Friday, July 4, 2014

Kim WIlde: Kids In America

Well today is our nation’s birthday and 238 years ago the Continental Congress signed the Declaration of Independence separating the United States from Great Britain. It is only fitting that we pick a song that mentions America – in fact, its record label, EMI America, has our national identity also in its name.

Interestingly enough, even though Kim Wilde’s “Kids in America” references the US, Wilde is a Brit and EMI Records was a UK owned concern. Released worldwide in 1981 and in the US in 1982, the technopop “Kids in America” did better in other countries than it did in the US.

In fact, the song’s performance in Canada at #34 was worse than its #25 slot in the US. It was a number one hit in Finland and South Africa and a top 5 hit in 10 other countries. I remember playing this on WCIR in Beckley, WV and it produced a lackluster local performance – which was prophetic of its activity across the nation.

Written by Wilde’s brother Ricky and her father Marty, “Kids in America” served as Kim’s introduction to the music scene. Additionally, “Kid’s in America” was remixed and rereleased in 1994, but alas, it failed to chart then as well. In 2006, Wilde rerecorded the song, but did not release it as a single for a third time.

Happy Fourth of July to all the “Kids in America.”

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