Category: YouTube clip of the week

Kokomo

This week in 1982 saw the one and only UK chart entry for Kokomo. Now, so as not to confuse matters, there were two different acts called Kokomo – one was a solo artist and one was a band. In 1961, Jimmy Wisner had a top 40 hit with Asia Minor and he went by the name Kokomo. The other – this week’s clip – was a band from 1982 whose hit was called A Little Bit Further Away.

Kokomo were formed in 1973 and evolved out of another seventies band called Arrival who had two hits, both in 1970 called Friends which reached number six and the follow-up, I will Survive peaking at number 16. Sadly, they didn’t survive after that hit despite recording three more singles, but their record company ripped them off.

Kokomo comprised vocalist and composer Frank Collins, keyboard player Tony O’Malley, bassist Alan Spenner, drummer Tony Beard & backing singers Dyan Birch & Paddy McHugh. Birch was the lead singer with Arrival and had a fantastic voice.

In 1975, on his request, they backed Bob Dylan on the album Desire. They disbanded in 1977 but reunited in 1982 for the hit and remained intact until 1991 when Alan Spenner died.

There have been a couple of line-up changes and a couple of reunions since, but no more chart acts.

Let’s remember that hit from 1982.

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Yazz

Yazz is celebrating her 60th birthday this week.

Yasmin was born in the Shepherds Bush area of west London. Her mum was English and her father, Winston was from Jamaica and is a former station manager at Leicester Square tube station.

In 1983, she was briefly the lead singer with The Biz before she was chosen to front the single Doctorin’ the House by the production duo Matt Black and Jonathan More who went by the name Coldcut.

She then launched a solo career and her first hit was a cover of the Otis Clay song The Only Way is Up. Her next two singles, Stand Up For Your Love Rights and Fine Time were both top 10 hits. The last of her 12 UK hits came in 1997 with a cover of the Jackson 5’s Never Can Say Goodbye which stalled at number 61.

Let’s remember her second hit.

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Meat Loaf

Marvin Lee Aday is 72 this week.

He was born in Dallas, Texas and when he was 22 headed to Los Angeles where he formed his first band Meat Loaf Soul, a name coined by Meat’s football coach because if his size. He released a few singles, but struggled because, as he claimed on an interview with a New Zealand radio interview, no one took him seriously in the music industry.

He went on to appear in the L.A stage production of Hair, he broke off for a U.S tour and then returned to the same show but this time on Broadway in New York. In 1973, he was invited to join the cast in the original production of the Rocky Horror Show where he portrayed Eddie and Dr. Everett Scott, the how was a success and it led to him being cast as Eddie in the film version, The Rocky Horror Picture Show.

In 1975, he and Jim Steinman began work on what was to become one of the biggest selling albums of all time, Bat Out of Hell. Two years in the making, it finally surfaced in 1977. To date, it has sold approx. 44 million copies worldwide.

He continued to appear in many film and TV productions as well as releasing the albums Dead Ringer (1981), Midnight at the Lost and Found (1983), Bad Attitude (1984) and Bat Out of Hell II: Back into Hell (1993) – the latter containing his only UK number one hit I’d Do Anything for Love (But I Won’t Do That).

In 1997, he had a cameo appearance as a bus driver in the film Spiceworld.

Let’s remember and enjoy one of the singles released from Bat Out of Hell which, astonishingly only reached number 32 in the UK singles chart.

Marvin Lee Aday is 72 this week.

He was born in Dallas, Texas and when he was 22 headed to Los Angeles where he formed his first band Meat Loaf Soul, a name coined by Meat’s football coach because if his size. He released a few singles, but struggled because, as he claimed on an interview with a New Zealand radio interview, no one took him seriously in the music industry.

He went on to appear in the L.A stage production of Hair, he broke off for a U.S tour and then returned to the same show but this time on Broadway in New York. In 1973, he was invited to join the cast in the original production of the Rocky Horror Show where he portrayed Eddie and Dr. Everett Scott, the how was a success and it led to him being cast as Eddie in the film version, The Rocky Horror Picture Show.

In 1975, he and Jim Steinman began work on what was to become one of the biggest selling albums of all time, Bat Out of Hell. Two years in the making, it finally surfaced in 1977. To date, it has sold approx. 44 million copies worldwide.

He continued to appear in many film and TV productions as well as releasing the albums Dead Ringer (1981), Midnight at the Lost and Found (1983), Bad Attitude (1984) and Bat Out of Hell II: Back into Hell (1993) – the latter containing his only UK number one hit I’d Do Anything for Love (But I Won’t Do That).

In 1997, he had a cameo appearance as a bus driver in the film Spiceworld.

Let’s remember and enjoy one of the singles released from Bat Out of Hell which, astonishingly only reached number 32 in the UK singles chart.

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T.Rex

It was 40 years ago this week that Marc Bolan died in a car crash in Barnes. The car was driven by his girlfriend, the singer Gloria Jones who recorded the original version of Tainted Love and also write the 1979 disco hit Haven’t Stopped Dancing Yet for Gonzalez.

T.Rex first hit the UK chart in 1968, under the name Tyrannosaurus Rex, with Debora. After three hits they shortened the name to T.Rex and chart 20 hit singles including the four chart toopers; Hot Love, Get It On, Telegram Sam and Metal Guru.

Let’s enjoy his last top 20 hit, from 1976.

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Brian May

The legendary Queen guitarist Brian May is 70 this week.

The great man, whom I’ve met on a few occasions, has many strings to his bow, but he is certainly an underrated songwriter, probably just over shadowed by his phenomenal guitar playing.

He wrote or co-wrote almost 50% of Queen’s 46 UK hit singles, the first, and a sole writer, was Now I’m Here, a number 11 hit in 1975. It was primarily written about the good times and the bad times of the hard, extensive touring, which the band did during their first few years.

In 1974, they famously supported Mott the Hoople on their American tour, and it that tour which also provided some inspiration, highlighted by the line ‘Down in the city, just Hoople and me.’

Of all the queen songs, this one holds the record for the longest stay in their live sets, Freddie recalled in a Record Mirror interview in 1976, “We released it after Killer Queen, and it’s a total contrast, just a total contrast. It was just to show people we can still do rock ‘n’ roll – we haven’t forgotten our rock ‘n’ roll roots. It’s nice to do on stage. I enjoyed doing that on stage.”

Let’s enjoy this live version in Budapest from 1986.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=06kCc9JcEtI

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