Antonio Banderas – Cancion del mariachi (Leaping Ahead #152)

Leaping Ahead Project 2016 #152: 160531

[Song from a Spanish artiste]

From the soundtrack to Robert Rodriguez’s ‘Desperado’, this was performed by Los Lobos and Antonio Banderas. The album track “Mariachi Suite” by Los Lobos was awarded a Grammy for Best Pop Instrumental Performance at the 1995 Grammy Awards.

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Mungo Jerry – In the Summertime (Leaping Ahead #151)

Leaping Ahead Project 2016 #151: 160530

[A song from 1970]

This was Mungo Jerry’s debut single. Written and composed by its lead singer, Ray Dorset, it celebrates the carefree days of summer. In 1970 it reached number one in charts around the world, including seven weeks in the UK Singles Chart, two weeks in one of the Canadian charts, and number three on the Billboard Hot 100 singles chart in the US. The song took Dorset only ten minutes to write and compose, which he did using a second-hand Fender Stratocaster while he was taking time off work from his regular job, working in a lab for Timex. The song’s lyric “have a drink, have a drive, go out and see what you can find” led to the song’s somewhat ironic use in a UK advert for the campaign Drinking and Driving Wrecks Lives.

The Cure – Friday I’m in love (Leaping Ahead #148)

Leaping Ahead Project 2016 #148: 160527

[A Friday song]

This was the second single from the 1992 album ‘Wish’. During the writing process, Robert Smith became convinced that he had inadvertently stolen the chord progression from somewhere, and this led him to a state of paranoia where he called everyone he could think of and played the song for them, asking if they heard it before. None of them had, and Smith realised that the melody was indeed his.

And here’s a song fact for you – it was written to be a slower number than its upbeat final rendition. While the track was recorded in D major, the commercially released version sounds a quarter-tone higher than D major due to Robert Smith forgetting to turn off the vari-speed on the tape after toying with it before recording. When played live, the song is played in its original intended key as opposed to the one heard on the record.