Saturday, March 28, 1992

Eric Clapton reached #2 with “Tears in Heaven”

First posted 1/28/2021; last updated 2/27/2021.

Tears in Heaven

Eric Clapton

Writer(s): Eric Clapton, Will Jennings (see lyrics here)


Released: January 8, 1992


First Charted: January 11, 1992


Peak: 2 US, 11 CB, 3 RR, 13 AC, 9 AR, 5 UK, 12 CN, 37 AU (Click for codes to singles charts.)


Sales (in millions): 3.3 US, 0.4 UK, 4.91 world (includes US + UK)


Airplay/Streaming (in millions): 4.0 radio, 198.95 video, -- streaming

Awards: (Click on award for more details).

About the Song:

Eric Clapton launched his career in the 1960s, making a name for himself with the Yardbirds, John Mayall’s Bluesbreakers, Cream, and Blind Faith before launching his solo career in the ‘70s (and making an album under the Derek + the Dominoes banner). On the charts, he reached #1 in 1974 with his version of Bob Marley’s “I Shot the Sheriff.” His biggest selling song, however, came nearly two decades later with 1992’s “Tears in Heaven.” WK

The song peaked at #2 on the Billboard Hot 100 and won Grammys for Song of the Year, Record of the Year, and Best Male Pop Vocal Performance. It was originally featured on the Rush soundtrack, but then appeared on Clapton’s Unplugged album. The later is the best-selling album of Clapton’s career, selling over 25 million worldwide and winning the Grammy for Album of the Year.

Clapton had seen plenty of tragedy in his life, but the one-two punch of late 1990 and early 1991 might have been the most devastating. In August 1990, his friend and fellow musician Stevie Ray Vaughan and Clapton’s manager and two of his roadies were killed in a helipcoter accident. On March 20, 1991, his four-year-old son Conor died when he fell from a 53rd-floor window of a New York City apartment. WK

Clapton poured his grief into “Tears in Heaven.” The song was ambiguous enough that it worked in the context of the score he was crafting for the movie Rush about a narcotics agent who becomes an addict. He asked Will Jennings for help on the song. Jennings had worked with Steve Winwood and written the #1 movie songs “Up Where We Belong” for An Officer and a Gentleman and “My Heart Will Go On” for Titanitc. Jennings thought it was too personal and that Clapton should write it alone, but he relented. Clapton wasn’t sure he wanted to release the song, but was convinced by the Lili Zanuck, the director of Rush, that the song might help others cope with grief. SF


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Tuesday, March 24, 1992

Arrested Development released their debut album

First posted 4/2/2008; updated 9/8/2020.

3 Years, 5 Months, & 2 Days in the Life

Arrested Development


Released: March 24, 1992


Peak: 7 US, 3 UK, -- CN, 4 AU


Sales (in millions): 4.0 US, 0.3 UK, 5.0 world (includes US and UK)


Genre: rap


Tracks: (Click for codes to singles charts.)

  1. Man’s Final Frontier
  2. Mama’s Always on Stage
  3. People Everyday (8/15/92, 8 US, 2 UK, 2 RB, sales: ½ million)
  4. Blues Happy
  5. Mr. Wendal (12/19/92, 6 US, 4 UK, 6 RB, sales: ½ million)
  6. Children Play with Earth
  7. Raining Revolution
  8. Fishin’ 4 Religion
  9. Give a Man a Fish
  10. U
  11. Eve of Reality
  12. Natural (4/4/92, 90 RB)
  13. Dawn of the Dreads
  14. Tennessee (4/4/92, 6 US, 18 UK, 1 RB, sales: ½ million)
  15. Washed Away
  16. People Everyday (Metamorphosis Mix)

Rating:

4.200 out of 5.00 (average of 9 ratings)


Awards:

About the Album:

“Arrested Development was one of the genre’s most promising groups when it released” JD 3 Years, 5 Months & 2 Days in the Life of..., named for “the amount of time that it took to secure a recording contract.” JD Critically, “its positive messages” AMG about “pleas for black unity and brotherly compassion, as well as a devotion to the struggle for equality” AMG “were the chief selling point for many rock critics” AMG and the band “claimed an armful of Grammy Awards, including best new artist and best rap group, in 1993.” JD

