Sunday, July 26, 2009

Donnie Iris - "Ah! Leah!" (Forgotten Song)

You've probably heard this song a long time ago, but might not have known what they were singing. Well, in the chorus they're singing "Ah! Leah!" -- apparently chosen because it sounded good, then they realized it was a woman's name.

This was the single from the 1980 Donnie Iris LP "Back on the Streets". It is tempting to call Donnie Iris a one hit wonder, but he actually had a hit after this (1981's "Love is Like a Rock") as well a hit in 1970, "The Rapper", with The Jaggerz. Not good stuff in my book, but technically it's more than one hit.

This is a definite guilty pleasure. Sure, it's a slightly silly song, but it's got a strong hook, power chords and a good solo, so what more could you want? I remember it getting a modicum of radio airplay in early 80s. But the video... geez. It did receive a bit of early MTV play as I recall, but not much. Although I'm linking the video below, I highly encourage you not to view it. It's bad. Really bad. So very bad, it will ruin the song for you (see also: James' "Say Something" video). I've made fun of Jan Hammer in his video before, but Donnie's earnest "Buddy Holly meets your Dad's friends" look is excruciating.

I blame the video for bumping this song off the classic rock radio play list.

YouTube (don't do it!).

1981 Live version on YouTube (not much better!).

(a PBS station!) version (surprisingly good); I think this is from the show "Live From Studio A".

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