Thursday, April 30, 2015

Bananarama Republic

Someday, a long long time from now, when we who tread earth and water get to meet our ancestors in the clouds, I have no doubt that the cooler among those of us who Went Before will smile at us and say how lucky we were to have lived in the age of Bananarama.

Fun Girls Three!
Yes, Bananarama, the English pop group from the 1980s.  Original members were Sara Dallin, Siobhan Fahey and Keren Woodward. Fahey quit the band in 1988, which was a shame, as she was the first person I ever heard of named Siobhan.  It's a pretty name, but I had to ask the Irish woman I worked with at the time about how to say it (you say "ShaVAHN")! For three years, the threesome was rounded out by Siobhan-substitute Jacquie O'Sullivan, but since 1991, it's just been Sara and Keren making the music.

To be regarded as deep and intellectual,
always pose ostentatiously with a
book of poetry.
And what music!  80's synthesiser pop is not normally my choice, but the secret to this group, who made up their name from a portmanteau tribute to The Banana Splits tv show and a Roxy Music song "Pyjamarama," was that, unlike any other band alive during the 1980s, they did not take themselves seriously at all! Can you even imagine how great it would be if Bono from U2 and Duran Duran and Yes and Emerson, Lake and Palmer and Rush and Kansas would have lightened it up for two goshdarn seconds, long enough to record songs like "Robert DeNiro's Waiting" or "I Heard A Rumour"?

Pure pop for now people, as fellow Englishperson Nick Lowe said.

"Shav, Sare and Kere" was the nickname for their nickname, and they just did not worry about pretense or any kind of tense. Notice, they didn't even try to sing three-part harmony, or dance like ballerinas.  They clomped through their singing and dancing and seemed to be having the time of their lives.  They even sang backup harmonies for Fun Boy Three's version of "Ain't What You Do" just because they did that sort of thing for fun, boy.

And it's still going on! They toured the US in 2012 and are currently on tour across Europe.  No, they didn't change the world with their music, but they made it a little more fun to be alive, and can Bono say that?

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