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When McDonald's Girl was first released in England in 1982, it was officially banned by the BBC for mentioning a commercial tradename. This effectively derailed my recording career when CBS immediately thereafter dropped me from the label. But I'd always loved the song and always felt it was a pure pop hit. So, it's come as only a small surprise that this spunky little song keeps fighting its way into the popular music scene, proving itself over and over again in strange and unexpected ways.
graphic courtesy Brian Borowski
Barenaked Ladies In 1992 a then unknown band out of Canada with the unlikely name of Barenaked Ladies recorded a live version of McDonald's Girl which went on to become a regional hit on Toronto's alternative rock radio station CFNY. The rap bridge is their own creation and always makes me laugh. Although the 'Ladies' have never recorded a major label studio version of it, it was always a crowd favorite at their live gigs and MP3 and RealAudio files of their live radio version are floating around on Barenaked Ladies sites all over the net. Maybe one day they'll re-record it and release it as a single, so I can finally buy that riding mower I have my eye on.
The Blenders Then, last summer, while we were touring around England, I got email from the head of Universal Records for Scandanavia informing me that another cover version of McDonald's Girl, by a band from Minneapolis, MN called the Blenders, had just shot to #1 on the airplay charts in Norway. These guys do a beautiful vocal treatment of the song. I'd had to wait 16 years to prove it, but I'd always known it was a chart topping single. It felt pretty good. (even if there are only 5 million people in Norway!)
The Blenders - Dance MixWhen I first heard this dance mix of it, I fell down laughing hysterically, rolling around on the floor. It sounds amazing and was a total surprise.
Gimble in the Wabe / University of Michigan Apparently, ever since the Blenders performed the song at an a'capella convention, college groups around the country have been singing their own versions. Here's another cover of McDonald's Girl arranged and performed by a 16 piece a'capella singing group from the University of Michigan. They're really good and the song sounds great. This version totally cracks me up.
Dean's Original Version Here's the original, just to compare. I still kinda like it best, but I really do get great pleasure out of hearing other people's versions. The original track is off my third album Rumpled Romeo, a totally romantic pop album filled with tunes of teen love and adolescent angst. The reissued CD also contains 4 bonus tracks: Nookie in the Mail, I Didn't Mean to Make You Cry, Follow Your Heart and The Lakelands. It's a neat record.
To order the original, click here: ORDER Rumpled Romeo CD
To hear more Dean tracks in RealAudio click here: Hear More RealAudio.
Questions, comments, and suggestions to Dean