Oct 07

GARY GLITTER – “I Love You Love Me Love”

FT + Popular28 comments • 3,310 views

#340, 17th November 1973

Glitter halves the pace for what by his standards is a ballad. Surprisingly it’s still effective, less rabble-rousing but more anthemic – assuming you can turn off your hindsight detectors long enough to get past “So here we are alone” et al. His voice is left badly exposed, though: this slug of woozy defiance needs something meaner than his reedy panting to really work.



  1. 1
    Tom on 1 Oct 2007 #

    I am going to risk disaster by saying that I intend to update a lot more regularly in October – this will mean, as here, some pretty brief entries on songs where I really don’t have much to say: I’m sure the ever-vocal comments box massive will be on hand to fill in any gaps.

  2. 2
    Pete on 1 Oct 2007 #

    Short but sweet. This is probably the only GG song I really knew as a youth, and I am not sure why (post Timelords I got rock and roll…). The slowed down Glitter Band beat on this I always thought was an awesome way to do a ballad (BALLAD!) but it is a weird song. But it fits the slow hand clap.

    Bands / singers who consciously aim for the erection section or more importantly, LAST SONG OF THE NIGHT… You shoot for the (whole of) The Moon, and you might just get this:

    You love me too love…

  3. 3
    Waldo on 2 Oct 2007 #

    More good clean fun from Gary. This time he is not divvying out invites for us to join his pesky gang; on this occasion he figures he is in love with someone who clearly loves him back, he muses. The result is the familiar Glitter footy chant over the familiar Glitter Band backdrop. That’s all there is to it really.

  4. 4
    Marcello Carlin on 2 Oct 2007 #

    There was always something deeply unreal about the species that was the Glitterballad and I am more than once reminded of HAL the 2001 computer slowing down to half-speed and singing “Daisy, Daisy” before expiring. It’s like a robot trying to be intimate. On slightly later efforts like “Remember Me This Way,” Leander’s bizarre flanging and varispeeding of the instruments give the impression of a Blade Runner brass band.

    From the general thrust of the lyric I always assumed the invisible punctuation to determine the title as meaning “I love you, love me, love” but again I preferred GG when he was ahuman – see for instance “I Didn’t Know I Loved You” (so good a record that Arthur Baker cut an electro cover with Planet Patrol in the early eighties) where he more or less gives up on “lyrics” halfway through and reverts to grunts and signifiers which seem to reverse from sexuality back through to toddler talk – perhaps an unfortunate path to cite in relation to GG – but still it lies somewhere between Gene Vincent and the Teletubbies.

    As I said last time, though, I didn’t think much of him when he reverted to the Billy Cotton Band Show/Ralph Reader Gang Show vaudevillian sentimentalist schtick, of which this record was the latest chapter. All a bit too Mike and Bernie Winters showbiz rather than unapologetic futurism. But this was the third single to debut at number one in ’73 – Bell clearly learning promotional lessons from Polydor.

    As well as holding off “Let Me In,” he also defeated Marie Osmond on her maiden outing with “Paper Roses” and, interestingly, Alvin Stardust with “My Coo-Ca-Choo” who, again as previously mentioned, seems to have been the main glam compilation beneficiary of the Glitter ostracisation.

  5. 5
    Billy Smart on 2 Oct 2007 #

    While I’ve always found My Gang to be genuinely menacing in a ludicrous and wobbling sort of way, this has never struck me as being anything other than a bit rubbish. Clearly no sort of a love song, it also lacks the conviction to be an arresting statement of megalomania and self-worship.

    Along with Tie a Yellow Ribbon and Nice One, Cyril, this is covered by ‘the children’ on ‘Stewpot’s Pop Party’.

  6. 6
    Marcello Carlin on 2 Oct 2007 #

    I saw a copy of Stewpot’s Pop Party going for £50 (!) in Beano’s in Croydon the other week. The cover is genuinely horrifying in a Fisher-Price meets Don’t Look Now sort of 1973 way.

  7. 7
    Erithian on 2 Oct 2007 #

    The absolute commercial peak of Glitter’s career, straight in at number one as Marcello pointed out, the biggest selling single in the UK for six years and the 56th biggest seller of all time. Just a pity that it’s… well, pants.

    It’s a great big Victorian folly of a single, grandiose, accompanied by that ludicrous (though tongue-in-cheek) appearance on TOTP where he was wheeled in on the back of a great big star. The audience punched the air dutifully, but at that BPM you don’t expend enough energy to make it a good workout, and you can’t really smooch to it either (the idea of linking Gary Glitter and the erection section – puh-lease!). So without being in the fun of the late-‘73 moment I find it pretty boring nowadays. Give me his next number one any day.

  8. 8
    Mark G on 2 Oct 2007 #

    It needed brackets to show the words repeated..

    (I love [you) love me], luv.

  9. 9
    Marcello Carlin on 2 Oct 2007 #

    Just as well he didn’t do “My Coo-Ca-Choo” really. The thought of going back to GG’s flat and grooving on his mat would have caused me to eat my breakfast twice even in those days of innocence.

