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Belinda Carlisle’s “Sun” radiates in all its glory

28 March 2013 23 Comments
This blog belongs to Radio Creme Brulee – an internet music radio station that broadcasts globally.

This blog is affiliated with Radio Creme Brulee – an internet music radio station that broadcasts globally.

Belinda-AmazonIn our article about “The rampant trend of ageism in the music industry“, we made a reference to a comment by Tears for Fears band-member Curt Smith. He mentioned that “making another record is a money-losing proposition”. He was not simply making a reference to Tears For Fears. He was referring to ALL bands and artists from yesteryear that take a hiatus. It seems almost unfair that new and great material by older artists is always ignored. Yet, some of them continue to dig deeper into a creative well that mainstream media claims is dry without even giving these artists a real shot. Some of these artists have released their best material in decades within the last two years. The latest to join the ranks of this esteemed group of artists is the strikingly attractive and incredibly talented Belinda Carlisle.

Belinda Carlisle belonged to a class of female solo acts that distinguished themselves from the rest through their unique vocal style, striking image, and melody-driven tunes that just might never leave the radio airwaves. Many of these solo acts also suffered a tough transition into the 90s. Belinda was no exception. It appeared that the mainstream had no room for anything besides grunge, britpop, and hip-hop/R&B – thus making it very hard for artists that worked in the spectrum of conventional pop. Fortunately, the internet has broken the walls that mainstream media erected back in the 90s for many of these artists. These broken walls have allowed some of these artists to do what they do best and remind us of why we fell in love with them to begin with. “Sun” is hands down Belinda’s best single in over two decades.

The “secret sauce” of standing out from the clutter (especially for someone that is considered a star of yesteryear) is to hold on tightly to the defining elements of your musical legacy while giving your new music a treatment that allows it to blend in with the music of today without it getting lost. Belinda has found her secret sauce with the addictively upbeat “Sun”. The song opens with a beautiful piano intro (almost making one believe that Belinda is moving into balladeer territory) and quickly breaks into pounding electronic beats with a repeating synthesizer refrain. The production is noteworthy as it builds incrementally with each section of the song. On the verses, it is not glossy and hence does not drown out Belinda’s trademark vocals. In fact, the inherent vocal sexiness she showcases is quite reminiscent of the way she sounded on her hit single “Circle In The Sand” (a song that continues to induce weak moments). The line that truly epitomizes that style is the one where she sings “We are stardust”. The layered production is bumped up a tiny bit on the harmony-driven pre-chorus and is followed quickly by an overlay of a light layer of rock to give the soaring chorus a punchy sound. The sing-out-loud chorus might just stay stuck in the heads of listeners even though the real magic of the song is on its verses.

I have to admit when I first heard a 10-second snippet of the song, I was afraid Belinda was trying to step into “modern rock-chick Kim Wilde” territory and not do it as well as Kim. Fortunately, Belinda unapologetically re-embraces her pop roots and celebrates it for all it is worth on “Sun”. I had a massive crush on Belinda Carlisle when I was in the 7th grade. It didn’t matter to me that she was 20 years older to me. “Sun” reminds me exactly why. My only hope is that Belinda released a new “back to roots” pop album and reclaims her place in the world of pop music.

STAR RATING: 4/5 Stars

RADIO ALERT: Belinda Carlisle’s “Sun” is getting 5 plays a day on our radio station. IF you are reading this on a mobile device (smartphone, tablet etc.), CLICK HERE to listen to our radio station . If not, listen to our station from ANY part of the world by clicking on the button below.


23 Responses to "Belinda Carlisle’s “Sun” radiates in all its glory"

  1. Gary Stalking Horse says:

    Consistently under rated. Welcome back Belinda. This song rocks.

  2. @Gary Staking Horse: Thanks so much for that comment! This song truly does rock! Hands down one of the best singles of the year so far. Who would have expected Belinda Carlisle to return out of nowhere? A very pleasant surprise to say the least. Just out of curiosity, how did you discover our radio station/blog?

