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Re-Discover Culture Club


The Next Thing Will Be Amazing. 

We are celebrating 40 years of Culture Club from the release of their debut album "Kissing To Be Clever" which was released on October 14th 1982 selling over 4 million copies worldwide. Culture Club are one of the the very few left 80's bands still performing to sold out shows world wide. If you have seen Culture Club live you know they can put on a fantastic show making you want to get up out of your seat and dance. Please join us as we recap the greatest hits from Culture Club. We are digging into some lost or never seen performances from Culture Club that you may have not heard or seen before. Catch Culture Club on tour this year as they tour the world with the "Pop Culture Club" tour !   

This is 1982 the year that Culture Club debuted with their debut album "Kissing To Be Clever released on October 14th 1982 selling over 4 million copies world wide. Culture Club became the 1st band since the Beatles to have 3 Top 10 hits from a debut album!  

Culture Club have been Hot Since 82' and this year they are Celebrating their BIG 40th Anniversary together this year since their debut single "White Boy debuted in April of 1982! The single did peak only in the UK charts at #114 selling over 5,000 copies alone. George was just so happy that people were buying Culture Club's debut single. He just wanted to personally thank everyone for buying the record!

 In the summer of 82' Culture Club released a follow-up to "White Boy" by releasing their second single "I'm Afraid Of Me" which barely caused a ripple on the UK singles chart making it to the UK Hot 100 at No.100. Culture Club couldn't understand why? It was a face paced dance song and George loved it!

Culture Club had to act fast they decided to go on tour and play a few gigs. They had an album put together with producer Steve Levine. A few weeks into the tour Virgin Records called George and told him that they were going to be releasing "Do You Really Want To Hurt Me" as the next single. They told him that this was Culture Clubs' last chance to get a record deal with them. George was upset the record company chose Do You Really Want To Hurt Me as the third single and thought that Culture Club was going to be over. George said "Do You Really Want To Hurt me was way too personal and that nobody is going to like it. In September of 1982 "Do You Really Want To Hurt Me was released" The single rose rapidly in the UK charts after the group's first appearance on Top of the Pops, which resulted in George's androgynous style of dress and sexual ambiguity making newspaper headlines. The group was only asked to appear on Top of the Pops the night before the show after Shakey Stevens pulled out. 

 Culture Club gaining huge popularity around the globe. "Do You Really Want To Hurt Me" hits No.1 in Japan and Culture Club's Virgin/Epic Records decides to release "Mystery Boy" as the bands 4th single. The song was featured in a commercial in Japan for "Suntori Hot Whiskey" which Mystery Boy was replaced with George singing "Ooh Hot Whiskey, Oh Hot Whiskey". The song was released on an exclusive 7" only picture sleeve. Preview the tv commercial here!   

 Culture Club with the huge success of "Do  You Really Want To Hurt me" the band needed a follow up, Tony Gordon Culture Club's manager decided that they needed something new like a ballad or slow song. George & the boys came up and wrote "Time (Clock Of The Heart) The single was released in November of 1982 which peaked at No. 2 on the US Hot 100 and No. 3 in the UK. The single was a Top 10 hit in over 20 countries. We have a special video of an early mix of “Time (Clock Of The Heart) before the strings and orchestra were mixed in. This version was performed on “The Tube” back in October of 82” before it was released in November that year. 

 Culture Club were now the No.1 band in the world. The had scored 2 Top 5 singles in America and the UK. With the success of Time (Clock Of The Heart) Culture Club release the dance driven "I'll Tumble 4 Ya" which peaked in the US at No. 9 and No, 4 in Canada. The song was not released in the UK instead they got a new single from the fourth-coming album "Colour By Numbers" for "Church Of The Poison Mind" which hit the top 10. A special 12" version for I'll tumble 4 Ya" was released becoming the 1st remix for any Culture Club single. The single hit the US dance charts at No.14 for 14 weeks. 

You Know I'm Not Crazy is pure joy from the first Caribbean-flavored drum roll through three and a half minutes of effervescent delight. This is Culture Club at their best. They were the first band since the Beatles to notch three Top 10 hits from a debut album in the U.S., and Frank Zappa lampooned it -- which means Culture Club did something right here.

