Friday on my Mind 209: Eloise. RIP Barry Ryan

I’ve been meanning to post Eloise here for ages but never quite got around to it. Sadly its singer Barry Ryan died last month. He had a few minor hits in the UK when in partnership with his twin brother Paul, who eventually gave up being onstage in favour of being a songwriter. Apparently influenced by Richard Harris’s success with the Jimmy Webb song MacArthur Park, Eloise was the fruit of that and became a no 2 hit in the UK (with some chart compilers having it at no 1.) Paul predeceased Barry in 1992. So it goes.

Eloise is almost sui generis (despite any comparison to MacArthur Park.) It doesn’t really sound like any other 1960s song. It could be said to be overproduced and overwrought but once heard is never forgotten. Dave Vanian of The Damned liked it so much he had the band record it in 1986, when it reached no 3 in the UK.

It was released under the credit Barry Ryan (with The Majority) but is always referred to as if Barry Ryan were the sole performer. He certainly gave it his all in the recording.

The follow-up to Eloise, the similarly overblown Love is Love, can be listened to here and The Damned version of Eloise here.

The clip is from the German pop show Beat Club.

Barry Ryan: Eloise

Barry Sapherson (Barry Ryan,) 24/1/0 1948 – 28/9/2021. So it goes.

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