Song Lyric Sunday | “One of Us” – Joan Osborne

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Song Lyric Sunday was created by Helen Vahdati from This Thing Called Life One Word at a Time and author Jim Adams from A Unique Title For Me is our current guest host. For complete rules or to join in the fun, click here.

The theme for Song Lyric Sunday this week is Truck and Bus Songs.

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A one-hit wonder is a musical artist who is successful with one hit song, but without a comparable subsequent hit. The term may also be applied to an artist who is remembered for only one hit despite other successes.

I was more than a little surprised to find this week’s SLS selection on the one-hit wonder list.

In her 1995 hit One of Us, Joan Osborne invites listeners to consider various aspects of belief in God and how one might relate to God, if he was, in fact, just a slob like one of us, just a stranger on the bus, tryin’ to make his way home?

One of Us reached number four on the US Billboard Hot 100 and was also a major success worldwide, topping the charts of Australia, Canada, Flemish Belgium and Sweden, reaching number six on the UK Singles Chart, and becoming a top-twenty hit in at least thirteen other counties.

FUN FACT:

  • The album version starts off with the first four lines of a recording titled The Aeroplane Ride, made on October 27, 1937, by American folklorist Alan Lomax and his wife Elizabeth for the Archive of American Folk Song at the Library of Congress.
  • The song received Grammy nominations in 1996 for Best Female Pop Vocal Performance, Record of the Year, and Song of the Year.
  • One of Us was the theme song for the American television series Joan of Arcadia.

The video was mainly shot on Coney Island, with various attractions like roller-coasters, Ferris wheels and the New York Aquarium shown, interchanged with the vintage-looking shots in sepia and Joan singing in front of the camera.

Enjoy!

See my Song Lyric Sunday selection for Nesie’s Place!

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Disclaimer: I have no copyrights to the song and/or video and/or hyperlinks to songs and/or videos and/or gifs above. No copyright infringement intended.

One of Us

Song Lyric Sunday | “Party Train” – Gap Band

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Song Lyric Sunday was created by Helen Vahdati from This Thing Called Life One Word at a Time and author Jim Adams from A Unique Title For Me is our current guest host. For complete rules or to join in the fun, click here.

The theme for Song Lyric Sunday this week is Train Songs.

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Though they retired as a group after forty-three years in 2010, brothers Charlie, Ronnie, and Robert Wilson own a spot in music history as the Gap Band.

They ruled the 80s dance charts with songs like Yearning for Your Love, Burn Rubber on Me (Why You Wanna Hurt Me), Early in the Morning , You Dropped a Bomb on Me, and Outstanding, but it’s their #3 R&B hit from 1983, Party Train that appears in this week’s SLS.

FUN FACT:

  • The Gap Band was named after streets (Greenwood, Archer, and Pine) in the historic Greenwood neighborhood in the brothers’ hometown of Tulsa, Oklahoma. The group shortened its name to The Gap Band in 1973.
  • Party Train is from the group’s seventh album, Gap Band V: Jammin’.
  • On August 26, 2005, The Gap Band was honored as a BMI Icon at the 57th annual BMI Urban Awards. The honor is given to a creator who has been “a unique and indelible influence on generations of music makers”. Outstanding alone remains one of the most sampled songs in history and has, astonishingly, been used by over 150 artists.
  • Robert Wilson died of a heart attack at his home in Palmdale, California on August 15, 2010, at the age of 53.

The song’s music video starts with the three Wilson brothers driving onto a crowded boardwalk. It then cuts to random people dancing in a boxing ring. During this segment, it periodically cuts back to other people on the boardwalk and beach dancing, including Charlie wading in the ocean water in a speedo. The video ends with an unidentified person filling in a giant yellow ballot (which says “fill in the gap” at the bottom) and selecting “Gap Party” over “Democratic Party” and “Republican Party”. Charlie is then tackled and falls into the water.

Enjoy!

See my Song Lyric Sunday selection for Nesie’s Place!

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Disclaimer: I have no copyrights to the song and/or video and/or hyperlinks to songs and/or videos and/or gifs above. No copyright infringement intended.

Party Train

Song Lyric Sunday | “Safety Dance” – Men Without Hats

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Song Lyric Sunday was created by Helen Vahdati from This Thing Called Life One Word at a Time and author Jim Adams from A Unique Title For Me is our current guest host. For complete rules or to join in the fun, click here.

The theme for Song Lyric Sunday this week is Clothing/Hat/Pants/Scarf/Shirt/Shoes/Tie.

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Still going with the theme in the group’s name instead of the song because who doesn’t love Men Without Hats?

