Wednesday, November 18, 2009

The Producers: Langer and Winstanley

Nothing screams '80s like the production of Clive Langer and Alan Winstanley, but they have worked with quite a few bands outside of the decade as well. Just look at these names: Blur, Aztec Camera, Tim Finn, Suede, Hothouse Flowers, The Teardrop Explodes and Bush, just to name a few. To me, these are the B-listers when compared to the acts included in my mix below. These two would take a demo and work their overdub magic to create cheerful, sugary-sweet pop. As Elvis Costello said: "[They] certainly knew where the charts were but they also made great records. By 1983 they were pretty irresistible and unstoppable."

If you don't think they had the touch, just remember they even managed an American Top 10 hit for Madness. You'll never get me to believe there is another producer who could have accomplished that with those very English blokes! These two also helped Costello capture his first American Top 40 hit with the song below. And Dexy's Midnight Runners, against all odds, went all the way to No. 1 on this side of the pond, too. The rest of the songs below are just personal favorites of mine. What are the boys up to now? They just produced a new Madness album, 'The Liberty of Norton Folgate', to rave reviews.

They Might Be Giants - Hearing Aid (mp3)
Madness - Our House (mp3)
Elvis Costello & The Attractions - Everyday I Write the Book (mp3)
Dexy's Midnight Runners - Come On Eileen (mp3)
Morrissey - Our Frank (mp3)
Lloyd Cole & The Commotions - Minor Character (mp3)
David Bowie - Absolute Beginners (Full Length Version) (mp3)

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