Saturday, November 19, 2011

Homonyms: Blue Monday

Bob Seger: Blue Monday (Fats Domino cover)


New Order: Blue Monday


Mondays really have a bad reputation and that plays out in musical titles. Of the many songs I know about Monday, not a single one is uplifting. There's Stormy Monday, Monday Morning Blues, Manic Monday, Rainy Days and Mondays, and of course I Don't Like Mondays. So I guess it's no surprise that there are two versions of a song called Blue Monday.

The first was a 1956 hit for boogie woogie piano bluesman Fats Domino. I'm using a cover of that song, though, by Detroit's own rocker Bob Seger, used in the soundtrack for the 1989 movie Roadhouse. His version doesn't deviate much from Fats', and after growing up outside of Detroit myself, I always like some Bob Seger!

The second is a synth pop club dance song by New Order (surprisingly, we've never posted that band before). It was the biggest selling 12" single ever in the UK, and various remixes, re-recordings, and covers roam the internet. From the book Manchester England: The Story of the Pop Cult City we find that "Blue Monday was really influenced by four songs…The arrangement came from 'Dirty Talk', by Klein & MBO, the beat came from a track off a Donna Summer LP, there was a sample from 'Radioactivity' by Kraftwerk, and the general influence on the style of the song was Sylvester's '(You Make Me Feel) Mighty Real'." Both the base and drum tracks were synthesized, and the choir was sampled from Kraftwerk, one of the first records to sample another artist's song like that.

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