Marshall Crenshaw, Marshall Crenshaw (Warner Bros., 1982)
In 1982, no one was looking for the kind of music Detroiter-turned-New Yorker Marshall Crenshaw was making. An ode to Buddy Holly mixed with power pop, Crenshaw’s self-titled debut is like an Americanized, nerdier version of Elvis Costello. Even if being the domestic Costello was a niche market, Crenshaw’s simple pop music structure was still catchy and nostalgic enough to land the single “Someday, Someway” on the Top 40 charts. And that’s just one highlight on a record of many, including “There She Goes Again,” “I’ll Do Anything,” and the jingle jangle of “Cynical Girl.”
“Someday, Someway,” got Crenshaw some attention at college radio stations and of course from the power pop fanatics. But his style wasn’t in vogue with new wave, the predominant pop sound at the time, and he kind of fell under the radar.
Lucikly, in 2000, Rhino reissued the LP on CD versions of Crenshaw’s debut with loads of additional tracks including demos, B-sides. For example, there’s a beautiful and bittersweet, very Big Star-like track called “You’re My Favorite Waste of Time” that can’t be heard enough; it’s a shame it wasn’t fully recorded for his original LP. Fans of Big Star, Costello, and Nick Lowe should certainly scoop up Crenshaw’s debut. After all, you can never hear too many pop songs about the girl that got away. — Shannon McCarthy