  Church Of The Poison Mind" is a blistering trac  k with a soaring harmonica hook that evoked the sound of Stax and Stevie Wonder’s Uptight (Everything’s Alright). This is Culture Club's at its upbeat, Motown-saluting best, a poppy barn-burner that has more cajones than anything else in the group's catalog. Helen Terry's muscular backing vocals offer a welcome counterpoint to George's feathery leads, while the rest of the band shows that it can kick into a higher gear when the occasion calls for it. At Culture Club’s comeback show for VH1’s Storytellers series in May 1998, George introduced the track as being “about Jon – as were most of the songs during Culture Club’s reign”. Released as the band’s fifth single in April 1983, it reached No.2, only kept off the top spot by George’s idol, David Bowie, with Let’s Dance.  

 Karma Chameleon despite being Culture Club’s biggest hit, reaching No.1 in September 1983 and staying there for six weeks, all of the members of the band have had issues with the song in the past. When George first sang it to them, they all initially hated it and were reluctant to record it as they feared it would mark the end of their career. Needless to say, they relented and saw it become one of the most successful singles of all time.

 That's The Way (I'm Only Try To Help You) A tender piano-led ballad, the stripped-back track was recorded as a tribute to George’s mother. Essentially a duet between George and Helen Terry, it’s one of the best showcases of her gospel-infused voice, which was an integral part of the Culture Club sound. A live favorite, That’s The Way (I'm Only Trying To Help You) was one of the LP’s best-known tracks, as it was the B-side to Karma Chameleon.

 Black Money Is a long-time fan favorite, "Black Money" is a soulful ballad showcasing the vocal harmonies of George and Helen Terry, covering the issue of unrequited love. As with the majority of "Colour By Numbers", the lyric refers to a volatile relationship: “Somebody else’s life cannot be mine/ But when you love someone/ And they don’t love you in the return/ When you love someone/ You’ve got money to burn.” When Culture Club released "This Time – The First Four Years", their first greatest-hits album, in 1987, "Black Money" was planned as a single to promote the release, even including a live version of the song on the VHS tape, but was shelved at the 11th hour.

 It's A Miracle  Originally titled "It’s America", George wrote, "It’s A Miracle" on his first trip to the US in November 1982. Celebrating the land of dreams, it name-checks aspects of US celebrity and pop culture, something that makes sense when put into context with the song’s original title

 Miss Me Blind was released as Colour By Numbers’ fourth single in many countries, but not the UK, Miss Me Blind, a dance-pop track with an embittered lyric that refers to the group's debut album, Kissing To Be Clever, with backing vocals by R&B stalwart Jermaine Stewart. There's a tinge of dark underpinning, but it never gets in the way of the song’s fluffy fun. There was a major source of disagreement in the studio, with George and Roy Hay clashing over the inclusion of the lengthy guitar solo. With Roy fighting to keep it and George vehemently against it, the solo was eventually recorded one day when George wasn’t in the studio.

 Perhaps the most underrated song not included on the "Colour By Numbers" LP until 2003 when it was featured on the remastered version, "Colour By Numbers" is a beautiful ballad almost so close to "Victims" with a lyric seemingly penned during a fraught day in George and Jon’s relationship, tackling the issue of outside influences, with lyrics such as: “When I told you those lies, Felt the spirit of love, Demanding more than compromise, Took a chance for a while, Speaking in tongues, That float us down rivers, the past will remind us, All colors we chose”.

 Mister Man was inspired by stories about New York’s mean streets and the high crime rate in the early 1980s, George wrote Mister Man on his first day in the Big Apple in November 1982, along with It’s A Miracle. A catchy pop track featuring a touch of reggae, Mister Man remains one of Culture Club’s lost classics, only released as a single in South Africa. Along with Black Money and It’s A Miracle, Mister Man was debuted on A Midsummer Night’s Tube in June 1983. Mister Man was the first song recorder for the album "Colour By Numbers" 

 Victims this track is considered by many to be Culture Club’s masterpiece. The grandiose ballad, beginning with a simple piano before building to an orchestral conclusion, was a snapshot of a tortured relationship and the powerlessness of being infatuated with someone (guess who Jon) This song is such a masterpiece and was perhaps acknowledged as such by the band during their 2017 World Tour, in which George wanted everyone in the audience to be quiet and not talk during the performance. The stadium was quiet with an elaborate piano sequence of just George and Roy Hay together. The audience just sat there to an unbelievable performance of the song. Boy George explains that the song takes him to another world when he performs this to a live audience. 

