A Pair of Brown Eyes

Last updated

"A Pair of Brown Eyes"
Single by The Pogues
from the album Rum Sodomy & the Lash
B-side "Whiskey You're the Devil"
Released18 March 1985
Genre Celtic rock
Length4:54
Label Stiff
Songwriter(s) Shane MacGowan
Producer(s) Elvis Costello
The Pogues singles chronology
"Boys from the County Hell"
(1984)
"A Pair of Brown Eyes"
(1985)
"Sally MacLennane"
(1985)

"A Pair of Brown Eyes" is a single by The Pogues, released on 18 March 1985. [1] The single was their first to make the UK Top 100, peaking at Number 72. [2] It featured on the band's second album, Rum Sodomy & the Lash , and was composed by Pogues front man Shane MacGowan. Its melody is loosely based on that of “Wild Mountain Thyme" (also known as "Will Ye Go Lassie Go"), a song by Francis McPeake in a traditional Irish folk style.

Contents

The song references the Johnny Cash version of the song "A Thing Called Love": "And on the jukebox Johnny sang / About a thing called love". It also references Irish country music singers Ray Lynam and Philomena Begley's version of "My Elusive Dreams": "While Ray and Philomena sang / Of my elusive dream".

Music video

The music video for the single was directed in 1985 by Alex Cox and was set in a Nineteen Eighty-Four -esque Britain with Margaret Thatcher in the place of Big Brother as a supreme, god-like authoritarian figure. The video featured roles played by band members as well as a cameo by the record's producer Elvis Costello.

Critical reception

The song was ranked number 9 among the "Tracks of the Year" for 1985 by NME . [3]

Related Research Articles

The Cure English rock band

The Cure are an English rock band formed in 1978 in Crawley, West Sussex. Throughout numerous lineup changes since the band's formation, guitarist, lead vocalist, and songwriter Robert Smith has remained the only constant member. The band's debut album was Three Imaginary Boys (1979) and this, along with several early singles, placed the band in the post-punk and new wave movements that had sprung up in the United Kingdom. Beginning with their second album, Seventeen Seconds (1980), the band adopted a new, increasingly dark and tormented style, which, together with Smith's stage look, had a strong influence on the emerging genre of gothic rock as well as the subculture that eventually formed around the genre.

Johnny Marr English musician

Johnny Marr is an English musician, songwriter and singer. He first achieved fame as the guitarist and co-songwriter of The Smiths, who were active from 1982 to 1987. He has since performed with numerous other bands and embarked on a solo career.

Adamski English DJ, musician, and record producer

Adam Paul Tinley, known professionally as Adamski, as well as Sonny Eriksson, is an English DJ, musician, singer and record producer, prominent at the time of acid house for his tracks "N-R-G" and "Killer", a collaboration with Seal, which was a No. 1 song in the UK in 1990.

<i>Rum Sodomy & the Lash</i> 1985 studio album by The Pogues

Rum Sodomy & the Lash is the second studio album by the London-based folk punk band The Pogues, released on 5 August 1985. The album reached number 13 in the UK charts. The track "A Pair of Brown Eyes", based on an older Irish tune, reached number 72 in the UK singles chart. "The Old Main Drag" later appeared on the soundtrack to the film My Own Private Idaho.

<i>If I Should Fall from Grace with God</i> 1988 studio album by The Pogues

If I Should Fall from Grace with God is the third studio album by Irish folk-punk band The Pogues, released on 18 January 1988. Released in the wake of their biggest hit single, "Fairytale of New York", If I Should Fall from Grace with God also became the band's best-selling album, peaking at number 3 in the UK Album Charts and reaching the top ten in several other countries.

Fairytale of New York 1987 single by The Pogues featuring Kirsty MacColl

"Fairytale of New York" is a song written by Jem Finer and Shane MacGowan and recorded by their London-based band the Pogues, featuring singer-songwriter Kirsty MacColl on vocals. The song is an Irish folk-style ballad and was written as a duet, with the Pogues' singer MacGowan taking the role of the male character and MacColl the female character. It was originally released as a single on 23 November 1987 and later featured on the Pogues' 1988 album If I Should Fall from Grace with God.

Danny Boy Song by Frederic Weatherly

"Danny Boy" is a ballad, written by English songwriter Frederic Weatherly in 1913, and set to the traditional Irish melody of "Londonderry Air".

<i>Porcupine</i> (album) 1983 studio album by Echo & the Bunnymen

Porcupine is the third studio album by the English post-punk band Echo & the Bunnymen. First released on 4 February 1983, it became the band's highest-charting release when it reached number two on the UK Albums Chart despite initially receiving poor reviews. It also reached number 137 on the American Billboard 200, number 85 on the Canadian RPM 100 Albums and number 24 on the Swedish chart. In 1984, the album was certified gold by the British Phonographic Industry. The album includes the singles "The Back of Love" and "The Cutter."

