The 45th most populous city in the United States of America.
Birthplace to all manner of musicians, artists, political figures.
An oil city at one point.
A rich, vibrant and varied history.
But the only thing that really matters is that from this soil grew the authors of one of the finest pop songs in the history of music.
A breezy, sweet, sunny, shimmering, glistening, infectious pop song the likes of which only those who do not have ears to hear or who have been declared dead by a physician don’t adore.
“It’s a song about the fact that so much in life is fleeting”
(Zac Hanson, 2012)
It can only be “Mmmbop” by Hanson.
The song, and the band, arrived in 1997 and hit the top of the charts in fifteen different countries, including here in the United Kingdom. The album that followed, “Middle of Nowhere”, sold over ten million copies and went Gold with sales of over one hundred thousand in the UK.
They were a phenomenon.
Isaac, Taylor and Zac were children when fame arrived.
Long haired, skater boy chic, clean living, good looking…on the surface they looked like they had been put together in a record company laboratory. Designed to sell records to tweenage girls and make the marketing genius behind them very, very rich indeed.
The truth was something very different.
Hanson were no boy band, they were talented musicians and songwriters who had been performing professionally since 1992 and who had used that experience and talent to craft a song so glorious that only the hardest of hearts wouldn’t be won over by its easy charm.
Often dismissed as one hit wonders the truth of the matter is that Hanson only failed to achieve even greater success than they did because of record label politics. Despite that they have sold over sixteen million records worldwide, released 8 top 40 albums and a fistful of top forty singles on both sides of the Atlantic.
You can lose yourself to the bleak isolation of Joy Division, the drug soaked nihilism of The Velvet Underground, the rock and roll excesses of Oasis all you like, Heaven knows I have, but if you don’t have room in your heart for something this perfect then I can’t be your friend…I can only offer pity.