Manic Monday - The Bangles - 80sneverend - Mondays


Bangles – Manic Monday

But I can't be late
'Cause then I guess I just won't get paid
These are the days
When you wish your bed was already made
It's just another manic Monday
#Bangles #ManicMonday

Mondays in January and February are certainly among the saddest days of the year, this is a fact; since some years the so-called Blue Monday is celebrated in many countries as the saddest day of the year, far enough from the end-of-year holidays and their positive influence, far enough from the upcoming holidays to start feeling the taste, in a cold and gray month, and of course on a Monday. In the 80s the concept of Blue Monday had not yet been formalized, but surely Monday was already the least pleasant day of the week: even Bob Geldof and his Boomtown Rats had expressed themselves with I don’t like Mondays, for example.

But let’s move to America in 1986, exactly on January 27, which was the last Monday of that month. For someone it would have been one of those days that change your life forever, because the song that will change your life is released. And this song of course is about a Monday, because it is Manic Monday by Bangles, a song that has become the hymn of endurance and stress for all the employees of the world, who on that day have to start running again after two days of relaxation or fun.

In reality, the story of the song was born some time before, when a well-known character composes this song for his girlfriend of the time, who was to make a musical film with him, and he even created a group around her. The girl is Apollonia Kotero, or simply Apollonia, and she is Prince’s girlfriend. The genius from Minneapolis had to shoot his main film, titled like the song Purple Rain, and had created the group Apollonia 6. He had a passion, as well as for female singers, also for numbers, if it is true that for his previous girlfriend, poor Vanity, he had created the group of Vanity 6. When Vanity left, he brought Apollonia in and changed the name of the group. Both the Vanity 6 and the Apollonia 6 were actually three, meaning that each of them was talented two times the usual rate.

In short, Prince had just ditched Vanity, he had put up with Apollonia, and for her and for her group he composed Manic Monday. And indeed you can find Apollonia’s version of Manic Monday: the song is definitely the same, the sound is a little dull, and the song overall is a little flat. Moreover, there is also a version of the song recorded by Prince himself, a little more alive, but also a little distant from the masterpieces and the style of the genius. In short, we realize that he had written it thinking of someone else. In any case, Prince also broke with Apollonia, and in fact Manic Monday never came out, neither as an Apollonia single, nor in the Prince film.

Some time later, however, Prince saw a video of the Bangles on television, and remembered them. Yes, because years ago they had shared a past in the context of an art movement in the Los Angeles area called Paisley Underground, which brought together several artists, including the Bangles and Prince. From here Prince obviously drew inspiration for his record company Paisley Park.

In a nutshell: Prince shows up at a show where the Bangles play, with a cassette in his hand, and says more or less: “I have two songs here for you. Do you want them?” The Bangles set to work recording their version of the song, even a little terrified that Prince could be unhappy with their performance, and try to stay close enough to the version he provided. The final version is certainly similar, but different in sounds, and naturally embellished by the voices of the Bangles, especially the voice of Susanna Hoffs.

The Bangles did not have a real leader, they were a very democratic group, and they also distributed the parts to sing, but it is a fact that a couple of songs where Susanna Hoffs sang a little more than the others, were more successful than others. Susanna was often seen by the press as the leader of Bangles, or at least their main voice, and this was one of the elements of tension that after a few years led to the dissolution of the group.

Going back to our story, Prince was satisfied with the Bangles version, and finally, on that last gray Monday in January, the song came out. The Bangles had already recorded an album but their success had remained fairly confined to their areas. Right at the beginning of 1986, on January 2nd, their second album, Different Light, was out, and a few weeks later, finally, Manic Monday was also out. By the way, Prince credited himself as Christopher as author of the song, as his character in his movie Under the Cherry Moon.

It was a smash hit, the song hit the top spots in many countries within a few weeks, and I’d say Bangles’ career took off forever. In a short time they will publish other hits, such as If She Knew What She Wants and Walk Like an Egyptian, and will enter right into the memory of the 80s.

Curiously, in a few weeks the Bangles will find themselves in second place in the charts, exactly behind Prince with Kiss.

We know the text, and it speaks of the return to reality of a woman who, after a weekend of relax and fun, on Monday finds herself struggling with the usual problems: going to work, being late, waking up already tired, finding the boss in the office waiting for you. I wonder how Prince actually knew about these situations, but let’s go ahead. The last lines help us to understand why the protagonist is so tired and late: her boyfriend called her in the evening and they allowed themselves a night together… which clearly passed too quickly!

In short, Monday is not generally the most popular day for many reasons, but I would say that if there is someone for whom Monday is the lucky day par excellence, well, I would say that it could absolutely be the Bangles! And shall we mention the final scene of the video, with the calendar composed only of Mondays?

The Bangles on Wikipedia

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