Wednesday, January 31, 2018

This Doesn't Seem Very Friendly

Jessie's Girl by Rick Springfield

Released in February of 1981, this was Rick's only #1 hit and it took 19 weeks to reach the #1 spot and was in the #1 spot the week that MTV premiered.

Rick was a TV soap star, appearing on General Hospital as Dr. Noah Drake (I never saw the show, I hear he was dreamy) and this was from his 4th album. His timing was perfect. What could work better than a TV ready guy on an all music television channel? Well, if you watch the video, you'll wonder how any of this happened.

The video starts with "Jessie" engaging in some graffiti and he's there with his girl. And now he's littering...he's a catch. But we get to see Rick and his band rocking out on the song (hey, go easy on the star-filters). And now Rick is walking up to Jessie and his girl.....and they just walk on by like he doesn't even exist. Seems like they're not as good of friends as it seems. Here's Rick smashing lots of bathroom mirrors (that's a lot of bad luck: 4 x 7 = 28 years). And now we get to see what a guitar solo looks like when its done by someone that isn't a lead guitar player (trust me, those aren't the notes for that solo). And then, finally, we get to see Jessie and his girl (along with the dog from Rick's album cover) sitting in the audience watching Rick perform this song.

Rick's not a very good friend but then neither is Jessie or his girl. I predict this relationship has zero chance of success.

Please enjoy.

Saturday, January 13, 2018

Who Hasn't Heard This Song?

Don't Stop Believin' by Journey

Released in June of 1981, this song is probably one of the most recognizable songs from the 1980's. It reached #9 on the US charts and sold over 1 million copies when it was first released. Pretty impressive but consider its sold over 7 million digital downloads, making it the most downloaded song from the 1980's.

The video was a live performance from the band's Escape tour filmed in Houston, Texas. The advantage of the live performance is the opportunity to hear lead singer Steve Perry's vocal range. He sounds better live than on the record!

Please enjoy.

Sunday, January 7, 2018

Well, That's Quite A Debut Video

One by Metallica

Released in January of 1989, this was the third single from their fourth album....but it was their first video. And what a way to start. The song is about a soldier that has been injured during a battle and now has no arms, no legs, and has lost his hearing and sight. With no way to communicate with the outside world, he is trapped forever inside is body. He is One. At over 7 and a half minutes, that's quite a song. And should be reason enough to avoid all wars.

After the band was finished recording the song, someone pointed out to them the similarity between the theme of the song and that of the book and film Johnny, Get Your Gun (the book was written in 1939, the film was made in 1971). In the book and film, the main character has been severely injured during a World War I battle and has no arms, no legs and has lost his hearing and sight (see the similarities?) but while in a hospital, he discovers that he can communicate with the outside world by using the Morse code, spelling out SOS to his doctors and later asking them to kill him. It's a bit dark, I'd wait until a happier time before a viewing.

The video was filmed in Long Beach (coincidentally on the day before the very first Metallica concert I ever attended) and features the band jamming along to the song intercut with scenes from the film Johnny, Get Your Gun. In the years since the video was filmed, the band has purchased the rights to the film so they wouldn't have to pay for the rights to include the images in the video (a smart idea). The live performance of the song usually includes plenty of pyro and explosions and is among the most played live songs by the band typically being one of the last songs of the performance each night.

Please enjoy.