Ahead of the release of his fifth album, The Boombox Ballads, out on August 14th through Moshi Moshi, Sweet Baboo aka Stephen Black has released a video for his latest single, Got to hang on to you, which comes out the same day as his album. Black describes Got to hang on to you as ‘my attempt to write a song like The Boys Are Back In Town by Thin Lizzy”, even though the song’s lyrics, “All I want to do is play you Northern Soul records, while you’re lying next to me until late in the night”, suggest a different inspiration.
“It’s a shame really, because we first played it live in 2013 and then the film Northern Soul came out so everyone will think I’m copying that, but I’m not”, he maintains. “The truth is, I’m not even a massive Northern Soul fan. My special subject on Mastermind is the complete works of Gorky’s Zygotic Mynci. But one night, my wife and I listened to Blowing Up My Mind by The Exciters, and I decided to write a song about it. Any references in the song, like [legendary Northern Soul mecca] Wigan Casino, are a product of Wikipedia and Google”.
The song itself has this rather lovely indie lilt to it, the descending backing vocals and little country funk guitar lines that appear between the changes giving it this rather bitter-sweet quality to it. More than that its little little story, full of love and humour and spiky wordplay, all wrapped up in a delightful little pop song.
Where would we be without Sweet Baboo. Check the video, here