Whatever it takes, swear its true...its pure and simple
Pure And Simple by Girl Thing Original version
Pure And Simple by Hear'Say PopEatsPop cover
Pure And Simple by Bianca Ryan Excellent cover by American "superstar"
Pure And Simple by Hear'Say Rare second recording by the PopStars band
Pure And Simple by Chris Moyles, All Saints & Oasis Quite funny spoof but reveals a real legal issue over the track...
Seeing as I've been away for so long I thought it would be right to make the "comeback" post a bumper edition! This time they have one key PopEatsPop star and thats a little American girl with a huge voice. She goes by Bianca Ryan and she was the star of America's Got Talent which was a sort of spin-off to American Idol. Her album is a database of covers but its her critical PopEatsPop tracks that wins her such a special place in my heart. Much has been made of the PopeatingPop element of Leona's recent version of Kelly Clarkson's 'original' A Moment Like This but I think it would better to focus on better songs used and abused by reality tv contestants/starlets. Can i just add that the song was already recorded by Swedish band Fame and Dutch act Glennis Grace so those comparing Kelly Clarkson to Leona might wanna open the playing field. Why be so Anglo-American? There are other countries in the world!
So lets take the older of songs first: the iconic Pure And Simple. Originally it was given to Girl Thing who'd worked with Alison Clarkson on their first and only album. It was pinned as their saving grace after two flop singles but the record company bottled out and gave the song to an act that was bound to sell. That act was Hear'say. The girls of Girl Thing were outraged. There were even a few promo singles of the Girl Thing version that actually got played by over-excited Dj's wanting to claim to be the first station to play the new song by the Popstars band. Despite the gigantic sales of the Hear'say record the song writers have recently stated the the original remains to be the better of the two citing the male vocalists, Danny and Noel, as crucial let downs. If you compare the two you can clearly hear what they are talking about. The Girl Thing edition clearly sounds 'right'. I think the song simply, ahem, wasnt meant for male vocals. The boys are just too deep for its brilliant upper register c-notes and classic backing harmonies so much it sounds like they are out of tune. Which they werent. They just couldnt sing a song written for girls.
The sheer PopEatsPop factor of this little moment in pop music history must not be questioned. One record was about to drop only to be withdrawn by a machine that some would say would be the new world order. The Hear'say track zapped out the last dying breath of Girl Thing and is now pretty symbolic for our fascination with celebrity, confusion and delirium. Musicians dont just need the TV to promote their records but must eat the rectums of animals(rather than svengali's) all infront of a public that couldnt quite give a boo about decency. Its a world that allows Jordan to flourish and Jade to release her own scent. The huge success of Pure & Simple can be cited as reason for this wonderful situation were in. It sold 1.3 million in total and 500, 000 in its first week. A record beaten by Will Young's cover of a Westlife album track.
Proving that the song is really made for a female singer is the newest version of the song by Bianca Ryan. Her version teases out the gospel backdrop of the song and makes it sound like a track Mariah Carey would have recorded back when she did songs like Anytime You Need A Friend and My All. Bianca Ryan should not be reckoned with. With some good material and management she could be the next Christina or Mariah which explains the cover of this song. While Hear'says version will go down as the most selling it will be Bianca's that stands the test of time for without any doubt her popeatspop cover leaves the other recordings in tatters....
However one can't really cover Pure & Simple without pointing out the fact that even the original song doesn't sound so original at all. I could wax lyrical about that fact that it sounds like something else in a Popjustice post-ironic way. But I'll let Chris Moyles do it (when he used to be quite a good radio dj). So today there are all three takes on Pure & Simple including one rarer version by Hear'Say that found its way on the flop second album. Enjoy!
Next update later tonight!