Monday, April 14, 2008

Peter Godwin -- "Baby's In The Mountains" (1983)

If you're a New Wave fiend who relishes the more obscure acts, then Peter Godwin's your man. There are about five zillion New Wave record compilations, and you'll be inundated with the Stray Cats, Modern English, Men At Work and The Police, but good luck finding one with Peter Godwin (you can try Just Can't Get Enough, Vol. 12).

Together with Duncan Browne, Godwin was in the minor pop band Metro previous to jumping off on his own track.

"Baby's In The Mountains" was prototypical for the era -- layers of analogue synths driving a mid-tempo pumping beat, programmed drum machine with synthetic beats, what sounds like a deep Moog bass, and a highly affected vocal periodically backed up by female singers.

If there was one musical twist that singers liked to do at this time, and "Baby's In The Mountain" is a prime example, it was the slightly chromatically out of tune throwaway line. In this case, listen to the pre-chorus when Godwin sings "and there's NOTHING I can do" which kind of goes up and down an octave in those six words.

The song really took hold when Polydor had master mixer John Luongo did one of his classic extended remixes, jetting the song into the dance clubs at the time. Since making it big in dance clubs was still going strong from the earlier disco era, these 12" singles gave whole new lives to songs at the time (see my post on ABC's "Poison Arrow"). Luongo earned his chops with those disco songs, so when these New Wave acts came calling with their 4/4 dance beats, it was an easy transition for him. You can find his remix of "Baby's In The Mountains" on a "best of" Peter Godwin compilation on Amazon.

Here's a simple home-made video for "Baby's In The Mountains." Not much visually, but it's good to have the song out there:


4 comments:

Anonymous said...

oh man, was this song was it! Pitty this verion is a bit lame, but hey, who cares?

Anonymous said...

i have been searching for the name of this song forever!!! I came across it back in the days and for the life of me i could not remember the name of the song untilI heard it on Sirius radio first new wave and have not heard it since... thanks for making my days

giz said...

Well,

Thanks for remembering him and posting.

At any rate, he's back with a new album and with a new band called NUEVO (http://www.nuevomusic.com) and with meaner yet gentler sound...so do click and listen.

Also, you can join me and him at his fan page in facebook:

http://www.facebook.com/#!/pages/Peter-Godwin/152584509493?ref=ts

...anyways, thanks from Mission Control, Fort Godwin.

skyray is love,
Giselle

Peter Godwin said...

By the way Drew. You're talking about "Baby's In The Mountains".

But the line you picked on:

"listen to the pre-chorus when Godwin sings "and there's NOTHING I can do" which kind of goes up and down an octave in those six words".

Is actually from another song of mine entirely. It's from the bridge of "Images Of Heaven".

Go back and have a listen to both songs. Anyone reading this who knows the songs will have already spotted this I'm sure.

Sloppy blogging Drew. But are you man enough to apologize?

Peter Godwin