  Mistake No 3. This slow-burning, sultry, and often overlooked entry in the Culture Club song canon is an understated but still impactful heartbreak paean and features one of George's most soulful vocals. Keep the Kleenex handy when this one is on.

  The Dive starts with a rock rhythm section, then turns to a driving polyrhythm for the dynamic chorus. "Eyes Like A Deep Blue Sea To dive in, Love that you give to me We're surviving When love is gone I can't carry on. This is a catchy rave-up song.

  Don't Want To Talk About It. This fan favorite has never been performed live by Culture Club during any of the Waking Up With The House On Fire World Tour in 1984. This is one of Culture Club's lost tracks that some people tend to forget. It has a very small guitar solo in the middle almost sounding like a follow-up to Miss Me Blind. The lyrics are very cheeky and smart, George sings about being at a party "Staring at the people lost a terrified" It's about the press and how they always want to speak with just Boy George and not the other members of Culture Club.  Give it a listen. This song was released as a single in Mexico in 1984.

 Culture Club was the hottest band in 1984 after winning their Grammy Award for Best New Artist, the band was feeling the pressure for a new single. George and the band have delivered a smash new single with lyrics that were so catchy it was bound to be a number one single for them it was in Ireland. The percussion on Jon Moss's drums sounds so amazing since this was the first time he uses a drum machine for the single. It sounded like a Duran Duran song at the time. When Culture Club re-invented this on their World Tour in 2017 people went crazy over this. It has aged so well this song that it fits in with the modern world we live in now and Culture Club has proven to deliver that with this song! 

 Love Is Love Culture Club just recently performed this song live for the first time during the 2016 World Tour in the USA. George's vocals on this are by far the best he ever sound. This song sums up the meaning of love and what it all stands for. Many T-shirts nowadays have the words "Love Is Love" meaning we are all accepted that's what George was trying to point across everyone when he wrote this amazing song 38 years ago. It has become a staple for Culture Club in Brazil where the single reached the Top 3 in Brazil alone. This was just recently remixed for the Culture Club 2002 Box set and is by far a fantastic remix.

  Don't Go Down That Street.  In the tradition of earlier Culture Club songs, "Don't Go Down That Street" includes chatting, but instead of Jamaican patois, it features Japanese chatting by Miko, Boy George's friend at the time. That song was recorded especially to be a B-Side. The song is really beautiful and the smooth jazz horns are amazing. The best part is when George sings in Japanese. The song is about a time when George used to be chased down the streets for being dressed as a nun. You can catch this moment in the bio motion picture "Worried About The Boy"  

   Sexuality Culture Club then at the peak of their popularity, were among several artists who were changing their sounds in the mid-1980's Producer Arif Mardin had helped Culture Club earn a Top 4 US Billboard dance track with "Move Away" but it was the song "Sexuality" the B-side to Culture Clubs single "Move Away" Both songs energized US and UK dance floors in the Spring of 1986. It was a time when Culture Club dance songs were hot and "The Tango Dub" mix to "Sexuality" would become Culture Club's longest dance remix ever at 10:08 seconds long. The lyrics were catchy. When I say I don't dance, I'm mean Not like you When I say I don't dance, I need Something new…One of the reasons they chose "Sexuality" was because Boy George knew it would become a dance floor filler. The album version, "Sexuality" was 5 a half-minute dance epic. 

  This track "Move Away" is considered by many to be Culture Club’s comeback masterpiece. The pop influence began with a simple outrageously catchy chorus Move, Move, Move Away from darling, I never said I hold your hand. This song represents one of the best vocals from Boy George.

  The sturdy funk of Too Bad, "This is America The Land of Dreams" A dance spin was placed on the "From Luxury To Heartache" album and reared its head on the dark and glorious "Too Bad." The production of this track sounds so big with such powerful lyrics "My children don't like thunder, my children don't like rain, my children don't like fighting. Songs like this will get you up a moving something that Culture Club is best known for.

