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Lesley Gore - You Don't Own Me [The Heroic Enthusiasts Remixes] (ECR Music Group)

26 February 2024

Writing about music of this nature might seem to be a bit out of keeping with the vibe of this site. But, something is happening here that speaks volumes about the nature, longevity, creativity and evolution of music. So, let’s talk about Lesley Gore.

Even if the name doesn’t strike much of a chord with you, you will undoubtedly know at least one of her songs. “It’s My Party” was her Quincy Jones produced breakthrough, the first of many the pair had a hit with. And one of those that followed was “You Don’t Own Me.”

So here we are six decades later, and what a perfect time to take that song, polish it up and pitch it to a whole new audience. So, thanks to The Heroic Enthusiasts, that is precisely what has happened. Across two deft and dexterous remixes, we are treated to some marvellous reinvention and sonic reimagination.

“The Enthusiastic Mix” turns the teenage cry of freedom into an ecstatic and euphoric clubland groover, whilst “The Heroic Mix” is a brilliant blend of the original’s angst and reaffirmation of individuality with a heightened, electronica meets chamber-pop anthemic quality. The perfect balance of the simple innocence of the original and a darker undercurrent that is only revealed against the background of women’s hard-won rights that are part of today’s social landscape. The original is also included, which makes for a beautiful comparison.

Music doesn’t just stay in the past. It is not confined to a time and a place. And, as these remixes prove, any song worth its salt will stand up to all manner of reinvention and relaunch. Here, we see it taken to two of many potential extremes. For me, it is “The Heroic Mix”, which proves my point the best, but taken together, this collection proves that a song continues to live, breathe and grow as long as someone loves and understands it.

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