Top 10 Kirsty MacColl Songs

Top 10 Kristy MacColl Songs

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Our Top 10 Kirsty MacColl Songs list will look at a talented singer and songwriter. She recorded several pop hits during the 1980s and 1990s. She is the daughter of folk singer Ewan MacColl. She started her musical journey in her teen years. Some of her hits include “There’s a Guy Works Down the Chip Shop Swears He’s Elvis,” “A New England,” “Days,” “Fairytale of New York,” “Caroline” as well as others. The singer also recorded songs that were produced by her then husband Steve Lillywhite. She was known for singing new wave, country, folk, and alternative rock music. She released five albums before her death in 2000.

Kirsty Anna MacColl was born on October 10, 1959. She passed away on December 18, 2000. She grew up in an entertaining family. Her father was singer Ewan MacColl. Her mother was a dancer. She started her musical career as a teenager. She got her start in music singing in bands before she signed a record deal. Kirsty MacColl released her first single “They Don’t Know” in 1979. The song was starting to get attention when a distributor’s strike happened.

The strike prevented copies of the single from getting in the stores. The song couldn’t make it on the charts. She recorded another single but felt like her label Stiff Records wasn’t behind her. She ended up leaving the label before the song was released. She went to Polydor Records and had a hit record with “There’s a Guy Works Down the Chip Shop Swears He’s Elvis.” The song was from her debut album Desperate Character. The album was released in July 1981. It features the singles “There’s a Guy Works Down the Chip Shop Swears He’s Elvis,” “Teenager in Love,” ‘Until the Night,” “Just One Look” and “Hard to Believe.”

Kirsty MacColl was dropped from her label and re-signed with Stiff Records. She had a hit single called “A New England.” While she was working on her second album, she recorded the theme song for the sitcom Dream Stuffing. In the United States, she was known for writing Tracey Ullman’s cover of her song “They Don’t Know.” Kirsty MacColl sang backup on the cover song. She started singing backup for artists.

Stiff Records went bankrupt. She couldn’t record music. She continued being a background vocalist. She returned to the British charts in December 1987. She sang a duet with the Pogues called “Fairy Tale of New York.” She went on tour with the Pogues. Kirsty MacColl was finally able to record her second album Kite. The album was released in April 1989. It peaked at number 34 on the UK album charts. It features the singles “Kite,” “Innocence,” “Free World” and “Don’t Come the Cowboy with Me Sonny Jim!”

Electric Landlady was released in June 1991. The album peaked at number 17 on the UK charts. It features the singles “My Affair,” “All I Ever Wanted” and “Walking Down Madison.” Titanic Days was released in October 1993. It peaked at number 47 on the UK charts. It features the singles “Angel,” “Can’t Stop Telling You,” “Last Day of Summer” and “You Know It’s You.” “Tropical Brainstorm” was released in March 2000. It peaked at number 39 on the UK charts. It features the singles “In These Shoes?,” “Treachery,” “Here Comes That Man Again” and “Celestine.”

Despite having a father in the music industry, success didn’t come easy for Kirsty MacColl. She had to work hard for what she accomplished. Her light dimmed too soon before she could become a bigger name in the music industry. She may be gone, but she won’t be forgotten. Her music will always be her legacy. Our Top 10 Kirsty MacColl will honor the late singer and her music.

# 10 – In These Shoes?

The 10th song on our Top 10 Kirsty MacColl Songs list is “In These Shoes?” from the Tropical Brainstorm album. “In These Shoes?” was released in February 2000. The song is about her interaction with three different men. The men offer her different things. She is tempted by them, but she refuses to sacrifice her shoes for them. She goes into detail about each man. One of the men has a sense of adventure. He wanted to be intimate with her on a mountaintop. She was surprised that he wanted her in those shoes.

He let her know he didn’t want to be with her while she was wearing those shoes. She loved her shoes too much, so she didn’t want to take him up on his offer. She met another man. He had a horse and wanted to give her a ride. He knew a place where they could get together. She wanted to know if she could go in her shoes. He said no, so she didn’t want to do it. She met another man who wanted her to walk up and down his spine. It makes him feel alive. She wanted to know if she could do it in her shoes. He didn’t think she could survive, but she wanted to do it.

The lyrics are funny and paint a funny picture about a woman who is approached by three men. She doesn’t want to choose a man over her shoes. They were promising her good evenings, but she wasn’t choosing them over her shoes. This is a song that females can understand if they love their shoes. It is a fun song that’s not to be taken seriously. The music brings the song to life. It has a Latin beat. The song is great for any level of dancing.

