Tuesday, July 23, 2019

"Weatherman" by Nick Jameson

Song#:  2838
Date:  08/23/1986
Debut: 95
Peak:  95
Weeks:  2
Genre:  Pop

Pop Bits:   Musician/songwriter Jameson grew up in Philadelphia and while there joined a band called The American Dream. They got signed to the indie Bearsville Records and recorded a self-titled psychedelic rock album in 1970. The LP just happened to be Todd Rundgren's first ever gig as a producer after he started working for the label as well. Nothing much came from the album and the band would eventually split. Jameson then got involved in production and ended up producing the fourth album by the British rock group Foghat (who were also on Bearsville), 1974's Rock and Roll Outlaws. The following year Jameson joined the group and produced their follow-up album Fool for the City, which contained their biggest US hit, 1975's #20 "Slow Ride." Jameson left the band but stayed on at Bearsville as a solo artist. He issued out a debut album titled Already Free, but it quickly came and went. Jameson continued on working as a producer for a couple of Foghat albums in the early 80s, but then it seemed his time with them and at Bearsville came to an end. Still longing for a solo career, Jameson found himself signed to Motown Records. He would write and produce his second solo album A Crowd of One. This first single was issued out and it just barely dented the Pop chart for a couple of weeks. The album didn't sell and Jameson was let go from Motown. His career as a musician was pretty much over, but he'd find success in another medium (see below).

ReduxReview:  Until now I didn't know this was the original version of the song. I knew it from the remake artist (see below). I like this slice of West Coast/yacht rock. It's an easy listen with a good chorus. I think the issue with the track is the production. Jameson does a good job trying to get the song into the 80s, but it just needed a more punchy production to sell the tune. In a couple of years, Roxette would break through with a song called "The Look" and their style of production would have made this song stand out. Still, it's not a bad listen. What's odd is that Jameson really switched gears for this album. He went from the heavy blues-rock of Foghat to the AOR-blue-eyed soul of his debut album to this synthpop ditty. He tried his best to be a pop star, but it just wasn't in the cards. Luckily, his voice got him a more successful second career.

ReduxRating:  6/10

Trivia:  Double Shot!  1) Although you may not know Jameson by name, you may recognize him from his other career. As the 90's began, Jameson began working as a voice-over artist. As a kid, he lived in various places in Europe with his family and had exposure to various dialects. His ability to pick up accents and create various voices would lead him to doing voice work on several animated series including The Critic. The voice work eventually led to acting jobs and he appeared on shows such as Seinfeld and Lost. Most folks would recognize Jameson from his role as Russian president Yuri Suvarov on the hit show 24. He would play that role for three seasons on the show.  2) If this song sounds familiar to you, it may be because of a different artist. Jack Wagner would record the song in 1987 for his third album Don't Give Up Your Day Job. It was released as the LP's first single and it would reach #67. Jameson wrote the song along with Kim O'Leary.


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