Friday, May 4, 2012

Spin the Bottle

This week's edition of Retro Friday features the artist Juliana Hatfield, and the song "Spin the Bottle."

In keeping with last week's Reality Bites movie theme, I have picked another song this week from the movie's soundtrack.

Juliana Hatfield was born on July 27, 1967 in Wiscasset, Maine. She is an American guitarist/singer-songwriter as well as an author from the Boston area. She has a folk/indie rock sound, and has been a member of such bands as Blake Babies and Some Girls.

Juliana first acquired a love of rock music during the 1970s, after a babysitter introduced her to the music of the Los Angeles punk rock band X. This introduction proved to be a life-changing experience for Juliana. She also listened to the music of more mainstream artists such as Olivia Newton-John and The Police, which may explain the contrast in her later music between sweet, melodic "pop" songs and more hard rock oriented music. Ever since her high school years she pictured herself as a singer. She sang in school choirs and briefly played in a cover band called The Squids, which primarily played Rush songs.

Hatfield achieved alterna-rock stardom in 1993 with the release of Become What You Are, which was recorded under the group name The Juliana Hatfield Three. Several songs from the album received regular airplay on major North American rock stations, most notably the song "My Sister" which became the biggest hit of her career, reaching the #1 spot on the Modern Rock Tracks chart, and the song's video become a staple on MTV.

My all time favorite Juliana Hatfield song, "Spin the Bottle," was used in the soundtrack of the Hollywood film Reality Bites (1994). Hatfield also made the cover of Spin magazine. Hatfield's popularity coincided with the success of multiple other female alternative rock musicians in the mid 1990's. In 1997 Juliana was invited to tour with the first ever Lilith Fair, a prominent all-female rock festival founded by singer Sarah McLachlan. Hatfield was featured in a number of girls' magazines at this time and was embraced by many pre-teen and teenage girls as a role model due to the positive way she addressed serious issues faced by young women in her songs and interviews. When reflecting on this time period she says: "I was never comfortable with the attention. I thought it had come too soon. I hadn’t earned it yet."

I think this song has a very catchy tune to it, plus it is a kind of dark "spin" on a game that is a party of many teenagers right of passage. It's that awkward moment when you get your chance with someone who you really like ... and try to brace yourself for elation or a total and complete let down. But really, that is almost everything in life, right?

Here it is, for your listening pleasure, "Spin The Bottle" ... I hope you enjoy it as well!

And as a bonus, here is the song "My Sister!"


1 comment:

  1. I'm glad you finally provided another Retro Friday article! I know you're busy, so thank you for taking the time to write one.

    This is another group, in a long line of them, that I'm not familiar with. Thanks for your 80's insite.