 Heavens Children, From Luxury To Heartache, 1986 - This is by far every Culture Club fan favorite song. called Inequality which became the sickly sweet "Heavens Children" The original concept of the song was immigrant slave labor in America. Jon & Roy said the lyrics were patronizing Heavens Children later scheduled for release in July of 1986. White labels were sent to the radio stations but soon shelved. The 12" mix of this sounds like pure heaven. 

 Image result for abba mania cdVoulez Vous– It was Roy Hay's idea to cover AbbaAbbas's9 hit. Boy George was reluctant at first, but he soon warmed to the idea and later conceded that, as usual, Roy's idea for a remake was right on target. This version that Culture Club did transform the original into an intensely ironic yet assertive and strangely uplifting disco dirge. In the process, Culture Club elevated Abbas's semi-classic to fully-fledged classic status.

   Less Than Perfect from Don't Mind If I Do, 1999 – In some ways a restatement of Culture Club's 1983 single "Victims". The piano introduction is breathtaking and this track is noteworthy for a rather ambiguous line "If I change my attitude, maybe I can conquer you completely, Everything I say and do, all I learn from you defeat me" Many Culture Club fans assumed that these words referred to Jon Moss, but George later revealed that his inspiration for the track was actually for his ex-lover Michael Dune.

  Cold Shoulder from Don't Mind IF I Do, 1999 - The song is very cold. The violins playing on the track are making you feel like its really the end of the relationship and it's very cold and the lyric's that are so deep, "I came here to escape the chill, from your cold, cold shoulder" This song represents the end of someone's relationship with someone. This is Culture Club at their best with this heartbreaking song.

  I Just Wanna Be Loved, from Greatest Moments, 1998 - "I Just Wanna Be Loved" tingles with warm yet worldly lyrics and a crazy-catchy chorus that you'll be humming for hours after one listen. Boy George is in peak vocal form, while Culture Club bandmates Roy, Jon, and Mikey play with astonishingly sharp precision. A promising peeks into what was an exciting, vita new phase for the band.

  Your Kisses Are Charity (Feat Dolly Parton) from Don't Mind If I Do, 1999- When Boy George asked Dolly Parton if she wanted to do a duet with him she was so touched and delighted she couldn't say no. The two never sung this song together in the studio but did perform this in 1999 on the UK show "The Lottery". Dolly Parton loved the song "Your Kisses Are Charity" The version was not featured on the album "Don't Mind If I Do" but released on a cd single as part two of a two cd set for the single in July of 1999. The original demo to this sounded slightly different as well with a few added lyrics.

  Crystal Blue Persuasion , P.S. Your Cat Is Dead Soundtrack, 2000  It's a great cover of a song that will go down in history as one of the most feel good feel good all over song ever to be recorded by Culture Club.

 What Does Sorry Mean - What Does Sorry Mean is an important track, and Boy George thinks it's one of the deepest and its a standout track from their record "Life" The song is partly about Boy George's parents and his childhood growing up! But it’s mostly about his Island Auntie. What Does Sorry Mean it’s kind of a general song about women who love too much. Women who are attracted to men hold the mark. Boy George's favorite lyric is the part, he and Roy came up with the melody, the bit where it goes, ” She can’t go back, she can’t be alone. She can’t go back, she’s always checking the phone” "What Does Sorry Mean has that classic Culture Club, contradictory, melancholy, sweet, weird, cool happy/sad, like an oxymoron. It’s very much like that. It’s very sad with a kind of joy, which kind of sums up the human condition sometimes. Now that’s what we call a very powerful song.

Oil & Water from Life- A beautiful piano-led romantic ballad, a crescendo of Culture Club’s versatility and musical brilliance, ‘Oil & Water’ is reminiscent of Culture Club’s previous plunges into show-stopping, powerful, romantic ballads  It's about two people that shouldn’t be together. It’s a reoccurring theme. There’s a line in the song saying. “Here we are now, pathological strangers. You choose to say I fall apart”. It's about when you fall for someone and they take control of you. The next line says, “Looking in from the outside, what can you see clearly”. It is about when you’re in the madness of a relationship it’s almost impossible for somebody from the outside to understand what you’re going through or feeling. This song is about ‘Oil and Water’, they just don’t go together. There are some beautiful lyrics in that song. It’s quite James Bond that song.

