Thursday, May 5, 2011

Johnny Kemp -- "Birthday Suit"

(Not Available on iTunes)

(Debuted February 25, 1989, Peaked # 36, 14 Weeks on the Chart)

I was 16 years old in 1989. I probably don't need to explain in any detail what it was about "Birthday Suit" that attracted my attention.

"Birthday Suit" was a song from the soundtrack of a film called Sing that came out in 1989. I never actually watched the film (not even as a video rental or on a late-night showing on a cable station), so I can't give any insight about what its purpose was in the movie. In fact, the only thing I know about the film is that it featured Lorraine Bracco as a teacher returning to her old high shool in Brooklyn and trying to help a troubled student(which was a concept lifted from Welcome Back, Kotter). Other than that, there was this song and a Paul Carrack/Terri Nunn duet called "Romance" that was a hit on the AC charts but missed the Hot 100.

Johnny Kemp was a singer who was born in the Bahamas but grew up in Harlem. His breakthrough came in 1988 when "Just Got Paid" was a Top 10 pop hit. I really wasn't much of a fan of "Just Got Paid," though, so I was pumped up when this song played on my radio in 1989. However, the chart fortunes being what they are, "Birthday Suit" would be Kemp's last hit.

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