Archives » Live It Up

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

Live It Up 41: – Market Square Heroes

This was the one that started it all off for Marillion in a singles sense but I didn’t come across it for a few years after its first release once I was catching up with their back catalogue after the release of their second album Fugazi.

There are some thematic similarities here with The Knife, the last track on Genesis’s second album Trespass.

Marillion: Market Square Heroes

Live It Up 40: Waiting for a Train – RIP George Young

Another string to George Young’s bow was the group Flash and the Pan which he set up with co-writer Harry Vanda and whose biggest hit in the UK was Waiting for a Train.

Flash and the Pan: Waiting for a Train

George Redburn Young: 6/11/1946 – 22/10/2017. So it goes.

Live It Up 39: Runnin’ Down a Dream/End of the Line. RIP Tom Petty

So, now Tom Petty has gone.

I was aware of him of course but never really followed him as he broke through around the time I was getting on with life instead of listening to music. Judging by the music of his that I have heard he was firmly in the rock mainstream. This may be typical.

Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers: Runnin’ Down a Dream

The esteem in which he was held is exemplified by his invitation to The Travelling Wilburys. Not a bad group to be a member of.

This song’s title seems all too appropriate.

The Travelling Wilburys: End of the Line

Live It Up 38: Chocolate Girl

This could be considered a 1980s answer in reverse to Carpet Man (see last week.)

I remember seeing the band perform this on the daily lunchtime BBC Scotland TV programme broadcast from the Glasgow Garden Festival.

Looking at this video messrs Ricky Ross and Dougie Vipond seem impossibly young. (I have taught Vipond’s eldest son.) And what was Lorraine McIntosh thinking about with that outfit?

Deacon Blue: Chocolate Girl

Live It Up 37: Marlene on the Wall

Even though this wasn’t a big hit in the UK (number 83 on first release in 1985 and number 21 on re-release later the same year) it still made enough of an impression to inspire me to name a character after it in my story The Gentlemen Go By (published in Spectrum SF 2, 2000) though I never actually mentioned the song’s title in the text, leaving it to the reader to infer the connection.

Suzanne Vega: Marlene on the Wall

Live It Up 35: Reward

What a striking opening line. “Bless my cotton socks I’m in the news.”

This, the biggest hit from The Teardrop Explodes, screams 1980s but is somehow also timeless – and the brass was an unusual touch.

Reward is also notable for having a definite ending and not fading the way most pop songs do. Anything else though would have been a travesty.

Herewith is a live version.

The Teardrop Explodes: Reward

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