Heroes

Happy TUNEBACK TUESDAY! Today I’m tuning it back (with a special dedication to STAN LEE) to 1977 with “Heroes” by David Bowie. Enjoy!

ORIGINAL RELEASE DATE: September 23, 1977

TRIVIA: Inspired by the sight of Bowie’s producer/engineer Tony Visconti embracing one of Bowie’s backing vocalists by the Berlin Wall, the song tells the story of two lovers, one from East and one from West Berlin. Bowie’s performance of “Heroes” on June 6, 1987 at the German Reichstag in West Berlin was considered a catalyst to the eventual fall of the Berlin Wall. Following Bowie’s death in January 2016, the German government thanked Bowie for “helping to bring down the Wall”, adding “you are now among Heroes”.

See you next Tuesday!

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Radio Ga Ga

Happy TUNEBACK TUESDAY!! Today I’m tuning it back to one of my favourite songs by Queen, “Radio Ga Ga”. Enjoy!!

ORIGINAL RELEASE DATE: January 23, 1984 (UK), February 7, 1984 (US)

TRIVIA: Recorded in 1983 and released in January 1984, the song was a commentary on television overtaking radio’s popularity and how one would listen to radio in the past for a favourite comedy, drama, or science fiction programme. It also pertained to the advent of the music video and MTV, which was then competing with radio as an important medium for promoting records. Ironically, Queen had done much to popularize the music video with “Bohemian Rhapsody” in 1975 and the video for “Radio Ga Ga” would receive a Best Art Direction nomination.

Roger Taylor originally conceived of the song as “Radio caca” (from something his toddler son once said), which doubled as a criticism of radio for the decrease in variety of programming and the type of music being played.

The band performed the song at every concert from 1984 to their last concert with lead singer Freddie Mercury in 1986, including their performance at Live Aid in 1985.

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Ironic

Happy TUNEBACK TUESDAY!! Today I’m tuning it back to 1996 with “Ironic” by Alanis Morissette. Enjoy!!

ORIGINAL RELEASE DATE: February 27, 1996

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Africa

Happy TUNEBACK TUESDAY!! Today I’m tuning it back to “Africa” by Toto. Enjoy!!

ORIGINAL RELEASE DATE: May 10, 1982

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Bennie And The Jets

Happy TUNEBACK TUESDAY!! In honour of Elton John being in Toronto (for his final tour), I’m tuning it back to “Bennie And The Jets”. Check out this official music video (which only came out last year)! Enjoy!

ORIGINAL RELEASE DATE: February 4, 1974

TRIVIA: Elton John rarely plays the song verbatim to the studio version, and often makes subtle or even drastic changes. Live, the piano solo in the middle of the song has been played in all sorts of variations, from very close to the original to wildly improvised and extended versions, such as the elaborate version during a Central Park concert in 1980 and another memorable take on it during the “Elton and his band” part of the show recorded for what would become Live in Australia in December 1986. (It can be seen on various Laserdisc releases of the show.) He has also been known to end the song in a wide range of styles, including classical, swing, boogie-woogie and even using the signature five-note phrase from John Williams’ score for Close Encounters of the Third Kind.

See you next Tuesday!!

Magic

Happy TUNEBACK TUESDAY!! Everyone enjoys a little magic in their lives… so today I’m tuning it back to 1984 with “Magic” by The Cars. Enjoy!!!

ORIGINAL RELEASE DATE: May 7, 1984

TRIVIA: The Cars shot the music video for “Magic” at the Hilton family house in Beverly Hills. Kathy Hilton leased her house to the band. A Plexiglass platform sat under the surface of the water. On the first take, the platform collapsed. The platform had to be adjusted to Ric’s weight. The house is also the setting for the movie Blind Date starring Bruce Willis & Kim Basinger.

See you next Tuesday!

Think

Happy TUNEBACK TUESDAY!! In honour of Aretha Franklin, I’m tuning it back to “Think” (as featured in the 1980 film The Blue Brothers). Rest in Peace, Queen of Soul.

ORIGINAL RELEASE DATE: May 2, 1968

TRIVIA: “Think” was released as single in 1968, from her Aretha Now album. The song reached No. 7 on Billboard Hot 100, becoming Franklin’s seventh top 10 hit in the United States. The song also reached number 1 on the magazine’s Hot Rhythm & Blues Singles, becoming her sixth single to top the chart. The song was written by Aretha and then husband Ted White. Franklin re-recorded the song in for the soundtrack of the 1980 film The Blues Brothers and in 1989 for the album Through the Storm. Pitchfork Media placed it at number 15 on its list of “The 200 Greatest Songs of the 1960s”.

See you next Tuesday!

Fashionable People

Happy TUNEBACK TUESDAY!! Today I’m tuning it back to 2007 with “Fashionable People” by Canadian band, Joel Plaskett Emergency. Enjoy!

ORIGINAL RELEASE DATE: April 2007

TRIVIA: “Fashionable People” was nominated for the 8th Annual Independent Music Awards for pop/rock song of the year.

See you next Tuesday!

 

 

Rainbow Connection

Happy TUNEBACK TUESDAY!! Today I’m in a muppet kind of mood… so I’m tuning it back to “Rainbow Connection” written by Paul Williams & Kenneth Ascher and performed by Kermit the Frog (Jim Henson).

ORIGINAL RELEASE DATE: June, 1979

TRIVIA: For the song that became “Rainbow Connection”, Jim Henson told them that the opening scene should feature Kermit the Frog by himself, singing and playing the banjo. Williams and Ascher wrote most of the song fairly quickly at Williams’ house, but got stuck trying to think of appropriate words for the part in the chorus that eventually became the phrase “the rainbow connection”; they were looking for a way to tie in the chorus to the song’s theme of rainbows. As they sat down for dinner with Williams’ then-wife, Kate Clinton, they explained to her their predicament of looking for a phrase that would provide “a rainbow connection”, then realized, in the course of explaining the problem to her, that the phrase “the rainbow connection” would itself be a good fit.

Williams and Ascher received Academy Award nominations for both the score of The Muppet Movie and for “Rainbow Connection”, which was nominated for Best Original Song.

See you next Tuesday!