Category: Single of the week

Come With Me Now (Kongos)

Groups containing siblings is nothing unusual, bands made up entirely of siblings is not too uncommon, but bands with four siblings from a charting father is a much rarer feat.

In 1971, Johannesburg-born, singer songwriter, John Kongos had two UK hits which both reached number four and they were He’s Gonna Step on You Again and Tokoloshe Man. The former was the basis for the Happy Monday’s hit Step On which made the top five in 1990.

In the 2010s, his four sons Dylan, Daniel, Johnny and Jesse formed their band called Kongos. They are clearly fussy about their name because, according to their website, they emphatically say, pronounced “KONGOS” – KONGOS is spelled like this. There’s no ‘The’ in KONGOS. It’s not KONGO’s, it’s not Congos, congas, kongus nor kongas. They reiterated by confirming ‘No relation to Cheick Kongo, the conga drum, the Kongo people of Africa, Donkey Kong, Kongos Norman, Kongos pizza, Kongos Club in Oklahoma,, Kat Kongos and Lasse Kongos. So now you how to address them should you bump into them.

They formed in 2003 and their roles are, Dylan on bass guitar, Daniel is the guitarist, Johnny plays keyboard and accordion and Jesse is the drummer – they all contribute vocals. They grew up in both Johannesburg and London but since 1996 they’ve been based in Phoenix, Arizona. They began playing shows and recording, eventually releasing their self-titled debut album in 2007. After years of touring and promoting themselves by emailing record labels, agents management companies, they got their real break in 2011 when their track I’m Only Joking became a radio smash in South Africa. Their second album, Lunatic, followed which included the track Come With Me Now. It was a slow burner and had a cult following. Drummer Jesse said that the band almost moved on to pushing new material before Come With Me Now caught fire in 2014, three years after it was recorded and after being used in an ad for NBC Sports. It received renewed attention in 2016, when it was featured in Amazon Prime’s advertising campaign for their show The Grand Tour that featured the Top Gear team of Jeremy Clarkson, Richard Hammond and James May. Additionally it was used in the 2012 film Holy Motors, the video game Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel and the 2014 action film The Expendables 3.

According to America’s Billboard magazine, the accordion-tinged rock song reached a new peak on Billboard‘s Alternative chart at number seven in its seventh week on the tally. It’s the fastest-rising debut top 10 on the chart since Lorde’s Royals in July 2013 and the fastest by a group since Flobots’ Handlebars in 2008.

So what is the inspiration behind Come With Me Now? The brothers explained, “Lyrically, it’s about losing unnecessary fears and inhibitions. Musically, it was inspired by a South African style of music called Kwaito,” they told Nicole DeRosa. Dylan added, “Johnny (who wrote the song) was listening to a lot of that Kwaito music. The variations of style that the song went through were quite vast, but it always kept this Kwaito vibe. Our dad was definitely an influence, not only because of his music and career in the music business but also because of all the different styles of music and culture he exposed us to while growing up like opera, classic rock, African tribal music, jazz, Qawwali music, etc.” The song was an early fan favourite when the band was opening for Linkin Park in South Africa.

All four members of the band write the songs, Dylan said, “We all write individually so it was difficult to plan an album upfront because we don’t write together very often at all. We bring individual songs to the table and construct an album from there.”

The track is taken from their second album Lunatic. Dylan explained to Rick Florino where the title came from, “The simple answer is we really liked the sound of the word. We went through so many names. This was actually the difficult part of the process. It somewhat relates to the album’s opening track I’m Only Joking, if you look into the lyrics. There’s a reference to ‘lunatics’. It stuck with us. After going back and forth with a number of names, we chose that one. It just sounded right to us.”

They landed a record contract with Epic records after the radio station KTCL-FM in Denver, Colorado played the single 396 times and that was three days after WKQX-FM in Chicago spun I’m Only Joking 215 times. It shows that radio stations, when allowed to have the freedom to play something other than the same songs on rotation, can have a big influence.

The Guardian described Come With Me Now as ‘a riot of growly vocals, handclaps, foot stomps and a chanty chorus: Greek restaurant music with great dollops of grunge and glam.’

It seemed the wait was worthwhile as Jesse Kongos said, “When it didn’t seem like things were getting going, we really lost heart — we were ready to move on to new material. We’re just happy we’re finally getting recognition.”

