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John Spinks of The Outfield Passes Away

by Mark Cartwright

Josie's on a vacation far away! Come around and talk it over...

The opening line to The Outfield's "Your Love."

If you're a cover band and sing that line, you're almost sure to get a rise out of the girls in the crowd - now more than ever.

In 1986 I was in a band which covered the song, and it was very popular at the time. We had it placed smack dab in the middle of our show as it was sure to pack the dance floor, which made club owners happy, and therefore helped us get paid. You'd sing that first line, and you'd hear the cheers.

Over the years, as things go, songs fade from consciousness, but some seem to come back, and we don't really know why, other than the fact that they were a great song from the start. Journey's "Don't Stop Believin'" springs to mind. During the grunge era of the '90s, Journey, and their melodic rock were considered the wrong kind of rock and roll, as the music scene shifted for what seemed like forever into some over serious introspective non-melodic black hole of self hatred. But then, when the fog lifted, there came a realization. A realization that there had been some pretty catchy, rockin' music released in the 80s! Soon, if you played the opening keyboard line, you could hear "Wooooooo!" coming from the girls in the crowd. Then, it became the theme song for the White Sox on their World Series run, and then the song played on the jukebox in the final scene from the Sopranos.

The same is happening, though not quite on the same scale, with The Outfield's "Your Love." Unfortunately, the band's guitarist, and writer, John Spinks, will not get to enjoy the second time around as he passed away from liver cancer this week. Spinks was a wonderful song writer, who penned the hits, "All the Love in the World," "Since You've Been Gone," and many other great, catchy songs. He will be missed, but every time a cover brand breaks into "Josie's on a vacation far away!" The cheer will be for John Spinks.