Sweet times for Jack Radics
COVER Me GoodMonday, October 25, 2021
BY KEVIN JACKSON
The Jamaica Observer's Entertainment Desk continues its month-long feature titled 'Cover Me Good'. It will look at songs covered by Jamaican artistes which became hits.
Producer Donovan Germain was riding high in the early 1990s. One of the projects that helped skyrocket his Penthouse label was a reincarnation of the Feeling Soul rhythm which he dubbed Fire Burning.
The beat had songs such as Buju Banton's Love Mi Browning, Marcia Griffiths' Fire Burning, Half Idiot by Griffiths and Cutty Ranks, Feeling Lonely by Beres Hammond, and Crying Fool by Tiger, all number one hits on local charts.
Singer Jack Radics got his breakthrough hit with a cover of This Time I'll Be Sweeter which was also part of the project.
“I really liked the original version of This Time I'll Be Sweeter. The romance intrinsic in the lyrics and melody inspired me to record it,” Radics explained.
Germain had no idea that the song — which was recorded at Penthouse's Slipe Road studio — would become a hit. Brothers Tony and Dave Kelly and Steven Stanley were the engineers who worked on it.
“I knew it was a good cover of the original, but I generally don't predict the commercial acceptance of songs,” he said.
According to Radics, the song gave him the breakthrough he craved.
“I was elated at its success because it took my career into orbit. It opened every door and window for my career,” he shared.
This Time I'll be Sweeter made an impact on the JBC Top 30, RJR Top 40 and Gleaner Top 10 charts. Radics later scored with covers of British group Hot Chocolate's You Sexy Thing and The Top Notes Twist and Shout.
The oft-covered This Time I'll Be Sweeter was co-written by Haras Fyre and Gwen Guthrie who, like Radics, had success working with Sly and Robbie.
R&B singer Marlena Shaw first recorded the song in 1974. It appears on her 1976 album A Matter Of Time.
Roberta Flack recorded This Time I'll b e Sweeter for her 1975 album, Feel Like Makin' Love on which Guthrie sang background vocals. However, this version was included on Flack's 1977 album, Blue Lights in The Basement.
The first release of This Time I'll Be Sweeter was the B-side of Love is Blind by Martha Reeves in 1975. A version by British soul singer Linda Lewis was also released that year and reached number 51 in the United Kingdom in 1976. It was also a hit in Brazil.
The most successful version of This Time I'll be Sweeter came in 1978 as the debut for American soul singer Angela Bofill, whose cut reached number 23 on Billboard's Hot Soul Singles Chart.