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Hatcheck Girl (Eddie Howell)

There was an expression many years ago called turntable hit. Some younger people reading this won’t even know what a turntable is, but basically it describes a song that was played numerous times on the radio but failed to make the chart. It usually applies to national radio rather than local radio. One such song was called Hatcheck Girl by a singer called Eddie Howell.

When I was working at the BBC in the late seventies and early eighties, I received copious amount of vinyl and if something caught my ear I could get it some airplay in the hope of it being a hit. There were some that I succeeded in and was rewarded nicely, others, I tried, but did not make it to chart status. It happened to Eddie Howell twice firstly in 1976 when he recorded a song called Man from Manhattan despite having Queen connections as Freddie Mercury played piano on it and produced it and Brian May played guitar and provided backing vocals, but more about that later.

When a record plugger from Gem records gave me a copy of Hatcheck Girl in 1980, I loved it instantly and got it some airplay on both Peter Powell and Kid Jensen’s show. They loved it too. Six years ago a woman wrote into Graham Norton’s Radio Two show to request a song on his Tune With A Tale feature and it was Hatcheck Girl. Graham admitted he’d never heard of it and what’s more, the BBC never had a copy in its library. Shameful! They had to download it and it a got an airing.

When this song came in as a request for Single of the Week, I set about trying to track Eddie down. Initially I had no luck, but by chance a friend of mine tracked him down on Facebook and Eddie gave his contact details and so I got to find out about the story behind the song.

When I made contact, I learned that Eddie was originally from the Midlands and was living in London, “I am a Birmingham lad though and through,” he admitted prooudly, “I’ve noticed you don’t see many Birmingham people in London and I have no idea why. I know it’s the second city but you see many Mancunians, Liverpudlians and Welsh people, but not many Brummies.”

Eddie is still making music and he told me, “We’ve just re-recorded Man from Manhattan with Mike Moran (who co-wrote and produced Barcelona). We’ve kept Brian’s guitar and Freddie’s vocals and I’ve done it because someone contacted me about doing it for Freddie’s AIDS charity, the Mercury Phoenix Trust. I agreed and then we had to get the original multitrack from Warner’s in Burbank, California where they’ve been since 1975, but we got them and we recorded it in the Czech Republic with a 17-piece brass section would you believe. It’s going to be available through the fan club.”

How come Freddie and Brian got involved? “I was doing a promotional gig one night at Thursday’s club in Kensington,” Eddie explained, “I had Jack Lancaster on saxophone and Robin Lumley on keyboards and Phil Collins on congas and during the set my manager, David Minns, walked in with a man that I thought looked like Freddie Mercury, then I realised it actually was Freddie. It was there that he first heard Man from Manhattan, which was a newly written song, I included in the set but it, wasn’t on the album. After the gig, Freddie made a beeline for me and said, ‘I love that song Man from Manhattan, can I produce it?’ Then we all went down to The Elephant on the River to celebrate, in fact Kenny Everett and his wife were there too. I gave Freddie a two track guitar/vocal demo of the song and a couple of days later he called and said let’s get going. Studio time was booked at Sarm East Studios and true to form, Freddie quickly took control of the sessions, he did lots of pre-production work on the song’s structure and the harmony arrangements. He had a mini cassette recorder loaded with ideas for the track, backing vocals and answering phrases.”

I asked him why he thought it wasn’t a hit first time round, “We had great radio play and Top of the Pops lined up and then, all of a sudden, the musicians union mysteriously discovered that Jerome Rimson, the American bassist hired by Freddie for the sessions, had been working in Britain without a permit. This obliged them to place a ban on all further UK media exposure due to his ‘illegally’ recorded playing, a decision which effectively killed off the record.”

So, onto Hatcheck Girl. “Well, there was a club I used to go to in Birmingham called The Cedar Club, I saw The Move there before they were famous, Jeff Lynne had a great band called The Idle Race and I just used to go up there and watch them and that’s where I met the cloakroom girl. I remember her name, it was Melissa and I just used to watch here because she was so typical of the kind of girl who was doing a job and hanging around with the stars and the musicians in the hope of moving up to the big time. I changed cloakroom to hatcheck and obviously she was the catalyst of the song, but the rest of it was made up.” I asked him how he came up with the club name, “Reno seemed to fit, it had to be a two syllable word and flow well, Cedar club wouldn’t have worked. I toyed with the idea of Vegas, but that didn’t flow too well either. I was thinking about a kind of Caesars Palace casino scenario, alluding to my fascination with the Mafia and the girl in the song would have been checking hats in that kind of club, mingling with the stars and the gangsters.”

