Don’t Forget the Songs-365: Mach Dos: Day 128
Wed. May 16 2012

“Pretty in Pink”
The Psychedelic Furs
1981 & 1986

Psychedelic Furs fans, I dare you to try to purchase the single movie song version of “Pretty in Pink.” I had so much trouble today trying to download the 1986 soundtrack re-recorded version from John Hughes film—Pretty in Pink. [Editor’s Note : The 1986 mp3/m4a version is not available for individual sale. You must purchase the entire Pretty in Pink soundtrack]

In case you were wondering, which came first—the Furs originally wrote, recorded and released the single five years before Hughes even wrote a draft of his film.

Lead vocalist Richard Butler told Mojo Magazine how the Furs song became the basis for Hughes beloved film of the 1980s when he said—“Molly Ringwald took it to John Hughes and said, ‘I love this song, we should use it for a movie.’ He took it away, listened to it, and wrote Pretty in Pink, which totally got the whole thing wrong. It was nothing like the spirit of the song at all.”

Butler described the true meaning of “Pink” to Mojo when he said. “[“Pretty in Pink”] was about a girl who kinda sleeps around, and thinks it’s really cool and thinks everybody really likes her, but they really don’t. She’s just being used. It’s quite scathing

It’s obvious that Hughes focused on the innocence nature of Caroline from the original Furs 1981 version of the song. It was John’s interpretation through his film and the re-recording of “Pink” that captured the hearts and imagination to a new audience of Furs.

I finally figured out what Butler was mumbling during the coda of “Pink;” it’s very eloquently positive, poetic and inspiring. This must be the lyrical coda that inspired the more Hollywood theme of the Hughes film.

“♫ All their favorite rags of
war/ and other kinds of
uniform/ that kid you are
really free/ like individuality/ you
are what you want to be/ until
[…] ♫”

So now it’s your turn to decide, Don’t Forget 365’ers – no I’m not going to ask to you choose between Duckie and Blane; instead, I am curious to hear, which of these two versions of “Pretty in Pink” — do you prefer?

The original rawer and more rockous 1981 version or…

…the 1986 more cleaner Butler vocal pop mix with the Clarence Clemons-esque sax solo at the end?

“♫This is it, that’s the end of the joke♫”

Whatever interpretation you subscribe to—the Furs original or the 1986 soundtrack mix— we all can agree Butler and co—recorded one of the most memorable movie theme songs of the last twenty years.