Posted by: Liza Rosenberg | January 28, 2007

80s Music Video Sunday #8

I’ve always found it interesting how some musicians can be so popular in Europe, yet remain almost unheard of in the US (and vice versa, I would imagine). I’m not referring to musicians who don’t perform in English (and whose chances of succeeding in the US without singing in English are virtually nil), but rather those who do sing in English and are filling stadiums throughout Europe, Asia, Australia, etc, yet for some reason are unable to crack the American market (Robbie Williams comes to mind, though for the life of me, I can’t understand why he hasn’t made it in the US – face it, the man can sing and dance, and is rather easy on the eyes to boot).

And so it was, only three-and-a-half years ago, that I discovered one of Britain’s more popular 80s bands, which, as far as I know, never made it big in the US. Husband and I (in our “pre-Little One” days) were in Europe for about a week. Aside from a weekend spent in Norway, the trip was primarily for business purposes, with one day spent in Holland and several days spent meeting business contacts around England. We rented a car to reach all of our far-flung meeting points, and got to see quite a bit of the beautiful English countryside, as well as a number of charming cities, villages and off-the-beaten-path attractions. We spent a lot of time in that little Ford Focus of ours, and the radio was always on. It was during one of the seemingly endless drives from point A to a distant point B when a certain song came on. And I was hooked. The song was by a band called The Housemartins, and even though the song was a cover, it was, simply put, amazing. I loved their voices, I loved their style. I had to have more.

We returned to Israel, and I got my hands on every song by The Housemartins that I could find. My pal Anglosaxy, ever the helpful Brit, introduced me to Beautiful South, the band formed by several members of the Housemartins, and their music became part of my growing repertoire as well. My favorite Housemartins song would have to be The Light is Always Green. For today’s 80s Music Video Sunday, however, I’ve decided to go with the song that brought about my ongoing love affair with this incredibly talented group, since it’s not only a beautiful song, but it also serves as a wake-up call regarding the current depressing status of the world we find ourselves living in, I think. A “make love not war” sentiment from my inner hippie chick, so to speak (thanks for reminding me, Maryam). Enjoy!

Caravan of Love
The Housemartins (original lyrics by Ernie Isley, Chris Jasper and Marvin Isley)

Are you ready
Are you ready
Are you ready
Are you ready
Are you ready for the time of your life
It’s time to stand up and fight
S’alright
S’alright
Hand in hand we’ll take a caravan to the marvel land
One by one we’re gonna stand up with pride
One that can’t be denied
Stand up
Stand up
From the highest mountain valley low
We’ll join together with hearts of gold
Now the children of the world can see
This is a better place for us to be
The place in which we were born
So neglected and torn apart

Every woman every man
Join the caravan of love
(Stand up) stand up
Stand up
Every body take a stand
Join the caravan of love
(Stand up) stand up
Stand up
I’m your brother
I’m your brother don’t you know
She’s my sister
She’s my sister don’t you know

We’ll be living in a world of peace
And the day when everyone is free
Bring the young and the old
Won’t you let your love flow from your heart

Every woman every man
Join the caravan of love
(Stand up) stand up
Stand up
Every body take a stand
Join the caravan of love
(Stand up) stand up
Stand up

I’m your brother
I’m your brother don’t you know
She’s my sister
She’s my sister don’t you know

So are you ready (he’s coming)
Are you ready (he’s coming)
Are you ready (he’s coming)
Are you ready (he’s coming on the caravan)
You better get ready (go for it)
You better get ready (go for it)
You better get ready (go for it)
You better get ready

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Responses

  1. What important lyrics! Wish everyone could hear them around here…

  2. I hope this comment goes thru- I tried commenting about 20 times to your Sesame Street post last week, with my blogger name, anonymously, and “other” but to no avail. Fingers crossed it’ll work this time!

    I also became aware of a lot of groups that never made it in the US only after I moved to Israel- I’d never heard of The Housemartins, though when I played the song you picked there was no mistaking the voice of the guy from The Beautiful South. That’s another group I never heard of til moving here, and I think they’re great- I’ve got a bunch of their songs downloaded to the computer.

  3. Excellent! Big fan of the Beautiful South too. Great song.

  4. Not much of a Heaton groupie myself, to be honest, although I love Jacqueline’s voice, and I have traumatic associations of falling over to this song at a birthday party in the ice-rink!

  5. Man, I’d completely forgotton about them. Don’t they look so British?

  6. fantastic song! Great memories! Wisconsin Mary turned me on to these guys ages ago!


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