Saturday, April 18, 2020

"Heart and Soul" by T'Pau

Top 10 Alert!
One-Hit Wonder Alert!
Rated 10 Alert
Song#:  3107
Date:  05/02/1987
Debut:  91
Peak:  4
Weeks:  27
Genre:  Pop, Rock



Pop Bits:  This English band headed up by singer Carol Decker and guitarist Ronnie Rogers came together in 1985. Decker and Rogers had already been writing music and performing for a few years, but then decided to officially get a band together and seek a record deal. A demo tape ended up in the hands of producer Roy Thomas Baker and after seeing the band perform live, he helped get them signed to the Virgin Records offshoot label Siren. Baker would end up producing the band's debut LP that would eventually be titled Bridge of Spies. This first single was released earlier in '87 in the UK, but it went nowhere. Luckily, the song got picked up for use in a TV ad for Pepe Jeans that aired in both the UK and the US. Thanks to the exposure from the ad, interest in the song picked up. The single was reissued in the UK and released in the US. In the UK, the song would take off and reach #4. In the US, the tune debuted near the bottom of the chart and made a long, slow climb eventually hitting #4 in its fifteenth week. It also got to #13 at Dance. Thanks to the hit, the album (retitled as just T'Pau) would sell fairly well in the US getting to #31. Unfortunately, further singles from the band failed to make any US chart and that would leave their legacy here as a true one-hit wonder. However, the story was quite different for them back in the UK (see below).

ReduxReview:  Pure, classic 80s. Anchored by that opening bass line riff, this song was awash in everything 80s including synths, heavy production, rap, a hooky chorus, near nonsensical lyrics, and big vocals by Decker, who had equally big hair. The tune had everything going for it so it was quite surprising that it didn't take off on initial release. Fortunately, the advert brought it to the masses. I bought the single and played it over and over. I just loved it and I still do. It was one of those songs that I never got tired of hearing. It's a shame "China in Your Hand" (see below) didn't catch on here. At least the band was able to grab this big hit that has remained popular for decades.

ReduxRating10/10

Trivia:  Double Shot!  1) Following the success of "Heart and Soul" in the UK, the band re-recorded a track from the album, "China in Your Hand," for single release. The power ballad would storm the charts in Europe and hit #1 in at least six countries including the UK where it stayed at the top of the chart for five weeks. A third single, "Valentine," would reach #9 while a fourth track make the Top 20. The Bridge of Spies album would make it to #1 and go 4x platinum in the UK. The band's second album, 1988's Rage, would be a #4 platinum seller. A third album would get to #10. The band would then split up. Decker would revive the band throughout the years for performances and a couple of albums.  2) When the band initially formed, they used the name Talking America. Then one day Carol Decker was watching a rerun of Star Trek when the character T'Pau appeared. T'Pau was a Vulcan high priestess and first appeared on the second season premiere of the show. The episode is famous for introducing the Vulcan reproductive condition known as pon farr and for a battle to the death between Spock and Captain Kirk overseen by T'Pau. Although the T'Pau character would not be in any further episodes of the original series, she would appear in episodes of Voyager and Enterprise.
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