Together in Electric Dreams
|"Together in Electric Dreams"|
|Single by Giorgio Moroder and Philip Oakey|
|from the album Philip Oakey & Giorgio Moroder and Electric Dreams soundtrack|
|Format||7", 12", CD single|
|Recorded||Musicland Studios Munich & Powerplay Studios Zurich, 1984|
|Genre||Synthpop, New Wave|
|Giorgio Moroder and Philip Oakey singles chronology|
"Together in Electric Dreams" is a song by the British singer and composer Philip Oakey and Italian composer and producer Giorgio Moroder. It was written by Oakey and Moroder and recorded for the original soundtrack of the 1984 film Electric Dreams.
It later formed part of the joint album Philip Oakey & Giorgio Moroder, released in 1985. Released as a single in the UK in September 1984 it proved a major commercial success, actually eclipsing the original film it was intended to promote. It reached No.3 in the UK Singles Chart, staying in the charts for 13 weeks. It would prove to be the only hit of the brief Oakey/Moroder partnership. It was finally released as a single in the United States in 1988.
The film Electric Dreams was to be director Steve Barron's first full feature film. Previously Barron had made a name for himself conceiving and directing a number of innovative music videos during the early 1980s. His biggest success had been directing the music video for The Human League's "Don't You Want Me" in 1981 which helped the single become number one in the UK and U.S.
For the film Electric Dreams Barron wanted to emulate the huge success of the film Flashdance a year earlier. Flashdance had used the electronic music of Giorgio Moroder, so Barron enlisted Moroder as director of music, who wrote most of the score. Barron wanted the end credits to roll to "an emotional" song in the same way as Flashdance had done.
Moroder wrote "Together in Electric Dreams" which was to be a male solo vocal, when he asked who Barron would like to sing the lyrics, Barron immediately thought of his former associate Philip Oakey.
When Oakey recorded the song it was over very quickly, after the first full recording Moroder told Oakey that the first take was "good enough, as first time is always best". Oakey who thought he was just rehearsing insisted on doing another take. Moroder let him but to this day Oakey is convinced that Moroder still used the first take on the final production. Originally released to advertise the film, "Together in Electric Dreams" quickly overshadowed the original film and became a hit single in its own right.
Oakey states that it is ironic that a track that took literally ten minutes to record would become a worldwide hit, while some of his Human League material that took over a year to record didn't.
The promotional video was originally designed to promote the film Electric Dreams not the song, and this was how most U.S. viewers would see it. In the UK where the original film was a flop, the promotional video was perceived to be a music video first, and often erroneously a Human League video.
Like many film soundtrack promos, the video splices key scenes from the film with footage of Philip Oakey. In addition, other promotional scenes were created especially for the video: an Electric Dreams signboard is seen behind Oakey twice, the actual movie poster is seen behind him on the freeway and the computer from the film is seen relaxing on the beach. Oakey is seen being driven around purportedly San Francisco (but was actually Los Angeles) singing the lyrics. The video would famously finish with a sock puppet parody of the MGM Lion on a TV screen, on a beach.
Giorgio Moroder himself makes a cameo appearance in the video as the boss of the radio station taken over by the computer.
|UK Singles (Official Charts Company)||3|
|UK Singles (Official Charts Company)||46|
In the media
- It is played on the fictional radio station Flash FM in the video game Grand Theft Auto: Vice City Stories.
- It is the theme to the BBC 2009 show Electric Dreams, where a family has to live in the 1970s, 80s and 90s, with only the technology available at that time.
- It is used in a commercial by EDF Energy.
- British sitcom Miranda series 3 finale episode "A Brief Encounter" featured the song in the episode and credits.
Association with The Human League
Philip Oakey is the lead singer of the British synthpop band The Human League. As a result of which "Together in Electric Dreams" is often erroneously credited as a Human League single. It was also released at the height of the band's international fame and success; because of this popularity the single has been included in the band's various Greatest Hits compilation albums released later.
Although the Human League have never recorded their own version, due to the song's popularity the band frequently play a unique Human League version when they perform live, often as an encore. The Human League version differs considerably from the Giorgio Moroder produced original in that it has a longer, more dramatic intro and female backing vocals by Susan Ann Sulley and Joanne Catherall, which are now as prominent as Oakey's lead.
- The song was covered in 2001 by Lali Puna for the album Reproductions: Songs of The Human League.
- The song was covered by 5 separate artists for the 2007 album Together in Electric Dreams released by Sunday Best Recordings.
- An acoustic cover version of the song by Darren Hanlon was recorded and broadcast by Australian JJJ Radio as part of the station's "Like A Version" program on June 25, 2010.
- Mechanical Black produced a cover of the song in 2011.
- The song was featured in the short film "Here's To Big Bear" and was sung live in a truck cab by some of the actors.