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Romantics songs that should have been hits (Read 6361 times)
Ken_Cheng
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Romantics songs that should have been hits
Feb 23rd, 2005 at 3:41am
 
Everybody knows "What I Like About You" and "Talking In Your Sleep", but listening through the Romantics' catalogue, they seemed to have a ton of great songs that could have been big radio hits (or singles), but weren't:

"When I Look In Your Eyes":  this has been a staple of the Romantics' act since before the beginning of their recording career, and it's a great song.  It should have been a hit.

"Shake A Tail Feather":  a cover of an old rock 'n roll/R&B song from the early 1960s.  The Romantics' version had "hit" written all over it...and people *did* get hits with recycled 1960s oldies back in the 1980s.

"One In A Million":  this one did make the Top 40, but just barely, and I don't remember it being on the radio in the 80s at all (I was about 11 years old when this song was first released).  Listening to it today, I've got to wonder why "One In A Million" wasn't charting higher than, say, Huey Lewis and the News'  "If This Is It" or Men At Work's "Who Can It Be Now?" from approximately the same era. 

As far as being hitmakers is concerned, the Romantics were one of the most underappreciated bands of the 1980s.  Casual listeners who haven't tried the catalogue beyond "What I Like About You" and "Talking In Your Sleep" have no idea what they've missed.

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Rob
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Re: Romantics songs that should have been hits
Reply #1 - Feb 23rd, 2005 at 4:00am
 
Rock You Up,  and just about anything off the first album could have been hits.
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pinkbubelz
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Re: Romantics songs that should have been hits
Reply #2 - Feb 23rd, 2005 at 9:55am
 
One in a Million did play on Radio Stations in the 80s.   Smiley

I still love "A Night Like This"....

Listening to Oldfriends "Meet the Romantics" you can definitely hear a lot of energy and excitement in their early versions of their songs... Smiley  It's really too bad that they didn't get the radio play that others in the 80s got....

Personally, I liked their older albums better... My least favorite probably is Rhythm Romance-- I think they got really watered down at that point...

Ken, if you don't already have 61/49, then you definitely need to get it. The songs are much more "mature" and complex and I love the direction they are taking now... Smiley  It feels like they've gone back to some of their early sound to me... Smiley
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Ken_Cheng
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Re: Romantics songs that should have been hits
Reply #3 - Feb 23rd, 2005 at 3:03pm
 
I bought 61/49 last year following the renewal of my interest in the Romantics' music.  I was not even a teenager when the Romantics were in their early 80s commercial prime, so like most other people, I only knew their two big hits.  Being a longtime Beatles fan, however, I recognized the sonic kinship between the early Beatles and the Romantics (even through the heavy 80s production on the IN HEAT songs, one could hear the Beatles influence).  I read up on the Romantics and bought as many of their older records as I could find, and I was very pleasantly surprised to learn that the Beatles' kinship I detected within the Romantics was *not* a fluke.

I was surprised by the appearance of a *new* Romantics album in the record bins.  Wary of comeback efforts by 80s bands long not heard from, I decided to read some reviews of 61/49 before spending my cash for it.  I was surprised by the nearly universal good reviews the record received.  That convinced me to buy the album.  I was not disappointed.   On 61/49, the Romantics demonstrated how they were a much deeper and musically capable band than they're often given credit for.  The Romantics are the true heirs of the early British Invasion, and have captured the sound and spirit of the early Beatles, Rolling Stones, Kinks, and Who better than any other band I've heard in the past 25 years.  61/49 also revealed a new dimension to the Romantics that I hadn't heard before, and that I bet casual fans of the band haven't even imagined the Romantics were capable of:  they guys are bluesmen as well as rock 'n rollers.  Muddy Waters would've been proud of 61/49, which ranks up there with the Stones' EXILE ON MAIN STREET as one of the best examples of dark, bluesy rock 'n roll.
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« Last Edit: Feb 24th, 2005 at 1:08am by Ken_Cheng »  
 
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bookiesoriginal
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Re: Romantics songs that should have been hits
Reply #4 - Feb 23rd, 2005 at 5:49pm
 
no mention of Tell It To Carrie?  I think that could/should have been a hit.
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Ken_Cheng
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Re: Romantics songs that should have been hits
Reply #5 - Feb 23rd, 2005 at 11:53pm
 
Quote:
no mention of Tell It To Carrie?  I think that could/should have been a hit.


That was another good one in a retro-1960s mode, kind of like Blondie's "In The Flesh".   "Tell It To Carrie" was mellower-sounding than most of the Romantics' output at the time; it sounded very much like a Hollies record.

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Kevin1
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Re: Romantics songs that should have been hits
Reply #6 - Feb 24th, 2005 at 1:57am
 
I agree with just about all of those "shoulda been" hits. I can only blame Nemperor for not making "A Night Like This" a hit. Am I right that "Forever Yours" was the first single off that album? Good grief. Why wasn't "Night" one of the videos? Ditto Rob on "Rock You Up." Should have been the second single, followed by "Got Me Where You Want Me." I love "One in a Million," but those other two songs capture the essence of the Romantics much better. And I've always been partial to "Keep in Touch" as well. Also, for a cover-tune hit, I would choose "She's Got Everything" over "Tail Feather" (although I love them both). Even "Open Up Your Door" is a great recording ... Seems like Nemperor had a knack for choosing the wrong lead single, though. I know "Eyes" was a single -- did it get released before or after "What I Like"? Then came "Forever." Not sure about Strictly Personal, although I know "She's Hot" was one of the singles. And the choice of "Test of Time" was just atrocious. (I know Rob agrees with this one.) Not that there is much to choose from on that album, but the title track would have been my choice for sheer commercial sheen. Anyone else? What should have been the first single from RR?
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Rob
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Re: Romantics songs that should have been hits
Reply #7 - Feb 24th, 2005 at 3:45am
 
