Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Soulful Baroque Bubblegum... And Blues Rock

Sometimes huge internet marketplaces show their strong side... I had never heard of a British band called the Love Affair until I ended up buying a very affordable collection called The Best of the Good Times. For some reason, whenever people report the male lead singer of a band being exceptionally good, I often check out if there really is something to it. I remember it only took one song of Steve Ellis' singing to get convinced.

Like many bubblegum superstars, Steve Ellis was only a teenage boy when he was already singing on hit records in the late 1960s. Also like many other bubblegum artists, on the a-sides the Love Affair was practically Ellis backed by session musicians. Also, the band had only one chart-topping hit, Everlasting Love - a song that definitely deserved the spot! But the Love Affair wasn't a one hit wonder as it had other top 10 hits as well.

However, the Love Affair wasn't really a bubblegum band. The hit songs were arranged to appeal to the masses, pretty much like Edison Lighthouse and others, but on the b-sides the Love Affair was showing a heavier r&b style. The music is all good, and the distinction between the a-side and b-side style is quite interesting, as if there were two whole different bands. There was obviously a difference of opinion concerning the band's desired image and direction, so Ellis and his bandmates broke up after only a few years. It seems that the music business won this round.

In any case, Steve Ellis is a fantastic white soul vocalist. He sound equally good singing heavenly pop songs like Bringing on Back the Good Times, Rainbow Valley, and A Day Without Love, as he sounds singing more bluesy songs like Let Me Know, 60 Minutes (Of Your Love), and I'm Happy – there is also a great version of Hush.

I must say, I rarely buy music with such high quality for about £3,50. There are so many songs that sound like hits that it is almost exhausting. The blues rock works nicely as a balancing agent.

Check out some cool songs (YouTube):

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