The Canadian group had already enjoyed success in Canada with The Safety Dance when it was released in the U.S.  in March of 1982. It became an even bigger hit in the U.S. spending four weeks at its peak position of number 3 in September and October 1983, and staying on the Billboard Hot 100 for 24 weeks.  It also reached number 1 on Cash Box, as well as number 1 on the Billboard Dance Chart.

FUN FACT:

  • One of the theme words, hats, is actually used in the song in the second verse – “And we can dress real neat, from our hats to our feet…”
  • The song was written by lead singer Ivan Doroschuk after he had been kicked out of a club for Pogo dancing. (A  dance in which the dancers jump up and down, while either remaining on the spot or moving around; the dance takes its name from its resemblance to the use of a pogo stick, especially in a common version of the dance, where an individual keeps their torso stiff, their arms rigid, and their legs close together. People sometimes got injured when pogoing, but, more often than not, pogoers who fall to the ground are helped up instead of getting trampled.

The music video is notable for its English folk revival imagery, featuring Morris dancers, Mummers, Punch and Judy and a maypole. It was filmed in the village of West Kington, in Wiltshire, England. Ivan Doroschuk is the only member of the band actually to perform in the video. Doroschuk, and others in the video, can be seen repeatedly forming an “S” sign by jerking both arms into a stiff pose, one arm in an upward curve and the other in a downward curve, apparently referring to the first letter in “safety”. The Morris dancers seen in the video were the Chippenham Town Morris Men, performing a dance called Monkton Park. The dwarf actor is Mike Edmonds, whose T-shirt in the video shows the Rhythm of Youth album cover. The identity of the young blonde woman by the name of Jenny seen dancing in the video remained unknown until 2013, when she was identified as Louise Court, a journalist who served as editor-in-chief at Cosmopolitan and became a director at Hearst Magazines UK in 2015.

Enjoy!

See my Song Lyric Sunday selection for Nesie’s Place!

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Disclaimer: I have no copyrights to the song and/or video and/or hyperlinks to songs and/or videos and/or gifs above. No copyright infringement intended.

The Safety Dance

Song Lyric Sunday | “No Parking on the Dance Floor” – Midnight Star

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Song Lyric Sunday was created by Helen Vahdati from This Thing Called Life One Word at a Time and author Jim Adams from A Unique Title For Me is our current guest host. For complete rules or to join in the fun, click here.

The theme for Song Lyric Sunday this week is Floor/House/Roof/Walls.

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Party time! 😀

Back in my clubs days…last century…this was a song that would pack the dance floor. It wasn’t time to look cute or cool when Midnight Star’s No Parking on the Dance Floor was played.  It was time to dance!

The title track from the group’s fourth and most successful album of the same name in 1983,  the song reached number 43 on the R&B chart, number 44 on the dance chart, and number 81 on the Billboard Hot 100.

FUN FACT:

  • The song has been sampled by several artists since its 1983 release, including Sugar Ray’s song from 2003, Mr. Bartender (It’s So Easy). The basic melody was sampled by the Bar-Kays in their 1984 hit Freakshow on the Dance Floor.

It’s a fun video, very 80s with lots of Jheri curls, shoulder pads, and leather!

Enjoy!

See my Song Lyric Sunday selection for Nesie’s Place!

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Disclaimer: I have no copyrights to the song and/or video and/or hyperlinks to songs and/or videos and/or gifs above. No copyright infringement intended.

No Parking on the Dance Floor

Song Lyric Sunday | “Pretty Wings” – Maxwell

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Song Lyric Sunday was created by Helen Vahdati from This Thing Called Life One Word at a Time and author Jim Adams from A Unique Title For Me is our current guest host. For complete rules or to join in the fun, click here.

The theme for Song Lyric Sunday this week is Bird/Fly/Sky/Wing.

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His first single in seven years, neo-soul artist, Maxwell described the 2009 Pretty Wings to MTV as “a bittersweet love song about meeting the right girl at the wrong time.” Maxwell also told Billboard Magazine: “I met this girl who I still respect very much, and although it didn’t work out, I got lots of inspiration from it. This track speaks of my time with her. ”

Pretty Wings won the Grammy Award for Best Male R&B Vocal Performance and was nominated at the 52nd Grammy Awards for Song of the Year and Best R&B Song in 2010.

FUN FACTS:

  • Pretty Wings reached the top forty on the Billboard Hot 100. It also topped the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart, making it Maxwell’s first song in ten years to have done so (the last having been Fortunate in 1999). It remained at number one on that chart for fourteen consecutive weeks, which remains tied for the third-longest run at the top in the chart’s history.
  • The lyrics of the song express “pretty wings” as a metaphor; “If I can’t have you, let love set you free to fly your pretty wings around.”
  • Along with fellow musicians D’Angelo and Erykah Badu, Maxwell has been credited with helping to shape the “neo soul” movement that rose to prominence during the late 1990s.

