Power pop band Fountains of Wayne was formed by Adam Schlesinger and Chris Collingwood – they took their name from a now-defunct lawn ornament store in New Jersey. Apart from one fluke hit (2003’s ‘Stacy’s Mom’) they were never huge sellers, but they earned the affection of music aficionados with albums like 1996’s Fountains of Wayne and 1999’s Utopia Parkway. With Schlesinger’s disorienting passing from Covid-19 this week, let’s look back at one of the band’s rarities.
I may not have admitted it at the time, but Britney Spears’ early hits like ‘Oops! …I Did It Again’ and ‘…Baby One More Time’ are robust pop songs. Richard Thompson delivered a great solo acoustic take of ‘Oops! …I Did It Again’ on 1000 Years of Popular Music. During the Utopia Parkway era, Fountains of Wayne needed a b-side for the UK market and heard ‘…Baby One More Time’ on the radio. According to Schlesinger they thought “God this is a really good song” and recorded their own version in an hour in Schlesinger’s apartment.
When they submitted it to their record company, Atlantic announced that ‘…Baby One More Time’ would be the album’s first single. Understandably, Collingwood threw a tantrum and according to Schlesinger it “turned into this big mess”. Fountains of Wayne’s ‘…Baby One More Time’ was shelved, although it was leaked and played on the Howard Stern show. It later turned up on the band’s rarities collection Out-Of-State Plates.
‘…Baby One More Time’ is well constructed, and it sounds great as a guitar-driven power-pop song. Robert Christgau later wrote that it’s “as redolent and fetching as any of [Fountains of Wayne]’s peaks”. A surprising array of artists have covered ‘…Baby One More Time’ – Ahmet and Dweezil Zappa, Travis, Bowling for Soup, and Swedish humorist heavy metal band Black Ingvars are among many versions – but Fountains of Wayne were the first.
Graham Fyfe is probably the only music blogger to appreciate Neil Diamond and Ariana Grande. Aphoristic Album Reviews features reviews and blog posts across a growing spectrum of popular music.
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Aphoristic Album Reviews is almost entirely written by one person.
Graham Fyfe is probably the only music blogger to appreciate both Neil Diamond and Ariana Grande. Based in Fleet Street (New Zealand), he's been writing this blog since around 2000. Aphoristic Album Reviews features reviews and blog posts across a growing spectrum of popular music.
Read about the discographies of musical acts from the 1960s to the present day. Browse this site's review archives or enjoy these random selections:
Brian Eno started his musical career as a member of Roxy Music, where he used his synthesiser to treat Phil Manzanera’s guitar and Andy Mackay’s saxophone and oboe. After leaving Roxy Music he built up an impressive catalogue as a producer, with significant albums for David Bowie, Talking Heads, Devo, […]
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Emmylou Harris started as a folkie – born in Alabama, she dropped out of college to perform folk songs in Greenwich Village. She recorded an unsuccessful debut album, 1969’s Gliding Bird, and as a divorced solo mother she dropped out of the folk scene. She was spotted performing by Chris […]
I add new blog posts to this website every week. Browse the archives or enjoy these random selections:
Neil Finn grew up in the provincial town of Te Awamutu, New Zealand, and joined his brother Tim in the art-rock band Split Enz as a teenage guitarist. When they switched gears to new wave pop, Neil provided their most recognisable song, ‘I Got You’. After Tim Finn left the […]
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Creedence Clearwater Revival emerged in 1968, seemingly from a Florida swamp but actually from El Cerrito in California. Rebelling against the psychedelic music that was prevalent at the time, Creedence began their career playing stripped-down and bluesy swamp rock. As CCR’s career progressed, frontman John Fogerty’s writing grew in confidence, […]
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