  10. 10
    Waldo on 2 Oct 2007 #

    “The cover is genuinely horrifying in a Fisher-Price meets Don’t Look Now sort of 1973 way.” That’s a great line and I know exactly what MC means.

    I think the most inappropriate choice for Glitter would be that one from Maurice Chevalier from “Gigi”. Blessed if I can remember the name of the song…

  11. 11
    mike on 2 Oct 2007 #

    Was it Tom Browne on the Top 20 show who rather prissily insisted on pronouncing the title “grammatically” (I love you; love me, love) instead of the way it was actually pronounced on the record?

    Strange how so many of the top acts of 1973 were reaching their absolute commercial peaks simultaneously; not that we knew that at the time, as it was one of those periods in pop where the A-list seemed set in stone.

  12. 12
    Marcello Carlin on 2 Oct 2007 #

    And how rapidly that A-list seemed to crumble in ’74, leaving the field clear for the B-list to come through, but that’s a forthcoming story…

    Yes it was Tom Browne…he was an ac-tor, RADA don’t you know. Oh how I laughed when new Top 40 host Tony Blackburn made the same gag week after week when playing “Funkin’ For Jamaica” about how well he’d done since leaving Radio 1 and we never knew he could play the trumpet.

  13. 13
    Armchair Vigilante on 2 Oct 2007 #

    It makes me sick that you are reviewing records by that bastard.

  14. 14
    Marcello Carlin on 2 Oct 2007 #

    Hi Ian.

  15. 15
    Erithian on 2 Oct 2007 #

    Yes, Mike, you’re anticipating somethng I was going to say shortly, and it seems I’m not alone!

    So, Vigilante – yes, you’re angry, and I don’t know when you came across this site, but I hope you can see why we can’t do a series reviewing UK Number 1 singles without covering some pretty reprehensible characters. Care to join in the debate about whether art or music made by characters such as this can ever be appreciated on its own merits?

  16. 16
    Marcello Carlin on 2 Oct 2007 #

    um, Erithian, check the blog link which our “friend” has helpfully provided.

  17. 17
    Erithian on 2 Oct 2007 #

    OK, am looking…

  18. 18

    it is the prelate formerly known as DIRTY VICAR i believe

  19. 19
    Lena on 2 Oct 2007 #

    Tom, I don’t mind you writing shorter postings on the mid-70s period, it is pretty dire. There are some good ones in ’74, I think, and I’m looking forward to seeing what the massive has to say about them.

  20. 20
    intothefireuk on 2 Oct 2007 #

    Even in 1973 this was a disappointing entry from Gareth – the elements are all in place but it’s just too damn slow. However he did make up for it with some spectacular TOTP appearances. Still at least it helped to keep the freaky Osmond family off the top.

  21. 21
    doofuus2003 on 5 Oct 2007 #

    I’ll go with the short posts too, I can’t always find much to say; but, strangely, I always liked this GG number, tho’ never considered it a ballad

  22. 22
    Rosie on 5 Oct 2007 #

    Sheesh! I go offline for a week (terminally-ill computer, now replaced), and after a bit of a hiatus there are four Popular entries to be dealt with!

    Not much to say here except that this is probably my favourite amongst GG’s singles. Which isn’t saying a lot, really.

  23. 23
    The Dirty Vicar on 5 Oct 2007 #

    This is maybe a song that gains in hindsight, as it is hard to imagine anyone loving GG now.

  24. 24
    wichita lineman on 6 Jun 2009 #

    Spotify haven’t shied away from the GG catalogue, which is just as well as, out of embarrassment, I can’t bring myself to buy his records in charity shops (passed on the first 2 albums last week) and HMV refuse to stock them.

    “They didn’t know that we were just two angels in the sky” remains an astonishingly weird/romantic line. I thought this was way too soppy at the time, but now it sounds unique, like a drunken hokey cokey ( suggesting a touch of Red Riding christmas party). The heavily treated saxes remind me of a stuttering bi-plane which gives it a WW2 retro-futurist feel – possibly Leander and Glitter were aiming for this, to get the grannies up and rock’n’rolling with the rest.

  25. 25
    Lena on 19 Nov 2013 #

    The glam star it’s okay to like: http://musicsoundsbetterwithtwo.blogspot.co.uk/2013/11/the-stand-in-star-alvin-stardust-my-coo.html Thanks for reading, everyone!

  26. 26
    georgethe23rd on 11 Feb 2014 #

  27. 27
    lonepilgrim on 19 Oct 2019 #

    watching GG again on Youtube to remind myself of this and for some reason looking at his pudgy face I’m reminded of Ricky Gervais. The Glitter Band are the motor driving this song while GGs leery pantomime performance steers it into a ditch.

  28. 28
    Gareth Parker on 7 Jun 2021 #

    Not much get up and go here. Another generous 4/10 from me.

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