The beat is addictive and you can’t help tapping along with it. This is one of Kirsty MacColl’s last songs so you can’t help wondering what could have happened to her career if she hadn’t passed away. She sounds as if she was having fun singing this song. You can hear the happiness in her voice as she sings the song. The song shows she has a great sense of humor.

# 9 – Terry

The ninth song on our Top 10 Kirsty MacColl Songs list is “Terry.” “Terry” is a non-album single. “Terry” was released in October 1983. The song tells the story about a woman who breaks up with her boyfriend so she could be with “Terry.” He is considered a tough guy and she is attracted to him. The song opens with her calling out her old boyfriend because he doesn’t listen to her. She thought she could be invisible to him. It didn’t matter anymore because she met someone new. She apologized for breaking his heart, but she found another guy. “Terry” promised her they would be together forever. She believes him because he is not the kind of man that would change his mind about something like that. She describes him as a tough guy like Marlon Brando. She wanted to break the news to her boyfriend. She wanted her ex to hide for a while because if “Terry” saw him, he would be capable of doing anything.

This song doesn’t paint Kirsty MacColl in a good light. She seems a little cold when she told her ex that she was moving on with a new man. This story seems like something out of a book or a movie. Kirsty MacColl wasn’t afraid to look like a villain in the song. She was going for what she wanted. The music has a 60s vibe to it even though it was recorded in the 80s. The music is reminiscent of the girl groups from the past. The music is vibrant and invites you to the dance floor. Kirsty MacColl’s vocals were stacked when she sings the hook. It was a nice touch. This is a song you won’t get tired of hearing. The music and vocals will give you a reason to keep listening to the song.

# 8 – You Still Believe In Me

The eighth pick on our Top 10 Kirsty MacColl Songs list is “You Still Believe in Me.” “You Still Believe in Me” is a non-album single. “You Still Believe in Me” was released in 1981. This is a cover of the Beach Boys’ song. This song tells the story of a woman who appreciates her man. She hasn’t been the best girlfriend, but he was patient with her. Any time they broke up, he would bring his love back to her. She couldn’t believe he was willing to be with her after everything she did to him. She wants to do better. She can’t help the way she acts when he’s not with her. She tries to be strong, but she finds herself getting weak. She promised him she would be faithful. She is happy that he still believes in her.

This emotional song will open your eyes to your relationship if you have someone who believes in you through thick and thin the way Kirsty MacColl describes in this song. Kirsty MacColl changed the melody of her song from the Beach Boys’ version. Her version is more tender than the Beach Boys’ version. She also adds harmonies that aren’t in the original version. It’s different to hear a song like this taken from the female perspective. You don’t hear too many songs about a woman admitting to being unfaithful to her lover and being appreciative of him standing by her side. Kirsty MacColl did an incredible job on this cover song. She made the song her own. Her harmonies are incredible. She makes you want to sing with her. She may not make you forget about the Beach Boys’ version, but she did a great cover of the song.

# 7 – They Don’t Know

The seventh song on our list is “They Don’t Know.” “They Don’t Know” is a non-album single. “They Don’t Know” was released in June 1979. The song is about a woman’s love for her boyfriend. Everyone tells her he’s not the one for her. She thinks people don’t understand the way she feels about him. She talks about how they have been together. She doesn’t know how to leave him. She wonders why she should be lonely every night when she can be with him.

She doesn’t want to listen to people telling her that he is bad for her. She doesn’t want to listen because they don’t know about them. The narrator talks about how she enjoys being around him. People think they are crazy to be together, but she doesn’t care. She is okay if people don’t understand their relationship. She wants to continue to hold his hand. She doesn’t think it should matter if other people don’t approve of them. She wants to take the chance to stay with him because they have nothing to lose. She wants to make the love she has with him last.

This song is about loving your partner no matter what anyone thinks. If you are in a relationship and you have friends who judge the relationship, you know about a song like this. She is basically speaking to you. Kirsty MacColl sings an honest song about wanting her man despite the objections of others. You may have heard Tracey Ullman’s version of the song, but this is the original version. Kirsty MacColl wrote and recorded the song before Tracey Ullman covered it.

