Bodeans – Only Love

Another band that missed the masses but were a hit on college radio in the 80s.

Only Love was released in 1986. The Bodeans opened up for U2 on their Joshua Tree tour and you would think they would have broken through a little more than they did.

This song was on the album “Outside Looking In” their second album released in 1987.  Their first album “Love & Hope & Sex & Dreams” was released in 1986 and it lead to a full-page profile in Time Magazine. The story, written by  critic Jay Cocks, quotes Llanas as saying, “We were a big fish in a little pond. Now we’re little fish in a big pond. You’re a local band until you get a record contract, then all of a sudden Bruce Springsteen is your competition.”

In 1977 Sophomores Sam Llanas and Kurt Neumann meet in study hall at Waukesha South High School and bond over a shared love of music. The two later end up playing music together. In 1980 At Neumann’s urging, Llanas dropped out of college to pursue music full-time. The group pursues gigs at small bars, clubs, dances and events. Llanas comes up with the name, Da BoDeans.

Llanas and Neumann added drummer Guy Hoffman (Oil Tasters, Confidentials, later the Violent Femmes) and bass player Bob Griffin (The Agents) to fill out their sound in 1983.

Their first album was referred to as cowpunk, rockabilly, roots-rock, revivalist rock, and as a synthesis of the a Rolling Stones and the Everly Brothers. Band member Sammy Lianas made more modest claims for the group, telling Cosmopolitan columnist Michael Segell, “I’d describe us as a band that writes a lot of good songs in different styles and plays most of them pretty well… . Our biggest influence was mid-sixties radio.

The band was still touring as of 2019 but Kurt Neumann is the only original member left.

Only Love

See you walking down the street now every day
Pushing by the people as you make your way
You’re walking proud now, baby
You got your head held high
Want you to know that this whole world
Sees your heart cry
Now see how hard you try
To make yourself believe

It’s only love
It’s only love
It’s only love
It’s only love

Maybe love shouldn’t have to be so hard to take
Shouldn’t have to feel that love
Until your poor heart breaks
So why you tell yourself
You know there’s no one else
Then it ain’t worth the waiting anymore
Don’t you wonder if there’s such a thing

It’s only love
It’s only love
It’s only love
It’s only love

You better look in there
Believe it, even if it’s too hard to
Someone who’s been waiting
Oh, baby, just for you and love
It’s only love

If I could, I’d take you, baby, in my arms
Take away all love’s blame
And all love’s scars
Maybe we could ride away
Till we get so far away
And then I couldn’t see us coming back again
Well show me what you think of it
Show me what you need

It’s only love
It’s only love
It’s only love
It’s only love
It’s only love
It’s only love
It’s only love
It’s only love