I heard a rumour at the time that Eddie had married the hatcheck girl, but that wasn’t true, but as Eddie continued, “Funnily enough I did meet my wife at that club. She was Finnish and she came over from Finland and got a job as an au pair girl in Little Aston and we met at the club. But Melissa left before I met my wife (to be) and I admit I was a bit heartbroken.”

Eddie admitted, “I like the song and I like the arrangement, but I always thought it was a bit heavy on the strings,” I disagreed with him explaining that as a listener, when you hear a song you either like it or you don’t. If it was done in a different way it may not have the same appeal. “This is why most artists have producers I think because the producer should have a totally objective view of the song. If you wrote it and you’re singing it then you’ve got your own little ideas on how it should be, well that true’s with me anyway.”

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Giddy-Up-A-Ding Dong

Sometimes when I receive a request for a single of the Week, the requester often asks for a specific version of the song and if I know it to be a cover version I do wonder that they were aware of an original. This week Kato asked for Giddy Up A Ding Dong by The Sensational Alex Harvey Band who recorded their version in 1973, but the original is from some 16 years earlier.

The song was written in 1953 by Freddie Bell who was born Ferdinando Dominick Bello in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania to Italian American parents, and his friend Joey Lattanzi. It was not recorded until three years later after the group had signed to Mercury. He formed his backing group, The Bell Boys the year previous who comprised guitarist Frankie Brent, Jerry Mayo on trumpet, Jack Kane on saxophone, Russ Conti on piano and Louis Joseph Cicchini on drums. Giddy-Up-A-Dong-Dong was a novelty song designed to showcase the band’s clowning.

In the mid-fifties, they landed a residency at the Sands Hotel in Las Vegas. There was another group, The Treniers, performing at the same venue and the lead singer from that group gave Bell the nickname ‘Ding Dong’. The Bell Boys, in their set, regularly included a cover of Big Mama Thornton’s Hound Dog but done in a much souped-up tempo. It was their version that Elvis first heard and based his own version on theirs. Bell had removed any sexual innuendo from the lyrics of Hound Dog to make it more acceptable for radio. Bell met Elvis in Vegas and said of Elvis’ version of Hound Dog, “I didn’t feel bad about that at all, in fact, I encouraged him to record it. He was an extraordinary talent but he didn’t know how to sell rock ‘n’ roll in Vegas. We had choreography, while Elvis just stood and sang.”

They were spotted by film producer Sam Katzman who offered them a part in Rock Around the Clock and Giddy-Up-A-Ding Dong became their first Mercury release and was featured in the movie.

The song opens with the lyrics, ‘I went ridin’ the other night, two colour horse, oh my what a sight! The name of my horse was Ding Dong while we was ridin’ and singin’ a song’ The nursery rhyme like song continues with ‘We rode and we rode the whole night through, my horse was tired, I was too. I had a date with ma girl at eight, come on Ding Dong we can’t be late’ yes despite its childish lyrics, songs of the time, including Bill Haley’s See You Later Alligator and Tommy Steele’s Rock With the Caveman heralded important social change that meant teenage life would never be the same again.

They were a class act live as seen in Rock Around the Clock. The Bell Boys dance in line and their long, skinny pianist, Russ Conti, plays the piano one-handed while dancing for the camera. Kane plays two saxophones at once and Bell in between singing plays trombone during the instrumental break.

Oddly, Giddy-Up-A-Ding Dong was not a hit in the United States, but it was popular in Australia and France and in the UK it climbed to number four in the charts. The publicity for the single said, “If these sides don’t move you, see a doctor – you’re dead.” The British publicist Ken Pitt, who had seen Bell in Las Vegas, recommended his show in the New Musical Express, “They’ve got it all at their fingertips, right down to the last honkin’ semi-quaver.”

The Sensational Alex Harvey Band were essentially a glam rock band formed by frontman Alex in 1972. They recorded both original material as well as array of cover versions. Their debut album, Framed, featured the title track, a cover of an old Robins song and an extended six and a half minute version of I Just Want to Make Love to You. Next came Next, a seven-track album with five original songs and their faithful cover of Giddy Up a Ding Dong (without the hyphens). Alex left in 1976 and the band continued without him. He died of heart failure on 4 February 1982.