On a commercial level “the band, shot to the top of the Billboard charts [and] sold 5 million albums worldwide.” JD “But it was pegged as…‘alternative hip-hop’ – rap’s equivalent to the alternative explosion then dominating the rock world – and that tag would come to haunt the outfit.” JD

“Though the group successfully toured as part of Lollapalooza ‘93, rock radio turned a deaf ear. It was branded as ‘too black’ for the white music media, and ‘not black enough’ for many hip-hop outlets” JD due to the band’s “outspoken opposition to the glorification of drug dealing and the violent gangsta pose.” JD Instead, the band “addressed prejudice, the need for African-American unity, safe sex and the role of religion in bringing about social change. Speech advocated a revolution, but one that started not with guns, but changing the way that African-Americans think about themselves and their community.” JD “The issues the group was addressing had much more common in many African-Americans’ lives than the tales of violence delivered by other rappers.” JD

“The group’s instrumental backings were fluid, grooving, absurdly catchy and grounded in a long tradition of soul, funk, R&B, gospel and rock ‘n’ roll.” JD “It’s determinedly down to earth, and that aesthetic informs the group’s music as well. Their sound is a laid-back, southern-fried groove informed by rural blues, African percussion, funk, and melodic R&B.” AMG “The artful craftsmanship of the backing tracks was well suited to Speech’s smooth, laid-back rapping – a mellow style that belied the potent urgency of his lyrics.” JD

“All of it comes together on the classic single Tennessee, which takes lead rapper Speech on a spiritual quest to reclaim his heritage in a south still haunted by its history.” AMG The song, “which celebrates familial roots, is based on his teenage experiences visiting his grandparents in the town of Henning, Tenn.” (DeRegotis).

Mr. Wendal is a moving portrait of a homeless man encountered on the street, and Give a Man a Fish is a call for positive thinking as the road out of the ghetto.” JD

People Everyday was a sharp rewrite of Sly and the Family Stone's ‘Everyday People,’ and other tracks sampled Earth, Wind & Fire, Minnie Riperton, Buddy Guy, Junior Wells and Bob Dylan (a snippet of ‘Mighty Quinn’ appears in Arrested Development’s U).” JD

“In retrospect, 3 Years... isn’t quite as revolutionary as it first seemed.” AMG “There’s a distinct political correctness – even naïveté – in the lyrics, which places the record firmly in the early ‘90s; it's also a bit self-consciously profound at times.” AMG Nonetheless, 3 Years... is “still a fine record that often crosses the line into excellence.” AMG

In addition, the album “was a major influence on a new breed of alternative southern hip-hop, including Goodie Mob, OutKast, and Nappy Roots, and it still stands as one of the better albums of its kind.” AMG Also, “the influence of its music and its positive lyrical message live on in artists such as Erykah Badu, Lauryn Hill, Jill Scott, the Roots and Common, many of whom are part of the so-called neo-soul or natural R&B movement.” JD

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Tuesday, March 10, 1992

A Queen Retrospective

A Retrospective: 1973-1992

Queen

A Brief History:

Glam-rock/classic rock group formed in England in 1972. After lead singer Freddie Mercury’s death from AIDS in 1992, the group continued to tour and record with other singers, including Paul Rodgers (best known for his work with Bad Company) and American Idol contestant Adam Lambert. Otherwise, the band’s lineup stayed consistent throughout.

The Players:

  • Freddie Mercury (vocals
  • Brian May (guitar)
  • John Deacon (bass)
  • Roger Taylor (drums)

On the Web:

Awards: (Click on award to learn more).

Compilations:

This page highlights the compilations below.


The Studio Albums:

This page offers snapshots of all the studio albums below, noting those songs which appear on compilations with the codes noted above. Appearing after song titles are the songwriters in italicized parentheses, running times in brackets, and when relevant, the date the song was released as a single and its peaks on various charts. Click for codes to singles charts.

