John Kilzer – Memory in the Making

I was never into 80’s rock ballads but this one I liked. Maybe it was because of when I heard it, I don’t know. Kilzer released an album in 1988 “Memory in the Making” and the album contained some minor hits such as Green, Yellow, and Red, Red Blue Jeans, and Memory in the Making.

The album charted at #110 in the Billboard album charts in 1988. This song didn’t chart but got a lot of local airplay where I live. This is the only album that made it to the Billboard 200.

John Kilzer grew up in Jackson, Tennessee as a 6-foot-6-inches tall high school all American basketball standout, played for the  Memphis to play for the Tigers from 1975-1978. He traded the complimentary tickets players receive with Mabon “Teenie” Hodges, author of the hit “Take Me to the River” in exchange for guitar lessons.

He passed away last month.

Memory in the Making

Throwing roses at the moon
Overdosing on perfume
That arises from your picture
An inviolate fixture
This is more than I expected
It’s as though I have erected
A mausoleum for my heart babe
I’ve reserved the best part babe
It’s a memory in the making
It’s a power that’s taking
Control of my soul girl
Now there’s nowhere left to go girl

Guess it only stands to reason
There’s a time and a season
A place and purpose
I guess that verse don’t include us
And it only goes to show you
You’re just a ghost in a castle
That’s my destiny to wrestle
It’s a memory in the making
It’s a power that’s taking
Control of my soul girl
Now I’m in danger of the dark girl
Like my mama always said boy
You can sleep when you’re dead boy
But all I really want to do girl
Is close my eyes and dream of you girl

Throwing roses at the moon
Overdosing on perfume
That arises from your pillow
How much further down love go

Author: Badfinger (Max)

Power Pop fan, Baseball fan, old movie and tv show fan... and a songwriter, bass and guitar player.

69 thoughts on “John Kilzer – Memory in the Making”

      1. He had a couple of MTV “hits” also…. but he may have been mostly local. I heard the song and looked him up and just found out he passed away in March.


  1. I remember this song, well. It may not have charted but, it played here in NC. The Piedmont/Triangle area has been a hotbed of music in the past so, eclectic stuff got played.

    He hung himself March 12. Struggling alcoholic. How very sad. Great voice, too.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You are the first person I’ve talked to who has remembered it. I usually didn’t like these types of songs but I liked this one…and a couple of the other ones on the album.


      1. I liked the song & I love rediscovering stuff I have forgotten. I remember thinking back then that he sounded much like Bryan Adams but, I liked his voice better. This particular song has a John Waite feel to it…or Corey Hart.

        The album that it came from lists Roseanne Cash as a backup singer.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Our band played Green Yellow Red…one of us had the album and liked it.

        I think his biggest hit was red blue jeans… I liked the Beatles in a box line…Yea Bryan Adams is a good comparison.. but like you I like John’s voice better.


      3. Another thing is, the lyrics all say “Lennon in a locket” but, that’s not correct. At the end of the video, the locket lands on the ground and it’s Lenin.

        The underlying theme is, she’s a communist.


      4. LOL… It brings back so many good memories for me. I’ve been listening to it on youtube today.
        I’m just so damn happy SOMEONE remembered! Hans never heard of him and other people havent either. Maybe it was mostly in our area.


      5. Well, in 1988, you and I were 21/22. I think Steve is a bit older than we are. Plus, I’ve read where he stated that he stopped listening to the regular radio in the 80s.

        Regarding not knowing the song, if you were talking to someone older than we are, they probably would miss it. Kilzer got heavy rotation on MTV & his music was showcased on Melrose Place. He’s not that obscure. He just didn’t create a catalog of albums. Given today’s media, he would have been a mega-star, overnight…and probably hastened his demise.

        Liked by 1 person

      6. I stopped listening around the time of Tiffany…I just started to stick with cassettes in my car after that. I would go to the Great Escape…a used music shop and get albums and tapes.

        You are right though…a few years older and people wouldn’t know. I posted something on Shazam…the 70s tv show and only people my age knew.

        I’m odd because I have always liked older music…I should have graduated in 75 instead of 85…that would be more in line with my tastes…but I did like some eighties music. I liked the one hit wonders like….You Aint Worth The Salt In My Tears and Going For A Soda…


      7. OMG. That’s another song that I have forgotten about! Martin Briley! DAMN. We seem to have the same knack for liking one-hit wonders.

        There are so many pieces of music throughout time and genre that I like. But, today’s music…*sigh* very little of it appeals to me. Somewhere along the line, it lost its soul or something.

        Liked by 1 person

      8. Oh today I can’t get into it…not mainstream stuff anyway. I did post on that one a while back. It’s hard to find those hits that people forgot after a while.


      9. Yes you would have you like researching.
        What did you want to be growing up?

        I wanted to be either A: Third baseman for the Dodgers or B: In a band that rivaled the Beatles…didn’t work out too well lol.


