“Electric Avenue” by Eddy Grant (1982)

Eddy Grant is a very authoritative singer. “Electric Avenue” isn’t sung so much as it’s bellowed. Grant’s throaty croak is an awesome fit for the stark flavor of the song, though. There’s not much behind his voice other than that staccato guitar riff and whizzing synths (complete with that infamous sound effect that sounds like a car being revved up.)  Eddy’s faint island lilt gives the song a bit of a Grace Jones vibe, to my ears. I think she would’ve killed a cover of this song.

“Electric Avenue” was a significantly bigger pop hit than an R&B hit, which might be due to its status as one of the first videos by a black artist to get major MTV play and might also be due to the fact that pre-dancehall, West Indian artists didn’t get a lot of love from Black Americans outside of areas with big Caribbean populations.

Yes, there is an Electric Avenue in Boston. Yes, when I lived in Boston, I took a photo of the street sign and posted it on Instagram (that profile has since been deleted). Because I am a basic bitch.

“Electric Avenue” isn’t on Spotify…what’s up with that?

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