In 1994, I bought a copy of the Dutch EDM act 2 Brothers on the 4th Floor’s maxi-CD ‘Dreams (Will Come Alive).’ Before last.FM scrobbles and Spotify, that CD spun a maximum of times. 21 years later I accidentally stumbled upon 2 Brothers on the 4th Floor via Spotify and back comes the memories.
The song in question was the 1993 release of ‘Never Alone,’ a top three hit in native Holland and Belgium. Despite churning out loads of singles, only two albums were released – “Dreams” (1994) and “2” (1996). Apart from ‘Dreams (Will Come Alive),’ major hits included ‘Fly (Through the Starry Night)’ and ‘Fairytales.’ In 1996, they even made a Christmas version of their hit ‘There Is a Key’ née ‘Christmas Time.’
Who were 2 Brothers on the 4th Floor?
The duo consisted of the brothers Martin and Bobby Boer. They created the group in 1990, and earned cross-over success in markets such as Germany, Czech Republic, Poland and Brazil. Being the creators, the Boer brothers didn’t sing. Instead, various of singers and rappers were front figures throughout the career.
The debut hit came in 1990 when ‘Can’t Help Myself’ reached the top ten in the Netherlands, placing the on the US dance charts. In 1994, Des’Ray (née Désirée Manders) joined the act with rappoer ‘D-Rock’ on the aforementioned ‘Dreams.’ It was a great international success.
2 Brothers on the 4th Floor – Dreams (Will Come Alive)
2 Brothers on The 4th Floor – Never Alone
Bananarama’s ‘Cruel Summer’ first saw the light of day back in June 1983, when it was released in the UK. Taken from the eponymous set “Bananarama,” it reached No.8 in the UK. It later returned to that chart in 1989 in a remix version.
Included in The Karate Kid
Initially a UK affair, the track crossed over internationally when it was part of the 1984 hit movie The Karate Kid. Not sure why, but Bananarama refused to be included on the soundtrack set yet managing to securing a top ten US hit on the back of the movie.
Bananarama – Cruel Summer (Official Music Video)
Ace of Base version reached gold in the US
The Swedish group Ace of Base released their version in 1998, produced by Cutfather & Joe. It was included on the third album “Flowers,” which was re-named “Cruel Summer” for the US market. The single peaked at No.10 in the US, while it managed to climb to No.8 in the UK. A Frenglish version was also released, featuring the French pop group Alliage on guest vocals.
Ace of Base – Cruel Summer (Official Music Video)
Ace of Base feat. Alliage – Cruel Summer
I first wrote about Beyoncé’s ‘Standing on the Sun’ back in June 2013. It was then used in the commercial for Swedish H&M. The track has resurfaced in a remix version as part of the platinum edition of the “Beyoncé” set. With additional help of Mr. Vegas, ‘Standing on the Sun’ is the second remix together with new versions of ‘Flawless’, ‘Drunk in Love’ and ‘Blow.‘
Written by hugely successful singer and song-writer Sia and Greg Kurstin, the remix version has amassed 20,000+ scrolls via last.FM.
Beyoncé – Standing on the Sun Remix (ft. Mr Vegas) (Official)
This week 30 years ago, the German group Alphaville climbed atop the Swedish singles chart with ‘Forever Young.’ Although it was released in September 1984, it didn’t chart here until November. Moving 18-10-1, it quickly moved to the top dethroning Limahl’s ‘Never Ending Story’ two-week run. While Europeans regard this as one of the biggest Alphaville hits of all time, it never made the US Top 40 despite being released there on three separate occasions.
The song has been played on several TV shows such as One Tree Hill, 30 Rock, Queer As Folk and was used in commercials for Scandinavian banks SEB across the Nordics and Baltics.
Alphaville – Forever Young
In an odd move, Alphaville re-released the track in 2001 for fans. Submitting money for postage, they could receive the CD via mail for free. A remix of the track was also issued in 2006.
Alphaville – Forever Young 2001
Alphaville – Forever Young (2006 Remix)
Finally, the Australian group Youth Group made a cover of the track in 2006 for The O.C. This was a result of having appeared with the song ‘Shadowland’ in a previous episode, they were simply asked to record this version. It was also used in the promos in native Australia, subsequently sending it to the top of the national singles chart.
Melissa & Ryan in The O.C. – The Youth Group Cover