Susanna Hoffs – My Side of the Bed
A certain type of person will thrill with anticipation when they look at a song’s credits and see the names Tom Kelly and Billy Steinberg, because they know that unless things have gone horribly, horribly wrong they are in for three and a bit minutes of pop perfection. These are the guys who wrote, amongst many other classics, Like a Virgin, True Colors, So Emotional, Eternal Flame and the greatest power ballad of all time, Alone by Heart.
So if you’re, say, Susanna Hoffs and you’ve just gone solo from The Bangles, you would probably be jolly pleased that Columbia Records has enough faith in you to stick you in the studio with the aforementioned pair because let’s be honest, they probably don’t come cheap. This is the gem that they and Susanna came up with:
No-one does sexy yet vulnerable quite like Susanna, and My Side of the Bed is a masterclass in sexy vulnerability carried along by the jangliest of jangly guitars. Was there ever a better come hither than “We all need to be comforted. You can get yours…on my side of the bed”? I don’t think so.
Now, you’re probably thinking “well what’s the difference between this and a Bangles record?” and the answer is not a lot really, and thank goodness for that. Unfortunately for Susanna, early 1991 was not a good time for guitar pop. Scan the top 40 on the week that Susanna crept in at no.67 and you will find an awful lot of faceless dance music, The Simpsons and only The Railway Children and Morrissey representing the jangle. So despite a primetime performance on TV’s Wogan, My Side of the Bed made very little impact in the UK. The Bangles eventually came back in 2003 but by then almost no-one cared because fourteen years is a long time in music and by then we had Girls Aloud. Such is pop.
Entered chart: 24/02/1991
Chart peak: 44
Weeks on chart: 4
Who could sing this today and have a hit? Kelly Clarkson! Kelly Clarkson! Kelly Clarkson!