Sadly no original members of the Bell Boys are alive; Conti died in 1992, Brent in 2002, Bell in 2008 and Mayo in 2011.

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What’s Made Milwaukee Famous Has Made A Loser Out Of Me (Jerry Lee Lewis)

Alcohol takes the blame for many things in this world and often quite rightly so. In this week’s choice for Single of the Week, it takes the blame twice in a good way and not such a good way.

When Jerry Lee Lewis first came to the UK in 1958, he was accompanied by his 13-year old wife Myra who was also his cousin. Thanks to one journalist who was waiting for him at London Airport (now Heathrow) he made the fact that she was 13 and his cousin public which completed halted his career and his tour was cancelled after just three dates. He returned to the States and what was seemingly ok before he left was not all right now. Radio stations stopped playing his music and people he knew and trusted abandoned him. He still had a recording contact with Sun record and so kept on churning out songs. That contract ceased in 1960 and Jerry moved to Smash Records but it did little for his career.

In the late sixties, his producer, Jerry Kennedy, thought a change of direction could be needed and suggested he record some country and western songs which he agreed to do. The first was Another Place, Another Time which surprised everyone when it flew up the country chart.

In 1968, a fledgling songwriter called Glenn Sutton was working as a staff producer at Columbia records when he met music publisher Al Gallico. As it happens, Gallico was looking for some new material for Jerry Lee and asked Sutton if he could come up with something. Sutton didn’t come up with anything immediately and a few days later Gallico called him and told him he needed a song for a session the next day and asked Sutton what he had. Sutton, knowing he had nothing, and not wanting to lose the chance to write a song for the once-famous rock ‘n’ roller, looked around his desk and saw an advert for Schlitz beer with the caption ‘the beer that made Milwaukee famous’. In an interview with Mick Brown, Sutton said, “I told Al that it was a drinking song, I’d written a lot of drinking songs before then, but I’d never thought of that.”

In the 19th century a lot of Polish and German immigrants moved to Wisconsin and set up a number of breweries which included Pabst, Blatz, Miller and Schlitz. The latter was the one came up with the slogan ‘The beer that made Milwaukee famous’. Sutton, knowing he had to get the song finished now he had committed, worked through the night and by dawn What’s Made Milwaukee Famous with the added twist (Has Made a Loser Out of Me) was finished.

The story of the song is a sad one because the narrator prefers a drink instead of going home to his waiting woman. The song starts with, ‘It’s late and she’s waiting and I know I should go home, but every time I start to leave they play another song then someone buys another round’ which says it all. She tells him the relationship cannot survive if he spends so many hours in the pub, which he knows but is unable to help himself. In the end he concedes, ‘Now’s she’s gone and I’m to blame, too late I finally see What’s made Milwaukee famous has made a loser out of me’.

When Jerry Lee heard it, it appealed to his instinct and cut it the next day. When released it peaked at number 94 in the Billboard chart. The song was also covered by Sutton’s then-wife Lynn Anderson (Sutton produced her sole UK hit Rose Garden) and with much more success by Rod Stewart who, with a slightly retitled What Made Milwaukee Famous with the added (Has Made a Loser Out of Me), took it to number four in the UK as part of a double A-side with a cover of Jimi Hendrix’s Angel. Interestingly, in 2006, Rod and Jerry recorded a duet version of the song which appeared on Jerry Lee’s album Last Man Standing.

Sutton, it seemed, was more than just a songwriter. He was a performer and did so under the jokey pseudonym Bluewater Dave, the world’s oldest living entertainer or as a superhero called Angelman. As Bluewater Dave, he would often put on a rugged, well-worn old man’s mask and riff through blasphemous comic routines about the industry, politics and aging. As Angelman, however, he donned a silver mask, body-length blue tights and cape. Off stage it would continue when sometimes he’d arrive at music industry meetings shouting his trademark line ‘Put your hands on an angel, and I will bust your ass.’

In April 2007, Sutton had a heart attack and died in his sleep at the age of 69. He was loved by many and as Michael McCall wrote in the Nashville Scene, at his funeral, and at a memorial service hosted by his daughter Lisa Sutton his friends and family—including two ex-wives and a former live-in girlfriend—told ribald stories of his exploits anchored by loving stories of his generosity, kindness and sweet spirit.