I Could Never Take the Place of Your Man

"I Could Never Take the Place of Your Man" is a song written and recorded by American musician Prince. It was released as the final single from his ninth studio album Sign o' the Times (1987). It has since been covered by numerous artists.

The Boys Are Back in Town 1976 single by Thin Lizzy

"The Boys Are Back in Town" is a song by Irish hard rock band Thin Lizzy. The song was originally released in 1976 as the first single from their album Jailbreak. It is considered by Rolling Stone to be the band's most popular song, placing it at No. 272 on the 2021 edition of the "500 Greatest Songs of All Time" list.

Hurt (Nine Inch Nails song) Nine Inch Nails song

"Hurt" is a song by American industrial rock band Nine Inch Nails from its second studio album, The Downward Spiral (1994), written by Trent Reznor. It was released on April 17, 1995, as a promotional single from the album. The song received a Grammy Award nomination for Best Rock Song in 1996.

This Charming Man 1983 single by The Smiths

"This Charming Man" is a song by the English rock band the Smiths, written by guitarist Johnny Marr and singer Morrissey. Released as the group's second single in October 1983 on the independent record label Rough Trade, it is defined by Marr's jangle pop guitar riff and Morrissey's characteristically morose lyrics, which revolve around the recurrent Smiths themes of sexual ambiguity and lust.

Philomena Begley Musical artist

Philomena Begley is a country music singer from Northern Ireland. Today, Begley is affectionately known as 'The Queen of Country'.

<i>Poguetry in Motion</i> 1986 EP by The Pogues

Poguetry in Motion is an EP by The Pogues, released on Stiff Records in the UK on 24 February 1986, and in the US & Canada on MCA Records. It was the band's first single to make the UK Top 40, peaking at number 29 and the first Pogues recording to feature Philip Chevron and Terry Woods.

Newton Faulkner Musical artist

Sam Newton Battenberg Faulkner is an English singer-songwriter and musician from Reigate, Surrey. He is known for his percussive style of guitar playing. In 2007 Faulkner's debut studio album Hand Built by Robots was certified double platinum in the United Kingdom. The album topped the UK Albums Chart in August 2007. It was promoted by three singles, "Dream Catch Me", "I Need Something" and "Teardrop". "Dream Catch Me" reached number seven on the UK Singles Charts.

My Elusive Dreams 1967 single by David Houston and Tammy Wynette

"My Elusive Dreams" is a country music song written by Billy Sherrill and Curly Putman. Putman recorded his song in March 1967 and released it on ABC Records in June 1967, peaking at #41 on the Hot Country Singles charts and #34 on the Bubbling Under Hot 100. The song was later recorded by several artists. The best-known version was recorded as a duet by David Houston and Tammy Wynette, and was a No. 1 country hit in October 1967; the song also peaked at No. 89 on the Billboard Hot 100. Wynette recorded a second duet version of My Elusive Dreams in 1973 with George Jones; this version was included on the Let's Build a World Together album.

Hang On in There Baby 1974 single by Johnny Bristol

"Hang On in There Baby" is a song written by American musician Johnny Bristol and arranged by H. B. Barnum as the title track from his first album. It was released as a single in 1974, reaching No. 8 on the U.S. Hot 100 and No. 2 on the U.S. R&B chart. In the UK it reached No. 3.

Kirsty MacColl English singer and songwriter (1959–2000)

Kirsty Anna MacColl was a British singer and songwriter. She recorded several pop hits in the 1980s and 1990s, including "There's a Guy Works Down the Chip Shop Swears He's Elvis" and cover versions of Billy Bragg's "A New England" and The Kinks' "Days." Her song "They Don't Know" was covered with great success by Tracey Ullman. MacColl also sang on recordings produced by her then-husband Steve Lillywhite, most notably "Fairytale of New York" by The Pogues.

Ray Lynam is an Irish country music singer, born on 29 November 1951 in Moate, Co. Westmeath.

Goodbye Lucille Number 1 1986 song by Prefab Sprout

"Goodbye Lucille #1" is a song by English pop band Prefab Sprout, released as a single under the title "Johnny Johnny" by Kitchenware Records in January 1986. It was the final single taken from their album Steve McQueen. The single failed to reach the top 40 of the UK Singles Chart, reaching a peak of number 64 over three weeks on the chart.

References

  1. "Record News". Melody Maker . London, England: IPC Media: 4. 16 March 1985.
  2. Pogues UK chart history
  3. "Albums and Tracks of the Year". NME. 2018. Retrieved 8 September 2018.