Archives » 1980s

Live It Up 50: Echo Beach

A bit of 80s fluff.

Martha and the Muffins: Echo Beach

Something Changed 17: Sympathy

A by now Fishless Marillion recorded this in 1992.

The original was of course first released by Rare Bird in 1970.

Marillion: Sympathy

Live It Up 49: Steamy Windows – RIP Tony Joe White

I was sad to read of the passing of singer-songwriter Tony Joe White, who died last week. His was an idiosyncratic voice.

I have already noted his sole UK hit Groupy Girl. His greatest success was perhaps as a writer of songs made famous by others. Elvis Presley recorded Polk Salad Annie (I featured White’s version here.) Tina Turner had a big hit with Steamy Windows in 1989. White’s version is a bit less strident.

Tony Joe White: Steamy Windows

White’s breakthrough as a songwriter came with Rainy Night in Georgia which has been covered multiple times. His original is still quite soulful, though.

Tony Joe White: Rainy Night in Georgia

Tony Joe White: 23/7/1943 –24/10/2018. So it goes.

Live It Up 48: Good Tradition

Tanita Tikaram had an unusual background for a 1980s pop star, born in Germany to a Indo-Fijian father and Sarawakian mother, moving to England in her teens.

This is one of those jaunty-sounding pop songs which has a lyric that hints at something darker.

Tanita Tikaram: Good Tradition

Live It Up 47: The Way It Is

I’m sure you were expecting this. You know how my mind works. I just held it over for an extra week.

A wonderful piece of piano playing from 1986.

Bruce Hornsby And The Range: The Way It Is

Live It Up 46: Assassing

Another one from before Marillion became big.

I hadn’t heard this version of the song till I looked it up for this post. On the basis of hearing Punch and Judy and the band’s performance on The Oxford Road Show I bought the album it’s from (Fugazi, the first Marillion record I ever bought) and the track on there is over 7 minutes long.

This is a somewhat brutal edit for the single release (and, I assume, radio play.)

Marillion: Assassing (7” edit)

The longer album version is here, should you wish to sample it.

Live It Up 45: Pure

Just a piece of perfect pop. From 1989.

The Lightning Seeds: Pure

Live It Up 44: Satellite

Another space connection.

It does remind me a bit of Safety Dance by Men Without Hats, though, which was no. 17 in this Live It Up category.

The Hooters: Satellite

Live It Up 43: Only You

A few weeks ago I featured Yazoo’s Nobody’s Diary. Their first hit had been Only You which they took to no. 2 in 1982.

The Flying Pickets went one better a year later scoring a no. 1 with their a capella version.

Here’s them miming on German TV.

The Flying Pickets: Only You

And this is the original, with the somewhat weird video.

Yazoo: Only You

Live It Up 42: Nobody’s Diary

Vince Clarke – in 1982 very recently ex of Depeche Mode – hit on a wonderful combination of electronica and traditional when he formed Yazoo with the distinctively voiced Alison Moyet – or Alf as she was known when she first hit the public consciousness.

They never had a no. 1 but this was a no. 3 for them in 1983.

Yazoo: Nobody’s Diary

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