Lisa Lougheed

TV THEME SONGS: ‘Run With Us’ – Lisa Lougheed

“You can run with us,
We’ve got everything you need”

C’mon children of the 1970’s and 80’s, you MUST remember The Raccoons?! Those lovable cartoon friends that lived in Evergreen Forest, Bert, Ralph, Melissa and their dog, Schaeffer were a Saturday morning must between 1985 and 1992 as they constantly battled with wealthy business-aardvark, Cyril Sneer and his henchpigs. They even befriended his son, Cedric and his girlfriend, Sophia, often enlisting them to put a stop to his evil father’s escapades.

One of the most important aspects of the show was the music, with its uplifting 80’s new wave, pop-rock themes and more often than not, a song to accompany a montage halfway into each episode. The score was written by the show’s creator, Kevin Gillis along with composer John Stroll. From series one, apart from the opening instrumental piece, they wrote any number of songs, most of them recorded by Canadian singer Luba (born Lubomyra Kowalchyk in 1958) together with the song which would become most synonymous with the show, “Run With Us”, with singer Steve Lunt, who also contributed to the lyrics.

Other songs on the soundtrack were recorded by Leo Sayer and even 70’s Country singer Rita Coolidge, who had more recently recorded the theme song from the 1983 Bond film, ‘Octopussy’, “All Time High”. For reasons best known only to Gillis, Steve Lunt was dropped after the first series and the song was re-recorded by 16 year old American dancer, Lisa Lougheed, who the song is best associated with. Lisa eventually re-recorded all of Lunt’s earlier tracks, and the album, “Evergreen Nights”, was issued in 1987. “Run With Us” was released as a single independently, but neither, surprisingly, did anything on the charts.

A video was made for “Run With Us”, which saw Lisa dancing in the streets and alleyways with her gang of friends, in the hope that the song would be welcomed by wider audiences away from the cartoon. From series four in 1988, Lisa joined the cast of the show as a new character, Lisa Raccoon(!), was created, enabling yet more songs to be featured and even sung by the character herself! After “Evergreen Nights” and The Raccoons came to an end, Lougheed recorded two further albums in the 1990’s, neither of which were at all successful. She generally slipped into obscurity soon after, her last known appearance was providing backing vocals for Celine Dion and R Kelly’s 1998 number one, “I’m Your Angel”.

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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!