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.