Simply Red – Picture Book (1985)
I was once gainfully employed at a grocery store named Marilu’s Market.
Why the name Marilu you ask? It was jointly owned by business partners Mario & Luigi, obviously. I think my gaming enthusiast friends will agree, talk about a missed opportunity!
As was customary in Golden Horseshoe region grocery stores at the time (in an attempt to increase customer comfort –> increase time in store –> increase sales per visit), the soundtrack all day/every day at Marilu’s was provided by 102.9 K-Lite FM.
The strange thing about listening in that captive audience context is that even a decade and a half later, I probably still know most of the words to dozens of soft rock hits. However, as this was long before Shazam & I don’t recall the station frequently announcing the artist names, I haven’t the foggiest idea who sang what!
On the second side of Picture Book, hearing Holding Back the Years was a pleasant blast from the past (though I did feel somewhat compelled to check the expiry dates on our dairy products).
The softest of soft rock ballads was a bit misleading though as the bulk of the album is relatively up-tempo.
Will I buy a Simply Red shirt to slide between the other band Ts in my dresser? Even if not, I certainly can’t say I didn’t enjoy Picture Book.
In fact, as an exercise in juxtaposition, it was a terrific album to listen to alongside Elliott Smith (review #344 to follow).
Also, should you find yourself in need of music during a waffle-making-dance-party with a 4-year old (a common occurrence for most I trust?), the opening tracks on each side will more than get the job done.
If I ever choose to rank the 1001 (and note to future self, I advise against this), I anticipate this would end up in the neighbourhood of Tina Turner’s Private Dancer. Both are albums that:
– I purchased on cassette for next to nothing
– I listened to on repeat for a day or two
– I didn’t get remotely sick of hearing
– Now that I’ve reviewed them, neither is likely to see much further time in the rotation.
Although I can assure you, when Tina came on at Marilu’s, no artist-identifying software was ever needed!