Tuesday, September 13, 2016
SHG: Phil Phillips: "Sea of Love"
Phil Phillips: “Sea of Love”
Entered the chart on: 7/20/1959
Peaked on: 8/24/1959
Weeks at #2: 2
Song at #1: “The Three Bells” by the Browns
I don’t recognize the song at #1. Should I even bother to listen to it? For context, you understand.
I definitely recognize “Sea of Love,” which is another one-hit wonder, alongside the Impalas in the Class of ’59. Lots of these short-run artists struggle for years to have a second hit (see: Cathy Carr) without success, but Phil only had a couple of other singles to his credit. Not sure what’s happening there, but let’s examine the case of “Sea of Love” just the same...
Ooh...Phil’s voice is like honey! I could listen to a voice like that every day. The backing vocals are by a vocal group by the Twilights and they’re nice, as is the seesaw piano part which forms the base of the instrumental backing. This sounds like it came from earlier on in the 50s, based on the very stripped-down arrangement compared to the last few tunes I reviewed. It’s piano, vocals, and not much else.
Lyrically, it isn’t anything super spectacular. “La la la, I love you,” that sort of thing. But the piano arrangement is memorable and...damn! I could listen to Phil’s voice all day long.
Again, I’m regretting that he was only a one-hit wonder. What a voice!