I Know That Song! The 80's Song That Took On New Meaning in 2005


This No 9 song from 1985 is about unadulterated joy and has been used in a number of feature films including: The Secret of My Success (1987) and American Psycho (2000). Also, Jack Black's character in High Fidelity (2000) plays this song on a cassette tape.

Royalties from airplay and advertisements featuring today’s song have been extremely high. This band wisely kept the publishing rights and all that mailbox money typically gets divided among the band members each year.

But how MUCH money? Estimates are that the song has consistently been earning a little over $1 million per year since 1985 and according to a former employee of EMI Records, "[this song] was the crown jewel in EMI's catalog," and that it was one of EMI's biggest earners from advertisers.

In early 1983, the fledgling band recorded—at their own expense—an LP of their original material designed to be sold at gigs. The album picked enough critical buzz and radio play (especially for today’s song) to get them a Canadian tour. 

Around this same time, their song "Going Down to Liverpool" was covered by The Bangles, which added to their profile. (CLIP) With the group building a fan base with their recordings and extensive touring, major label interest began to build, and trina and the band eventually signed an international deal in 1985. For that album, the band re-recorded, remixed, or overdubbed 10 songs from their earlier Canadian releases to create their self-titled international debut album in 1985.

In late August and early September 2005, which marked the 20th anniversary of the song's release, the surge of a storm named Hurricane Katrina devastated much of the U.S. Gulf Coast, and the MSNBC program Countdown with Keith Olbermann dubbed its coverage of the storm, "Katrina and the Waves"; the name also appeared in numerous headlines and blog postings. 

A New York Times reporter contacted Katrina Leskanich, who said: "The first time I opened the paper and saw 'Katrina kills 9,' it was a bit of a shock...I hope that the true spirit of '[our song] will prevail. I would hate for the title to be tinged with sadness, and I will have to do my own part to help turn that around." 

She also stated that she hoped that [today’s song]" would become an anthem for the Gulf Coast's recovery.

Katrina and The Waves...Walking on Sunshine...I Know That Song!