Can you believe we’re already halfway through August? I really need to learn the art of not blinking. Just sayin’.
Meanwhile, it’s Monday – and Monday means music! This week’s theme is “tunes with male names in them”. How fun! Grab your favorite tune(s) and join in the fun, won’t you?
Let’s start with a band that hails from my heritage country, Sweden, with a song they originally recorded in Swedish on their solo album in 1975. They recorded the English version the following year, but only appears on their greatest hits collections vs. an actual album.
ABBA member Anni-Frid ‘Frida’ Lyngstad originally recorded the song in Swedish on her solo album Frida Ensam (meaning Frida Alone) in 1975. ABBA then recorded an English version the following year. The song does not appear on any studio album, only greatest hits collections.
This was the biggest selling single in Australian chart history until it was overtaken by Elton John’s “Candle In The Wind ’97.”
Give a listen to ABBA with “Fernando”:
Next up is a song that was based on the original artist’s life. It tells the tale of a boy with humble beginnings with a talent for guitar. Some details were changed: the original artist was from St. Louis, not Louisiana, and he knew how to read and write very well. He graduated from beauty school with a degree in hairdressing and cosmetology.
The line, “That little country boy could play” was originally, “That little colored boy can play.” Berry knew he had to change it if he wanted the song played on the radio, and he didn’t want to alienate his white fans, who could better relate to the tale of a “country” boy.
The music video is a scene from one of my favorite movies – the actor only pretended to play guitar and lip synced while a musician named Mark Campbell sang the vocals, but was credited as “Marty McFly.” The actor has since learned how to play guitar and rocks amongst the best of them.
Have fun watching “Johnny B. Goode”:
Next up is a song that doesn’t have a male name in the title, but does have ‘man’ in the title, and I love the song, so I’m slipping it in here. It’s a song that was inspired by this artist’s experiences playing at The Executive Room, a piano bar in Los Angeles. He worked there for six months in 1972 after his first solo album tanked. The characters in the song are based on real people the artist encountered while working at The Executive Room.
The artist was quoted as saying:
“It was a gig I did for about six months just to pay rent. I was living in LA and trying to get out of a bad record contract I’d signed. I worked under an assumed name, the Piano Stylings of Bill Martin, and just bulls–ted my way through it. I have no idea why that song became so popular. It’s like a karaoke favorite. The melody is not very good and very repetitious, while the lyrics are like limericks. I was shocked and embarrassed when it became a hit. But my songs are like my kids and I look at that song and think: ‘My kid did pretty well.'”
Give a listen to the inimitable Billy Joel with “Piano Man”:
Next up is a song about an actor famous for his cool persona and attitude that the lyrics allude to. In the video, the artist recreates the car chase scene from the actor’s movie Bullitt and the motorcycle chase from his film The Great Escape.
The artist won a Grammy for Best Female Rock Vocal Performance for this song, and The Voice (Season 3) winner Cassadee Pope performed this song in the show’s finale with her coach Blake Shelton.
Give a listen to the gorgeous and talented Sheryl Crow with “Steve McQueen”:
Last, but certainly not least, is a song that was the first single from this artist’s new album a couple of years ago. When the song was sent to him, he loved it so much that right before he walked out on stage for a performance a while back, he thought he’d play the song solo acoustic to see what the audience thought.
Flash forward, and he said there’s no doubt that their response that day helped make it the first single from what will be his next album.
The song title resonated deeply with him, particularly since he considers it a poetic use of the three John’s and what each represent to him. The song also references many more well-known names, including John Wayne, Kris Kristofferson, Don McLean, and Marilyn Monroe.
The artist performed the full version of this song live on stage for the first time during the CMT Music Awards on June 10, 2015.
Without further ado, here’s the awesome Keith Urban with “John Cougar, John Deere, John 3:16”:
That’s a wrap for this week – have a great Monday!
Now on to the particulars of Monday’s Music Move’s Me: I have the supreme honor and privilege of being a co-host with the inimitable Xmas Dolly and our musical cohort, Callie from JAmericanSpice, and our awesome friend Cathy, from Curious as a Cathy has returned full force as a co-host.
Want to join in the fun? It’s easy – just find a tune that rocks your boat, post it and link up – don’t forget to grab Xmas Dolly…er, um, I mean her button…over at her place here. Check out Xmas Dolly’s sidebar for the random themes we sport each week – and you can always ask for a specific theme of music you like, too. Check out the other music lovahs and let’s jam!