Shoes – Present Tense – My song posts have been just that – a note about a certain song that is a much loved by me. In the case of the band Shoes, I can’t pick a favorite song, so I’ll pick a favorite album. Present Tense is a wonderful piece of pop music. Released in 1979, it was a treasure trove of catchy tunes & fun to sing along to lyrics. Its four videos were in heavy rotation during the very early days of MTV (I know, they used to actually show videos, like all the time.) The band consisted of Jeff and John Murphy, Gary Klebe & Skip Meyer. The first 3 shared lead vocal duties – like the Beatles, pretty much, if you wrote it, you sang it. Their voices worked really well together and they created lovely harmonies.
This album is the only LP of mine that saw continuous play from the early 80’s until about 2001, when I discovered the band had a website – (*links updated 2/20/14) ShoesWire.com. I sent a mail, verifying it was an active site and nearly had a heart attack when the e-mail I received in response was actually from Jeff Murphy. Over the course of a few weeks, I ordered every CD available and acquainted myself with the wonder that is Shoes. I even got to see them live when they performed at the International Pop Overthrow in Chicago in 2003. It took 22 years from the time I discovered them before seeing them in concert and it was very worth the wait.
Jeff has actually written a book about the making of Present Tense. It’s filled with great pictures and interesting things about how sounds were created and why things were recorded the way they were. You can also order anything from their entire catalog. Their music is available at iTunes as well.
Sit back and spend a few minutes in pop music nirvana –
In My Arms Again – sung by Jeff Murphy – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FXh2yB8jizU
Too Late – sung by Gary Klebe – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1Opz_drg1O8
Cruel You – sung by John Murphy – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kxe-ZXrgRqY
Tomorrow Night – sung by Jeff Murphy – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b9DfyEiw6yM