Boy Meets Girl is George Merrill and Shannon Rubicam. Now they are BoyMeetsGirl Music (BMGM) because, according to their website, the original name now brings up so-called dating sites and two other bands on internet searches. They will always be Boy Meets Girl to me. They started as an ‘80s singer-songwriter pop duo. They are most known for writing two of Whitney Houston’s greatest hits, “How Will I Know” and “I Wanna Dance With Somebody (Who Loves Me),” singing back-up on Deniece Williams biggest, “Let’s Hear It For The Boy,” and their own, “Waiting For A Star To Fall.” Just two weeks ago “WFASTF” was included in a list on the MTV Buzzworthy Blog regarding standout sax solos in reference to Lady Gaga’s “The Edge of Glory.”
They were lovers, spouses, and divorcees. Through all of it they were and still remain friends and will forever be creative collaborators. Every emotion of every era came out in their music. Simply put, they are darn good pop writers. I fell in love with their ode to love, their breakthrough sophomore release, Reel Life. I saw “WFASTF” on Casey Kasem’s American Top 40 on TV in middle school, asked my parents to get me the full release, and wore that tape out. I still have it and have listened to it from time-to-time as the years have passed and I’m listening to it now as I write this.
There was just something about how sweet their pop sound was and how that combined with the intertwining of the feminine and the masculine voice, their melodies and harmony, and the purity of their love that came through their music. ‘Nuff said.
BMGM were gracious enough to provide me a song (plus one) to stream with each part of this interview. So, Part 3 will contain two songs and one of them is very special. Stay tuned for that.
For now, listen to “This Chronic Pain” from their last release, 2003′s The Wonderground. George intimated via email that he “loves the guitars on this one.”
Click the first pic to go to their official site and second, at the end of Part 2 of the interview, to get to their Twitter Account.
6. Tell me about the unreleased RCA album, New Dream, which you released via your website in 2004. What happened with RCA? Why did you decide to release it yourselves and why did it take 13 years?
Shannon: Just before we were to release New Dream, RCA/BMG went through an upper-tier management shake-up in which our champions at the company were let go and, unfortunately, we and about seventy other bands were abruptly cut from the roster in a matter of just a few days. They called it “getting the axe” and that’s exactly what it felt like to us. At the time, we were not free to release the album ourselves unless we bought the masters, which we couldn’t afford. There was no internet to speak of, no digital presence, or independent marketing opportunities like exist today, so New Dream sat in a vault for a very long time. When the internet began to flourish and we were up and running with our own website, George and I requested that RCA/BMG reissue the album. They agreed to our request, so we then bought a batch of the reissued CDs to sell from our site.
7. Talk about your last release, 2003’s The Wonderground. As such a big fan of Reel Life, why should I check it out?
Shannon: I like this question. The Wonderground is quite different in tone and tempo than Reel Life and I’ve even read a few Amazon reviews from disgruntled Reel Life fans who didn’t much care for The Wonderground. I understand that they were hoping for more music in a vein similar to Reel Life and were disappointed with our change in musical direction. However, The Wonderground represents what we were personally experiencing at the time – divorce – and there is simply no way to put a happy face on such a wrenching life event. We expressed musically what was closest to our hearts and trusted that the songs would find resonance somewhere, which I think they have. The songs are, for the most part, quieter, more introspective, tender…so, if you’re curious about that aspect of BoyMeetsGirl Music, then by all means, we encourage a listen.
George: Check it out, just because we are most proud of this album. We recorded it at my house, invited other musicians in, and I think it was a great experience for us all. There is a tender and raw quality that I like.
Shannon: George did a beautiful job of recording and mixing. I love the sonic qualities he created on The Wonderground.
8. Will there ever be another BoyMeetsGirl Music release?
George: I really love as yet unrecorded songs that we have compiled in the years since The Wonderground. Why record? Because there are some gems that would be so much fun to share with everyone! Why not record? Can’t think of a good reason.
9. Career highlight? Individually and as BoyMeetsGirl Music?
George: I’ll pick one, but I’m flooded with wonderful pictures. Ha! Grocery shopping in Idyllwild, California in 1986 and hearing the New Christy Minstrels sing “How Will I Know” on the overhead sound system, very exciting; oh, singing “Too Much, Too Little, Too Late” with Deniece Williams (in way over my head!) at the Greek Theatre Los Angeles. And, as Boy Meets Girl, I’d say meeting Dick Clark on American Bandstand.
Shannon: One warm summer day when the windows were open, a car went by outside and as it passed I heard “How Will I Know” with a Doppler effect. Such a small moment in time, but I felt it happened just for me to celebrate.
10. One thing you’d change or do differently?
Shannon: I always wish I had been a more savvy marketer of our music. I see some young artists today who are very much a part of the decision-making process and take a very knowledgeable, active hand in their careers. This is admirable, even necessary to longevity and success. Kudos to them and that’s my only real regret. Other than that, my life has been an interesting ride so far and I’m a wiser person for the many mistakes I’ve made.
George: Well put, Shannon – much to admire in the all-around talent that’s evident now at the top of the charts.
To be concluded TOMORROW…