Respectable by Mel and Kim was number one in the UK thirty years ago. What a great song. They had that proper pop star essence, too, didn’t they?
I’ve always thought (and when I say always, I actually mean it, cos I’ve been saying this to anyone who’ll listen for nearly 30 years now), that if you change the instrumentation of Stock Aitken Waterman records to sound more like Motown or Red Bird recordings, people would adore them, and they’d get the respect they deserve. (Although, looking at Mike Stock’s Twitter these days, he seems fairly right wing, so respect only goes so far with him.)
This is definitely one of the highlights of SAW’s output. This, You Spin Me Round (Like a Record), Never Gonna Give You Up, and obvs a whole load of Kylie songs.
But, here I am, falling into the male rockist trap of praising the producer over the artist. Pop stars have producers. Rock stars work with kindred spirits. Pop star producers “do everything,” rock music producers enhance. The Stone’s albums with Jimmy Miller get rightly praised, but we don’t really take anything away from the band in that praise, and I feel we do when talking about pop music (clearly, I’m not comparing the output of the Stones and Mel & Kim, cos that wouldn’t be fair).
It’s the same with they don’t play their instruments or they don’t write the songs. Who cares? Really? I don’t need Lionel Messi to manufacture footballs or mow the pitch to enjoy his skillz.
But yes, Respectable. Brilliant record. Showing Out was ace, too.
The song in my head when I woke up this morning
Manchild by Neneh Cherry
On this day
Balls, 22 March 2007
Here’s an interesting Wikipedia article