songs that weren't a bands biggest hit, but have gone on to be their legacy song and biggest iTunes seller

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I saw the Prodigy last night and was surprised to find out that the biggest reaction wasn't for "Breathe" or "Firestarter" or "Poison", but for "Smack My Bitch Up." I checked on iTunes and it's their biggest selling track! Sometime in the last 10 years it became their legacy track. How? Why? What other bands is this true?

so, yeah. Please cross-reference with iTunes for this.

1. Prodigy - "Smack My Bitch Up"

donky tonk women (Whiney G. Weingarten), Friday, 27 March 2009 16:50 (thirteen years ago) link

great thread idea, i definitely have sat around and figured this out w/ a few bands, will have to look some up when i get home tonight

the worst breed of fong (some dude), Friday, 27 March 2009 16:53 (thirteen years ago) link

would be interesting to cross-reference this with licensing

s1ocki, Friday, 27 March 2009 16:54 (thirteen years ago) link

like maybe in the long run that impacts sales more than radio/video play

s1ocki, Friday, 27 March 2009 16:55 (thirteen years ago) link

my guess is that there are a large number of people out there who did not know the band Prodigy but knew there was a song called "Smack My Bitch Up"

fight the real NME (Curt1s Stephens), Friday, 27 March 2009 16:58 (thirteen years ago) link

i always thought smack my bitch was the big prodigy song!!

rip dom passantino 3/5/09 never forget (max), Friday, 27 March 2009 16:59 (thirteen years ago) link

it wouldn't have sold as well as nearly half their other 90s songs esp. the two #1s

Hard House SugBanton (blueski), Friday, 27 March 2009 17:00 (thirteen years ago) link

notoriety was helped by banned video, no?

鬼の手 (Edward III), Friday, 27 March 2009 17:03 (thirteen years ago) link

2. Elton John - "Tiny Dancer"
^^ someone can doublecheck this and refute it if necessary since i'm looking at a cached browser page of his top iTunes songs, but that's a very prominent example of a song that movie licensing turned into a much bigger part of the artist's legacy than it had been before

the worst breed of fong (some dude), Friday, 27 March 2009 17:03 (thirteen years ago) link

wouldn't be surprised if 'Wonderwall' was biggest-selling Oasis song online (was probably their biggest hit in the US if not in the UK tho)

Hard House SugBanton (blueski), Friday, 27 March 2009 17:06 (thirteen years ago) link

Don't have iTunes right here, but just guessing on a few...

Peter Gabriel - In Your Eyes (wasn't even a single from So)
Queen - Bohemian Rhapsody
Lou Reed - Perfect Day

kornrulez6969, Friday, 27 March 2009 17:06 (thirteen years ago) link

Bohemian Rhapsody was always Queen's biggest hit surely

Hard House SugBanton (blueski), Friday, 27 March 2009 17:07 (thirteen years ago) link

"Bohemian Rhapsody" benefitted from the 90s re-release and Wayne's World, but it was always one of their biggest hits, I gotta veto that. xpost

the worst breed of fong (some dude), Friday, 27 March 2009 17:09 (thirteen years ago) link

Perfect Day? It must still be "Walk on the Wild Side"

President Keyes, Friday, 27 March 2009 17:13 (thirteen years ago) link

Journey's only two top 5 songs in the US were "Open Arms" and "Who's Crying Now."

"Don't Stop Believing," meanwhile, is the biggest-selling catalogue track in iTunes history.

Bianca Jagger (jaymc), Friday, 27 March 2009 17:16 (thirteen years ago) link

no way was bohemian rhapsody a bigger hit than "another one bites the dust" or "crazy little thing called love"

What about "Son of a Preacher Man" by Dusty Springfield?

obv I don't know the UK chart stuff much, but was that actually her biggest hit?

stank pony (M@tt He1ges0n), Friday, 27 March 2009 17:16 (thirteen years ago) link

ooh good call, put a 3 on that. xpost re journey

the worst breed of fong (some dude), Friday, 27 March 2009 17:17 (thirteen years ago) link

"Bohemian Rhapsody" held a sales record in the UK for almost a decade and was Queen's first US top 10. I would say songs that establish a band on that level count as one of their biggest hits whether there are higher charting songs or not.

the worst breed of fong (some dude), Friday, 27 March 2009 17:19 (thirteen years ago) link

Bohemian Rhapsody was always Queen's biggest hit surely

Not in the U.S., where No. 1 hits "Crazy Little Thing Called Love" (!) and "Another One Bites The Dust" both charted higher. (So did "We Are The Champions," at first, but then "Rhapsody" came back in 1992 and hit No. 2 off of Wayne's World; it had only hit No. 9 on its original release.)

