ONE HIT WONDERLAND: Lullaby by Shawn Mullins

Everything’s gonna be all right, as long as your expectations for your career aren’t too high.

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17 comments

  1. After watching this review (twice, so I could be sure what the name was), I went and listened to the entirety of The Thorns’ only album on Spotify. Liking what I heard, I went to the nearest Hastings the next day and bought the only copy of the album they had, for 97 cents. I have listened to it at least once a day since then, and know the first six songs by heart. Thank you, Todd. This is the first time you introduced me to a band I could care about, and it’s one of the better bands currently sitting in my CD collection.

  2. I think you hit half of the positivity, which is the melody of the chorus is pleasant. I think there is also the fact that over a long life everyone needs to be told everything will be okay, and that everyone finds a way to be strong to let someone suffering know things will be okay.

    I had a girlfriend once who decided that “All I Want” by Toad the Wet Sprocket was our song. I told her over and over that it’s a horribly depressing song and she should really listed more closely to the verse lyrics, but to her the chorus had no depth or tragic irony or hoping against hope; it was just about HER wanting to feel like she did when we were together, and that was enough for her.

    I think a lot of people must have responded to this song in the same way. “Man, I’ve been through some tough stuff, and I’m always pushing forward and keeping the dark stuff out and hoping I can endure.” Being told in a pretty voice that things will be okay is welcome. I’d like to hear that more.

    And yes, Matthew Sweet is brilliant.

  3. That’s odd. I was ten and living in Mexico when this song became a hit, and wasn’t even really actively listening to music aside from what I heard in the Radio or in MTV, and I still remember listening to this song… a LOT.

    I always have felt mixed feelings about it. On one hand, yeah, the Chorus is very uplifting and has a really nice melody to it… But the rest of the song kind falls flat to me. I’ve never been a fan of songs where the verse is talking instead of singing, and here it’s no exception.

    Still, I much preferred this over something like say, New Radicals’ “You get what you give”, which also became hit at the time and I found it to be extremely annoying. By the way Todd, any plans of ever addressing that one hit wonder?

  4. Are you ever going to do a One-Hit-WonderLand episode about ”In the year 2525”?

  5. Todd you should do a One Hit Wonderland about Ram Jam – “Black Betty”

    Or The Standells – “Dirty Water”

  6. I’ve always felt that this song was less about a Poor Little Rich Girl and more about a girl who is used to being happy, used to having it all, doesn’t really have any problems, but is suffering from major depression. She feels like she should be happy, but can’t be. *Shrug* I don’t know how I really get that impression, but I do.

  7. MidnightScreeningsman2014

    I liked the song by lil wayne.If i would suggest a song about kids to you todd then it would be daughters by nas(well based on what the rap critic

  8. I love One Hit Wonderland, because it reminds me how many artists fly in and out of our lives without our even remembering them. So many titles, I didn’t recognize until I heard the first lyric, not this one, but a lot. It’s kind of an interesting mix of existential curiosity and modern music history scholarship.

  9. I’m a long-time viewer, signed up just to post on this one!

    I was actually a little surprised to see Shawn Mullins appear on here, because I didn’t even recognize him as a one-hit wonder. Oh he definitely counts as one, but when I was growing up he was pretty big on the local Adult Alternative station (I’m about your age Todd and damn do I remember Adult Alternative being a big thing back then). The funny thing about it though is that I never even heard Lullaby on that station, rather it was just on the pop stations! The Adult Alternative stations would play stuff like Shimmer (can you really call that a follow-up, though? It’s on the same album). Actually, Shimmer was *really* popular on my local station. I guess I don’t find it quite as cheesy as you though — that’s probably a combination of the time period and just solid 90s nostalgia on my end.

    Overall though I think I agree with your assessment. I can’t summon up any hatred, hell I even like a couple of his songs and they appear on my Shuffle All rotation at times. I had no idea he made a band with Matthew Sweet, I’ll have to check that album out.

  10. One Hit Wonder Suggestion – “I Believe in a Thing Called Love” by the Darkness. Its a over-the-top piece of retro cheese, but came out during the 2000s. That gives it a really weird context considering the rock going on at the time.

  11. 5:56 fucking hell Todd that was terrifying please never make that noise again

  12. Also funny that Todd is older than I but said Shawn Mullins was “before [his] time”, since this song seemed really ubiquitous to me when I was growing up.

  13. i know you kind of left the question sort of unanswered but i think he didn’t deserve better,but in the best of ways,with the way you put it,he seems pretty satisfied with where he is right now,not being hugely popular

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