Nice write-up by Marc Meyers in the WSJ on the anatomy of the song: “The Power of Love” by Huey Lewis and the News, featured in the movie Back to the Future starring Michael J. Fox. Meyers writes (abridged):
By 1984, Huey Lewis and the News had eight Billboard pop hits but none cracked the top five. Then came an offer to write a theme for the movie “Back to the Future.” Mr. Lewis nearly passed.
He feared a song with that title would make the News sound retro and dated. So he went with “The Power of Love.” The single became a No. 1 Billboard pop hit in 1985 and was nominated for an Oscar.
Recently, the song’s co-writers—Mr. Lewis, guitarist Chris Hayes and guitarist/saxophonist Johnny Colla—looked back at making the hit. A new album from Huey Lewis and the News titled “Weather” (BMG) is due out Friday. Edited from interviews:
Huey Lewis: When my manager, Bob Brown, and I met with the Amblin Entertainment team in Los Angeles in 1984, they told us about a film they had just written called “Back to the Future.”
They talked about the kid who was the lead character, Marty McFly, and said that if he had a favorite band, it would be Huey Lewis and the News. They asked me to write and record a song.
At first, I didn’t want to write a song called “Back to the Future.” The News wasn’t about looking backward. I also told them I had no idea how to write for a film.
“That’s OK,” they said. “We don’t care what you call it. We just want a Huey Lewis and the News song.” By then, we had a bunch of strong hits, including “I Want a New Drug,” “The Heart of Rock & Roll” and “If This Is It.”
I said, “Let me have a think and I’ll send you the first new song we write.” They said, “Fine.” When I got back to my house in Santa Venetia, Calif., up in Marin County, I remembered the cassette demo our guitarist Chris Hayes had given me with his chord progression for a new song.
Read more here.
E.J. Smith - Your Survival Guy
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