The Romantics' legacy song is almost certainly "What I Like About You" (big jock-rock hit, right?), though in their lifetime "Talking In Your Sleep" charted way higher (No. 3, compared to No. 49.)

xhuxk, Friday, 27 March 2009 17:20 (thirteen years ago) link

what about "Sweet Caroline" by Neil Diamond....again, i'm a lil ignorant of his history but wiki says "Song Sung Blue" was a bigger chart hit

stank pony (M@tt He1ges0n), Friday, 27 March 2009 17:20 (thirteen years ago) link

yeah that's really interesting, i don't think i've ever even heard "Talking In Your Sleep" but I've heard "Like" a million times. xpost

the worst breed of fong (some dude), Friday, 27 March 2009 17:21 (thirteen years ago) link

this icon should be next to all these songs in the iTunes store: http://www.soulstrut.com/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/badassbuddy_com-slowburner.gif

the worst breed of fong (some dude), Friday, 27 March 2009 17:23 (thirteen years ago) link

I think I've heard those 2 about an equal # of times--but I guess "Like" is more of a party song.

President Keyes, Friday, 27 March 2009 17:23 (thirteen years ago) link

what about "Sweet Caroline" by Neil Diamond....again, i'm a lil ignorant of his history but wiki says "Song Sung Blue" was a bigger chart hit

Yeah, I think "Sweet Caroline" and "Cherry Cherry" are both more famous today than "Song Sung Blue" or "Cracklin' Rosie" -- but they were all in the top 5.

Bianca Jagger (jaymc), Friday, 27 March 2009 17:24 (thirteen years ago) link

Freebird? That's certainly Skynyrd's legacy song, but probably not their biggest iTunes seller (Sweet Home Alabama?).

Josh in Chicago, Friday, 27 March 2009 17:26 (thirteen years ago) link

(Meant to add "Song Sung Blue" and "Cracklin' Rosie" were his only two solo #1s.)

Bianca Jagger (jaymc), Friday, 27 March 2009 17:27 (thirteen years ago) link

oh wow here's the ultimate one:

according to wiki, "Dancing With Myself" by Billy Idol only reached 102 on the U.S. charts and FAILED to chart in the U.K.

stank pony (M@tt He1ges0n), Friday, 27 March 2009 17:27 (thirteen years ago) link

usually a soundtrack or placement in a television show will raise a song out of the bands "hits" into a totally different demographic

cutty, Friday, 27 March 2009 17:27 (thirteen years ago) link

Peter Gabriel - In Your Eyes (wasn't even a single from So)

This was released as a single off of the "Say Anything" soundtrack and received massive amounts of radio play.

BADGES DON'T GIVE YOU THE RIGHT TO WALTZ OFF WITH A BABY (HI DERE), Friday, 27 March 2009 17:27 (thirteen years ago) link

oh wow here's the ultimate one:

according to wiki, "Dancing With Myself" by Billy Idol only reached 102 on the U.S. charts and FAILED to chart in the U.K.

― stank pony (M@tt He1ges0n), Friday, March 27, 2009 1:27 PM (1 minute ago) Bookmark Suggest Ban Permalink

yeah but "Rebel Yell" and "White Wedding" are both bigger iTunes sellers

the worst breed of fong (some dude), Friday, 27 March 2009 17:30 (thirteen years ago) link

i mean this could very easily turn into "early hits that established a band's identity but didn't chart as high as later singles when they were more famous" list and get away from the original idea

the worst breed of fong (some dude), Friday, 27 March 2009 17:31 (thirteen years ago) link

yeah that's true

stank pony (M@tt He1ges0n), Friday, 27 March 2009 17:31 (thirteen years ago) link

i was more just shocked that that hadn't even charted at the time, being how catchy it was and all

stank pony (M@tt He1ges0n), Friday, 27 March 2009 17:32 (thirteen years ago) link

"Should I Stay or Should I Go?"

