Webster

The Constitution was made to guard the people against the dangers of good intentions." --American Statesman Daniel Webster (1782-1852)


Monday, November 20, 2017

Monday Music "Don't You Want Me" by The Human League

I was driving on the way to work and this song came on my Sirius/XM and I decided to use it on my "Monday Music".  You know that you been doing this for a while when you have to do a search first to make sure that you haven't used the song already. Surprisingly I haven't.  Well I remember when this song came on and to me it represented the new heights of the 2nd British invasion and the New Wave that was hitting the United States and being played on that new channel MTV...You know..back when they played Music.  Well the sound was something totally new as far as the new wave and they played well on a good stereo and I was using my Dads PX Stereo that he picked up in the early 70's when he was on his 2nd tour in Vietnam in 1972.  He had the Stereo shipped home during his tour and I made use of it.  I remembered when I flicked the power switch "ON", I heard a hum and the power came on and it was a Sony and it played really good.  I continued the family tradition when I bought my Yamaha from the PX in Stuttgart  and I still have it. LOL.
And everyone in my barracks used foam earplugs to cover up all the Jacks from dirt and surprise that they are still there.
One of these days, I will have time to build models again...LOL


"Don't You Want Me" is a single by British synthpop group The Human League, released on 27 November 1981 as the fourth single from their third studio album Dare (1981).
It is the band's best known and most commercially successful recording and was the 1981 Christmas number one in the UK, where it has since sold over 1,560,000 copies, making it the 23rd most successful single in UK Singles Chart history. It later topped the Billboard Hot 100 in the US on 3 July 1982 where it stayed for three weeks. In 2015 the song was voted by the British public as the nation's 7th favourite 1980s number one in a poll for ITV.

The lyrics were originally inspired after lead singer Philip Oakey read a photo-story in a teen-girl's magazine. Originally conceived and recorded in the studio as a male solo, Oakey was inspired by the film A Star Is Born and decided to turn the song into a conflicting duet with one of the band's two teenage female vocalists. Susan Ann Sulley was then asked to take on the role. Up until then, she and the other female vocalist Joanne Catherall had only been assigned backing vocals; Sulley says she was chosen only through "luck of the draw". Musicians Jo Callis and Philip Adrian Wright created a synthesizer score to accompany the lyrics which was much harsher than the version that was actually released. Initial versions of the song were recorded but Virgin Records-appointed producer Martin Rushent was unhappy with them. He and Callis remixed the track, giving it a softer, and in Oakey's opinion, "poppy" sound. Oakey hated the new version and thought it would be the weakest track on Dare, resulting in one of his infamous rows with Rushent. Oakey disliked it so much that it was relegated to the last track on side two of the (then) vinyl album.
Before the release of Dare, three of its tracks—"The Sound of the Crowd", "Love Action (I Believe in Love)", and "Open Your Heart"—had already been released as successful singles. With a hit album and three hit singles in a row, Virgin's chief executive Simon Draper decided to release one more single from the album before the end of 1981. His choice, "Don't You Want Me", instantly caused a row with Oakey who did not want another single to be released because he was convinced that "the public were now sick of hearing The Human League" and the choice of the "poor quality filler track" would almost certainly be a disaster, wrecking the group's new-found popularity. Virgin were adamant that a fourth single would be released and Oakey finally agreed on the condition that a large colour poster accompany the 7" single, because he felt fans would "feel ripped off" by the 'substandard' single alone.
The Human League often added cryptic references to their productions and the record sleeve of "Don't You Want Me" featured the suffix of "100". This was a reference to The 100 Club, a restaurant/bar in Sheffield.
Today, the song is widely considered a classic of its era. In a retrospective review, Stephen Thomas Erlewine, senior editor for AllMusic, described the song as "a devastating chronicle of a frayed romance wrapped in the greatest pop hooks and production of its year." Oakey still describes it as over-rated, but acknowledges his initial dismissal was misguided and claims pride in the track. Oakey is also at pains to point out another misconception: that it is not a love song, but "a nasty song about sexual power politics"

In 1981 record company Virgin were becoming aware that the promotional music video was evolving into an important marketing tool, with MTV being launched that year. Because it was agreed that the video for Open Your Heart had looked "cheap and nasty", Virgin commissioned a much more elaborate and expensive promotional video for "Don't You Want Me".
The video for the song was filmed near Slough, Berkshire, during November 1981 and has the theme of the filming and editing of a murder-mystery film, featuring the band members as characters and production staff. Due to it being a "making of" video, both crew and camera apparatus appear throughout. It was conceived and directed by filmmaker Steve Barron, and has at its core the interaction between a successful actress (also a 2nd negative cutter) played by Susan Ann Sulley walking out on "film director" Philip Oakey on a film set. It is loosely based on the film A Star Is Born. Near the end of the video, Wright, who also plays a film editor, has an expression on his face, while the camera pulls back to reveal that the negative room where Oakey, Wright, and Sulley were working in is yet another set (the camera can be seen in the mirror's reflection).
Filmed on a cold, wet, winter night, it was shot on 35mm film instead of the cheaper video tape prevalent at the time. Susan Sulley claims that Steve Barron was heavily influenced by the cinematography of Ultravox's video for "Vienna" (directed by Russell Mulcahy earlier that year). Steve Barron was also influenced by François Truffaut and his film Day for Night, and because of that the clapper board seen in the video bears the inscription "Le League Humaine" as a tribute to Truffaut.
The video is credited for making Oakey, Sulley and Catherall visual icons of the early 1980s but became controversial later for a scene involving the murder-mystery film subplot where Jo Callis appears to shoot Catherall (and later in the video repeated with Oakey shooting Sulley) with a pistol from a car window (a Saab 99 turbo). The scene is cut out of the DVD version and usually on music television, replaced with a montage of other shots from the video edited in slow-motion. The other car that was used in the video is a gold W-Reg Rover SD1. In a 1995 interview, Catherall mentioned that the car Callis was driving had to be pushed into shot as he couldn't drive at the time, to which Sulley added "he still can't!"
The video was released in December 1981.

4 comments:

  1. That is one of the best tunes of the eighties. Good video, too, but one of my favorites is their video for "Human". Just something about it that I can't explain.....

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s1ysoohV_zA

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hey Bob;

      I will probably do "Human" next week though. Thank you for the suggestion. Usually I just let the "Eureka" moment hit when I hear a song on the Sirius/XM.

      Delete
  2. Of course we all want you, Mr. G. Duh. I used to sing this until I wore it out. I was a lonely student. LMAO. It is a pretty cool song with telling lyrics, tho.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hey Momma Fargo;

      You do an ego good, LOL. It is a good song and for a bit I heard it so much, it burned me a bit on the song.

      Delete

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