Sunday, August 16, 2015

"Smiling Islands" by Robbie Patton

Song#:  1368
Date:  03/12/1983
Debut:  90
Peak:  52
Weeks:  12
Genre:  Soft Rock, Adult Contemporary

Pop Bits:  Patton's Christine McVie-produced album "Distant Shores" got some attention thanks to the #26 single "Don't Give It Up" (#41 AC). It wasn't enough for his label (Liberty) to ask for more so he packed up and moved over to Atlantic. His first album for them, "Orders from Headquarters," featured this first single that couldn't quite climb into the top half of the pop chart. It did better at AC where it reached #16. Despite the album not selling well, Atlantic green-lit one more LP. "No Problem" came out in 1984, but quickly disappeared. It would be Patton's last album. He continued to write songs for other artists before branching off into composing music for film and TV.

ReduxReview:  This is kind of an odd song. Although the tinkling keyboards sound dated now, the arrangement is kind of nice with a little Caribbean feel going on at some points along with the accordion sound in the chorus. I think this was meant to be an easygoing song that would conjure up visions of tropical islands. The problem is that it may be too laid-back. It's almost sleep inducing. And then there is the sudden change of vocalists at the end. I don't really get that. I guess she's the other island? Dunno. It's just a strange choice. The song is an easy listen, but it's way too lazy to scale the pop chart heights.

ReduxRating:  5/10

Trivia:  Patton's LP "Orders from Headquarters" continued his Fleetwood Mac connection. The end of this song features a vocal solo by Stevie Nicks. Christine McVie also makes a guest appearance on the album closer "Look Away."


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