Thursday, August 16, 2007

Hidden 'Gems' On My MP3 Player: #12 - Sophie B Hawkins


I can't help but enjoy this song, even if it's not the best effort that Sophie B Hawkins has done, although it does come damn close, for my money that honour must surely go to another tune of hers, Right Beside You, a song that comes as close to being the perfect pop song as possible. Purists will now decry me as being an idiot, hey, join the list, it's long and illustrious and growing every day. Like I care.

I can't remember when I first heard this, probably on the radio back in the day, and it left no impact upon me at all. However now I know why. On radio, or TV, it's just another song, however it wasn't until I threw it onto my MP3 player that I truly discovered the depths and layers to the tune. The drums sound like they're lifted straight from Led Zeppelin's When The Levee Breaks and that's just the start of it. There's all kinds of innuendo in the lyrics, little background whispers and the majestic outro verse that you have to both hear to believe and also listen very carefully to hear. You won't hear all of it in the video, so get a copy of the song and crank it up on the headphones. Trust me, it's worth it.

Hawkins is somewhat of an enigma. With the success of her first album, Tongues And Tails, she appeared to have the world at her feet. The follow up album, Whaler, was even better than the first and then...nothing. It looked like she stopped dead and just gave up. It took seven years before she released another album, and since that album, in 2001, only one more album has followed (well, two if you count a live album). It's maddening as each album is better than the previous, but then I also adore Kate Bush and she's not known for being prolific these days either. But who am I to complain?

The video I'm showing here is listed as being 'banned'. Beats me why. As has been pointed out by more than one person other artists were doing worse than this and getting away with it. In an era where a video just isn't a video unless the artist in question is wearing next to nothing, fiddling with themselves whilst conducting aerobics classes. Still I expect that it got banned because it uses the word, 'Damn' in both the title and the song proper. Shock! Horror! I'm sure that the world wasn't ready for that, especially from a female artist, but then world has often shied away from assertive females (other than over-hyped, over-rated media whores such as Madonna) whilst celebrating those who like to dress up as sluts. What this song, and video, does is reinforce my impressions on Sophie. You see other artists I'd love to spend time with. Some I'd like to take home. Sophie, well I'd not complain if she wanted to groove all night to the Rolling Stones...I'd be in that.

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