My 10 Favorite Powerpop Songs

As you may have guessed by now I’m an extreme fan of power pop. This list was hard to write…I kept changing most of it… but I knew the top choice and worked from there.

I just gave my self ten choices or I would have gone on and on. A lot of artists and their songs were left off…such as Todd Rundgren, The Cars, Sloan, The Lemon Twigs, The Flamin’ Groovies, The Shivvers, The Jayhawks,  and too many more to mention.

10. The Ride – Twisterella– 1992 – I found this a few months back and have been listening to it ever since.

9. The Records – Starry Eyes– 1979 – Great song. Starry Eyes would end up being The Record’s best-known song. Robert John “Mutt” Lange produced their debut album for The Records.

8. The La’s – There She Goes– 1990 – A very good power pop song that has no verses…It just repeats the chorus four different ways four different times…but that doesn’t matter.

7. Cheap Trick – Voices– 1980 – One of my top Cheap Trick songs. Robin Zanders voice sounds great in this Beatlesque song.

6. The Who –Pictures of Lily– 1967 –  When this song came out Pete Townshend coined the name “power pop” and this song is about the childhood…lusts…of a boy.

5. Raspberries – Overnight Sensation (Hit Record)– 1974 – An epic song by the Raspberries. Not their most popular…that would be “Go All The Way” but this encapsulates everything power pop is about. Bruce Springsteen on Overnight Sensation: It’s one of the best little pop symphonies you’ll ever hear.

4. Big Star – The Ballad of El Goodo – 1972 – The tone of the guitars, harmonies and the perfect constructed chorus keeps me coming back listen after listen.

3. Badfinger –No Matter What– 1971 – The only band to make this list twice. Why? because this song defines the crunchy power pop of bands like Cheap Trick to come.

 2. Tom Petty – American Girl– 1977 – The Rickenbacker, the hook, and a Byrds sounding track.

 

********************************************************************

  1. Badfinger – Baby Blue – 1972 – The number one song was the easiest decision of the list. The rest were changed a few times…this one for me is a no-brainer. This song is the perfect power pop song…strong vocals, Crunchy Brit  guitar, great hook,  and great melody

The La’s – There She Goes —-Powerpop Friday

As far as power-pop songs go this one is in my top 5. I posted this back when I first started to blog but it’s perfect for a Friday.

A song by a British band called The La’s. A very good pop song that has no verses…it just repeats the chorus four different ways four different times. The song charted many times in different releases…it peaked at #49 on the 1991 Billboard 100 and #13 on the UK charts in 1990, #65 in 1999, #94 in 2012, and #59 in 1988 in the UK.

It was written by the singer Lee Mavers and recorded in 1988 and remixed and released again in 1990.

Many people think the song was about heroin. Paul Hemmings an ex-guitarist for the band denies that rumor. Either way, it is a perfectly constructed pop song.

It’s been covered by a lot of artists but probably most successfully by Sixpence None the Richer. I’ve always liked The La’s version the best.

From Songfacts

“There She Goes” is a song with one crazy story, so hang on. It was written by the Liverpool singer and guitarist Lee Mavers, and recorded by his band The La’s. The La’s released it on their only album, titled The La’s. “There She Goes” was released as a single, not once, not twice, but four times!

The first release scratched the UK Singles chart in 1988 at #51. The second release in 1990 was the peak, with #13 on the UK Singles and also charting in the US. The third release was in 1999, and it charted the UK Singles at #65. The fourth release was in 2008, on vinyl only for the song’s 20th anniversary, and charted again at #181.

While rumors persist that this song was inspired by “There She Goes Again” by the Velvet Underground, no definitive evidence supports it. The songs do have a similar theme and similar lyric styles, but completely different music. On the other hand, the common knowledge that this song is about heroin seems to be a sure bet. “Racing through my brain” and “Pulsing through my vein” exclude just about everything else, and newspapers in England ran stories about The La’s “ode to heroin.” La’s bassist John Power gave a rather evasive answer when asked about it, while La’s ex-guitarist Paul Hemmings flatly denied it.

La’s frontman Lee Mavers is a pretty enigmatic character. If you examine them closely, you’ll find a lot in common with Velvet Underground’s Lou Reed: Both had limited success with their first band but a steady cult following since, both are evasive of the media and reclusive, both are rumored to have written songs about drugs and to be heavily into drugs, and both are widely cited by other music artists as an influence out of step with their commercial success.

Covers of “There She Goes” include those done by Sixpence None the Richer, Robbie Williams, The Wombats and The Boo Radleys. Film soundtrack appearances include The Parent Trap, Fever Pitch, Girl, Interrupted and So I Married an Axe Murderer.

This song was an ironic airplay favorite in the UK when Maggie Thatcher resigned as Prime Minister in November 1990.

The La’s mainman Lee Mavers is a legendary perfectionist. The legend goes that he didn’t want the vintage studio equipment cleaned so the dust that had accumulated on it from the 1960s would remain.

 

“There She Goes”

There she goes
There she goes again
Racing through my brain
And I just can’t contain
This feeling that remainsThere she blows (there she blows again)
There she blows again (there she blows again)
Pulsing through my vein (there she blows again)
And I just can’t contain
This feeling that remainsThere she goes
There she goes again
She calls my name
Pulls my train
No one else could heal my pain
But I just can’t contain
This feeling that remainsThere she goes
There she goes again
Chasing down my lane
And I just can’t contain
This feeling that remainsThere she goes (there she goes again)
There she goes (there she goes again)
There she goes (there she goes again)

 

The La’s – There She Goes

A song by a British band called The La’s. A very good pop song that has no verses…it just repeats the chorus four different ways four different times. The song peaked at #49 on the 1991 Billboard Chart and #13 on the UK charts in 1990.

It was written by the singer Lee Mavers and recorded in 1988 and remixed and released again in 1990.

Many people think the song was about heroin. Paul Hemmings an ex-guitarist for the band denies that rumor. Either way, it is a perfectly constructed pop song.

It’s been covered by a lot of artists but probably most successfully by Sixpence None the Richer. I’ve always liked The La’s version the best.

 

“There She Goes”

There she goes
There she goes again
Racing through my brain
And I just can’t contain
This feeling that remainsThere she blows (there she blows again)
There she blows again (there she blows again)
Pulsing through my vein (there she blows again)
And I just can’t contain
This feeling that remainsThere she goes
There she goes again
She calls my name
Pulls my train
No one else could heal my pain
But I just can’t contain
This feeling that remains

There she goes
There she goes again
Chasing down my lane
And I just can’t contain
This feeling that remains

There she goes (there she goes again)
There she goes (there she goes again)
There she goes (there she goes again)