Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Wonderful Tonight/Stuck On You Mash Up

This morning, I woke up with a perfectly blended mash-up of Eric Clapton's "Wonderful Tonight" and Lionel Richie's "Stuck On You." It was prompted by last night's re-watching of the Friends episode where Monica and Chandler get engaged; they dance to the Clapton song over the end credits. These songs have always been glued to each other in my head. Maybe it's the relatively similar tempo, key, and song structure, but whenever one of them enters my consciousness, the other one seamlessly follows.

In fact, I often play, in my mind's music studio, the intro guitar riff to "Wonderful Tonight," then go right into the first verse of "Stuck On You," then back into Clapton's riff unconsciously before my brain recognizes that I'm melding the two songs. You know, now that I'm listening close, the guitar riffs actually sound almost identical.

There's a further twist in this mental mash-up of mine: at certain points when these songs have appeared in my head historically, I have also searched my '70s/'80s mental catalogue of radio hits, always with the nagging sensation that there was a third song stuck to "Stuck On You" and "Wonderful Tonight." I'm realizing now, though, as I play these songs side by side, that this "third" song is probably just a mental creation, my brain explaining the cognitive mystery of why these songs also sound like some unidentifiable country tune that I want to attribute to someone like B.J. Thomas or Gordon Lightfoot. As Lionel Richie's image knowingly tips his ten gallon hat to us from the cover photo of his 1984 single, I'm guessing that my brain was just trying to explain why I'm hearing what is essentially a country-pop song written by an R&B legend. Kind of awesome how the brain compensates and creates "realities" that don't exist.

Artist (Stuck On You): Lionel Richie
Year: 1984
Rating: Warm

Artist (Wonderful Tonight): Eric Clapton
Year: 1977
Rating: Cold


  1. Yes, yes, yes! You obviously know that these two songs have always gone together in my head.

  2. Fantastic!

    ...and, darn you for sticking these songs into my head.

  3. Ha! I do my best to pawn off my own earworms onto others: the risk of reading this blog, my friend.

  4. The third song you're thinking of is "Lay Lady Lay" by Bob Dylan. It sounds like "Stuck On You". Of course, so does "Sail On" by The Commodores. (And the verse melody of Bush's "Glycerine" sounds like the guitar riff of "Wonderful Tonight". And the verse chords of "Glycerine" sound like the chords of "Don't Stop Believin'" by Journey or "With Or Without You" by U2.)