Monday, July 30, 2012

Blast from the Past: It's All in the (Re-) Mix!

Some of my favorite songs are actually not original versions, but remixes. Maybe it's the gay thing, but I've always been a fan of remixes, all the way back to the time of 12" singles. If you really dig a song, and then find three remixes of it, it can sometimes be a real thrill (or it can sometimes be mind-numbing drek). Sometimes, the well-known version of a song is the remix, and it's the original that sounds different. And in a couple of odd cases, both versions were popular. Don't know what I mean? Okay. . .

1. & 2. You Don't Know by Cyndi Lauper - The lyrics are the same in both versions of this shoulda-been-a-hit, a song about ignorance and bigotry. The album version was somber and slow. The remixed version is powerful and driving. I like 'em both.

3. & 4. Missing - by Everything but the Girl - This band has quite a following, though this is their only real hit in the US. The song itself wasn't a hit until it was remixed. Compare and contrast. . .

5. & 6. The Reflex - by Duran Duran - Everybody remembers this song, one of the final "heyday" hits by the band. But the version you know sounds very different in its original album version. The remix is definitely an improvement here.

7. & 8. One by One - by Cher - This song is very probably the reason Cher's next album Believe started out dancy. One by One was a languid ballad that was turned into a dance song that lit up the dancefloor.

9. & 10. Express Yourself - Madonna - In this last example, we have a case where both the album version and the remix were hits. In fact, you probably know both versions, and didn't realize how different they are. But there are different instruments, different backing vocals. . . and both are great!

And that'll about do it for this week. Unbelievably, it's time for another work week. So let's make the best of it. Happy Monday!

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