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NEWS: 30 years of Jason Donovan

30 years in music: Marking the release of Jason Donovan’s debut single “Nothing Can Divide Us” on 29th August 1988

by Christopher Smith

Incredibly thirty years have now passed since Australian soap star Jason Donovan launched his music career with the single “Nothing Can Divide Us“. With the help of legendary hit makers Mike Stock, Matt Aitken and Pete Waterman, it began a chart career that would yield hit singles for the next five years, including four UK number one’s and a million selling debut album!

Jason’s Neighbours co-star Kylie Minogue had already crossed the great divide from acting to singing and could already boast of 12 months of solid, enormously successful chart success across the world and now Jason wanted a piece of the action. He was signed to S/A/W in-house label PWL Records in the UK and Mushroom Records in Australia, and recorded “Nothing Can Divide Us” at the beginning of August 1988. The song was released on 29th of the month and entered the UK singles chart six days later at No.37 (for fact fans/collectors, it’s label code is PWL 17!). Two weeks later it was sitting at No.5, its peak position there and spent a total of ten weeks on the top 40. It gained a Silver certification in the UK for sales of more than 200,000 copies (actual sales of 240,000 achieved). The song reached No.3 in Australia and also charted an half a dozen countries across Europe.

And so began Jason’s illustrious music career. His next offering was the ‘legendary’ duet with Kylie “Especially For You“, but I’ll leave that for another day…soon! Sadly, unlike the rest of Jason’s back catalogue, “Nothing Can Divide Us” has a somewhat dated feel about it now. Listening to it again thirty years after I, along with many others purchased it on 7″, it has not stood the test of time unlike the rest of the hit singles released after it. However, take a leap back to 1988 with me and spare three minutes forty six seconds of your time to pay homage to Jason’s debut single, the one that started it all and a slice of PWL pop from a time now long in the past.

Catch up with Jason via his official WEBSITE and his official FACEBOOK page

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Written by Christopher Smith

So perhaps you’ve read an article or two that I’ve written and wondered “just who is this character?”! Well I thought maybe it would be time to introduce myself and what I’m all about. Well it’s all about the music! Having been born in the late 1970’s I was heavily influenced by my parent’s love of ‘popular’ music and rock and roll of the 1950’s and 60’s. My Mother always said she should of married Elvis and my father was, and is still, in love with Sandie Shaw! But while my Dad’s tastes stopped in about 1967, my Mum carried on loving music throughout the 70’s, 80’s and beyond. My first memory was playing on the floor whilst my Mother was ironing one day with the radio on, and hearing ABBA’s “Super Trouper” dancing my nappy off to it! Maybe that’s where it all went wrong…?! Having been subjected to all and sundry in my infant years, I finally found my feet in the mid-1980’s and began ‘partying’ to the likes of Culture Club, Stevie Wonder(!), Elkie Brooks and Bananarama to name but a few! The year 1987 would have a profound effect on my listening tastes and from thereon in my life would be dominated with buying and listening to music. Any number of outstanding songs were released and listened to that year, most notably “Nothing’s Gonna Stop Us Now”, “I Wanna Dance With Somebody” and “La Isla Bonita”. That Summer my mind was completely taken over with music and sounds I’d never heard before and I was totally taken in by it all. My father would say “whaaar rubbish you got on naaaaao?” (I’m from Norfolk!) but I was hooked. And it continued so for the rest of the decade and the next. At the beginning of 1988 I ‘met’ my true love and the singer I’ve worshipped more than any other artist or group. You may know of her. She’s from Australia…! Aside from pop music, my tastes are many and varied and continues to grow and expand as I ‘mature’ in age. I’ve always been heavily interested in films and in particular the mechanics of film making and of course film music, so scores and subsequently orchestral music takes up a lot of my tastes and collection. 90’s dance and club tunes also takes up much of the space in my head and I’m surprised my brain has stopped shaking from the years of abuse it took being dragged to nightclubs, often three times a week in my 20’s! I find with each year that passes I regress back to my youth and of course the 1980’s. 80’s music dominates and the lust to see as many 80’s acts and singers play live now is insatiable. I’m still getting into the groove as much as every breath I take, but I’m never gonna give up listening to my heart and pumping up the volume, simply because I LOVE MUSIC…any kind of music!

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