Josh in Chicago, Friday, 27 March 2009 17:33 (thirteen years ago) link

Peter Gabriel - In Your Eyes (wasn't even a single from So)

...

This was released as a single off of the "Say Anything" soundtrack and received massive amounts of radio play.

"In Your Eyes" was released as a US single, peaking at #26 Billboard Hot 100 and #1 Billboard Mainstream Rock in 1986.

Say Anything gave "In Your Eyes" a second chart run in 1989, but it peaked at #41. No Top 40 for you!

...and became PG's first certified Gold single in 2005 lol

butt-rock miyagi (rogermexico.), Friday, 27 March 2009 17:35 (thirteen years ago) link

"Only You" did marginally better than "Situation" on the US charts (67 vs. 73) and much better on the UK charts (2 vs. wasn't even released), but "Situation" seems much more like Yaz's legacy song.

Bianca Jagger (jaymc), Friday, 27 March 2009 17:36 (thirteen years ago) link

"Born to Run!" Peaked at #23.

(Well, technically it's outsold by "Radio Nowhere" on iTunes, but I think that was thanks to some "Magic" promotion)

Josh in Chicago, Friday, 27 March 2009 17:38 (thirteen years ago) link

yeah acts with recent singles kinda skew this, but i think it's safe to assume "Born To Run" ultimately sells more than "Radio Nowhere"

the worst breed of fong (some dude), Friday, 27 March 2009 17:39 (thirteen years ago) link

Oh oh oh!

"American Girl" was the second single off Tom Petty's debut album, after "Breakdown," but did not even chart.

Bianca Jagger (jaymc), Friday, 27 March 2009 17:41 (thirteen years ago) link

Radiohead. Creep is their biggest hit, but probably not their "signature" song. NOt sure what is, though.

Bruce's biggest chart hit is Dancing In The Dark

kornrulez6969, Friday, 27 March 2009 17:45 (thirteen years ago) link

"Creep" is Radiohead's legacy song to millions of non-Radiohead fans

the worst breed of fong (some dude), Friday, 27 March 2009 17:45 (thirteen years ago) link

I'm not sure what Bob Marley's legacy song is, but I have a feeling that "Roots, Rock, Reggae" (his only U.S. Hot 100 hit, peaking at # 51) isn't it. It might not even be in the Top 10.

xhuxk, Friday, 27 March 2009 17:47 (thirteen years ago) link

(Well, Marley has lots of Legacy songs, obviously. Or at least an album full of them.)

xhuxk, Friday, 27 March 2009 17:48 (thirteen years ago) link

Cheap Trick's only #1 is "The Flame." ("I Want You to Want Me" was #7, "Surrender" #62.)

Bianca Jagger (jaymc), Friday, 27 March 2009 17:48 (thirteen years ago) link

What about remixes doing this with a song? Because Run DMC's It's Like That was just a b-side until it became like their biggest song (v. walk this way obv.)

Also presumably this must have happened by tunes that were sampled a bunch, although none come to mind immediately.

there's a big metaphor going on in which pussy is medicine (a hoy hoy), Friday, 27 March 2009 17:49 (thirteen years ago) link

'Hallelujah' wins this thread, surely?

James Mitchell, Friday, 27 March 2009 17:50 (thirteen years ago) link

Run DMC's It's Like That was just a b-side

Not really. It was on side one of the 12-inch, and came before "Sucker MCs"; ditto with the instrumentals on side two:

http://www.discogs.com/viewimages?release=257372

xhuxk, Friday, 27 March 2009 17:53 (thirteen years ago) link

How do I find out Itunes sales numbers? Is there some page for them?