 More Than Silence, More Than Silence’ is a highlight of the album that combines Boy George’s vocal proficiency, Roy Hay’s virtuosic guitar playing, Jon Moss’ beats, and Mikey Craig’s bass riffing to create another powerful ballad. Boy George sings about his desire for a “little more than silence.” The front man had stated in an interview that: “Artists make complicated lovers because they always need an audience” and that “Silence is the loudest sound in the universe.” George added that “[he] thinks we finally created a son which gives [Roy] the opportunity [to rock out a little].”There’s a little bit of a U2 sounding in there, and Culture Cub says that’s it's not accidental. More Than Silence is a really special song, It has that Culture Club spirit about it. It’s a love song. It’s about being held together by the things we don’t say to one another. The noise of silence in relationships can be, really, really close and intimate with someone, and yet know that if you say one thing, that one sentence can topple an empire. It's a song that allows you to feel like you know someone intimately but you also know if you say this one thing they won’t understand you or they will just condemn you. The lyrics George sings "I Could Use A Little More Than Silence, Just Three Words that Echo In My Heart...."

 Let Somebody Love You Let Somebody Love You" is a celebration of protesting but it's like turning protesting on its head, rather than protesting and complaining, we’re going to be angry in a productive way / why don’t you talk about something you love,” said Boy George in the behind the scenes of the music video for the light and cheery reggae-soul track. The colorful and diverse video matches the poetry and beauty of the song. With the chorus “Love is a revolution, war and famine too / Feed the hunger in your heart / Let somebody love you” the liberating song is perfect for a feel-good playlist.

 Runaway Train (Feat Gladys Knight) -Do you know the real story behind the making of the single "Runaway Train" Did you know it was inspired by a dream Boy George had, George, says, "I was in Australia and I had this mental dream one night and Mary J Blige was in my dream and she said to someone, ‘Have you heard this track that Gladys Knight has done with Culture Club?’, and I thought: ‘That's it! It’s got to happen’. happened it happen. Reworking Runaway Train which was already a refreshing throwback soul jam, Ms. Knight, who has kept her voice in terrific shape, sounds, well, terrific. What is most surprising is how well she blends with Boy George’s slightly weathered but warm tones.

 Bad Blood Bad Blood’ is a 70s disco-inspired, pop-dance song getting you in the dancing mood and setting the tone for the album. (“You wanna talk but do you want the truth? // Bad blood drippin’ on your dancin’ shoes // You own the world, nothin’ left to prove…”) Carrying Culture Club’s uplifting and heartfelt messages to all us weirdos. As Boy George said at a recent show: “Culture Club is for all us weirdos, yes even those who think you aren’t [weird] Bless you for thinking you’re not weird.”

  God & Love touches upon Boy George’s religious faith; Boy George is a Nichiren Buddhist with a Catholic upbringing. The song is influenced by Massive Attack’s “Teardrops”  The lyric “God and love must be done” shows his tying of love and positivity with faith. This bass-heavy, mid-tempo dance track is the first we hear of Boy George’s velvety and subtly gravely new vocals and Culture Club’s new sound.

 Life It's the ghost of "Do You Really Want To Hurt Me" The very beginning of the song almost sounds like the beginning of "Do You Really Want To Hurt Me". Boy George maintains his wit without avoiding feeling. His vocal on Life is a bit lower and gravelly but still powerful, gives this often slick music a real human dimension, and helps the song live up to its title: this is the music of life, maintaining memory, focused on the future while living in the present. As the lyricist of ‘Life’, George wanted to express something truthful, honest and bare while carrying an uplifting message of hope. It's his story but it's a story so many people will resonate with. A story of recovery, transformation and the start of a brand new journey which has already brought Culture Club well deserved accolades. It's a song about second chances and new beginnings, enlightenment, spiritual growth, and personal redemption.” Life from Culture Club is the song that they have played on their last  "The Life Tour 2018." People had their smartphone flashlights all turned on making the concert feel magical like everyone was there. The whole thing takes you there again and again"Life". It's such an uplifting song from Culture Club. 

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