By 1990 I was ‘all in’ on the college music sound. At Clarion University of Pennsylvania, I worked as a DJ at the student run station, the legendary WCCB. New music came in daily from record labels wanting to get some ‘spins’.

I would grab a stack of vinyl and go in the back production room and listen for hours to new unknown bands. I felt like a damned musical Magellan! I couldn’t WAIT to either debut songs on my show of bring up in conversation about the cool band no one knows yet.

Some of those songs somehow managed to secure permanent lodging in my brain. Others sadly did not make it through the years. This one has been a favorite of mine for 28 years.

28 years? Damn.

Celebrate by An Emotional Fish. Just a simple bass line. Unapologetically crushing my pathetic speakers. Singer, Gerard Whelan, paints a picture of his life both beautiful and equally jagged. The way he sings and the band plays you get the feeling that hanging out with these guys would be a blast until it wasn’t. Undoubtedly, it will most likely take a turn for crazy before the night is over. Not the good kind of crazy.

She insists that she’s a lunatic, closer to the bone
She hardly ever visits upstairs, we’ll ride the telephone
Well I guess beauty does what beauty does best
It’s beautiful

An Emotional Fish was off to a good start. Signed to U2’s indie label Mother Records, a few regional hits in home country of Ireland and then Celebrate hit big in the US. Climbing up to #5 on the Modern Rock Charts and then signed to Atlantic Records. They were never able to duplicate the success that had with Celebrate and eventually all moved on to other projects.

I LOVED this song. Still do. ‘Let’s celebrate, this party’s over. I’m going home.” Thank you, An Emotional Fish. I can’t imagine my college years without this one.

You have always been my favorite,


Photo by Ryan Stefan on Unsplash