87) Ruby & the Romantics – “Our Day Will Come”

While Ruby & the Romantics are sometimes categorized as a girl group (not least on Rhino’s indispensable One Kiss Can Lead to Another box set), the classification has never quite sat well with me.  Partly it’s because four of the five group members are male.  But more than that, it’s the fact that they sound more mature than their peers.  Whereas elegance for girl groups was all about matching chiffon dresses and prom night, “Our Day Will Come” suggests bossa nova, and with it martinis and cigarettes in uptown jazz clubs.  While calling a record “mature” may have certain negative connotations, Ruby & the Romantics prove that adult pop need not be bloodless.  “Our Day Will Come” echoes classic torch songs without losing the vitality of R&B or slavishly recreating the past (contemporary standards revivalists, please take note).  Ruby Nash’s robust alto offsets the Teflon-smooth vocals of the Romantics in the same way that the Hammond organ cuts through the loungey arrangement: to add extra dimensions to what could have been mere background noise.  Which brings me to another way “Our Day Will Come” doesn’t quite fit in with its girl group peers.  No matter how well-written or well-executed a girl group record is, it by definition must follow certain rules.  But by abandoning the template and smoothly incorporating diverse elements, both classic and contemporary, “Our Day Will Come” achieves timelessness.  8

Hit #1 on March 23, 1963; total of 1 week at #1
87 of 976 #1’s reviewed; 8.91% through the Hot 100

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1 Comment

Filed under 08, 1963

One response to “87) Ruby & the Romantics – “Our Day Will Come”

  1. Action Man

    This one never comes to life for me. Pleasant enough vocals, but my mind started drifting before I was a minute in.

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