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Monday, October 05, 2015

Artist Spotlight: Glenn Medeiros

Hello, everybody!  Well, today I'm going to do something a little bit different.  I'm going to do a Sunday Jukebox entry on a Monday, so consider this a Monday Jukebox entry instead.

Let's just say that my work schedule has been ridiculous lately and I ended up being too exhausted to even write one character in a blog yesterday.  But that's okay because I have a topic that I am really interested in talking about because today's subject is a person who could be considered a two-hit wonder.

And one of those hits I don't really care for.  At all.

Yeah, I know.  What I said seems like the biggest contradiction ever.  How can I be so excited over something that I hate?

Well, it could be because his other hit was a song that I actually don't mind.  And it could be because his story after leaving the music business is quite an interesting one.  I think that's why I'm happy to make the choice I made in making Glenn Medeiros the artist spotlight for this week.

But just who is Glenn Medeiros?

Well, I can tell you a few things about him.  He was born in Honolulu, Hawaii on June 24, 1970, which would make him 45 years old today.  When he was ten years old, he developed a love for singing by entertaining tourists on his father's tour bus, and when he was sixteen years old, he entered a contest that was being run by a local radio station where he sang a cover of a George Benson song.  Little did he know that song would be recorded as an album by an independent record label and listened to by record executive Guy Zapoleon.  Zapoleon took the copy of Medeiros' song to KZZP radio where it began playing in radio stations across the state of Arizona. 

Soon after, the song became a hit nationally.  Then worldwide.  And before anyone knew it, the 16-year-old kid from Hawaii who entered a talent competition was the next big thing in pop music.

It's just too bad that it happens to be a song that I don't particularly like.

Now, don't get me wrong.  I have nothing against the vocal abilities of Glenn Medeiros.  He sang a lot better at 16 than I did.  Truth be told, if it were any other song that he sang, I would probably like it.

But when you take a song that is dripping with enough sugar to put somebody in a diabetic coma and couple that with the quintessential 1980s schmaltz fest that was a video set on the beach (see Debbie Gibson's "Only In My Dreams" or Rick Astley's "Whenever You Need Somebody" for further evidence), have this.

ARTIST:  Glenn Medeiros
SONG:  Nothing's Gonna Change My Love For You
ALBUM:  Glenn Medeiros
DATE RELEASED:  March 1987

Oh, my god, even the single cover is enough to give you 1980s induced nightmares.  Again, that's no reflection on Medeiros, just a reflection against the cover artist who put together this album cover.  It just looks like a bad postcard with "Wish You Were Here Instead Of Me" for the text. 

And talk about cheesy music videos!  Okay, so back in 1987, it may have been the most romantic thing that you've ever seen.  But looking back on it now, it's a perfect illustration of everything that was wrong with the 1980s.

(Which wasn't much, mind you...but still.)

Whenever this song came on the radio - which was surprisingly frequent on the Top 40 station I listened to in my youth - I would always cringe because to me, "Nothing's Gonna Change My Love For You" evokes the same feelings of annoyance that the Backstreet Boys did twelve years later with the song "I Want It That Way", which, let's face it was the same twenty-two words that were repeated ad nauseum.

The Backstreet Boys had much better songs than that one.  And listening to the rest of Glenn's discography, I have to say that he had a lot better singles.  I mean, I get that if it wasn't for "Nothing's Gonna Change My Love For You", Medeiros would have never been discovered...but couldn't he have done a cover of a Michael Jackson song instead?  Or Cyndi Lauper?  Heck, I would have even taken a song by ABBA!

At least his second hit did much better, both in terms of listening and chart performance.

ARTIST:  Glenn Medeiros
SONG:  She Ain't Worth It
ALBUM:  Glenn Medeiros
DATE RELEASED:  May 5, 1990

NOTE:  Glenn actually released two self-titled albums.  One in 1987 and one in 1990.  I don't want you to think that it took three years for two songs from the same album to chart!

Now, I don't know whether it's my tendency to like new jack swing type music.  I don't know if Bobby Brown doing a rap solo in the song was the reason why.  All I know is that I actually don't mind this one.  It was one of those songs that I liked a lot, but didn't understand why.  Especially since the song was released by a man whose first big single made me cringe every single time I hear it.

I guess it all comes down to personal preferences and personal opinion.  I know that when it comes to different artists, depending on the type of music they release, I'll either love it or hate it.  A perfect example of this is Taylor Swift.  I'm not a country fan by any means, and a lot of her earlier hits like "Teardrops On My Guitar" and "Tim McGraw" are too twangy for me.

But then you take her pop album "1989" and a lot of the songs from there are songs that I really enjoy.

Well, the same holds true for Glenn Medeiros.  As a romantic crooner and ballad singer, he doesn't really garner my interest much.  But give him a faster beat and a song that has catchy lyrics, and I tend to like him more.

Or, maybe I just tend to like songs in which couples break up instead of make up.  That wouldn't make me a sadist, would it?  Then again, love is one of the few things that I am cynical about in general.

Anyway, Glenn Medeiros had a couple of single releases here and there, but by the mid-1990s, he decided to change his focus slightly.  I hope it didn't have anything to do with the disasterous appearance on the UK show Jukebox Jury in 1990...

Anyway, Glenn still kept his musical roots in place, and he wrote almost 200 songs for various artists around the world.  But instead of performing music in hopes of having another hit single, he decided that he would teach music instead.

And since the mid-1990s, he has pursued a career in education.

He taught hundreds of elementary and middle school aged children in Oahu, Hawaii before becoming Vice Principal of Maryknoll Grade School.  And in April 2015, Medeiros was appointed the President of St. Louis School - a position he began on July 1.

I would say that he's done very well for himself, wouldn't you?

So, maybe his singing career didn't last as long as he would have liked.  But with his passion for music, and making sure that it held a place in school curriculum - well, I have to respect him for that.  I know how important arts programs are to schools, and anyone who supports the implementation of music, art, and drama into public school programs automatically has my seal of approval.

But nothing's gonna change my hate of "Nothing's Gonna Change My Love Fore You".  Sorry, Glenn.

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