Magic Jewball

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iPod song of the week – Paul Hardcastle

Filed under : iPod Song of the Week
On May 27, 2007
At 2:50 pm
Comments : 11

Despite my joking about Memorial Day, I am eternally grateful for the sacrifices made by others for the freedoms we enjoy today. I’m also grateful for great music about said wartime sacrifices. I once did a paper in college about songs dealing with the Vietnam War that came out after the actual war. As you can imagine, it was among the more fun projects I did in college (speaking of, please note that Hopkins made it to the Division I Lacrosse Finals this weekend – go Lax Scholarship Guys!). There were several great songs from my project which I could have chosen for the iPod Song of the Week: REM’s Orange Crush, The Clash’s Straight to Hell, The Minutemen’s Viet Nam, but strangely, this one is my favorite.

First off, this guy isn’t even American, he’s British. Second of all, the song is predominantly made up of sound bites from a TV documentary about the war, used to great effect. I have no idea why a disco beat, background screams, and lady soul singers bring home the horrors of this war, but somehow they do. Obviously, the central point of the song is how young the soldiers were (thus the title), the horrific nature of their experiences, their inability to adjust once they came back, and the lack of appreciation for their efforts. But Paul Hardcastle appreciated you, guys! And he put out this unique single in 1985 before disappearing off the face of the earth.

And the title lives on in the name of the company which brings us American Idol, 19 Management. Yes, Simon Fuller was Paul Hardcastle’s manager. Remember that the next time you’re playing Trivial Pursuit.

Paul Hardcastle – 19
Not available on Napster, but is on about 500 different 80’s collections. You can stream it on the iSotW page.


11 Comments for this post

  1. Lydia says:

    Have my reading comprehension skills gone to shit and I just didn’t notice the title of the song or is it not in the post? If it’s not, could you tell me what the name of the song is? Please and thank you.

  2. Becca says:

    It’s there, but not explicitly… but you’re right, the Napster link usually takes care of that and there isn’t one. So there you go, I edited it. 🙂

  3. KP says:

    Oh man I remember this song and the video as well.
    I feel like I’m 19 again.

    I am always enlightened by different perspectives on a topic. Each of those songs, the people who wrote and performed them, the style in which they were done…It is like shining 12 different lights on one doorway.

  4. Linda says:

    Becca, I read you on feed, and haven’t had a ping from the MagicJewBall in a while! So, what a surprise to see your iPod Song of the Week.

    I was 10 in 1969. God, this is a great song, and I’m sending it to our History teacher, who is 24 years old. Time to teach the masses.

    Aw shucks, I just have an Armed Forces Medley on my blog. I don’t even think my students know that each branch of the military has their own song!

    Happy Memorial Day. Fantastic Song. Crying just listening to it. Vietnam was a waste. So incredibly sad.

  5. Lydia says:

    Becca, if I had listened before I commented, I would have figured out the name. Great song.

    KP (who I feel I shouldn’t talk to since I’ve been a bad journal girl), I love your “12 shining lights” imagery.

  6. Becca says:

    What? There are other perspectives on a topic besides mine? 😛

    Linda, I have no idea why the pings aren’t pinging. Ah well.

    But see that’s the thing. I’m fascinated by Vietnam because it was before my time and the school year seemed to end just before we ever got there. I never studied it before college, if you’d believe it. But pop songs do bring these things home, don’t they?

    Lydia, nah, it was my bad. Thank goodness my commenters keep me on my toes.

  7. Linda says:

    I knew I wrote Happy Memorial Day somewhere tonight, so I searched it out.

    God, I’m sorry. There is nothing happy about it. Please forgive.

  8. Becca says:

    Linda, no worries, these days it’s a happy break from work for most people.

  9. KP says:

    Thanks Lydia.

    And I love Becca’s iPod song of the week posts. They are my favorites, well, except for the food related posts, but that’s a personal problem.

  10. Deas says:

    Wow, thanks for the flashback. I was in grade 5 at the time and there were a lot of American kids in my Alberta classroom (oil business) so I heard a lot about the war.

    By the way, Paul Hardcastle has morphed into a brilliant jazz artist in his Jazzmaster’s series.

  11. Becca says:

    Wow, so he didn’t fall off the face of the earth. Excellent.

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