To date, the music video has been viewed on YouTube over 50 million times. The video takes place in a dim household and some scenes show five separate women in their beds sleeping. Maxwell served as an Incubus who is in bed with the women in their own scenes. In the final minutes of the video the women all levitate above their beds after reaching a state of euphoria by the Incubus. The final shot is Maxwell leaving one of the bedrooms of one of the five women. The music video was ranked #9 on BET’s Notarized: Top 100 Videos of 2009 countdown.

Enjoy!

See my Song Lyric Sunday selection for Nesie’s Place!

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Disclaimer: I have no copyrights to the song and/or video and/or hyperlinks to songs and/or videos and/or gifs above. No copyright infringement intended.

Pretty Wings

Song Lyric Sunday | “Cowboys to Girls” – The Intruders

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Song Lyric Sunday was created by Helen Vahdati from This Thing Called Life One Word at a Time and author Jim Adams from A Unique Title For Me is our current guest host. For complete rules or to join in the fun, click here.

The theme for Song Lyric Sunday this week is Cowboy/Gun/Hat/Horse/Western.

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Looks like I’m stuck in the 60s this week! 😀

“It’s a story. Little kids grow up, and they’re beating the girls up, pulling their hair – they don’t treat them tenderly. Then all of the sudden they realize that girls are made for kissing. And the girls go from baby dolls to boys. We were trying to write lyrics that were different, take a different angle and be as clever as possible, ” is what Leon Huff said about one of the songs he co-wrote with partner, Kenny Gamble.

Cowboys to Girls, recorded by R&B group, The Intruders in 1967, was a crossover hit becoming the group’s first Top 40 single.

A Top 10 smash on the Billboard Hot 100, peaking at #6, Cowboys to Girls was the biggest hit of The Intruders’ career.

FUN FACTS:

  • Cowboys to Girls was also The Intruders’ only number one song on the R&B singles chart.
  • Gamble and Huff were constantly writing down ideas for songs, and often started with a title, which they also did for Cowboys to Girls.
  • The Intruders were the first band Gamble and Huff recorded on their own label, and the success of this helped them launch the Philadelphia International label, where they wrote and produced songs for Billy Paul, The O’Jays, and Harold Melvin & The Blue Notes.

The video is from… a Sooouuul Train performance! 😀

Enjoy!

See my Song Lyric Sunday selection for Nesie’s Place!

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Disclaimer: I have no copyrights to the song and/or video and/or hyperlinks to songs and/or videos and/or gifs above. No copyright infringement intended.

Cowboys to Girls

Song Lyric Sunday | “Dream in Color” – Regina Belle

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Song Lyric Sunday was created by Helen Vahdati from This Thing Called Life One Word at a Time and author Jim Adams from A Unique Title For Me is our current guest host. For complete rules or to join in the fun, click here.

The theme for Song Lyric Sunday this week is Dream/Lullaby/Sleep.

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Her 1993 album, Passion, not only includes her Grammy-winning duet with Peabo Bryson, A Whole New World, from Disney’s animated film, Aladdin,  but artist Regina Belle also executes the powerful Dream in Color.

The song is about having the courage to live life fully and with integrity.

FUN FACTS:

  • A student at Rutgers University in the early 80s, Regina left to pursue a singing career. She returned to her studies in 2013 and received her degree as a member of the 2015 graduating class. Regina performed Dream in Color during the commencement ceremony.
  • Belle is married former NBA basketball player John Battle and they have five children, three of which are adopted.
  • Regina successfully battled a brain tumor in 2009. However, she is now deaf in her left ear.

Impossible to find a good video of the wonderful song so I had to settle for a static of the Passion album cover.

Enjoy!

See my Song Lyric Sunday selection for Nesie’s Place!

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Disclaimer: I have no copyrights to the song and/or video and/or hyperlinks to songs and/or videos and/or gifs above. No copyright infringement intended.

Dream in Color

Song Lyric Sunday | “I’m Every Woman” – Whitney Houston

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Song Lyric Sunday was created by Helen Vahdati from This Thing Called Life One Word at a Time and author Jim Adams from A Unique Title For Me is our current guest host. For complete rules or to join in the fun, click here.

The theme for Song Lyric Sunday this week is Songs that reference another group.

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I’m Every Woman was the 1978 debut hit for Chaka Khan after she left the funk group, Rufus.

Whitney Houston’s 1992 cover of the song for The Bodyguard soundtrack not only mentions Chaka near the end, but she’s also featured in the official video.

