Today in 1986 pop history was made when the Top 5 UK singles were all by female vocalists; Corinne Drewerey from Swing Out Sister, Mel and Kim, Susannah Hoffs from The Bangles, Kim Wilde, and Terri Nunn from Berlin who were at number 1 with “Take My Breath Away”.
Kim Wilde’s “You Keep Me Hangin’ On” was at number 2. The song is originally written and composed by Holland-Dozier-Holland & was first recorded in 1966 by the Supremes, reaching number one on the Billboard Hot 100. Wilde then covered it in 1986, bumping it back to number one on the Billboard Hot 100 in June 1987. Other artists also covered it: Vanilla Fudge (1967, #6 Billboard Hot 100), Reba McEntire (1996, #2 Billboard Hot Dance Club Party), among others.
Wilde’s version was a total re-working of the original, completely transforming the Supreme’s Motown Sound into an uptempo disco/new wave track. She and her brother, producer Ricky Wilde, had not heard “You Keep Me Hangin’ On” for several years when they decided to record it. The song was not a track they knew well, so they treated it as a new song, even slightly changing the original lyrics.
“You Keep Me Hangin’ On” became Wilde’s second and last top-40 entry in the United States following “Kids in America” (1981), as well as her most successful song in the US to date. It later ranked as the 34th best-selling song of 1987 on Billboard’s Hot 100 year-end chart that year.
In 2006, Wilde performed a new version of the song with the German singer Nena for her Never Say Never album.
• Read also: THOMAS DOLBY’S JOIE DE VIVRE.