This is a simple song about love. The music has a beautiful and catchy pop beat. The music has an old-school vibe. The lyrics will touch your heart. They will make you a believer in love withstanding obstacles. Kirsty MacColl’s vocals are spectacular. Her harmonies are flawless. You will find yourself singing along with the talented singer. The chorus is infectious and will stay in your head.

# 6 – Caroline

“Caroline” is from the Galore – The Best of Kirsty MacColl album. “Caroline” was released in February 1995. The song is about her being the other woman. Kirsty MacColl sings this song from the point of view of the other woman. “Caroline” is her best friend. She falls for “Caroline’s” man. She feels guilty for betraying her friend. The song begins with her talking to her man about “Caroline.” She lets him know that “Caroline” called to tell her that he broke her heart. “Caroline” wanted to know if she had seen him. She didn’t know what to do and didn’t call her back.

She didn’t know how she could break “Caroline’s” heart like that. She didn’t want to see “Caroline” anymore. She couldn’t look “Caroline” in the face and tell her that she is with her man. Later in the song she gets mad at him for leaving her friend. She realizes it was wrong to be with him. She wishes she could have turned him down. Her head was telling her one thing, but her heart was telling her something else. She is ashamed of herself for what she did. She realized it was a terrible thing to do to her friend.

It is hard to like the main character in this song after what she did to her friend. Kirsty MacColl tried to make her character in the song sympathetic. This is a story that will keep you hooked because of the drama. You will be interested in how the story ends. The lyrics keep you on the edge of your seat as she talks to her boyfriend about what she did to her friend. Kirsty MacColl wrote a dramatic song about a terrible thing to do to your friend.

She took a unique approach to this song. She chose to write it from the other woman’s point of view. Most people sing about the betrayal happening to them. They don’t usually sing about doing the betraying. This is a rare instance when the mistress gets to tell her side. The music has an electrifying country-rock beat. The song has a big sound that matches her big voice. Her harmonies in the song will blow you out of the water. She stacks her vocals in the track which gives the song more heart.

# 5 – Days

The next song on our Top 10 Kirsty MacColl Songs list is “Days” from the Kite album. “Kite” was released in June 1989. This is a cover of the Kinks’ song. This is a goodbye song. The song opens with her thanking someone for the days they gave her. She thinks about those days and won’t forget them. The person may be gone, but they are with her every day. She said the person took her life, but she knew they would leave her. She is okay with it, but she is not frightened anymore. She believes the nights are too long and wants tomorrow to come. The nights bring sorrow, so she wants them to be over.

This is an emotional song about thanking someone for the days they gave you. People don’t usually thank the other person for the time they gave them. The lyrics are universal because they could be to anyone. It doesn’t have to be a love interest. If is a goodbye song. It is a song about a new beginning. You can interpret the song anyway you see fit. That is the beauty of the song. Kirsty MacColl’s version is a softer version than the Kinks’ version. Her version is a folk version while The Kinks’ is a pop version. She kept the lyrics the same. She sounds as if she is singing this to someone special. She sings this with raw and emotional heartbreak. This song might bring a tear to your eye if you have someone to dedicate it to.

# 4 – A New England

“A New England is a non-album single. “A New England” was released in December 1984. The song is a cover of Billy Bragg’s track. The heartfelt song is about someone confronting the end of a relationship. She talks about what happened with her man. She tells him that she loves him even after everything that happened. She put him on a pedestal, but he didn’t do the same for her. She didn’t feel bad about letting him go. She only felt bad that she had to tell him. She wasn’t looking to change the world. She wasn’t looking for a “new England.”

She wanted to know if he was looking for another woman. She loved the things he wrote to her, but that was yesterday. She couldn’t survive on how he previously felt. He only came to her when he needed a friend. She thought she was wishing on shooting stars, but they were satellites. She knew it was wrong to wish, but she hoped that he would care about her. She told him that she had dreams, but things got in her way. She never asked him to stay with her. She sat by the phone hoping it would ring, but it wasn’t him calling her.

Don’t let the title of the song fool you. This is a thought-provoking song about a relationship. If you have found yourself wondering if the person in your life cares about you, this song is for you. Have you sat and wondered if the person you love will care enough about you to let you know they care about you? You know that you are not alone. Kirsty MacColl had a beautiful arrangement of the song. Her version managed to be different from Billy Bragg’s version. She has an ear for making a song her own. This song has a surprisingly upbeat sound considering she’s confronting someone about the end of her relationship. Her harmonies are exquisite. She could give lessons on how to do harmonies. She could probably do them in her sleep. Her voice sounds very pretty in this song. Kirsty MacColl sings the song as if she wrote it herself. You can easily forget that she didn’t write it.