Check out a list of the top 50 songs by Queen here.

Hover over an album cover to see its title and year of release. Click on the album to go to its dedicated DMDB page.

Queen I (1973):

  • Keep Yourself Alive (May) [3:32] (7/6/73, 89 CB, 6 CL) US1,CQ


Queen II (1974):

  • Seven Seas of Rhye (Mercury) [2:47] (3/9/74, 40 CL, 10 UK) UK1


Sheer Heart Attack (1974):

  • Killer Queen (Mercury) [2:57] (10/26/74, 12 US, 12 CB, 11 HR, 10 RR, 2 CL, 2 UK, 15 CN, 24 AU, sales: 0.6 million) UK1,US1
  • Now I’m Here (May) [4:10] (1/25/75, 34 CL, 11 UK) UK1
  • Stone Cold Crazy (Queen) [2:15] (40 CL) CQ


A Night at the Opera (1975):

  • Bohemian Rhapsody (Mercury) [5:57] (10/31/75, 2 US, 1 CB, 4 HR, 3 RR, 1 CL, 16 AR, 1 UK, 1 CN, 1 AU, sales: 13.78 million) UK1,US1,CQ
  • You’re My Best Friend (Deacon) [2:52] (5/22/76, 16 US, 9 CB, 15 HR, 7 RR, 2 CL, 7 UK, 2 CN, 40 AU, sales: 0.2 million) UK1,US1


A Day at the Races (1976):

  • Somebody to Love (Mercury) [4:56] (11/20/76, 13 US, 9 CB, 18 HR, 15 RR, 2 CL, 2 UK, 5 CN, 15 AU, sales: 2.6 million) UK1,US1
  • Tie Your Mother Down (May) [3:45] (3/19/77, 49 US, 54 CB, 64 HR, 6 CL, 13 UK, 68 CN, 47 AU) CQ
  • Good Old-Fashioned Lover Boy (Mercury) [2:54] (6/4/77, 41 CL, 17 UK, sales: 0.2 million) UK1


News of the World (1977):

  • We Will Rock You (May) [2:01] (10/7/77, 4 US, 44 CB, 1 HR, 4 RR, 1 CL, 1 UK, 3 CN, 8 AU, sales: 7.5 million) UK1,US1
  • We Are the Champions (Mercury) [3:00] (10/7/77, 4 US, 3 CB, 1 HR, 4 RR, 1 CL, 2 UK, 3 CN, 8 AU, sales: 6.84 million) UK1,US1


Jazz (1978):

  • Fat Bottomed Girls (May) [3:22] (10/28/78, 24 US, 18 CB, 31 HR, 2 CL, 11 UK, 17 CN, 25 AU, sales: 2.2 million) UK1,US1
  • Bicycle Race (Mercury) [3:01] (10/28/78, 24 US, 18 CB, 31 HR, 9 CL, 11 UK, 17 CN, 25 AU, sales: 2.2 million) UK1,US1
  • Don’t Stop Me Now (Mercury) [3:29] (2/10/79, 86 US, 77 CB, 84 HR, 7 CL, 9 UK, 53 AU, sales: 4.8 million) UK1


The Game (1980):

  • Crazy Little Thing Called Love (Mercury) [2:42] (10/20/79, 1 US, 1 CB, 1 HR, 1 RR, 17 AC, 1 CL, 2 UK, 1 CN, 1 AU, sales: 1.4 million) UK1,US1
  • Save Me (May) [3:48] (2/2/80, 41 CL, 11 UK, 76 AU) UK1
  • Play the Game (Mercury) [3:33] (6/14/80, 42 US, 38 CB, 44 HR, 15 CL, 14 UK, 22 CN, 85 AU) UK1,US1
  • Another One Bites the Dust (Deacon) [3:36] (8/16/80, 1 US, 1 CB, 1 HR, 2 RR, 1 CL, 7 UK, 1 CN, 5 AU, sales: 7 million) UK1,US1


Flash Gordon soundtrack (1980):