Tuomas, Friday, 27 March 2009 17:54 (thirteen years ago) link

Talking Heads. Their biggest charting US single is Wild Wild Life. Biggest in UK is Road To Nowhere. Their signature/legacy song is clearly Once In A Lifetime, which never even charted.

kornrulez6969, Friday, 27 March 2009 17:55 (thirteen years ago) link

I tried to a search for a specific tune on the Itunes store, but when I click on the song name, I'm thrown back to the Apple store home page.

Tuomas, Friday, 27 March 2009 17:56 (thirteen years ago) link

But also check 1983, because I wasn’t watching MTV till then. I saw it a bit in January ‘83 but didn’t see a ton of it till that summer (I remember a vivid vacation to Destin, FL at that time when it was available to watch in our time share apartment). MTV was pretty scrappy in those days, they would play videos from ‘80-‘83 all the time as if they were new.

Josefa, Saturday, 17 September 2022 21:32 (two weeks ago) link

they would play videos from ‘80-‘83 all the time as if they were new.

as it should be.

ミ💙🅟 🅛 🅤 🅡 🅜 🅑💙彡 (Austin), Saturday, 17 September 2022 21:35 (two weeks ago) link

I am not exactly sure how Apple Music ranks "top songs," but the first four on the list are "Psycho Killer," "Burning Down the House," "This Must Be the Place (Naive Melody)" and "Once in a Lifetime."

immodesty blaise (jimbeaux), Saturday, 17 September 2022 21:40 (two weeks ago) link

Once in a Lifetime and Road to Nowhere are the two highest placings in the UK charts, #14 and #6 respectively, quite different from the US charts, . I think we have to accept that the Heads are one of those artists with no clear answer to this question. It's very cool to me how Naive Melody has risen in recognition over time based on hard to determine factors, sort of like Immigrant Song or, to look at another cult artist with a few fluke hits, Warren Zevon's Carmelita, which seems to have found a new audience, although it doesn't yet threaten the preeminence of Werewolves yet.

mig (guess that dreams always end), Saturday, 17 September 2022 21:42 (two weeks ago) link

I never truly appreciated "Naive Melody" until I saw "Stop Making Sense."

immodesty blaise (jimbeaux), Saturday, 17 September 2022 21:44 (two weeks ago) link

have probably mentioned this before but "naive melody" wasn't even on my radar until i heard speaking in tongues and there are two noteworthy things about that:
1.it wasn't until ~summer 2002
2.it was a first listen love and immediately my favorite thing by them

ミ💙🅟 🅛 🅤 🅡 🅜 🅑💙彡 (Austin), Saturday, 17 September 2022 21:52 (two weeks ago) link

My favorite song in 1987 was "And She Was."

It's still in my top 10, whatever that says about me.

the floor is guava (Ye Mad Puffin), Saturday, 17 September 2022 21:53 (two weeks ago) link

At some point, "And She Was" became a go-to for them on nostalgia radio.

an icon of a worried-looking, long-haired, bespectacled man (C. Grisso/McCain), Saturday, 17 September 2022 21:53 (two weeks ago) link

Wait no 1986.

the floor is guava (Ye Mad Puffin), Saturday, 17 September 2022 21:53 (two weeks ago) link

"Stay Up Late" still cracks me up.

immodesty blaise (jimbeaux), Saturday, 17 September 2022 21:54 (two weeks ago) link

The big Chicago FM rock station not only played “And She Was” regularly in 1985, but also this remix:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i8P6UgB_xOQ

Montgomery Burns' Jazz (Tarfumes The Escape Goat), Saturday, 17 September 2022 22:02 (two weeks ago) link

Kind of waiting for the algorithm to throw "Stay Up Late" at a conservative and they decide it's a grooming anthem.

an icon of a worried-looking, long-haired, bespectacled man (C. Grisso/McCain), Saturday, 17 September 2022 22:04 (two weeks ago) link

I’m realizing that even though the release year of their first album is in its title, I had a warped internal sense of the band’s timeline, with everything “pushed up” a few years… I felt like they went into the early ’90s. But they were done by ’88!

