Wednesday, August 10, 2016

"Something's on Your Mind" by D Train

Song#:  1744
Date:  01/07/1984
Debut:  88
Peak:  79
Weeks:  6
Genre:  R&B

Pop Bits:  This duo made up of James "D-Train" Williams and Hubert Eaves III initially started performing together after they met in high school. In the late 70s, they each went their own way with Williams becoming a producer and Eaves joining the group Mtume. As the 80s started, they rekindled their partnership and formed D Train (named after Williams' high school football nickname). They signed with Prelude Records and issued their debut LP You're the One for Me in 1982. The title track would end up hitting #1 at Dance (#13 R&B) while another track, "Keep On," would get to #2 (#15 R&B). Their second album wasn't as successful, but their third effort spawned this title-track single that became their biggest hit at R&B getting to #5. It would also crossover to the Pop chart for a few minor weeks. They seemed on the verge of a bigger breakthrough, but at some point after their third album, the duo split. Williams would go for a solo career and score a #10 R&B hit in 1986 with "Misunderstanding."

ReduxReview:  It might just be me, but this song seems a bit too slow. I kept wanting to dance to it, but that was hard to do considering the tempo. It seems caught in this weird fine-line world between a slinky ballad and something more groovy. I think it's a good song, but I keep wanting to make it go faster. Had it been more danceable, I think it could have done a lot better. The guts are there for something pretty great, but as-is I find it a bit sluggish.

ReduxRating:  6/10

Trivia:  This song was later covered by jazz legend Miles Davis. He recorded an instrumental version of the song for his 1985 album You're Under Arrest. The tune was bookended by two Davis compositions titled "MD 1" and MD 2." Initially, Davis wanted to do a full album of his interpretations of modern pop songs. Apparently, he recorded several, but then changed his mind on the album's concept. By the time the tracks for You're Under Arrest were compiled, only three pop covers made it to the album - this song, Michael Jackson's "Human Nature," and Cyndi Lauper's "Time After Time." The album would mark the end of his relationship with his label Columbia with whom he had been with since 1955. Issues between the artist and the label would arise, including Columbia delaying the release of a completed album titled Aura. Davis would sign on with Warner Bros. and in 1986 issue what many consider another classic in his catalog, Tutu. Columbia would finally release the completed Aura LP in 1989.


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