  • Flash (May) [2:48] (10/6/80, 42 US, 39 CB, 53 HR, 22 CL, 10 UK, 24 CN, 16 AU, sales: 0.2 million) UK1,US1

Greatest Hits

Queen


Released: November 3, 1981


Recorded: 1973-1981


Peak: 11 US, 14 UK, 4 CN, 2 AU


Sales (in millions): 8.0 US, 6.0 UK, 27.6 world (includes US and UK)


Genre: glam rock/classic rock


Tracks (UK version): (1) Bohemian Rhapsody (2) Another One Bites the Dust (3) Killer Queen (4) Fat Bottomed Girls (5) Bicycle Race (6) You’re My Best Friend (7) Don’t Stop Me Now (8) Save Me (9) Crazy Little Thing Called Love (10) Somebody to Love (11) Now I’m Here (12) Good-Old Fashioned Lover Boy (13) Play the Game 914) Flash (15) Seven Seas of Rhye (16) We Will Rock You (17) We Are the Champions

Tracks (US version): (1) Another One Bites the Dust (2) Bohemian Rhapsody (3) Crazy Little Thing Called Love (4) Killer Queen (5) Fat Bottomed Girls (6) Bicycle Race (7) Under Pressure (with David Bowie) (8) We Will Rock You (9) We Are the Champions (10) Flash (11) Somebody to Love (12) You’re My Best Friend (13) Keep Yourself Alive (14) Play the Game


Total Running Time: 58:19 (UK version), 47:48 (US version)

Rating:

4.561 out of 5.00 (average of 17 ratings)


Awards: (Click on award to learn more).

About Greatest Hits:

The UK and U.S. versions of Queen’s first compilation differed with the former highlighting 17 songs and the latter including only 14. The U.S. version includes twelve of the songs featured on the UK version plus “Under Pressure” and “Keep Yourself Alive.” “Don’t Stop Me Now,” “Save Me,” “Now I’m Here,” “Good Old-Fashioned Lover Boy,” and “Seven Seas of Rhye” are unique to the UK edition. In 2004, the UK version was released in the U.S. as Greatest Hits: We Will Rock You with “I’m in Love with My Car” and live versions of “Under Pressure” and “Tie Your Mother Down” from 2004.

Hot Space (1982):

  • Under Pressure (Queen, David Bowie) [4:05] (with David Bowie, 10/26/81, 29 US, 22 CB, 26 HR, 23 RR, 7 AR, 1 CO, 1 UK, 3 CN, 6 AU, sales: 3.41 million) US1,UK2,CQ


The Works (1984):

  • Radio Ga Ga (Taylor) [5:43] (2/4/84, 16 US, 14 CB, 22 RR, 22 AR, 2 UK, 11 CB, 2 AU, sales: 1.6 million) UK2,CQ
  • I Want to Break Free (Deacon) [4:18] (4/7/84, 45 US, 53 CB, 3 UK, 26 CN, 8 AU, sales: 1.6 million) UK2
  • Hammer to Fall (May) [3:40] (4/7/84, 35 AR, 13 UK, 69 AU, sales: 0.2 million) UK2,CQ
  • It’s a Hard Life (Mercury) [4:09] (7/28/84, 72 US, 79 CB, 6 UK, 65 AU) UK2


A Kind of Magic (1986):

  • One Vision (Taylor) [4:02] (11/16/85, 61 US, 52 CB, 19 AR, 7 UK, 76 CN, 35 AU, sales: 0.2 million) UK2,CQ
  • A Kind of Magic (Taylor) [4:22] (3/29/86, 42 US, 42 CB, 3 UK, 64 CN, 25 AU, sales: 0.4 million) UK2,CQ
  • Who Wants to Live Forever (May) [5:16] (9/27/86, 24 UK, sales: 0.4 million) UK2,CQ
  • Friends Will Be Friends (Mercury, Deacon) [4:08] (6/21/86, 14 UK) UK2
  • One Year of Love (Deacon) [4:28] CQ


The Miracle (1989):

