Tuesday, September 1, 2020

"Happy Together" by The Nylons

Song#:  3244
Date:  08/29/1987
Debut:  92
Peak:  75
Weeks:  7
Genre:  Pop, Vocal

Pop Bits:  The a cappella quartet (with some added synth percussion) came close to cracking the Pop Top 10 with their remake of Steam's 1969 #1 hit "Kiss Him Goodbye" (#12). The song was from their fourth album Happy Together. For their follow-up single, the title track was selected for release. It did fairly well at AC reaching #16, but at Pop the song just couldn't make much headway. The guys would return in 1989 with a new album titled Rockapella that, like their previous LPs, contained remakes and a few originals. Unfortunately, singles from the album failed to chart and the album quickly disappeared. The quartet would continue to record albums over the years and remain very popular in their homeland of Canada. Of the four members that made up The Nylons in their 80s heydays (which included three founding members), three would pass away over the years leaving only original tenor Claude Morrison to carry on with new members. In 2016, the group decided to retire and set out on a final tour of Canada.

ReduxReview:  Their lone hit was a bit of a fluke that did wonders in raising the quartet's profile. It helped to give them name recognition that reached far beyond their Canadian home. However, even they had to know that they were gonna land in one-hit wonder territory. A cappella is a very cool and difficult style of music, but it is one that has a very short shelf life when it comes to pop radio and the charts. Every now and then someone will reach the Pop chart with an a cappella track and it will typically earn them a large audience that they can entertain for a long while. Bobby McFerrin certainly did well after his 1988 #1 hit "Don't Worry, Be Happy" and more recently the group Pentatonix has been quite successful after a couple of charting songs. Still, a string of Top 10s by an a cappella artist will most likely never happen and for The Nylons their luck ran out quickly after "Kiss Him Goodbye." This remake was another nice effort from them, but it just didn't have that extra zing that made "Kiss Him Goodbye" fun. They needed something better than this to overcome the one-hit wonder stigma. In the end it didn't really matter as the lone hit was enough to keep them a popular act over the years.

ReduxRating:  5/10

Trivia:  This was a remake of a song originally recorded by The Turtles. That band's original take hit #1 for three weeks in 1967. Written by Alan Gordon and Garry Bonner, the tune has been covered by many artists over the years. In addition to The Turtles and The Nylons, two other artists have reached the Pop chart with a version. Tony Orlando and Dawn got to #72 in 1972 with their take while the Captain & Tennille hit #53 in 1980 with a fantasy-styled version. The Turtles' classic track has been used or referenced in numerous TV shows, films, video games, and books.


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