Posts from 9th November 2009

Nov 09

BILLY OCEAN – “When The Going Gets Tough, The Tough Get Going”

FT + Popular47 comments • 6,820 views

#565, 8th February 1986, video

The intro to “When The Going” is one of pop’s more excruciating: a piggledy pile of drum hits never resolving into a beat while Billy O huffs and puffs “Tough! Tough! T-T-Tough! Huh!”, clearly with no better idea than us of what on earth this is meant to be. A nod to hip-hop? To electro? And then that rubbery bassline comes in and the song relaxes into itself, keen to move on from this regrettable misunderstanding. Though when the “Huh! huh!” stuff comes back in over the outro it still feels hugely out of place.