In the '80s, John Farnham was 'the voice' of anti-war sentiment too
As we learned this week, '80s artists were not afraid to tackle the tough subjects of war and PTSD among its soldiers. However, '80s artists were also equally optimistic and encouraging on overcoming the brutality of war with songs of hope like You're The Voice by John Farnham.
John Farnham joined the Little River Band as its new lead singer in the early '80s after Glenn Shorrock left the band in 1982. Farnham already had an established solo career before he became the vocalist on LRB hits such as The Other Guy and We Two. Farnham left LRB in 1985 and enjoyed his greatest success in 1986 when You're The Voice became a monster hit in Australia. Besides hitting No. 1, it's accompanying album Whispering Jack was No. 1 on the Australian album charts for 25 weeks and is the best selling album of all time in that country.
The video for You're The Voice starts off with images of war and it's lyrics ask the question, "How long can we look at each other down the barrel of a gun?" In the U.S., You're The Voice only reached No. 82, but it has quite the legacy. It has been covered by countless artists and in 1991, Heart's version garnered considerable airplay and was a minor hit on the Mainstream Rock Charts. In 2007 it was featured in the Andy Samberg movie Hot Rod as the song of inspiration when Samberg attempts to jump his motorcycle over fifteen school buses.
Farnham is the only singer to chart a number one record in five different decades in Australia and his latest 2015 release was a duet album with Olivia Newton-John called Two Strong Hearts Live that topped the Australian charts.