Obviously Five Beliebers (morrisp), Saturday, 17 September 2022 22:18 (two weeks ago) link

(Well, "Sax and Violins" was ‘91)

Obviously Five Beliebers (morrisp), Saturday, 17 September 2022 22:20 (two weeks ago) link

Sometimes what we are talking about on this thread is not a new legacy song, but a biggest hit that is now (often justly) much less persistent, and one good example I noted recently was The Damned's followup to Grimly Fiendish, a cover version of something called Eloise, and not the William Bell song either. #3 in 1986 and the furthest I think they got from their original sound, although they had a history of 60s covers I generally had little use for. I had never heard it before or the 1968 original by someone improbably called Paul Ryan and the Majority, and I'll be just fine if I never hear it again.

Or am I crazy, was this song great and it's now unjustly forgotten? Btw, Phantasmagoria is a tolerable guilty pleasure, love the bass groove on Shadow of Love in particular...

mig (guess that dreams always end), Saturday, 17 September 2022 22:38 (two weeks ago) link

Kind of waiting for the algorithm to throw "Stay Up Late" at a conservative and they decide it's a grooming anthem.

― an icon of a worried-looking, long-haired, bespectacled man (C. Grisso/McCain), Saturday, September 17, 2022 3:04 PM

"songs that weren't a bands biggest hit, but have been algorithm'd to be accidental culture war songs"

xpost to mig: phantasmagoria has long been my favorite damned album. oh well.

ミ💙🅟 🅛 🅤 🅡 🅜 🅑💙彡 (Austin), Saturday, 17 September 2022 22:44 (two weeks ago) link

And do you dig "Eloise" too?

mig (guess that dreams always end), Saturday, 17 September 2022 23:00 (two weeks ago) link

‘Night Tracks’ was also better than MTV bc they played black music and dance music

― Josefa, Saturday, September 17, 2022 8:20 PM (yesterday) bookmarkflaglink

I would love to know some examples of black and dance music that had videos and was ignored by MTV at the time. Can you remember any specific examples?

Mr. Snrub, Sunday, 18 September 2022 00:39 (two weeks ago) link

“In My House” by Mary Jane Girls
“Let the Music Play” by Shannon
“The Medicine Song” by Stephanie Mills

Josefa, Sunday, 18 September 2022 00:46 (two weeks ago) link

Here Comes the Sun was the Beatles song with the most streams the last time I looked, which is weird and cool.

akm, Sunday, 18 September 2022 00:51 (two weeks ago) link

xp

“Space Cowboy” by Jonzun Crew
“Last Night a DJ Saved My Life” by Indeep
“Rock Box” by Run-DMC

Josefa, Sunday, 18 September 2022 00:54 (two weeks ago) link

re: MTV’s explicitly racist programming in its early days, watch this segment by Sam Ford (starting around 4:48):

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rVGRuHIH6b8

Montgomery Burns' Jazz (Tarfumes The Escape Goat), Sunday, 18 September 2022 00:59 (two weeks ago) link

"This isn't the Wizard of Oz, there are black people here" LOL

immodesty blaise (jimbeaux), Sunday, 18 September 2022 01:20 (two weeks ago) link

Bowie's 'This fuckin' guy over here' face during this whole thing...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XZGiVzIr8Qg

We were listening to that Hit Parade episode in the car yesterday. My wife thought it felt like he was just listing songs that had some longevity after their initial release (and that therefore outperformed their chart position). Which is a mildly interesting topic but not exactly mind-blowing new information.

The chart performance of a retail single - or radio plays thereof - is a pretty narrow metric. Lots of songs are beloved in ways that won't register if chart position is your metric. This has pretty much always been the case, right?

Loads of rock music was intended to be consumed as part of an album, not as a single.

the floor is guava (Ye Mad Puffin), Sunday, 18 September 2022 14:40 (two weeks ago) link

i think referencing chart performance is a perfect way to illustrate just how consistently wrong "the establishment" gets it. payola and illegitimate popularity also play a role, but i digress.

ミ💙🅟 🅛 🅤 🅡 🅜 🅑💙彡 (Austin), Sunday, 18 September 2022 15:11 (two weeks ago) link

I think it’s a little more interesting than that – like they talk about how “I Wanna Dance With Somebody” did top the charts for a few weeks, but not for nearly as long as “I Will Always Love You”… and yet “Dance” is her big legacy song now. Public taste over time has shifted from what was reflected by the charts.

