“X” Marks The Spot For Music – OBSCURE Music At That!
I am willing to admit that, although there are some terrific songs here, “X” isn’t an easy letter for music – at least music that I am proud to share….it took a bit of research, but I came up with some really terrific songs and Artists – let’s get going!
XTC – “Grass”
Yje band XTC has always been a critical favorite, and they’ve had some hits along the way as well. This song is from “Skylarking”, their ninth studio album, released in October 1986.
Todd Is God!
The album was produced by one of my favorite Artists, Todd Rundgren, and has been described as a loose concept album centered around various cycles in life, such as the seasons, days, and years. According to wikipedia, the album title was chosen as a double entendre, referring to a type of bird (skylark), as well as the Royal Navy term “skylarking”, which means “fooling around”.
Here is the video for “Grass”:
“Skylarking” is considered one of XTC’s greatest works, but it wasn’t much fun getting done – there were many stories about the band’s issues working with Todd, and he was very candid as well…here is a look at some of Todd’s greatest producing achievements, and some stories about working with XTC as well:
As my Todd story notes, he also produced a Hall & Oates album…not this one, however, which gives us our much-needed “X”:
“X-Static” by Daryl Hall and John Oates
“X-Static” is the eighth studio album by Daryl Hall & John Oates, and it was released in 1979. It wasn’t a big hit for the duo, but it did include “Wait for Me”, which reached #18 on the Billboard charts.
While there is no song on the album called “X-Static”, here is the video for the title track “Portable Radio”, which includes the lines:
“C’mon and listen to the
Turn up the power
Rock it for hours and hours and hours
Now turn it soft and low
Crank up the power
Turn up the power all night
So there you go! Take a listen – this song was clearly disco-inspired, but still a very catchy song:
As I said, the album included the classic song “Wait For Me”, and I wanted to make sure it got some love as well!
Here is the official music video for “Wait For Me:”
Some of H&O’s best songs weren’t singles – here is a look at five great album cuts:
It’s always a tragedy when an Artist dies, but that doesn’t mean they stop releasing new music:
“Xscape” by Michael Jackson
This posthumous album was released in 2014, and one song was a huge hit, the Justin Timberlake-enhanced “Love Never Felt So Good.” But here is the title track, with a great fan music video by Jaimy Kempkes, using vintage Michael Jackson material over the new track:
Bravo for that effort…next up, a band with a name that hits this category dead center!
X – “Los Angeles”
John Doe and Exene Cervenka headed up this iconic LA punk band, and they are still going strong – here is their classic song “Los Angeles”:
Finally, my last choice was written by Jeff Lynne of The Electric Light Orchestra – for one of the most reviled films of all time!
“Xanadu” by Olivia Newton-John
Yes, this musical from 1980 starred Olivia Newton-John and the legendary Gene Kelly – but boy was it a bomb!
That said, I own it on DVD because it’s a bit of a camp classic now, and here is the scene in the film when the song is performed:
Well, then. As I said, Jeff Lynne wrote the song and has released his version as well – and it’s pure ELO ear candy – the band was recently acknowledged by The Grammy Awards fo this long career, and you can read about it here:
Let me know if “X” marked the spot for you!