When I was a kid I had heard the Pet Shop Boys on the radio whenever new singles had been released but it wasn’t until I was about 14 or 15 when I started to take more of an interest in their music. This was because I had never taken the time to listen to more than one song at a time. I used to chill with a group of dudes at my friend chicken’s house and he had the Discography album and used to play it and the more times I heard it the better it became. I have most Pet Shop Boys albums now and listen to them on a regular basis.
Pet Shop boys consist of Neil Tennant and Chris Lowe and are a synthpop/electronic music duo. They have sold over 100 million records worldwide since their founding in 1981 when they met in a music shop in Chelsea, London. Originally they were called West End because of the area in London that they came from but eventually settled on Pet Shop Boys because a couple of their friends worked in a pet shop.
In 1985 the Pet Shop Boys signed to Parlophone, recorded and released the album Please in 1986 which contains some of their most famous hits like West End Girls, Opportunities (Let’s Make Lots of Money), Suburbia and Love Comes Quickly. West End Girls was their first UK #1 and it went on to be #1 in Canada, USA, Finland, Ireland, Hong Kong, Israel, Lebanon, Norway and New Zealand. Disco which is a remix album of Please was also released in 1986.
1987 was a busy year for the Pet Shop Boys. The Single West End Girls earned them a BRIT award and also an Ivor Novello Award. The album Actually was released and they had some recording sessions with Dusty Springfield for the single What Have I Done To Deserve This. Another couple of massive hits off the album were It’s A Sin and Rent. The group also played on a special TV concert for the 10th anniversary of Elvis’s death where they played Always On My Mind.
Introspective was the album released in 1988 which also contained some of their most popular songs: Left To My Own Devices, I’m Not Scared, Domino Dancing and the single Always On My Mind. The Pet Shop Boys went on a huge tour of Hong Kong, Japan and the UK and it wasn’t until 1990 when they released their fourth album Behavior which had a different style to their more usual upbeat albums.
Since the release of Discography in 1991 which contained most of their hits the Pet Shop Boys have released several more studio albums and remix albums and have written and collaborated with many other musicians. The Pet Shop Boys have also changed their style several times, from the old style of Adidas Tracksuits to the new futuristic looks like in the single Go West.
Some of the artists who have worked with the Pet Shop Boys on music and video’s are: Liza Minelli, Dusty Springfield, Patsy Kensit, Mark Farrow, Barbra Windsor, Ian McKellen, Bernard Sumner, Johnny Marr, Boy George, Blur and David Bowie to name a few.
Some of their most notable albums are Please, Actually, Introspective, Behaviour, Very, Bilingual, Nightlife, Release, Fundamental, Disco 1-4 and Pop-Art and some of their most famous songs over the years have been: West End Girls, What Have I Done to Deserve This, Left To My Own Devices, It’s A Sin, Go West, Absolutely Fabulous, Bet She’s Not Your Girlfriend, Se a Vida E (That’s The Way Life Is), I’m With Stupid and Numb.
My Top 10 Pet Shop Boys Songs are:
02. What Have I Done to Deserve This
03. Left to my own devices
05. One Thing Leads to Another
06. One In a Million
08. It Couldn’t Happen Here
09. Opportunities (Let’s Make Lots of Money)
10. A Red Letter Day