I agree it’s not a super profound observation, but it’s the foundation for this long thread anyway, lol

Obviously Five Beliebers (morrisp), Sunday, 18 September 2022 15:47 (two weeks ago) link

(and they also use current radio play as a metric for the Whitney songs, so it’s sort of apples for apples:

Yours Cool, Chris Molanphy: In the last 12 months. I want a dance with somebody who loves me. Was played on the radio more than 70,000 times. 70,000. That’s three times. The Spins of I Will Always Love You, a song that spent a dozen more weeks at number one. Then wanna dance? Did I Want to Dance With Somebody was streamed 111 million times in the last year. Stunning. That’s more than double the streams of I Will Always Love You.)

Obviously Five Beliebers (morrisp), Sunday, 18 September 2022 15:49 (two weeks ago) link

Re: Boys + Girls, I remember hearing “Slave To Love” almost daily on the radio at the time; surprised it didn’t even crack the Hot 100. Also surprised that Ferry’s only US top 40 hit was “Kiss and Tell” — a decent song, but one I heard far less on the radio than his earlier singles, or the Avalon singles.

― Montgomery Burns' Jazz (Tarfumes The Escape Goat), Saturday, September 17, 2022 5:30 PM

The label pushed Bete Noire hard: talk show appearances for Ferry in America and Europe, SNL performance, plenty of print interviews, world tour.

By contrast B+G barely got a push and was an insta-smash coming after Avalon and the degree to which New Pop had copped his moves and look .

Malevolent Arugula (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Sunday, 18 September 2022 15:57 (two weeks ago) link

This doesn't quite meet the criteria in the thread title, but it's in the ballpark. After the Joan Jett show the other night, my wife — who's a bit younger than me and really only knows Joan Jett songs as oldies — said something about how "Bad Reputation" is her signature song. Which I agree with, but I noted that it's interesting that it was never even a single in the U.S., much less a chart hit. She was shocked. It's so ubiquitous in her mind that she assumed it was her biggest hit. I guess maybe it was having it as the Freaks & Geeks theme song that really propelled it, or maybe it's just sort of been absorbed over time. But in 1980, that song was still way too punk for the charts.

This remains an interesting topic to me, which is why I follow this thread wiht interest.

At the same time, I don't really have any trouble reconciling the disparate impulses reflected in the Hit Parade podcast.

Of COURSE I wanted to hear the catchy songs emanating from my radio in 1981, as fed to me by Casey Kasem. That was a large part of my life at the time.

But it's equally true that in the long run, people will gravitate toward a different mix of songs than the ones that grabbed us immediately.

"Cool It Now" and "Shake Your Love" aged in a different way from how "I Want Candy" and "Once in a Lifetime" aged. The same is true of "Borderline" vs. "La Isla Bonita."

the floor is guava (Ye Mad Puffin), Sunday, 18 September 2022 16:11 (two weeks ago) link

Joan Jett played at the first rock concert I ever saw, in 1982, and somehow I already knew “Bad Reputation” then, even though it wasn’t a single. AOR radio must have been playing it as an album cut.

Josefa, Sunday, 18 September 2022 18:22 (two weeks ago) link

It's an amazing song, and definitely its presence has grown a LOT over the years. F&G is a good inflection point I think. But I would put I Love Rock n Roll forward as her legacy song -- the only thing I knew by her as a 90s teen, her biggest Spotify track by a mile, and I think it would be in a lot of VH1 docs and things like that. Just a much bigger thing culturally... Wouldn't be surprised if many folks think of her as a one hit wonder off of that.

Doctor Casino, Sunday, 18 September 2022 18:58 (two weeks ago) link

"Bad Reputation" has popped up in a lot of ads and other Film/TV since F&G, and has always been presented as sort of her signature song: for one thing, it's the song she does in URGH! A Music War, which alongside "I Love..." was probably many fans intro to her post-Runaways.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_S7MlEBKB0k

That’s a good point about URGH! Which probably applies to a lot of other groups… “Unforgettable Urge” be Devo, “Tear It Up” by the Cramps, and “Come Again” by the Au Pairs all seem like signature tunes because of that film.

