I recently took a road trip to Chicago with some friends, and, as the drive from Maryland is pretty long, burned a CD or two for the occasion. I try to include a decently diverse array of genres on these CDs to keep everyone happy or at least complacent— one guy only enjoyed “Green Hill Zone” from the Sonic the Hedgehog series, to give you an idea of what we’re dealing with.
The song “Your Love” by the Outfield was included on one of these CDs, and I decided to play a game with the other guys, borne mostly of boredom. I asked them first if they had all heard this song before— they all had— and then said simply I’d give 5 bucks to whoever could tell me the artist. A few people were pretty frustrated; they had heard this song a million times, how did they not know who did it? After a few guesses like “The Police?” they gave up. I’d stumped them.
“Your Love” is one of those songs that is nearly unbearably catchy. It also has the fortune/misfortune of appearing in what seems to be an endless amount of movie trailers. It’s entered the cultural consciousness, in other words, which is funny, because the Outfield has not. At all. Seriously, nobody knows the Outfield. The song itself is basically musical shorthand for “the 80s” in a movie, but nobody knows any other songs by the Outfield. So let's listen to some!
Huh. Well. The video sure is silly. How does that guy tune his bass, right? Also, the song's kind of awful. It's like "Your Love," except not catchy and bad. But it follows the formula— anthemic chorus, lots of harmonies, and a drummer who takes his job way too seriously.
You know a band is destined to be remembered for exactly one song when that song plays at the beginning of a music video for an entirely different song. And, hey, look, it’s the same harmonies and it sounds the same as the other two songs! Except it’s also not good.
Well, that's enough of that. Turns out the Outfield kind of caught lightning in a bottle there. They found a winning formula that won only once. Once I found a "Greatest Hits of Tag Team" CD at a record store, and included on it was a Spanish version of "Whoomp!" and a song called "Here It Is, Bam!" One hit wonders are the best.