Wednesday, April 01, 2009

One Night Stands: 'Gotta Stay High'

Unless you are among the modest number of people who purchased and really listened to the album Maybe You've Been Brainwashed Too in 1998, then you probably only know one song by New Radicals, and that's the single "You Get What You Give," which, in itself, is not a huge incentive to hear more.

Frontman Gregg Alexander has many talents, but naming a band is not one of them. Despite the exquisitely poor name of New Radicals, which sounds like it was named by a corporation, their one album is one of my favorites and for some reason "Gotta Stay High" has been in my head for the last three days (no, I don't do drugs).

Aside from being the lead singer, Alexander wrote and produced all of the tracks on MYBBT, then virtually disappeared. One of my favorite band tidbits is that the lineup features Danielle Brisebois of All in the Family. It's Brisebois who says, "Make my nipples hard, let's go" on my favorite track, "Mother We Just Can't Get Enough," though unfortunately it is cut out of most versions on YouTube. Check out Brisebois' bio: She has been sampled by Jay-Z and has written hits for Natasha Bedingfield. Way to skirt the child-star curse, Danielle!

It is sad to me that Alexander isn't very visible anymore. I really liked his style, both vocally and musically. In places on MYBBT, he channels Mick Jagger.

I was wondering what it is about this album that makes it, to me, a better pop experience than most. It must be the fact that it's Alexander's project (as opposed to a team of producers'). His energy in it is palpable. It's kind of earnest, in a very non-radical way.

Music: "Gotta Stay High"

P.S. Apologies for the thoroughly uninspired and unclever nature of this post. I forgot how working full-time can really take it out of you.

1 comment :

  1. you're right -- the only song I ever heard by them was their big hit. and even though i kind of wanted to punch the guy when he macho-threatened to beat up courtney love, hanson, etc.i think it's one of the most undeniably catchy songs ever. thanks for posting these.


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