.

                      The lyrics are so ambiguous.

                      For the longest time I thought the song was about the "empty nest" syndrome ("the kids have run away") - narrated by an older guy who once won his dream girl and had a family with her, but now wonders if that was what he really wanted after all.

                      That's probably a misinterpretation but I'm sticking with it....




                      Comment


                      • #12
                        THRILLER'S SOUNDS OF THE 90S
                        PART 3: 22 JUNE 2020




                        In a bid to represent the UK at the Eurovision Song Contest in 1995, Deuce competed in A Song For Europe earlier in the year and finished third, losing to Love City Groove who placed 10th in the contest that year. The group's second single charting at #10 in April, I Need You had all the hallmarks of a Eurovision pop anthem but it sadly wasn't to be. Formed in 1994, Deuce were the brainchild of Tom Watkins of London Records (the manager behind East 17, Bros and Pet Shop Boys) and lead vocalist Kelly O'Keefe who was doing work experience in his office at the time. The pair decided to form a mixed-gender group leading to O'Keefe recruiting her dance friend Lisa Armstrong, while Watkins found Paul Holmes and Craig Young. I definitely think this could've fared better at the contest that year as it has that "ABBA on speed" quality about it that Pete Waterman later used to describe Steps.



                        Needing no introduction, Robbie Williams remains one of the biggest British popstars of all time. No Regrets charted at #4 in December 1998, Williams' eighth solo single and the second from his second album I've Been Expecting You. Featuring backing vocals from Pet Shop Boys' Neil Tennant and Divine Comedy's Neil Hannon, the song was written about both past relationships and his time in Take That, and he performed the song on tour with the rest of the group on backing vocals when he re-joined Take That for the Progress era in 2010/11. One of the B-sides of the single, Sexed Up, was later re-worked for the Escapology album and became a single in its own right in 2003. No Regrets is one of Robbie's best tracks and showed how he and Guy Chambers often master reflective themes.



                        Candy Girls were a 90s dance outfit consisting of producer Paul Masterson and designer/DJ Rachel Auburn. An early project of Masterson's, he later went on to became a big name in the UK club scene as Yomanda and Hi-Gate. Featuring vocals and spoken word from Sweet Pussy Pauline (real name Candice Jordan), where she tells her lover to leave then immediately and hysterically begs him to stay, Wham Bam was Candy Girls/SPP's second single and highest peaking, making #20 in February 1996. The song was a smash on the US Dance Club Chart where it reached #7. Wham Bam is a great example of the Hi-NRG Eurodance that emerged in the mid-90s and Sweet Pussy Pauline's sassy delivery of lines such as "get out... and take that dog with you!" borders on iconic.



                        The Whole Of The Moon may have been a hit in the 90s, but the song's origins lie firmly in the 80s. First released from the Scottish group's album This Is The Sea in 1985, The Whole Of The Moon charted in the UK at #26 but managed #12 in Australia. After a subsequent four years of sell-out tours and picking up on the reception the song received at their gigs, the band re-issued the song as a single in April 1991 upon the release of their Greatest Hits compilation - evidently they were right as it went on to peak at #3 in the UK. Written by band-member Mike Scott, he has said that the song's subject is a composite of many people, including author C. S. Lewis, but explicitly stated that it is not about Prince as had been rumoured at the time. It's a great nostalgic, upbeat song that you can imagine dancing to towards the end of a wedding party.

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                        • #13
                          LOVE Whole Of The Moon!! Mandy Moore's version was also good.
                          thank u, next

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                          • #14
                            The Whole of the Moon is nice!
                            My YouTube Channel - The best songs of the 80s, 90s and 2000s

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                            • #15
                              Deuce was a guilty pleasure- great song. Lead singer reminds me of Claire Richards - not sure why.

                              I agree the Robbie song is one of his best.

                              Waterboys is a classic.

                              Didn't think I'd heard the Candy Girls one until I listened to it now & sounds familiar. Camp as Christmas. Interesting to hear link to Hi Gate & Yomanda though makes sense.
                              Ste's Personal Chart 2020

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                              • #16
                                Originally posted by steophonic View Post
                                Didn't think I'd heard the Candy Girls one until I listened to it now & sounds familiar. Camp as Christmas. Interesting to hear link to Hi Gate & Yomanda though makes sense.
                                Don't you remember when SholasBoy was quoting it one weekend? it's a Hev's Homies classic.

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  Originally posted by Thriller View Post

                                  Don't you remember when SholasBoy was quoting it one weekend? it's a Hev's Homies classic.
                                  That explains it
                                  Ste's Personal Chart 2020

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