Just forget the words and sing along

Monday, March 29, 2010

Finding Lost Music

The one thing that always strikes me about music is how it can be easily found, and then easily lost. You know what I mean. You'll be listening to the radio, you'll hear maybe 30 seconds of the song, but you'll miss the announcer saying the name of the song, and you'll never find out what the song is called or who sings it, and it'll haunt you for the rest of your days!

Don't you hate it when that happens?

That's why it always brings me such joy when I'm able to rediscover one of those songs. Just one day, you'll finally hear the whole thing on the radio, and be all like, "DUDE! That's it!" and you'll finally hear the whole song and the name of it and it just gives you a good feeling. I had one of those moments recently, and little did I know that the song was right under my nose.

In this case, it wasn't a snippet heard on the radio. It was a snippet of a music video. When I was but a wee lad in Entwistle, one afternoon after school I caught a little bit of Video Hits, and I saw this really weird music video. The only thing that stuck with me after all these years was this one part of a guy being rolled down a conveyor belt, while he's poked with sticks and eventually covered with glue, and then he's stood upright and peels the glue from his face. It just always stuck with me. I tried finding it on YouTube, but you actually don't get a lot of hits when you search for "that music video with the guy on the conveyor belt that gets covered in glue."

So it wasn't too long ago I was leafing through the Edmonton Journal, and I read an interview with 1980s Canadian pop sensation Gowan. The interview described the music video for A Criminal Mind as being made of "low-budget props and gloopy goo." Something about "gloopy goo" made me think "guy on a conveyor belt that gets covered in glue." So I did a quick search on YouTube for A Criminal Mind by Gowan, and lo and behold! It was the music video that haunted me in my youth!

We've played that song quite a bit on the River, so why I never figured out that the music video for that song was one song that I'm now quite familiar with, I don't know.

So why was Gowan recently being interviewed in the Edmonton Journal? Well, it turns out that 2010 marks the 25th anniversary of his hit album Strange Animal, which spawned the hits A Criminal Mind and Strange Animal. To commemorate this occasion, Gowan, now going by his full name Lawrence Gowan, has released the album Return of the Strange Animal. Disc 1 is his album Strange Animal, all digitally remastered and sounding better than ever. Disc 2 is a DVD, containing the music videos for A Criminal Mind and Strange Animal, plus some original tracks, some new videos, and a new documentary about the making of the album.

Reading that article, Gowan's had a pretty good career after his pop superstardom in the 1980s. In the 1990s, he started going by his full name and went to a more easy listening sound. He had a few smaller hits, but nothing as big as his 1980s successes. And then, in 1999, he became the new lead singer for Styx, and continues to rock out crowds all over the world.

I just might have to pick up Return of the Strange Animal, just so I can forever have that music video in my collection.

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