What Made Milwaukee Famous was not only Schlitz beer, but a Glenn Sutton song too.

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Duel (Propaganda)

One thing I personally never do is read reviews whether it be a film, book or a song. I have no interest in knowing someone else’s, usually a so-called ‘expert’, opinion. If I’m interested I’ll find out for myself. This week’s choice is one of those cult classics which crops up from time to time on half-decent radio stations and is if often recognised, but not remembered by its title. When Duel was released in 1985 it got a slating in Record Mirror’s singles review section, which that particular week was done by the members of more or less forgotten eighties band Scritti Politti. Green (lead singer) said, “They look complete and utter wankers in their photos. I think the whole thing is pointless and horrible. It’s not exciting, challenging or (sic) beautiful.” David Gamson (keyboard player) thought, “The track sounds very lumpen,” with Fred Maher (drummer) adding, “It’s a female Morrissey, it isn’t what I was expecting. Trevor Horn was clearly busy that week.” Thank God I ignored them back then.

Propaganda, who were Claudia Brücken, Michael Mertens, Ralf Dörper and Susanne Freytag, were formed in Düsseldorf, Germany in 1982. Claudia and Suzanne had been in a group called Topolinos when Ralf saw them and invited them to join his new band. Claudia remembered, “We dressed up very glamourous and performed short sets. We also did backing vocals for other bands, but right from the start the idea was to go to England and get a recording contract.”

“I loved it,” Claudia told Max Dax, “it was all very exciting. I was 19 years old and school was over. Of course everything went very fast. I wouldn’t question the situation I found myself in. I guess I took it for granted that I was constantly working in the studio together with Stephen Lipson and Trevor Horn. I remember it was quite exciting to see Stewart Copeland of The Police walking into the studio and to contribute to the drums on Duel as if this was the most natural thing in the world to do. It was phenomenal.”

Their 1984 debut single, Dr. Mabuse, reached number seven in their homeland and number 27 in the UK. They then relocated to the UK and signed a deal with Trevor Horn’s ZTT record label. Horn had signed their most successful act, Frankie Goes To Hollywood, a year earlier and were still really concentrating on building their career especially after the trouble they had getting Relax off the ground.

Propaganda were a synth band but didn’t want to be pigeonholed as such, Claudia recalled at the time, “A lot of people tried to put us into a corner after Dr Mabuse. They saw that the single was inspired by the Fritz Lang film and assumed that we were very dark and mysterious, but we knew that would happen so for the follow-up we set out to be very over the top in our video with lots of colour. We wanted to make that contrast.”

Claudia, who by now had married ZTT employee Paul Morley, explained, “When it came to Duel, we just wanted to do something completely different, that’s what Propaganda means. Duel was a love song which is a duel between two lovers.” It has a real emotion which is less obvious than a slow song because the synth sound detracts from it a little, which isn’t a criticism. ZTT wanted to release Duel immediately after Dr Mabuse and Ralf said, “We wanted to have one following the other because it makes sense if you look at the two songs. There are quite a lot of ways we can sound, on Duel we show the two opposites, the one side very sweet and the other very harsh.”

At two minutes and five seconds in there is a noise which sounds like an elephant, Ralf’s comment when asked about it was, “It’s not an elephant, it’s a microchip with big ears!”

The track has been used in two sporting contexts, firstly when it is played at the Heart of Midlothian Football Club during home matches and the instrumental section was used as an intro by Australian Television in their sports programme called 7 Sport during their coverage of the Touring Car Championship.

Propaganda broke up in 1990 however reformed in 2005 but it was just Susanne Freytag and Michael Mertens. Brücken had two minor solo hits in 1990 and 91 with Absolut(e) and Kiss Like Ether respectively. She still performs solo and in November and December 2018 her and Suzanne Freytag, under the name X-Propaganda, supported Heaven 17 on their mini tour celebrating the 35th anniversary of their Luxury Gap album.

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Private Eyes (Hall & Oates)

Who are the most successful duo in American pop history? Simon and Garfunkel? The Everly Brothers? Well, they both were once (at different times) until they were overtaken in the late eighties by Daryl Hall & John Oates as certified by Billboard magazine. This week it’s the story of their third, of six, American number one hits.