FUN FACTS:

  • The music video features a very pregnant Houston performing the song, while scenes from The Bodyguard are intercut into the clip. The video also features cameo appearances by Houston’s mother Cissy Houston as well as by Chaka Khan, Valerie Simpson, Martha Wash and labelmate TLC. The song won Houston a NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Music Video, and received a Grammy Award nomination in 1994 for Best Female R&B Vocal Performance.
  • When I’m Every Woman was released, Houston’s preceding single, I Will Always Love You, was still at number one on the US Billboard Hot 100 (it remained there for eight more weeks).
  • Chaka’s version reached number twenty-one on the Billboard Hot 100, number one on the Hot Soul Singles,
  • Houston’s version peaked at number four on the Billboard Hot 100 in just its seventh and eighth week of release; remaining in the top 40 for nineteen weeks. The song became number one on the Billboard Hot Dance Club Play chart, reached number five on the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart, and cracked the top 40 on the Hot Adult Contemporary Tracks chart.

It’s a fun, energetic video!

Enjoy!

See my Song Lyric Sunday selection for Nesie’s Place!

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Disclaimer: I have no copyrights to the song and/or video and/or hyperlinks to songs and/or videos and/or gifs above. No copyright infringement intended.

I’m Every Woman

Song Lyric Sunday | “Candle in the Wind” – Elton John

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Song Lyric Sunday was created by Helen Vahdati from This Thing Called Life One Word at a Time and author Jim Adams from A Unique Title For Me is our current guest host. For complete rules or to join in the fun, click here.

The theme for Song Lyric Sunday this week is “Songs that includes somebody famous in it

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Originally written in 1973 by Elton John and Bernie Taupin, Candle in the Wind was a tribute to actress Marilyn Monroe who’d died eleven years earlier.

It’s opening line, “Goodbye, Norma Jean”, refers to Monroe’s real name… Norma Jeane Baker.

Taupin said the song is about “the idea of fame or youth or somebody being cut short in the prime of their life. The song could have been about James Dean, it could have been about Montgomery Clift, it could have been about Jim Morrison … how we glamorize death, how we immortalize people.”

John would rewrite the song twenty-four years later as Candle in the Wind 1997 for a tribute to Diana, Princess of Wales after her death. He never says Diana’s name, but refers to her as England’s Rose.

FUN FACTS:

  • The single release of the original song reached No. 11 in the UK charts in 1974. At the time, it was not released as a single in the United States (Bennie and the Jets was chosen instead).
  • During a concert on 7 April 1990 at Farm Aid IV, John dedicated Candle in the Wind to young Ryan White, who had been suffering from AIDS. White died from AIDS complications the next day.
  • According to the Guinness Book of Records, Candle in the Wind 1997 is the second highest selling single of all time (behind Bing Crosby’s White Christmas from 1942), and is the highest-selling single since charts began in the 1950s.
  • The 1997 version won Elton John the Grammy Award for Best Male Pop Vocal Performance at the 40th Grammy Awards ceremony in 1998.

I’ve posted both versions of the song’s lyrics with videos. The first video is from Elton’s Madison Square Garden concert, and the second is from the memorial service for Princess Diana. (With a one minute lead-in in Italian! Performance begins at 1:07)

Enjoy!

See my Song Lyric Sunday selection for Nesie’s Place!

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Disclaimer: I have no copyrights to the song and/or video and/or hyperlinks to songs and/or videos and/or gifs above. No copyright infringement intended.

Candle in the Wind

Song Lyric Sunday | “When I Think of You” – Janet Jackson

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Song Lyric Sunday was created by Helen Vahdati from This Thing Called Life One Word at a Time and author Jim Adams from A Unique Title For Me is our current guest host. For complete rules or to join in the fun, click here.

The theme for Song Lyric Sunday this week is “Songs from/connected to television shows.”

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In addition to her family’s variety show, Janet Damita Jo Jackson had starring/recurring roles in three successful television shows. From young Penny Gordon Woods on Good Times, to Charlene Duprey on Different Strokes, to Cleo Hewitt on Fame, Janet flexed her acting muscles early. But it would be her 1986 breakout album, Control, which put her front and center on the world stage.

The much-awarded and praised album spawned five top-five singles, including When I Think of You which went all the way to number one and become Janet’s first hit single.

FUN FACTS:

  • Containing autobiographical themes, a majority of the Control’s lyrics came as the result of a series of changes in Janet’s life.
  • The album is also notable for being what originated the style and genre that came to be known as new jack swing.
  • Best known as a television actress, Janet was initially reluctant to begin a recording career.
  • Janet’s father, Joseph, oversaw production on her first two mostly forgettable albums before Control, Janet Jackson and Dream Street. His rigid direction and control led to Janet firing him, hiring a new manager and embarking on one of music’s most successful careers.

Enjoy!

See my Song Lyric Sunday selection for Nesie’s Place!

~~~

Disclaimer: I have no copyrights to the song and/or video and/or hyperlinks to songs and/or videos and/or gifs above. No copyright infringement intended.

When I Think of You

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