Josefa, Sunday, 18 September 2022 19:27 (two weeks ago) link

“Uncontrollable Urge,” jfc

Josefa, Sunday, 18 September 2022 19:29 (two weeks ago) link

Nat "Devo" Cole mashup!

IIRC, many of the URGH! performances were the bands' set-closers, which would prove that theory.

The podcast episode was worth it for me just to become aware of how much "I Wanna Dance WIth Somebody" had eclipsed "I Will Always Love You", which seemed un-eclipseable in its heyday. As for why "I Wanna" is so much more popular "How Will I Know", the former has a lyric tailored to wedding reception vibes, which is prob true of a few more of these legacy songs. Are wedding dj royalties tabulated somewhere?

bendy, Sunday, 18 September 2022 20:05 (two weeks ago) link

Another song that popped into my head was "Just Like Honey" by the Jesus and Mary Chain. None of the singles from Psychocandy reached the top 40 and the album itself only got to #31, although it sold steadily. Their commercial peak was with the next album and the one that followed it. I have no idea if they sold anything in the US or were ever played on MTV.

I learn that it was the NME's second-favourite song of 1985, behind "Never Understand" and just in front of "Running Up That Hill". Who would have thought the NME circa 1985 would still be relevant in 2022. Not me! But it is. I need to learn its secrets.

But since then "Just Like Honey" has been used in Lost in Translation and a bunch of adverts and TV shows. And it always pops up in lists of "songs that have the same rhythm as 'Be My Baby'", e.g.:
https://www.avclub.com/kick-kick-kick-snare-repeat-15-songs-that-borrow-the-1798240471
https://www.billboard.com/music/pop/the-ronettes-be-my-baby-drum-intro-artists-sample-interview-7866041/

I think it helps that unlike "Never Understand" and "You Trip me Up" the feedback is relatively restrained. It can be made into a normal record if you turn down the treble.

Ashley Pomeroy, Sunday, 18 September 2022 22:07 (two weeks ago) link

JAMC's most popular US single is likely "Head On."

Malevolent Arugula (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Sunday, 18 September 2022 22:08 (two weeks ago) link

...or "Sometimes Always".

Apparently "Blues From A Gun" hit #1 US Alt Rock, "Head On" at #2, "Far Gone and Out" at #3, and "Sometimes Always" at #4.

I would go so far as to say that JAMC never had anything in the US you could call a "hit" and to be honest I wouldn't even say "Just Like Honey" has risen to any kind of widespread recognition here despite its use in some popular movies. I was in college when Automatic came out, #1 "Alt Rock" it may have been but there was nobody listening to it except me.

Guayaquil (eephus!), Sunday, 18 September 2022 22:47 (two weeks ago) link

True, and a lot of what was big on Alternative Radio then had disappeared from regular rotation and--if you were lucky--relegated to niche programming like Sunday Night "College Music" shows.

Insert "a few years later" after 'rotation'.

tbc I meant in current streaming numbers. "Just Like Honey" and "Head On" are their biggest Spotify "hits."

Malevolent Arugula (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Sunday, 18 September 2022 23:36 (two weeks ago) link

Surprisingly, "April Skies" is their #2 on Spotify.

jamc a perfect example of a cult band in the u.s. afaict. have still never heard them on the radio or 'out and about' yet they're a pretty common name by now. wonder how much the pixies cover plays into their stateside notoriety.

ミ💙🅟 🅛 🅤 🅡 🅜 🅑💙彡 (Austin), Monday, 19 September 2022 00:30 (one week ago) link

meaning: i wonder how many u.s. folks came to them via the cover.

ミ💙🅟 🅛 🅤 🅡 🅜 🅑💙彡 (Austin), Monday, 19 September 2022 00:31 (one week ago) link

Probably quite a few, but there were a lot of teenage hipsters like myself who knew Psychocandy very well. I remember arguments circa 1986 about who the JAMC sounded like most… my friend said the Monkees and I said The Beach Boys

Josefa, Monday, 19 September 2022 01:20 (one week ago) link


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