      10. A singer…a cross between Newton-John & Benatar. I have the range. That & a model. I have the height & build. I also wanted desperately to do some kind of sports…running, volleyball… I hit 12 & started my growth spurt. My thighs used to ache me (heating pads on my grandmother’s couch). Then, the dislocations started. Mostly my left knee but, a few times, my right. That went on for 3 yrs. I had to be very careful about what I did. Dec. 1981, I had my 1st knee surgery (left). Arthroscopic was new then. I went to Greensboro. A decade later, same Doc, same knee. He said the inside looked like shredded crab meat. Both of my knee caps didn’t track right…too high. Mild form of a birth defect? IDK. My left one tracks properly, now but, it’s a damaged, weak joint. My right knee stopped dislocating on its own…no surgery. But, it doesn’t track right. You can see where the cap is higher than the left one. No sports for me!

        I still can’t run. Bad knees beget a bad back which begets bad hips. I’m surprised I don’t walk sideways like a crab. I do have a CCP as I will have to stand & fight. 😁

        Liked by 1 person

      11. That early geez. After what you described I can’t complain at all! I pulled a floor jack from a pallet when I was 18 and out went my back…ever since then…if I sleep wrong or walk off a curb wrong…I walk around like Groucho Marx.
        Is it because you grew too fast?


      12. That sounds like a herniation. Ever had an MRI? And, yoga would help…if you are interested. Yoga has helped me, even with the damage.

        I did grow fast. The Doc remarked that I had grown so fast that, the tendons & ligaments had trouble keeping up (he was guessing). The other side of that is…you know the Chris Thomas material I post? As a psychic healer for 30+ years, he had an insight into body functions that the scientific community can’t touch. Knee trouble, hip trouble, lower back trouble (not as a result of an accident)…all signs of insecurity. It’s a weakness in the root chakra. And, wouldn’t you know it…my parents began really fighting when I was 11, split when I was 12 and divorced when I was 13. THAT is a HUGE insecurity right there.

        I learned about chakras & meridians with yoga long before I found CT’s material. I was amused and delighted when the information dovetailed. Lent credence to the CT’s claims.

        Liked by 1 person

      13. Yes on the MRI… the last one said I had two slipped discs. Now I can go for a while without it hurting but then suddenly it will go. I want to do Yoga and Meditation…the latter for my peace of mind and I think it would help.

        I can see that on the back and things. I don’t believe all in science. Everything works together. The mind is strong and can do a lot of things.


      14. Yea I need to fill that in!
        Oh… change yet again….every where I look at lyrics for Red Blue Jeans…I’m making the post for Thursday….all of them have Lennon in a Locket…it makes sense both ways because of Beatles in a Box..But yea it because of the communist plot…it probably is Lenin.I’m going to continue to search


      15. Per Joel Whitburn, Red Blue Jeans is the one song Kilzer didn’t have a hand in writing. So, somebody messed it up with the video. The songwriter may have meant it to be Lennon and Kilzer had Lenin in the locket when filming. It’s either an accident or, someone was doing a comparison of Lennon & Lenin. It could be an indictment of communism (not a celebration) & Lennon? IDK.


        Liked by 1 person

      16. Lennon was accused of being communist because of Imagine. Hell Lennon would do things to shock people and do something different the next day…He wrote with idealism but not a communist.

        He liked to shake up people

        There is a story of him going to a an occult store and he didn’t like the people so on the way out he said “May God Bless You” just to rile them up.


      17. No his father left when he was 5, he was raised by his strict aunt Mimi….he got close to his uncle George…he died… then he started to know his mother again as a teenager and she got killed by a drunk off duty cop in a car….after that he was never the same.
        That is why him and McCartney bonded….McCartney lost his mother young to cancer


      1. Thanks…. just so sad.

        I started this post last year sometime but I couldn’t find a lot about him. Heard the song and of course now I can unfortunately.


      2. I always liked the song and I’ve wanted to cover it forever but could not find hardly anything. I thought it was a big hit because it was played here that much.
        I found something in Allmusic about him but not much….of course now he is everywhere…it sucks why


      3. It’s like tv…alll those channels with nothing on…

        Can you imagine say 1983 or so if we would have got the internet?


      4. Heh. Reminds me of Springsteen…”57 Channels & Nothing On”


        That would have been a really fun library to wander around in. And, with static web pages, no less. Dynamic pages just make it longer to download.

        Liked by 1 person

      5. I was thinking of that song this past week…almost did something on it.

        I’m glad we didn’t have it now that I think about it…I’m glad I got out and did things…I would have stayed glued to it


    1. I wonder if he just ran out of songs or got addicted to drugs too much.
      Sometimes someone comes out with a great debut album because….they spend their life writing it….they use all of their best songs…the second one they only have a year or so…sometimes less.


      1. That is interesting. He was helping people with the same problems. I had no clue also that he played college basketball.

        I’ll wait a week or so and do Red Blue Jeans with more info.

        Liked by 1 person

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