Kevin, I absolutely agree with you that Nemporer was to blame for some very bad choices in releasing singles. Forever Yours was a poor choice off National Breakout because it just sounded too different than the first album, and lacked the energy of the first album.  A Night Like This probably would have had to have been reworked to be a single.  I have always been partial to Take Me Out Of The Rain. I think it's the song that most captured the  sound of the first album, and I just think it's a great little pop song. Poor Little Rich Girl was another possibility. As far as Strictly Personal, I believe No One Like You was released as a single.  It was a good song, but again strayed way too far from the Romantics sound.  It was more of a "lite metal" ballad.  I think Dont You Put Me On Hold or Come On Girl (work out with me) would have been better choices.   For the In heat album, you can't disagree with Talkin and One In a Million because they both became hits.  I do think though that Rock You Up should have been a third single to showcase the harder edged Romantics stuff. I also always thought Love Me To The Max had single potential.  Ok, the Rhythm Romance album. Kevin, the word "atrocious" sums up the choice of Test Of Time as the first single.  I think that just killed the album. Too wimpy. Maybe Make It Last, the title track, or lets Get Started would have worked.  Mystified wasn't a bad single, but by that time the album was dead with no momentum.
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KristineAOrlando
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Re: Romantics songs that should have been hits
Reply #8 - Feb 25th, 2005 at 7:50am
 
Hey hey hey now! Kevin, I just have to disagree with you about the Rhythm Romance album. I have revisited it recently and I think Mystified was a very worthy song and the rest of the album, while a little bit of a deviation from the true Romantics' sound, was quite likable. In Heat is also a favorite of mine, with Do Me Anyway You Wanna, OIAM, TIYS and Tail Feather.

Of course, I will ALWAYS be partial to A Night Like This.

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Lori
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Re: Romantics songs that should have been hits
Reply #9 - Feb 25th, 2005 at 9:01am
 
Mystified was a great song, in my estimation, but "On A Night Like This" definately shoulda been a hit!  What a fabulous song....................

Lori
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Timster2
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Re: Romantics songs that should have been hits
Reply #10 - Feb 25th, 2005 at 9:18am
 
I always felt "Girl Next Door" from the first album would've made a good single.  I have to agree with Rob about "Take Me Out of the Rain" from National Breakout.  It's probably my favorite track from that album.  It does sound like something that could've been left over from the first album- much like "I Can't Tell You Anything". 

From Strictly Personal I'd offer up "Can't Get Over You" -it would've been nice for a song with Rich singing lead to have been released as a single.   I don't think much promotion was done for "She's Hot".

I could've sworn that "Rock You Up" was released as a third single from In Heat, but it just didn't chart.  I thought that I saw a 45 with a picture sleeve in an oldies store a few years ago. "Tail Feather" would've been a great dance single.    I know that it was included on a "pre-packaged" cartridge tape that played throughout the day in the Limited store where I worked, so someone in the industry recognized its appeal.

As for Rhythmn Romance, "Let's Get Started" was probably the strongest track from the album.  "Test of Time" was/is still a turd.  The title track should've been the lead single, but what's done is done.
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mymeka
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Re: Romantics songs that should have been hits
Reply #11 - Feb 25th, 2005 at 10:32am
 
I think Rock You Up was a single - it was played on the radio a lot in my neck of the woods!

Lori
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Kevin1
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Re: Romantics songs that should have been hits
Reply #12 - Feb 25th, 2005 at 9:42pm
 
"Rock You Up" was released to rock radio (it was played constantly here in Louisville), but wasn't released as a commercial single -- as in, you couldn't go into a store and purchase it as a 45. It did show up on a four-song sampler from In Heat, but other than that the only way to get it was on the album. Interesting that I see many folks choosing "Let's Get Started" as a single candidate from RR. I like that song, too, and it bore the most resemblance to the Rock You Up/What I Like sound. I have an article from an Indianapolis newspaper circa 1987 that bears the headline, "Band accustomed to bad breaks" (boy was THAT a harbinger). In the article, Wally mentions that "Started" probably would have been the best choice for the first single, but that the record company chose "Test of Time" instead. Which in part led to the failure of RR, and you all know the rest of the story.

I'm also interested to hear that so many folks like "Take Me Out of the Rain." I've always been partial to that song as well, although I don't hear it being a radio single. To me, that's one of those eternal album gems, the earworm that won't let go but which just didn't really sound produced for radio. I love the bridge in that song. Wally's vocal is so passionate; almost sounds like he's about to cry ...
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Andrew
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Re: Romantics songs that should have been hits
Reply #13 - Feb 28th, 2005 at 11:38pm
 
Devil In Me 
61/49 
Midnight To Six Man 
When Will It End 
Out Of My Mind (Into My Head) 
When The Angels (Hear Me Callin') 
New Kinda Pain 
I Need You 
Paint The Sky 
Still We Remain 

Wink  Smiley

Its rare I'll listen to a CD non-stop day after day. Along with American Idiot, 61/49 is a CD that rarely ever leaves my player.

Older stuff: Rock You Up is an AWESOME song and When I Look In Your Eyes which is just as fun as What I Like About You in my opinion.
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COZFAN
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Re: Romantics songs that should have been hits
Reply #14 - Mar 10th, 2005 at 8:37pm
 
'Lets get Started"
Love it up"
anything and everything off "In heat"
'Open up your door"
"Got me where you want me"
"Shake a tail feather" Live
Anything Live
In heat is by far the best album.

                                         Cozfan
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