portrait of this blog's author - by Stephen Blackman 2008

Monday, April 16, 2018

You got it . . . .  one of the most extraordinary unique voices in pop
 . . . deserved to have been even bigger . . . . . . 

On this day in music history: April 15, 1989 - “She Drives Me Crazy” by Fine Young Cannibals hits #1 on the Billboard Hot 100 for 1 week, also topping the Club Play chart for 2 weeks on March 18, 1989. Written by Roland Gift and David Steele, it is the first chart topping single for the British pop music trio. Originally titled “She’s My Baby”, the trio spend nearly six months writing and arranging the song. Lead singer Roland Gift initially begin singing the song in his normal vocal register, but changes his mind when he feels that isn’t working and starts singing it in his falsetto voice. When FYC begins work on their second album, they are eager to work with Prince on the project. When he is unavailable, the band instead work with David Z. (David Rivkin, brother of Prince & The Revolution drummer Bobby Z.), and record the track (along with three others) at Prince’s Paisley Park Studios in Chanhassen, MN. Issued as the first single from their second album “The Raw And The Cooked” in January of 1989, it quickly becomes a smash. Entering the Hot 100 at #97 on January 28, 1989, it climbs to the top of the chart eleven weeks later. Another factor in the popularity of “She Drives Me Crazy” is the stylized, avant-garde music video directed by French choreographer and mime artist  Philippe Decouflé. The clip features the band performing the song with various visual techniques being applied, including stop motion photography, intercut with others dancing and moving in time to the track.  Decouflé had employed similar visuals for the video he made for New Order’s “True Faith”. “Crazy” also becomes a big club hit thanks to remixes by co-producer David Z. and DJ Justin Strauss, which are released as a 12" single, topping the dance chart and becoming a best seller. The success of the single helps propel “The Raw And The Cooked” to number one on the Billboard Top 200 on June 3, 1989 where it spends seven weeks at the top.“She Drives Me Crazy” is certified Gold in the US by the RIAA.

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