Saturday, January 14, 2017

Songoftheday 1/14/17 - Boy Mercury shootin' through every degree, ooo girl dancin' down those dirty and dusty trails...

"Roam" - The B-52's
from the album Cosmic Thing (1989)
Billboard Hot 100 peak: #3 (two weeks)
Weeks in the Top-40: 13

Today's song of the day is from the new wave band the B-52's, who had grown from a quirky college act from Athens, Georgia, to mainstream pop stars with the perfect distillation of their sound on the top three pop hit "Love Shack" in the fall of 1989. That track was produced by Don Was; their next release would be helmed by disco god turned go-to producer Nile Rodgers (Madonna's "Like A Virgin", David Bowie's "Let's Dance"). "Roam" was written by the group with lyrics from Robert Waldrop, and the resulting "roadtrip"-style anthem sounded as mainstream as they were ever going to become. With Fred Schneider's carnival barking in the background and Cindy Wilson and Kate Pierson harmonizing joyfully but straightforwardly, the record would become radio's safest bet with them (not to diminish how good the song is, like R.E.M.'s "Shiny Happy People")...


"Roam" became the band's second (and so far, most recent) top 10 pop hit in the U.S. in March of 1990. The song also climbed to #6 on Billboard's Modern Rock radio chart, while the 12" remix made it to #10 on their Dance Club Play list. Internationally, the single was a top ten success in New Zealand (#2), Canada (#4), and Ireland (#9), and reached #11 in Australia and #17 in the UK. It also slipped on to the top-40 in Germany, their first success there, at #40.

(Click below to see the rest of the post)


Here's the 12" remix (which ironically starts out with Fred) that reached the top ten on the dance chart...


...and the band playing live on MTV in 1990...


...and lastly, live in London in 2013...


Up tomorrow: Country rockers are out in the open.

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