The Epic 2017 Project #139: 170519
Katrina & The Waves (1985)
Infamous now for taking the UK to the winning slot in the 1997 Eurovision song contest with ‘Love shine a light’, Katrina & the Waves formed back in 1981.
Their biggest commercial success came with this, their third studio album, released in 1985. The majority of tracks were re-mixed and overdubbed versions of songs that had appeared on their first two albums, but “Walking on Sunshine” and “Going Down to Liverpool” were entirely re-recorded versions of songs from their first independently released album.
‘Walking on Sunshine’ became an overnight international success on it’s re-release, but it was originally written by Kimberley Rew for Katrina and the Waves’ 1983 eponymous debut album. The re-recorded version was the second single from the self-titled third album, reaching No.4 in Australia, No.9 in the United States, and No.8 in the United Kingdom. It was the Waves’ first US top 40 hit, and their biggest success in the United Kingdom until “Love Shine a Light” in 1997.
Royalties from airplay and advertisements of “Walking on Sunshine” have been extremely high. Katrina and the Waves kept the publishing rights and the royalties that typically go to the songwriter have been divided among the band members. Estimates are that the song has earned at least $1 million per year for the ten years ending in 2010. According to a former employee of EMI, “Walking on Sunshine was the crown jewel in EMI’s catalog,” and that it was one of EMI’s biggest earners from advertisers.
In August 2015, the song was acquired by BMG Rights Management for £10 million, along with all the other songs written by Kimberley Rew and Katrina and the Waves.
The Epic 2017 Project #132: 170512
Grace Jones – Living my life (1982)
Living My Life is the sixth studio album by Grace Jones, released in 1982. It was the last of three albums she recorded at the Compass Point Studios in the Bahamas.
Jones had already recorded two reggae-oriented albums with the Compass Point Allstars at the Compass Point Studios in Nassau, Bahamas, with the most recent, Nightclubbing, becoming her most successful record to date. She went back into the studio in 1982 to record an album which would be her final offering in the unofficial Compass Point trilogy. This time around, Jones recorded only one cover, “The Apple Stretching”, which was originally written by Melvin Van Peebles and used in the Broadway show Waltz of the Stork. “Nipple to the Bottle” was co-written with Sly Dunbar, while, apart from “My Jamaican Guy”, the other tracks were collaborations with Barry Reynolds.
The title track “Living My Life”, despite receiving a limited single release, was ultimately left off the album. Further outtakes included the track “Man Around the House” (written by Jones and Barry Reynolds), and a cover of Johnny Cash’s “Ring of Fire”. Both tracks were released on the 1998 compilation Private Life: The Compass Point Sessions.
Leaping ahead project 2016 #138: 160517
[A song for the naughties (5)]
Released in February 2000, the music video features clips from ‘The Beach’ (also released in 2000) and shows the group walking and singing on a beach at Wells-next-the-Sea in Norfolk.
Leaping Ahead Project 2016 #44: 160213
[A song from a band beginning with A]
The reason I’ve chosen this tune for today – apart from the fact that it’s a cracking song – is because it and Abba won the 1974 Eurovision Song Contest with it. But there’s more still – for the 1974 Eurovision Song Contest was hosted at the Dome concert hall in Brighton, UK – a stone’s throw from where I live.