Song Of The Week: “Sea Of Love” by Phil Phillips

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAHow to woo a maiden fair in two simple steps:

Step 1 — Compose a song for the comely lass.

Step 2 — Make it one of the biggest hits of the year and an all-time classic love song.

It’s just that easy!

You can ask Jean Phillip Baptiste (who had the nom de chanson Phil Phillips bestowed upon him) — he followed these steps back in 1958.

phil phillips 2While bellhopping for a hotel in Louisiana, Phillips (as we’ll now refer to him) fell for a young lady who worked at the same establishment. She wouldn’t give him a second glance, and so, like thousands of dudes since the dawn of time, since the first cave man banged two sticks together in rhythm with his beating heart, this smitten kitten decided to write a song for the object of his affection. He would compose a tender and tranquil tune about a “Sea Of Love,” and together they would sail away into the sunset. Romantic? You betcha.

As fate would have it, while practicing the song, Phillips was overheard by a guy who knew a guy who owned a small record label. “Record Guy” liked what he heard, sent Phillips into the studio, and pressed up a few hundred singles. They sold out in Louisiana, and this brought “Sea Of Love to the attention of Guy #3 (aka BIG Record Guy), who bought the rights for the nationally distributed Mercury label.

Next thing you know, “Sea Of Love” hits #2 on the pop charts, starts getting played on jukeboxes and at weddings for years to come, and three decades later becomes an unexpected smash for Robert Plant and Jimmy Page as The Honeydrippers.

Unfortunately, Phil Phillips didn’t get the girl (C’mon, girl! What’s a guy gotta do?), but he gets serious style points for the effort.

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