Monday, March 26, 2007

Yahoo LAUNCHCAST song of the day

Artist:Dexy's Midnight Runners

Song:Come On Eileen


Considering the kind of music I normally write about, I'm almost afraid to admit I like this 1982 smash hit. But I do and I like a lot of British groups from this era. In North America, Dexy's Midnight Runners is just another one hit wonder. Their history in England is more complicated. Dexy's Midnight Runners was led by Kevin Rowland. He was born Aug. 17, 1953 in Wolverhampton, England and grew up in London, Ireland & Birmingham. In 1977, he was a member of a group called The Killjoys. They only released one single. He got together with Kevin "Al" Archer and decided to form a soul group and named it after dexedrine. Rowland had a couple of fatal personality flaws. One is he was a control freak trying to control a large band. The other was he seemed obsessed with the look and image of the group instead of the music. He tried to make Dexy's look like New York dockworkers as a tribute to the film Mean Streets. This would drive Archer nuts. After some record company problems, they had a couple of hits in England in 1980. After the next couple of singles flopped, Archer left to form Blue Ox Babes. Everyone but trombonist Jim Paterson left too. Rowland & Paterson reformed Dexy's. The story goes that Rowland heard a Blue Ox Babes demo and liked their folk based sound. He decided to alter Dexy's sound to sound more like them and hired their violinist Helen O'Hara. The video for Come On Eileen helped Dexy's become big in North America. Rowland has admitted that he stole the street urchin look of the video from Blue Ox Babes. They were never able to duplicate that mainly because the lineup was unstable because Rowland is a pain in the ass. He eventually released a solo album in 1988 that tanked and disappeared for several years due to depression & cocaine addiction. His 1999 album My Beauty tanked as well. I'm sure you've all seen the video but here it is anyway.

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