Wednesday, August 22, 2018

Positively Guilt-Free Wednesday: John Waite & The Babys

"Missing You" is a perfectly constructed pop song and John Waite sings the hell out of it. It's not his fault that everyone in the world loved it and you couldn't escape hearing it.

That said, I think John Waite is one of the great rock singers of our time. I met John a few times through a mutual friend. He was an occasional customer who was always on the hunt for all things Steve Marriott. I finally snagged him a Japanese copy of  Humble Pie's "Eat It" long before every record ever made was at your fingertips.

Here is an hour's worth of my favorite John Waite tracks, including 5 with his former band, The Babys. I think there is something special about each and every track. Mostly though, it's all about how Waite delivers it. (Check out how he phrases the days of the week in the last verse of the rocker, "Saturday Night."

"Wrong Or Right" feels like a lost track from Led Zeppelin's "Physical Graffiti."

"Everytime I Think Of You," a top 40 hit for The Babys, is just as perfect as anything played on AM radio.

And of course, you know me and how much I love a good hook and good harmonies. "She's My Girl" and "If You've Got The Time" are full of both.

There are four ballads here. If that's not your cup of tea, I'm sorry. But I find all four of them brilliant and heartbreaking. You can decide for yourself.

"Tears" and "Change" were both bigg-ish MTV hits, and for good reason. That's why I included them.

Finally, back to "Missing You" for a minute. If you truly can't stand it, give a listen to "Act Of Love." It's similar and I like it better.

That's it.

Be nice.

When You Were Mine- John Waite
Wrong Or Right- The Babys
Saturday Night- John Waite
Masterpiece Of Loneliness- John Waite
Let's Get Out Of Here- John Waite
Everytime I Think Of You- The Babys
Change- John Waite
If You've Got The Time- The Babys
How Did I Get By Without You- John Waite
She's My Girl- The Babys
In God's Shadow- John Waite
Tears- John Waite
Act Of Love- John Waite
Turn & Walk Away- The Babys




Oh good!

I really like the John Waite SOTW; now I'm looking forward to hearing all of these.

Thanks Sal

Dr Wu said...

Thank you for this, Sal! John Waite and The Babys are vastly under appreciated and your efforts are sure to initiate a grassroots movement to correct this criminal neglect. And this mix is perfect for a summer day! Thanks again

Anonymous said...

I've never given The Babys or John Waite a second thought and have never heard any of their/his music but I had to download the music cause of the LZ reference.

Thanks, Randy

P.S., I got my vinyl copy of Bird Streets w/ J. Falkner and listening to it on the big stereo. Fucking Great. Big thanks for that one.

softshoebanana said...

the Babys..... what a great band. They were never appreciated in the UK but I liked them and that's enough for me.

Chris Collins said...

I love John Wait!! Thanks for this!!

Dr Wu said...

‘After serving as the B-side for "Every Time I Think of You," the title track "Head First"...’ That is one very solid 45!

dogbreath said...

No guilty plea needed. Waite's voice is one of the best in pop, rock, whatever & he carried it through into Bad English as well. A very tasty little mix. Many thanks.

FD13NYC said...

Good mix Sal! Always loved John Waite and The Babys. Isn't It Time is a fave.

Frito Bandito said...

Mr. Waite just played here on the 4th of July opening for Pat Benatar. He was fantastic. I think of The Babys as the english Raspberries in a sense. Very under rated.

buzzbabyjesus said...

I discovered free form FM radio in 1971, and never tuned into "hit" radio again.
As a result I'm forever suspicious of "Pop sheen", and Top 40.
However, The Baby's are solid, and John Waite is a fine singer.

Shriner said...

"Isn't It Time", "Every Time I Think Of You", "Head First", "Back On My Feet Again", "Turn and Walk Away", "Midnight Rendezvous", "Give Me Your Love", "If You've Got The Time" -- classics all. "Midnight Rendezvous" is one of my top-5 warmup songs when I pull out the guitar with it's sideways-"Rebel Rebel" riff.

"The Raspberries of the late-70s" is how I've always thought of them. 5 solid power-pop albums. Not brilliant through-and-through like the 4 Raspberries albums, but there's more wheat than chaff in those Baby's albums for sure!

heartsofstone said...

Thanks - So underrated. I am a big fan of power-pop as a guilty pleasure.

Tinpot said...

What Randy said.

I don't usually DL something, unheard, on one person's recommendation, but over the years I've come to realize you know what you're talking about.

Thank you, looking forward to this.

cmealha said...

This is great. Glad you did it. His unique phrasing is what marks him as a great singer but so underrated cause he’s not a screamer. So many great examples here. Thanks

cmealha said...

Afterthought: His singing is like an ice skate gliding on the ice

Ken J Xenozar said...

Question for more knowledgeable: Did John Waite write these? Or is he just a damn good singer. If he wrote them, then he is a damn good songwriter too.

M_Sharp said...

That's some first rate power pop, or pop rock, or whatever you want to call it. I never went past "Missing You" with Waite. Thanks!