  3. Ken says:

    Sun is a fantastic song. Her inexplicable absence from radio is really a shame, but I suppose it’s all about dollars to get ont eh air. Thank God for Creme brulee. Belinda has continued to make music throughout the 90′s and into the 2000′s for a total of 7 solo records, but mainly under the radar stateside. She continues to be a major force in Europe, Australia and Japan. She is, in my humble opinion a better singer than her contemporaries such as Madonna, and far superior to the preteen pop crop around now. Belinda doesn’t need stage pyrotechnics or a posse of dancers to hold an audience. She sings live and her band plays live.

  4. @Ken: Sun truly is a great song. We simply didn’t see this one coming at all. Sadly, the unfortunate combination of payola and consolidation in the terrestrial radio industry in the US have made meritocracy in radio-play an unknown concept. Fortunately, internet radio is a viable option for folks – especially now that these stations broadcast on mobile devices through free apps. I just hope people resort to this. They do not have to be slaves to the irresponsible gatekeepers that terrestrial radio are. I am aware that Belinda continued through the 90s. I lived overseas in the 90s and Belinda continued to have hits in the UK top 10. The preteen crop should not even be compared with Belinda. There is no comparison. Belinda is supremely talented. Hopefully the fantastic reception to her new single will convince her to record a new album. Just out of curiosity, how did you discover our radio station?

  5. Ken says:

    I heard about Creme Brulee via Belinda Carlisle’s site on Facebook. Another fan mentioned that “Sun” Was being played on Creme Brulee (Thankfully). Hopefully Belinda will record more songs whether it be a remake of classics, pop standards or new material. I read that she doesn’t want to do the tour/make a record/tour routine again and that’s understandable. Perhaps she could do 10 shows a year in the U.S. and the same overseas to help support older material whihc has not lost it’s edge as well as new material. Incidentally 1 small local Chicago area station was playing “Sun” a bit, but that has ceased.

  6. @Ken: I too hope “Sun” is the prequel to new material in the near future. That song came out of absolutely nowhere and we were incredibly impressed by it. We continue to give it 5 plays a day. You can tune in to our station from ANY part of the world so don’t worry if the Chicago area station has stopped playing the track. I would love to catch her on tour.

  7. Gary Stalking Horse says:

    Heard about RCB through Belinda’s facebook page. I work in China and listen to it all day at work. Thanks guys/girls!

  8. @Gary Stalking Horse: So thrilled that you’re tuning in from China! I hope the selection of music does not get boring or repetitive for you. If possible, please take a few minutes to fill out our Listener Survey. Here is the link to it: http://kellogg.qualtrics.com/SE/?SID=SV_3K7U5BE9TzTj6VC

  9. Ken says:

    Belinda will be doing some solo shows in Europe, Japan and Australia. She did mention that she is long overdue for a solo tour in teh U.S. so fingers corssed that comes to fruition in 2014 or 2015. On a side note, The Go-Go’s are touring the U.S. beginning in June. They still do Belinda’s “Mad About You”. They will be playing Chicago on June 30th. The tour dates thus far are:

    June 13th Vienna, Virginia Wolftrap
    June 15th Niagara Falls, NY Seneca Niagra Casino
    June 16th Red Bank, NJ Count Basie Theatre
    June 19th New York, NY Roseland Ballroom
    June 20th Ridgefield, CT Ridgefield Playhouse
    June 22th Hyannis, MA Cape Cod Melody Tent
    June 23th Boston, MA Bank of America Pavilion
    June 25th Detroit, MI Chene Park Amphitheatre
    June 26th Cincinnati, OH PNC Pavilion
    June 29th Anderson, IN Hoosier Park
    June 30th Highland Park, IL Ravinia Festival
    July 6th Tulalip, WA The Tulalip Amphitheatre
    July 7th Portland, Or Oregon Zoo
    July 9th Saratoga, CA Saratoga Mountain Winery
    July 11th Tucson, AZ AVA Amphitheatre
    July 12th Scottsdale, AZ Talking Stick Resort
    July 14th Costa Mesa, CA Pacific Amphitheatre

