Saturday, April 15, 2023

"I'm Not the Man I Used to Be" by Fine Young Cannibals

Song#:  4102
Date:  11/11/1989
Debut:  85
Peak:  54
Weeks:  6
Genre:  Pop, Rock

Pop Bits:  After a pair of #1 Pop hits and the #11 "Don't Look Back," this band's second album The Raw and the Cooked was still doing well enough to call for a fourth single. This next track was selected for release. A remix of the tune would do fine in on the Dance chart getting to #8, but the single version would end up being a minor entry at AC (#40) while stopping shy of the halfway point at Pop. The label would opt for a fifth single and send out "I'm Not Satisfied," but it fizzled at a low #90 on the Pop chart. That would wrap up things for the album, which had reached #1 and sold well enough to go double-platinum.

ReduxReview:  Utilizing a more basic arrangement along with a sample from James Brown's "Funky Drummer," this track was more subtle and introspective than their previous three hits and it worked very well. The lighter approach allowed Roland Gift's vocal performance to shine through. It was a good choice for a single, but for some reason it didn't resonate as well with Pop listeners who seemed to prefer the band's more upbeat catchier tunes. It was too bad the band never recorded a follow up. They weren't the first nor the last band to have a big hit album and then just go away. Their disappearing act reminds me of the band fun. who hit it big with their second album as well in 2012. Their album Some Nights would be a #3 triple-platinum hit thanks to a pair of big Pop Top 10 hits including the #1 "We Are Young" that featured Janelle MonĂ¡e. The band would be nominated for six Grammys winning two for Song of the Year and Best New Artist. And then...pffft. They announced a hiatus that as of this posting date is still on.

ReduxRating:  7/10

TriviaThe Raw and the Cooked made Fine Young Cannibals worldwide stars. It was a well-reviewed impressive effort and folks couldn't wait for them to record a follow up. But then that never happened. The band more or less disappeared. So what happened? Why would a band at the top of their game just stop? In a couple of interviews, lead singer Roland Gift has mentioned that it wasn't just one thing. It seems a move to NYC, sudden fame, instant riches, and pressure to record an even more successful album all took a toll on the band. It got to the point where they were trying to write hits instead of just making music and eventually they just gave up and stopped with members going their own ways. After The Raw and the Cooked, the band would record two further songs. In 1990, they would record the Cole Porter standard "Love for Sale" for the AIDS charity album Red Hot + Blue. Then four years after their split, the band reunited to record "The Flame." It would be a track added to their 1996 hits compilation The Finest. Released as a single, it wouldn't chart in the US, but would get to #17 in the UK.


1 comment:

  1. To be fair, Jack Antonoff from fun. kinda got busy producing Lorde, St. Vincent, Lana Del Rey, and that little indie artist Taylor Swift. :-) A new fun. album isn't completely impossible, but probably unlikely.