Culture Club frontboy Boy George has fallen on tough times, time and time again, since his early-'80s heyday as the world's most beloved gender-bender. But his recent duet with Miike Snow frontman Andrew Wyatt on uberproducer Mark Ronson's Record Collection
album, "Somebody To Love Me," has restored Sir O'Dowd to his former pop glory. The lovely, Motownish track--penned by the Scissor Sisters' Jake Shears, Anthony Rossomando (of the Libertines/Dirty Pretty Things/Klaxons), Cathy Dennis, and Wyatt--is arguably the finest cut on Mark's critically acclaimed album, and George's vocals, which are just a little bit gruffer and world-wearier than they were in his carefree youth, contribute so much pathos to the song.
It's no coincidence that Mark assigned George the tune's line about wanting someone to "see the boy
I once was." When George croons those words, it's a sweet, subtly lump-in-throat moment...which is only augmented by the new "Somebody To Love Me" video, which brilliantly recreates a wild night in the life of Boy George, circa 1982, with a George lookalike (an actress--yes, a woman) portraying the dreadlocked icon in happier times. The effect is so uncannily precise, many viewers have mistaken this clip to consist of cobbled-together, actual grainy VHS archival footage of the Boy himself.
We can't think of a music video in recent memory that has so lovingly and bittersweetly touched on the topic of glorious lost youth, or so perfectly recreated the crazy '80s. But ultimately, Ronson's "Somebody To Love Me" video comes across as a love letter to, and celebration of, Boy George. Mark Ronson just produced the upcoming Duran Duran album (DD's Simon Le Bon and Nick Rhodes also appear on Record Collection
), so let's hope rumors of Mark masterminding a just-announced reunion
by Duran's peers Culture Club are true.
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