  10. Ken says:

    Oh, thank you playing “Sun: 5 times a day. 8>)

  11. @Ken: Thanks a ton for the tour dates! Much appreciated. It’s nice to see the Go-Gos still at it – although I have to confess I prefer Belinda’s solo work. “Sun” is a fantastic single so you do not have to thank us for playing it. We’d be crazy to ignore the track!!!!

  12. Ken says:

    You’re welcome for the tour dates. I read a Tweet today by Belinda. Get ready. She IS working with Ellen Shipley, Diane Warren and Charlotte Caffey on new songs. Maybe just maybe new material will come out in a year or 2. Fingers crossed. Whether it’s pop, rock, on something in the vein of Voila would be fine by me.

  13. @Ken: This is GREAT news! It will really be great to hear new material by Belinda in 2014. “Sun” was quite the reminder of the potent force she was in the sphere of pop music. We just retweeted her tweet via our twitter handle: https://twitter.com/rcremebrulee

  14. Ken says:

    “Sun” is doing quite well on Amazon as is the Greatest Hits CD ICON.

  15. Ken says:

    Glad to see Belinda still in the top 20. Wondering IF The Go-Go’s will cover “Sun” this summer? That would be cool.

  16. @Ken: Yes. The top 20 is based entirely on listener “votes” or “likes”. You do know how to vote for a track via our online radio player right?

  17. Ken says:

    No, I have not voted. I MUST do that!!

  18. @Ken: Please do! Please do let us know if you have any difficulty voting. Hopefully yo don’t feel like you are “suffering” through the rest of our music selection!

  19. Ken says:

    I looked for voting, but I couldn’t get to “Sun” to vote for it. Make a list of steps…go here, then click there etc….if you have a few moments….
    No, I am not suffering through the rest of the music slection. It’s varied and good. Thnx.

  20. @Ken: Hey Ken! You can only vote for the song WHILE it is playing. Here are the instructions: http://www.radiocremebrulee.com/frequently-asked-questions

    In the link above, navigate to the question on “how do I vote?”. That question has a photo of Kylie Minogue and the vote button right next to it. Hope this helps!

  21. Ken says:

    Thank you. I will do that.

  22. Ken says:

    For the Belinda Fans out there, The Go-Go’s have added more shows for their 2013 Summer Tour:

    The Go-Go’s 2013 Summer Tour thus far:

    June 8th Wichita, KS Wichita River Festival
    June 9th Saint Louis, MO Pageant
    June 12th Glenside, PA Keswick Theatre
    June 13th Vienna, Virginia Wolftrap
    June 15th Niagara Falls, NY Seneca Niagra Casino
    June 16th Red Bank, NJ Count Basie Theatre
    June 19th New York, NY Roseland Ballroom
    June 20th Ridgefield, CT Ridgefield Playhouse
    June 22th Hyannis, MA Cape Cod Melody Tent
    June 23th Boston, MA Bank of America Pavilion
    June 25th Detroit, MI Chene Park Amphitheatre
    June 26th Cincinnati, OH PNC Pavilion
    June 29th Anderson, IN Hoosier Park
    June 30th Highland Park (Chicago), IL Ravinia Festival
    July 3th Milwaukee, WI Summerfest
    July 6th Tulalip, WA The Tulalip Amphitheatre
    July 7th Portland, Or Oregon Zoo
    July 9th Saratoga, CA Saratoga Mountain Winery
    July 11th Tucson, AZ AVA Amphitheatre
    July 12th Scottsdale, AZ Talking Stick Resort
    July 14th Costa Mesa, CA Pacific Amphitheatre

  23. @Ken: Thanks so much for that!

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