When I was first learning
how to sing, I'd have to pull out my 45 RPM & 33 RPM collection.
It was my small treasure.
In fact, I still have ALL of those records. They're carrying many years of dust now. Anyway, I sang every ... single ... day. Music was my first love. I'd start my vocal session by singing a Barry Manilow hit. You know, in order to warm up the vocal chords. It's a no brainer. I had to start with Barry! Next, I'd throw in a tune from Bread. I'd add a touch of the Bee Gees. Then, I'd get my groove on with Kool &the Gang. Mix in some Blue Öyster Cult, and I'd say that I was just about ready to sing for a few hours without a break. Somewhere, mixed within my melting pot of music, Little River Band was also a staple for me. I completely enjoyed singing several songs by the Australian group, but two songs always fulfilled my necessary dose for the Little River Band. One was "Reminiscing" and the other song was "Cool Change". For some reason, "Cool Change" has always been a "summer song" for me. Maybe the lyrics have something to do with that. It's a song that always took me to a far away place ... "sailing on the cool and bright clear waters". I think, because I was a young student, like most students, I really looked forward to summer vacation. "Cool Change" portrays a solitary place of renewal, away from the crazy, stress-filled, anxiety of every day life.
With the sun, typically enveloping our Northwest August, "Cool Change" brings me back to the days when I rode my motorcross bike (which had one mag wheel that my parents let me buy - The boys who read this will know what I mean). I'd be shirtless, only draped by a towel over my shoulders. I'd make my way to the local watering hole. (I didn't know how lucky I was at that time. Our neighborhood actually had an outdoor pool to enjoy, within an entirely residential area.) During the summer, no thoughts cluttered my brain. I was so carefree then. (Wait, isn't that a lyric?) I just rode my bike, in no particular hurry, the summer breeze dancing across my face. I loved the feeling. I'd close my eyes when I coasted down a hill.
I remember how fun it was to see friends in the pool, people from the neighborhood, simply enjoying the warmth of the sun. Simply. After a few hours of cannonballs, and head-first dives, from the diving board, when the sun began to tire, exhausted from spreading the warmth needed to keep the pool warm, I remember the pine needles and other debris, from the surrounding trees, floating, as the water became darker, and colder, giving us frolickers the sign that it was almost time for dinner. I'd simply jump out of the pool, dry off what I could, said a simple, "See ya tomorrow", got on my bike, and slowly pedalled, leaving a trail of pool water to mark my path home ... those simple, carefree days.
"Cool Change" is a song by Australian pop group Little River Band, which was the second single from their sixth album, First Under the Wire. Released in August 1979, "Cool Change", did not reach the Australian Kent Music Report Singles Chart top 50. It was released in the United States (US) in 1980 on the Capitol Records label and reached the top 10 on the Billboard Hot 100. In May 2001 "Cool Change", written by lead singer, Glenn Shorrock, was selected by Australasian Performing Right Association (APRA) as one of the Top 30 Australian songs of all time.
Australian soft rock group, Mississippi, had toured the United Kingdom (UK) in 1974 but failed to make an impact on the music scene. While in the UK they met ex-The Masters Apprentices bass guitarist and now manager, Glenn Wheatley who was due to return to Australia. Also in UK was Glenn Shorrock (ex-The Twilights) who had attempted a solo career there. Mississippi returned to Australia in 1975 with Shorrock joining on lead vocals and songwriting, they were managed by Wheatley and soon changed their name to Little River Band. Other original members were guitarist-vocalists Graeham Goble and Beeb Birtles, lead guitarist Ric Formosa, bass guitarist Roger McLachlan and drummer Derek Pellicci. They first toured US in 1976, and had top ten hits there with "Reminiscing" (No. 3), and "Lady" (No. 10) in 1978 from Sleeper Catcher. First Under the Wire was their sixth album and was released in August 1979 by EMI in Australia and Capitol Records in US. It was the band's first and last top ten album on the US Billboard 200. The album also featured another top 10 Billboard Hot 100 hit with "Lonesome Loser" as the first single released ahead of the album in June.
For some reason, "Cool Change" has always been a "summer song"