The pair met in 1967 by accident. They were fronting their own separate bands, Daryl Hall, who was born Daryl Hohl, was the lead singer with The Temptones and John Oates fronted The Masters and were both appearing at the Adelphi Ballroom in Philadelphia which was Daryl’s home state of Pennsylvania, while Oates had travelled from neighbouring state New York. That evening was a band contest with many taking part and at one point trouble broke out between two other bands and gunfire was heard, so everyone tried to escape. Both Hall and Oates got into the same lift and found they had mutual interests and attended the same University so they struck up a friendship. They later shared a few apartments around the state capital. One of their properties had a letterbox which was labelled Hall & Oates and that would eventually become their professional name once with got their musical partnership going.

They began that partnership in 1972 and their first album Whole Oats went nowhere. The following year they released what would eventually become their most memorable album, Abandoned Luncheonette, but it did very little at the time. The single, She’s Gone, from that album was only released in 1976 after two or three acts had already covered it.

Four year had passed until the UK heard any more from the duo, even though they’d released six album in the States. They signed a new deal with RCA records and returned with Voices which contained the hit singles Kiss on my List and their original version of the Paul Young hit Everytime You Go Away. Next came Private Eyes which contained the first UK top 10 hit, I Can’t Go for That (No Can Do) and this week’s suggestion – the title track.

Montreal-born musician Warren Pash was trying to make a career as a songwriter in Los Angeles. He had written a song called I Need You to Need Me, but wasn’t happy with the title. One day he was driving on Ventura Boulevard when he saw an advertising poster for a new film called The Private Eyes which was about two bumbling detectives, that title appealed to him so he went home and wrote some more of the song then retitled it Private Eyes.

Pash, a few months earlier, had met Hall and his long-term girlfriend Sara Allen. Hall used to write songs with Allen’s sister Janna who was also a singer. Daryl and Janna had written Kiss on My List which was originally going to be for Janna’s debut album, but it ended up on Hall and Oates’ instead. Janna called Pash to see if he had any songs for her album which is when he mentioned Private Eyes. Janna like the sound of it and returned to L.A to work with Pash on it and they finished the song together. When she brought it back to New York to play it to Daryl, Sara added some bits and the song was then credited with four writers.

Pash recalled, in an interview with Song Facts, what it was like when Janna came back to L.A., “We went in a little rehearsal room somewhere – I think it was five bucks an hour with a beat-up, old piano with cigarette burns and half the keys not working, and a cassette player. We banged it out with some stuff that she added to make it more singable for her and more melodic for her. She took it away and I said, ‘OK, we’ll see what happens.’ She calls me maybe a month later and says, ‘I don’t think that song is for me.’ I said, yeah, I understand, and she goes, ‘but I think it’s perfect for Daryl and John, so I gave the cassette to them.’ I went, What are you trying to do, kill my opportunity to work with Daryl again? Why’d you give him that piece-of-crap tape? She says, ‘no, no, no… they’ll know what to do with it.'”

The song tells a story in a similar way that detectives would work, the opening line ‘I see you, you see me’ which indicates the moment when they spot each other after casing a joint. Lines like ‘when it’s watching for lies you can’t escape my Private Eyes’ give the song that eerie feel.

The accompanying video was done in the same way resembling an episode of Columbo with the stereotypical raincoats and hat. The video was done cheaply by a film director called Jay Dubin who was known for making cheap videos quickly.

Their song writing changed from around the time of the Private Eyes album, Daryl Hall explained in an interview with Output magazine in 1981, “A lot of times we’ll just come in with the basic idea of verse-chorus-verse musically, and I’ll just sing something over it, words that don’t make any real sense. Then we’ll come back and put the real lyrics in the song. It has worked real good for us because it keeps us from getting frustrated. We have it down now where we can go in the studio with incomplete songs and finish them there.” He also said, in a Billboard interview, “If you want to understand what we’re talking about, read between the lines,” to which John Oates added, “Some people go to a psychiatrist. We write songs.”

The song was used in the 2002 film Cherish and again in 2010 in Knight and Day which starred Tom Cruise and Cameron Diaz.

One artist who has been really inspired by Hall and Oates is the New York rapper Travis McCoy. He is such a fan that he had the artwork of the Private Eyes album tattooed on the back of his hands saying, “One day I was looking at the Private Eyes cover and I was like, that’s really f***ing awesome.”

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