  • I Want It All (May) [4:01] (5/13/89, 50 US, 3 AR, 3 UK, 34 CN, 10 AU, sales: 0.2 million) UK2,CQ
  • Breakthru (Mercury, Taylor) [4:09] (7/1/89, 7 UK, 45 AU) UK2
  • The Invisible Man (Taylor) [3:58] (8/19/89, 12 UK) UK2
  • The Miracle (Mercury, Deacon) [5:01] (12/9/89, 21 UK) UK2,CQ


Innuendo (1991):

  • Headlong (May) [4:37] (1/26/91, 3 AR, 14 UK) UK2,CQ
  • Innuendo (Mercury, Taylor) [6:27] (1/26/91, 17 AR, 1 UK, 28 AU, sales: 0.2 million) UK2
  • I’m Going Slightly Mad (Mercury) [4:22] (3/16/91, 22 UK) UK2,CQ
  • The Show Must Go On (May) [4:37] (10/26/91, 40 AR, 16 UK, 75 AU, sales: 0.7 million) UK2,CQ
  • These Are the Days of Our Lives (Taylor) [4:14] (12/21/91, 1 UK, 18 CN, sales: 0.4 million) CQ

Greatest Hits II

Queen


Released: October 30, 1991


Recorded: 1981-1991


Peak: -- US, 15 UK, -- CN, 4 AU


Sales (in millions): -- US, 3.64 UK, 22.3 world (includes US and UK)


Genre: glam rock/classic rock


Tracks: (1) A Kind of Magic (2) Under Pressure (with David Bowie) (3) Radio Ga Ga (4) I Want It All (5) I Want to Break Free (6) Innuendo (7) It’s a Hard Life (8) Breakthru (9) Who Wants to Live Forever (10) Headlong (11) The Miracle (12) I’m Going Slightly Mad (13) The Invisible Man (14) Hammer to Fall (15) Friends Will Be Friends (16) The Show Must Go On (17) One Vision


Total Running Time: 76:32

Rating:

4.253 out of 5.00 (average of 14 ratings)


Awards: (Click on award to learn more).

About Greatest Hits II:

Queen’s second compilation was released just weeks before lead singer Freddie Mercury’s death. It picks up where the first set left off, covering from 1981’s “Under Pressure” to the Innuendo, released earlier in 1991. The album wasn’t released in the United States where Classic Queen was released instead. The two compilations share eleven songs. Unique to this collection are “I Want to Break Free,” “It’s a Hard Life,” “Friends Will Be Friends,” “Breakthru,” “The Invisible Man,” and “Innuendo.”

Classic Queen

Queen


Released: May 10, 1992


Recorded: 1973-1991


Peak: 4 US, -- UK, 113 CN, -- AU


Sales (in millions): 3.0 US, -- UK, 3.5 world (includes US and UK)


Genre: glam rock/classic rock


Tracks: (1) A Kind of Magic (2) Bohemian Rhapsody (3) Under Pressure (with David Bowie) (4) Hammer to Fall (5) Stone Cold Crazy (6) One Year of Love (7) Radio Ga Ga (8) I’m Going Slightly Mad (9) I Want It All (10) Tie Your Mother Down (11) The Miracle (12) These Are the Days of Our Lives (13) One Vision (14) Keep Yourself Alive (15) Headlong (16) Who Wants to Live Forever (17) The Show Must Go On


Total Running Time: 75:10

Rating:

4.465 out of 5.00 (average of 6 ratings)


Awards: (Click on award to learn more).

About Classic Queen:

This was the North American version of Queen’s Greatest Hits II. It shares eleven songs from that compilation. Five songs from 1973-1981 are included here: “Keep Yourself Alive,” “Bohemian Rhapsody,” “Stone Cold Crazy,” and “Tie Your Mother Down.” The first two were on the U.S. Greatest Hits. “Bohemian Rhapsody” was included here because of its revival in the movie Wayne’s World. This collection also includes two songs from the 1981-1991 era which weren’t on Greatest Hits II: “One Year of Love” and “These Are the Days of Our Lives.”


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First posted 3/26/2008; last updated 8/5/2021.