Tuesday, January 31, 2017

"A Little Love" by Juice Newton

Song#:  1927
Date:  06/02/1984
Debut:  82
Peak:  44
Weeks:  10
Genre:  Pop, Adult Contemporary

Pop Bits:  After finding success in the country-pop arena, Newton leaned in a more pop/rock direction for her 1983 LP Dirty Looks. The shift in sound didn't really attract listeners and as a result her remake of The Zombie's "Tell Her No" stopped at a minor #27 on the Pop chart. Following the lackluster showing, her label, Capitol, went through some structural changes and soon Newton found herself back on her original label, RCA. Her first album for them, Can't Wait All Night, basically replicated the sound of her previous LP and the results were even worse. Although this first single would get to #7 at AC, it stalled short of the Top 40 at Pop and could barely get out of the basement at Country (#64). Due to the lack of support, the album sold poorly and couldn't even get into the Top 100. It was highly disappointing and Newton was going to have to change her approach if she was to keep relevant.

ReduxReview:  Although it sounds quite dated now, this is actually a cute little song. I'm not surprised that it missed at country as it is a straight-up pop tune, but I think it could have done a bit better at Pop. However, at the time I think the era of the pop/country crossover hit was on the wane and it was getting to the point where artists had to basically choose a camp and stick there if they wanted hits. Newton was caught between the two and not having success in either. She'd make a choice for her next LP that would end up paying off quite well. In the meantime, her pop/rock experiments had a couple of good moments such as this one.

ReduxRating:  6/10

Trivia:  Newton's album included the song "Restless Heart," co-written by producer/songwriter Tim DuBois. For that song and a few others that he wrote, DuBois put together a band to record them as demos. The band he assembled worked so well together that they decided to make a go of it themselves and with the help of DuBois signed to RCA and recorded a debut album. The song "Restless Heart" appeared on that LP and in-turn became the band's name. The self-titled album would end up going Top 10 at Country. Over they next few years they scored several hit singles at country with four of their albums going gold.


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