Tuesday, 21 August 2012

Cliff Richard 'She's So Beautiful'

Chart Peak: 17


Cliff's first Top 20 single since 'Please Don't Fall In Love' in 1983, 'She's So Beautiful' reached number 17 in early October 1985. It is his 68th Top 20 single since 'Move It' in 1958.

Although it doesn't warrant a mention in the sleevenote here, this was one of the songs from Dave Clark's much-hyped musical Time, which I know of mainly from seeing copies of the double-LP soundtrack: it's apparently never been released on CD but is now on iTunes if you use that. Cliff played the lead in the show itself too, and the promo video is obviously supposed to fit the storyline in some way, although the scene where a group of Aryan children are have a flaming globe thrown at them during their game of water-polo is still quite bizarre. Indeed had it been made by almost any other act you'd read it as bitterly sarcastic, but you never quite know with Cliff, do you?

The record itself is notable because - as the single sleeve boasts - it was arranged and produced by Stevie Wonder, who also played all the instruments; his second contribution to Now 6 of course. A decade or so earlier, that could have been a really hot combination, but by the mid-80s he'd already lost a lot of his mojo as a producer and arranger, settling too easy on simplistic progressions and static, swingless rhythms. He hasn't left himself much room for his skills as a player, and of course there's none at all for him as a singer or songwriter. The finished product is hard to pick holes in but instantly forgettable.

Also appearing on: Now 10, 15, 16, 17
Available on: Private Collection

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