Today’s POP RESCUE is the 1988 debut Mica Paris album called So Good. But is it?
Mica is joined on this album by the legendary saxophonist Courtney Pine (no obligatory 80s saxophone here!), and Will Downing.
The album opens with that Courtney Pine collaboration, and second single, Like Dreamers Do, and Courtney is straight in there with the sax. Mica’s vocals have a wide range in this song, and it really shows off her vocal skills in this up-beat track.
My One Temptation was her debut, and is probably one of her best known songs. This is pure 80s, but it’s catchy, has a nice gentle tempo, and I found the chorus tempting me to sing along (i did).
I swear that Nothing Hits Your Heart Like Soul Music begins with a strike of a cue ball. I’ve listened to it a few times and can’t imagine it being anything else than a pool game going on in the studio. The rest of this track is great, complete with 80s synth stabs and beats. Once again, it’s catchy, and singalong.
Saxophone opens the ballad Sway (Dance The Blues Away) – a track that showcases Mica’s soulful vocals perfectly.
Next up is Don’t Give Me Up, and this is probably the weakest song on the album, although it does include the vocals of Will Downing. Thankfully Breathe Life Into Me comes along, which is a bit more up-tempo and interesting, and it became the third single in 1988.
I love the double bass introduction and bass line on the track I’d Hate To Love You. Occasionally Mica’s vocals get a bit lost under the music, but it’s otherwise a good strong track.
Great Impersonation is the eighth track, and it’s another great strong track. Unmistakably 1980s, but it’s catchy.
Penultimate track is Words Into Action, feels like a 70s BeeGees ballad in places, and sees her duet with singer Paul Johnson.
The album closes with the title track So Good, and it feels like the perfect ending, almost acting as an encore to Mica’s vocal range, the backing singers, and musicians.
Some versions of this album switch the track Words In Action for another Will Downing duet, and cover of the Roberta Flack and Donny Hathaway single Where Is The Love, which was released as the fourth and final single from this album. However, unfortunately this edition does not include that track.
One thing to note is that Mica looks uncomfortable in her album artwork. Not smiling, and perhaps not entirely enamoured by the prospect of laying on sand, probably somewhere in a Bedfordshire quarry. And in her debut music video (see below), you can see that she was so determined to start her career, that whilst the studio is catching fire, she, as a complete professional, continues filming.
Where Is Mica Paris now?
Mica hasn’t quite repeated the success of her debut single and album, but saw a boost in the early 90s.
She has continued to record and release music, and has worked alongside the likes of Alexander O’Neal, Lemar, Jools Holland, and Moby, and has toured alongside Boyz II Men.
She has also branched into television and radio presenting, writing, theatre, and acting. More recently she has acted as an Ambassador for The Amy Winehouse Foundation, and a Patron of the Metropolitan Police’s Operation Trident.
POP RESCUE RATING:
- POP RESCUE 2014 RATING: 4 / 5
- 1988 UK CHART POSITION: #6, certified Platinum.
- POP RESCUE COST: £1.00 (from a Poundland store)