The Pursuit of Happiness (band)

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The Pursuit of Happiness (TPOH)
Origin Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Genres power pop, college rock
Years active 1985–present
Labels Chrysalis, Mercury, Iron
Associated acts Universal Honey
Members Moe Berg
Dave Gilby
Kris Abbott
Brad Barker
Renee Suchy
Past members Jennifer Foster
Rachel Oldfield
Tamara Amabile
Natasha Amabile
Johnny Sinclair
Leslie Stanwyck

The Pursuit of Happiness is a Canadian power pop[1] group perhaps best noted for their song "I'm an Adult Now."[2]

Beginnings[edit]

Led by Edmonton, Alberta singer and songwriter Moe Berg,[3] The Pursuit of Happiness were launched in 1985 when Berg and drummer Dave Gilby moved to Toronto, Ontario.[4] They soon met bassist Johnny Sinclair and formed the band, adding sisters Tamara and Natasha Amabile as backing vocalists. Their debut single, "I'm an Adult Now," quickly became a smash hit across Canada in 1986, sparked by a low-budget video which made it onto the Canadian music video channel MuchMusic.[citation needed]

The band signed with manager Jeff Rogers (Swell) in 1986. However, the band did not immediately sign to a record label, but instead released another independent single, "Killed by Love," in 1988. The Amabile sisters left the band that year, and were replaced by Kris Abbott and Leslie Stanwyck.

Chrysalis Records[edit]

In 1988, they signed to Chrysalis Records. Their debut album, Love Junk, was produced by Todd Rundgren and released that year. "I'm an Adult Now" was re-recorded and released as a single again, making it to the charts a second time. In January 1989 the song peaked at No. 6 on the Billboard's Alternative songs chart.[2] It was followed by "She's So Young" and "Hard To Laugh." The album sold over 100,000 copies in Canada, was certified platinum.[4]

Stanwyck and Sinclair left, going on to form Universal Honey, after completing the band's follow-up with Rundgren, 1990's One Sided Story. That album, led by the hit singles "New Language" and "Two Girls in One," did not sell as well as Love Junk, but was still a significant hit for the band. Starting with the tour for the album, Brad Barker and Susan Murumets joined the lineup. Rachel Oldfield replaced Murumets in 1992.

Mercury Records[edit]

The band then went through difficulties with their record label, but signed to Mercury Records for 1993's The Downward Road. Despite some success with the single "Cigarette Dangles" (the video appeared on Beavis and Butt-head), label troubles continued, and the band recorded their next two albums for the now-defunct Canadian label Iron Music. Oldfield left the band in 1995, and was replaced by Jennifer Foster, who in turn left the following year and was replaced by Renee Suchy.

Canadian Indies Hall of Fame[edit]

Although the group never officially disbanded, after 1996 they did not record as a unit until 2005, when they recorded two new tracks for a greatest hits compilation. The most recent lineup has played a few concerts over the last few years, culminating in a series of shows over the last week of 2005 which ended with a New Year's Eve concert in London, Ontario. In March 2006, they were inducted into the Canadian Indies Hall of Fame.

Discography[edit]

Singles[edit]

Release date Title Chart positions
Canada
RPM TOP 100
Australia Album
September 1986 "I'm An Adult Now"
(Original recording)
#35 - Non-LP singles
Both later re-recorded
for Love Junk
February 1988 "Killed By Love" - -
January 1989 "She's So Young" #20 - Love Junk
April 1989 "Beautiful White" #47 -
July 1989 "Hard To Laugh" - -
January 1990 "I'm An Adult Now"
(Re-recording)
- #39
May 1990 "Two Girls in One" #30 - One Sided Story
August 1990 "New Language" #42 -
February 1993 "Cigarette Dangles" #51 - The Downward Road
May 1993 "Pressing Lips" - -
July 1995 "Young And in Love" #77 - Where's the Bone
August 1995 "Gretzky Rocks" - -
January 1996 "Kalendar" - -
April 1996 "I Should Know" #42 -
September 1996 "She's The Devil" #56 - The Wonderful World of
The Pursuit of Happiness
January 1997 "Carmalina" #52 -
October 1984 "When Doves Cry" - - When We Ruled: The Best of
The Pursuit of Happiness

Albums[edit]

References[edit]

Featured on[edit]

  • Beavis and Butt-Head Season 2, Episode 7 "Customers Suck" - Cigarette Dangles (Music Video)

External links[edit]