“New Song” is Howard Jones’ first solo single, recorded in September 1983. The single eventually reached number seven on the UK Singles Chart. The single spent 20 straight weeks at the top of the UK singles chart, making it one of the biggest-selling single of all time. On the UK single, both the lyrics and the instrumental are printed on a white A-sided label, with the other credits appearing on the B Side. In the U.S., both the UK and U.S. versions include the same credits on the right.
This song is one of several hits that feature Jones performing lead vocals. Other examples include “Bicycle Race” from the album Please! and “I’m Forever Blowing Bubbles” from the News of the World album. “New Song” was later replaced by “Landmark in My Heart” on the final track of the same album. It then became a major hit in the U.S., selling more than one million copies in the first week alone.
It wasn’t long before other artists began to take interest in the song, which was quickly becoming known as a “rockabilly” song. Artists like Charlie Feathers and Rose got behind the new song. “New Song,” which is still ranked as a high in the UK, has also appeared in movies and other media, including a cover by The O’Jays on their hit album Nothing But the Best. A movie version was even made for Disney featuring Howard Jones. There are even New Song T-shirts and posters available for sale.
Jones went on to record several more songs that were considered more rockabilly. These tracks, like “Love in the Air” and “My Old School”, haven’t really reached the same level of popularity as New Song, but there’s no doubt they have their fan base. Many of the artists who have covered the original “New Moon” have done so because of their own personal experiences with the song. Other versions have been covered by numerous artists, most notably Don McClean.
One can only imagine how many chart-topping hits and music videos the New Moon version will receive over the years. It is certain to be a favorite for many music fans. The original recording has been featured in hundreds of films, including the award-winning film classic What Happens in Vegas. There are even children’s songs based on it that children love to sing along to. Even the lyrics have been given a colorful interpretation.
For those familiar with the original, there will be nothing to surprise them with the new version. For those not so familiar, it will be an interesting change of pace. Either way, it will surely be worth listening to. The new version is due to be available on March 8th, but you can already take a listen online.