Sunday, July 21, 2013

Private School (soundtrack)

Welcome to another edition of Soundtrack Sunday.

In July of 1989, the teenaged sex comedy Private School hit the theatres. Directed by Noel Black, it was centered on students at an academy for girls and a nearby school for boys. The film starred Phoebe Cates, Matthew Modine, Jonathan Prince, and Ray Walston.

To go along with the film, a six song EP soundtrack was released. Today, we'll give it a quick listen to mark the thirtieth anniversary of the movie and record.

Side one opens with Phoebe Cates and “How Do I Let You Know”, a bouncy new-wave pop song about finding a way to express feelings for someone she just met. Cates delivers a good performance here thought it is not her first musical credit. She actually sang the title song for Paradise, her film debut in 1982.

Mens Room, a group out of Canada, is next with “Best Years of Our Lives”. It features a swinging island rhythm with a positive energy and attitude. The song was actually first recorded in 1982 by the English band Modern Romance. It would become popular again decades later when the Baha Men covered it for the first Shrek movie in 2001.

Bill Wray follows with “She Said No”. Wray, an American composer who has written for a variety of artists across many music genres, performed this song in the film during the joint school dance scene.

Side two starts with a duet from Cates and Wray on “Just One Touch”, a beautiful piano based love ballad that was made for slow dancing.

Wray then sings the title track “Private School”.

Things close out with Rick Springfield and mid-tempo guitar rocker “The American Girl”. It first appeared on his 1982 album Success Hasn’t Spoiled Me Yet (click here for that review).

Given how Cates’ star power was growing after appearing in Fast Times at Ridgemont High a year before, you would have thought the film would have done well. Critics at the time would disagree. I would be hard pressed to tell you if I have ever actually seen Private School or not; if so, it would have been in the mid to late 80’s late at night on HBO or Showtime.

This soundtrack was only made available on vinyl and cassette back in the say. As such, one has to really dig around the Internet to hear a number of the songs from it.


HERC said...

This one is harder to find than The Last American Virgin or Sixteen Candlessoundtracks don't you think?

The music here is not even close to those films level but so help me, I will always have a thing for Phoebe Cates.

Martin Maenza said...

Herc, agree on all counts - but I did have fun tracking these down for a listen. That is part of the enjoyment of doing my blog for me.

HERC said...

The hunt, the chase is indeed fun.

Used to be harder - trying to figure out song titles, artists, etc.

It's easier today but maybe a little more maddening. Lost of incorrect info out there and I cannot believe some of the prices people are asking for stuff.

I have a few SACD and DVD-A discs but no surround system. They are for SOMEDAY. So I am always on the lookout for bargains in the format or just looking to see if a favorite album had been issued in the format.

Simple Minds New Gold Dream came up in conversation yesterday so I looked on Amazon to see if SACD or DVD-A were available. Both are:
$300 for SACD
$3,897.99 + $3.99 shipping for DVD-A

Private School soundtrack on vinyl: $20