# 3 – He’s On The Beach

Coming in at number three on our list is “He’s on the Beach.” “He’s on the Beach” is a non-album single. “He’s on the Beach” was released in June 1985. This song is about a man who wants to leave to find himself. He wants to find happiness. His friend misses him, but she hopes he finds what he is looking for in life. He ends up on the beach. She talks about being a friend of his. They ran into each other. They had the same taste in wine. She didn’t know he was sad back then. He decided he wanted to take a holiday. He wants to go to the beach because it is beautiful there. He is happy now that he is on the beach. His life has changed. He sends her postcards, but he is out of reach to her. She reminisces about the day he told her he was leaving. He made her think he was going for a week, but he was going longer than that. She was okay with him leaving because it was what he needed to do.

This song is bittersweet but optimistic. The song is bouncy and energetic. It is something that you can listen to in the summertime. The song has an old school feel to it. It sounds like something the Go-Go’s would have done. You can’t help smiling while you are listening to it. Kirsty MacColl sounds good in the song. Her vocals are stacked in the hook. She sounds as if she is having fun singing the song. Her voice blends well with the music. Her harmonies are smoking hot. The chorus is so hypnotic that it will stay in your head like an earworm. This is an underrated song that should have done better on the charts.

# 2 – There’s a Guy Works Down the Chip Shop Swears He’s Elvis

“There’s a Guy Works Down the Chip Shop Swears He’s Elvis” is from the Desperate Character album. “There’s a Guy Works Down the Chip Shop Swears He’s Elvis” was released in May 1981. This song is about a man who is possibly cheating on his girlfriend. She wonders why he is talking so fast. He is acting like he doesn’t want her to hear anything. He told her about the places he has been without her. She doesn’t want to know about it, but she will stay quiet. He swore to her that he would be true to her, but he lied to her. He is popular. He changed the way he dresses and changed his car. She is upset that she is home by herself while he is on the phone. She can hear him laughing on the phone. She must question everything he says to her.

The title of the song may make you think this is a novelty song about Elvis Presley, but it isn’t. Elvis Presley is only mentioned to prove that her man is a liar. This song may have you doubting what your partner does when they are on the phone. Kirsty MacColl didn’t reveal if it was a personal song, but it feels as if it was. The music has a 50’s or 60’s vibe. It has a catchy beat. The guitar is the star instrument in the song. The music will have you on the dance floor or dancing in your seat. Kirsty MacColl does a fabulous job with her vocals. She embraces the lyrics as if they are coming from a personal place. She sounds as if she has a double in the chorus. The chorus is irresistible. It is the best part of the song. Once you get past the title you will find that the song is worth checking out.

# 1 – Fairytale of New York – The Pogues ft. Kirsty MacColl

The number one song on our Top 10 Kirsty MacColl Songs list is “Fairytale of New York” from the Pogues If I Should Fall from Grace with God album. “Fairytale of New York” was released in November 1987. The song is about a couple who are down on their luck during the holidays. The song opens with a man talking to his wife from the police station. He is talking to his wife about a conversation he had with someone at the station. The old man sang a song to him, so he ended up dreaming about his wife. He won gambling and thought it was the start to a new beginning.

He tells her he loves her and can see them having a better life when their dreams come true. She let him know that he promised her that she could have what she wanted. He promised that Broadway would be waiting for her. They reminisce about their time together. As they talk about their relationship, the truth comes out. She is battling personal demons. Her issues get to her. She doesn’t want to be with him anymore. He felt like he could have been somebody if it weren’t for her. She blames him for taking her dreams away. They despise each other but they stay together.

This isn’t your typical Christmas love song. This is a song about a couple who end up despising each other. Despite their issues with each other, they stay together. They could have taken the easy way out and wrote a typical love song, but they chose to write a realistic song about a couple who stay together despite their problems. This is a story that keeps you hooked until the end. The song is different because they talk about despising each other but they don’t break up. This song mentions Christmas, but you can listen to it all year. If they didn’t make reference to the holiday, you can forget that it’s a Christmas song. Shane MacGowan and Kirsty MacColl did a great job vocally with this song. This is a classic song that will never get old.

Top 10 Kristy MacColl Songs article published on Classic RockHistory.com© 2023

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