Gnarls Barkley – St Elsewhere (The ’59) #297

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Gnarls Barkley – St Elsewhere (2006)

Jem of Jemtunes, born in 1959, has now turned 59. So ‘The ’59’ celebrates 59 years of cracking tunes with a few albums from each year – 1959 through 2018. Today’s the last instalment of year 48 – 2006.

St. Elsewhere was the debut album by American soul duo Gnarls Barkley. It was released on April 24, 2006 in the UK, where it went straight to the number 1 slot one the Albums Chart

The album’s first single, “Crazy”, was the first song to become a UK number one single based solely on downloads.

In 2007, the album won the Grammy Award for Best Alternative Music Album, with nominations for Album of the Year and Record of the Year for “Crazy”. 

 

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Anthony & The Johnsons – I am a bird now (The ’59) #289

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Anthony & The Johnsons – I am a bird now (2005)

Jem of Jemtunes, born in 1959, has now turned 59. So ‘The ’59’ celebrates 59 years of cracking tunes with a few albums from each year – 1959 through 2018. Currently we’re at year 47 – 2005.

I Am a Bird Now was the second album from New York City based Antony and the Johnsons. It won the Mercury Prize on September 6, 2005 and subsequently shot up the UK albums chart from No.135 to No.16 in one week, the biggest jump in the history of the award.

The album features guest appearances by Rufus Wainwright, Devendra Banhart, Joan Wasser and by lead singer Anohni’s childhood heroes Boy George and Lou Reed.

The cover is a photograph by Peter Hujar of Warhol Superstar Candy Darling on her deathbed (aptly titled “Candy Darling on Her Deathbed”).

Simply Red – A new flame (The ’59) #190

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Simply Red – A new flame (1989)

Jem of Jemtunes, born in 1959, has now turned 59. So ‘The ’59’ celebrates 59 years of cracking tunes with a few albums from each year – 1959 through 2018. Currently we’re at year 31 – 1989.

A New Flame was the third album from Simply Red, released in February 1989. It was a huge success worldwide, becoming the band’s first UK number one album and certified 7x Platinum by the BPI for sales of 2,100,000 copies in the UK alone.

The album’s lead single “If You Don’t Know Me by Now”, written by Kenny Gamble and Leon Huff, was originally written for Labelle but they never recorded it. However Harold Melvin & the Blue Notes made it a hit in 1972. Covered by a number of artists subsequently, the Simply Red version took it to No.1 in the UK and the US.

 

Sade – Diamond Life (The ’59) #163

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Sade – Diamond Life (1984)

This year, Jem of Jemtunes, born in 1959, turns 59. So ‘The ’59’ celebrates 59 years of cracking tunes with a few albums from each year – 1959 through 2018. Currently we’re at year 26 – 1984

Diamond Life was Sade’s  debut studio album  released in the United Kingdom on 16 July 1984 by Epic Records and in the United States on 27 February 1985 by Portrait Records.

After studying fashion design, and later modelling, Sade Adu began backup singing with a band called ‘Pride’ which, with Paul Anthony Cook, Paul Denman and Stuart Matthewman became ‘Sade’. Following various demos and performances, Sade received interest from record labels and later signed to Epic.

Recording for the album began in 1983 at The Power Plant in London and took a total of six weeks to complete.

Upon release, Diamond Life was met with acclaim from music critics and went on to win the Brit Award for Best British Album in 1985. Commercially the album was a success charting highly in the UK and US,  It spawned four singles including the hit singles “Your Love Is King” and “Smooth Operator”.

Grace Jones – Living my life (The ’59) #151

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Grace Jones – Living my life (1982)

This year, Jem of Jemtunes, born in 1959, turns 59. So ‘The ’59’ celebrates 59 years of cracking tunes with a few albums from each year – 1959 through 2018. Currently we’re at year 24 – 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.

Michael Jackson – Thriller (The ’59) #145

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Michael Jackson – Thriller (1982)

This year, Jem of Jemtunes, born in 1959, turns 59. So ‘The ’59’ celebrates 59 years of cracking tunes with a few albums from each year – 1959 through 2018. Today we’ve reached year 24 – 1982.

The late Michael Jackson released his sixth album on November 30, 1982.

Then, in just over a year, Thriller became — and currently remains — the world’s best-selling album, with estimated sales of 66 million copies.

It won a record-breaking eight Grammy Awards in 1984, including Album of the Year and produced seven singles — “The Girl Is Mine”, “Billie Jean”, “Beat It”, “Wanna Be Startin’ Somethin'”, “Human Nature”, “P.Y.T. (Pretty Young Thing)”, and “Thriller” — all of which reached the top 10.

Thriller also broke racial barriers in pop music, enabling Jackson’s appearances on MTV and meeting with President Ronald Reagan at the White House. The album was one of the first to use music videos as successful promotional tools, and the videos for the songs “Thriller”, “Billie Jean”, and “Beat It” all received regular rotation on MTV.

In 2001, a special edition reissue was released, which contains additional audio interviews, demo recordings and the song “Someone in the Dark”, a Grammy-winning track from the E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial storybook. In 2008, it was reissued again as Thriller 25, containing remixes with contemporary artists, previously unreleased songs, and a DVD with three music videos and Jackson’s performance of “Billie Jean” from the 1983 television special Motown 25.

In the same year, the album was inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame.

The electrifying Aretha Franklin (“The ’59”) #030

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The Electrifying Aretha Franklin (1962)

Aretha Franklin’s third studio album, was released on March 19, 1962 by Columbia Records. It’s also known under its working title The Incomparable Aretha Franklin and was recorded at Columbia Recording Studios, 799 Seventh Avenue, New York. It was produced by John Hammond and arranged by Richard Wess.