Mouth (song)

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Single by Merril Bainbridge
from the album The Garden
Released 24 October 1994[1]
Format CD
Recorded 001 Studios, Carlton, Victoria, 1994
Genre Pop
Length 3:25
Label Gotham, Arista, Universal
Writer(s) Merril Bainbridge
Producer(s) Siew
Merril Bainbridge singles chronology
"Under the Water"
Alternative cover
The cover of the single released in the United States

"Mouth" is a pop song written by Merril Bainbridge, and produced by Siew for Bainbridge's debut album The Garden (1995). It was released as the album's first single in October 1994 in Australia,[1] then was re-issued on 13 March 1995. It became her biggest hit to date peaking at number-one on the Australian ARIA Singles Chart for six consecutive weeks.[2] The song also became a Top 5 hit in the United States. Filipino-Australian singer Anne Curtis covered the song on her 2011 album Annebisyosa.

Content and music videos[edit]

The song, a playful and suggestive tune, was often referred to having something related to sexual themes. Bainbridge stated that "(Any sexuality on "Mouth" was) not deliberate - it was definitely not a sexual song. It's just honest - about a relationship, how you feel in a relationship. Sometimes you feel you're in control and the next thing, you're insecure - it's the role playing thing. To me, it's not about straight up sexuality. It doesn't bother me if people connect with that, because obviously it's there, but it wasn't something I was aware of".[3]

There were two music videos for the song, both directed by one of Gotham Records founders Ross Fraser.[4] The first video is a simple video with no plot, shot in both black and white and colour. Scenes included Bainbridge flirting with a man in a car and singing to camera wearing a black lingerie dress with a red heart in the middle of it, intercut with shots of another man's mouth. This video was released in Australia. The second video is in black and white and is just the footage of Bainbridge in the car kissing the man for the whole video, looking at the camera three times. It was filmed along Yarra Boulevard in the Melbourne suburb of Kew.[5] This video as well as the first, was released around the world. The first music video can be found on the special edition of The Garden as a CD Rom.

Chart performance[edit]

It was first released in Australia in 1994 but disappeared quickly due to lack of interest and airplay, becoming lost in the annual flood of releases that occur around Christmas. The song was repackaged and reissued in 1995 and with the help of airplay and more promo it became the biggest song of her career. It debuted on the Australian ARIA Singles Chart at number sixty,[6] and during its ninth week on the chart[7] it reached the number-one position and stayed there for six consecutive weeks.[2] This feat gave Bainbridge the accolade of having longest running number one by an Australian female in the 1990s. "Mouth" spent a total of twenty-six weeks in the charts,[8] was the fourth highest selling single for 1995,[8] and was accredited platinum by ARIA.[8] The song was nominated for five ARIA Awards in 1995 - "Single of the Year", "Best Female Artist", "Best New Talent", "Breakthrough Artist - Single" and "Best Pop Release" but failed to win.[9]

The song was released in the United States on 20 August 1996 and debuted on the Billboard Hot 100 at number sixty-seven and eventually peaked at number four. Success in the American music industry was, and still is, a relatively rare occurrence for Australian artists and the success of "Mouth" in the U.S. gave Bainbridge superstar status in her home country for a period. Ross Fraser stated that he thought she would have had more chance of success in Europe and what happened in the U.S. came as a surprise.[10] The song spent a total of thirty weeks in the U.S. charts and was the thirty-seventh highest selling single for 1996. It was accredited gold by RIAA selling 600,000 copies around the U.S.[11][12] After the success of the song, Bainbridge toured the U.S. and during that tour she played at Madison Square Garden in New York with Sheryl Crow. The song did not enjoy the same success in the UK, peaking at fifty-one in the charts during its eight-week run in the top two hundred. The song also went top five in Japan, Hong Kong and the Philippines.[13]

Track listing[edit]

Charts and certifications[edit]

Preceded by
"Back for Good" by Take That
Australia ARIA number one single
21 May 1995 - 25 June 1995
Succeeded by
"Have You Ever Really Loved a Woman?" by Bryan Adams
Preceded by
"Head over Feet" by Alanis Morissette
Canada RPM number one single
13 January 1997
Succeeded by
"How Bizarre" by OMC

Release history[edit]

Region Date Label Format Catalogue
Australia 24 October 1994[1] Gotham Records CD 74321-23641-2
Japan 21 February 1996 BMG Japan CD BVCP-8822
United States 20 August 1996 Universal Records CD 74321431012
United Kingdom 11 November 1996 Arista Records CD 74321431012


  1. ^ a b c "New Release Summary – Product Available from: 24/10/94 (from The ARIA Report Issue No. 245)". Retrieved 5 May 2016. 
  2. ^ a b c " > Merril Bainbridge – Mouth (song)". Hung Medien. Retrieved 5 May 2016. 
  3. ^ "Merril Bainbridge - Bob Gajarsky".]. Retrieved 8 December 2006.
  4. ^ "Music video director". mvdbase. Retrieved 21 December 2006. 
  5. ^ "Google Maps". Retrieved 16 October 2013. 
  6. ^ "The ARIA Australian Top 100 Singles Chart – Week Ending 26 Mar 1995". Retrieved 5 May 2016. 
  7. ^ Ryan, Gavin (2011). Australia's Music Charts 1988-2010. Mt. Martha, VIC, Australia: Moonlight Publishing. 
  8. ^ a b c d e "The ARIA Australian Top 100 Singles 1995". Retrieved 5 May 2016. 
  9. ^ "ARIA Award nominations". ARIA Awards. Retrieved 16 December 2006. 
  10. ^ "The Making of Merril page 4". Retrieved 11 July 2007.
  11. ^ a b "American single certifications – Merril Bainbridge – Mouth". Recording Industry Association of America. Retrieved 8 May 2015.  If necessary, click Advanced, then click Format, then select Single, then click SEARCH
  12. ^ a b "Best-Selling Records of 1996". Billboard. BPI Communications Inc. 109 (3): 61. 18 January 1997. ISSN 0006-2510. Retrieved 7 May 2015. 
  13. ^ "The Making of Merril page 3". Retrieved 11 July 2007.
  14. ^ "Image : RPM Weekly - Library and Archives Canada". Retrieved July 4, 2016. 
  15. ^ "Offizielle Deutsche Charts > Merril Bainbridge – Mouth (single)" (in German). GfK Entertainment. Retrieved 5 May 2016. 
  16. ^ " – Merril Bainbridge – Mouth". Top 40 Singles.
  17. ^ "Official Charts > Merril Bainbridge". The Official UK Charts Company. Retrieved 5 May 2016. 
  18. ^ a b c d "Merril Bainbridge - Artist Chart History". Allmusic. Retrieved 8 December 2006.
  19. ^ "Longbored Surfer - 1996". Retrieved 7 November 2014. 
  20. ^ "Longbored Surfer - 1997". Retrieved 7 November 2014.