Wednesday, May 5, 2021

"Circle in the Sand" by Belinda Carlisle

Top 10 Alert!
Song#:  3484
Date:  04/16/1988
Debut:  68
Peak:  7
Weeks:  17
Genre:  Pop

Pop Bits:  Carlisle's second post-Go-Go's album Heaven on Earth was certified platinum in January of '88. It got there thanks to a pair of hits including the #2 "I Get Weak." To keep sales going, this third single was released from the LP. It would end up being her third consecutive Pop Top 10 (her fourth overall). The song also did well over at AC where it was also her third consecutive, and highest charting, Top 10 (#5). Unfortunately, this single would be Carlisle's last one to make the Pop Top 10.

ReduxReview:  This atmospheric and mysterious song was an interesting choice for a single. The ballad was a nice change of pace after two bombastic hits, but I wasn't sure if it would fully catch on. It ended up doing quite well and secured Carlisle with a fourth Top 10. I think it gets overlooked today in favor of the other two hits, but it was a good track that got enhanced by an excellent arrangement and terrific production.

ReduxRating:  7/10

Trivia:  This song as well as Carlisle's #1 "Heaven Is a Place on Earth" were written by Rick Nowels and Ellen Shipley, and produced by Nowels. It was via Carlisle's album that the Nowels/Shipley writing partnership began. Nowels was gaining ground as a songwriter and producer having success with Stevie Nicks (1985's Rock a Little). Shipley had been singing around New York and released three albums, one indie and two for major labels, that did little for her career as a solo recording artist. When Nowels was hired on to produce Carlisle's second album, he needed hit songs. Shipley was a friend of his and he called her up to invite her out to L.A. to see if they could come up with something for Carlisle. Their first effort was "Heaven Is a Place on Earth" followed by "Circle in the Sand." The hits boosted both of their careers. They would continue to write music together for Carlisle and a few other artists. Nowels would go on to write and produce for major artists like Madonna, k.d. lang, Jewel, Santana, Keith Urban, Weezer, Cee-Lo Green, and many others. Beginning in 2011, Nowels began working with singer/songwriter Lana Del Rey. While he would contribute songwriting and production for a few tracks on several of her albums, the pair mostly wrote and produced two of her LPs, 2015's Honeymoon and 2017's Lust for Life. In 2013, a remix of one of their first collaborations, "Summertime Sadness" (originally from her 2012 album Born to Die), would become Del Rey's biggest hit to-date reaching #6 on the Pop chart.


1 comment:

  1. Of Belinda's hits I only seem to hear "Mad About You" and "Heaven Is A Place On Earth" a lot on a regular basis, I don't seem to hear "I Get Weak" and "Circle In The Sand" on the radio all that often.