The Coulda-Shoulda-Woulda Files: Bernard Butler Declares That He’s “Not Alone”

notalone.jpgTime for another installment of the Coulda-Shoulda-Woulda Files, where we blow the dust off of a forgotten favorite and give its lack of chart success a once-over.

Artist: Bernard Butler
Song: “Not Alone,” 1998
What happened: After guitarist Bernard Butler left Suede in 1994, he teamed up with the UK soul singer David McAlmont, then had a brief stint with The Verve. Butler released his first solo album, People Move On, in 1998; “Not Alone” was the second single from People, but it barely made a dent on British radio, peaking at No. 27 on the UK chart.
Why it should have been a hit: The I-will-survive anthem “Not Alone” is an overstuffed, grandiose song, from its opening orchestral swells to the string flourishes on its chorus, although we’re a little suspicious of Butler’s defiant lyrical claim that all he needs is an electric guitar; surely a stripped-down version of this wall-of-sound gem–it even has handclaps!–wouldn’t pack the same punch.

Bernard Butler – Not Alone [MP3, link expired]
the bernard butler website [Official site]

  • Ned Raggett

    Actually, you’d be wrong — saw him in LA with just an acoustic guitar for the tour for this (and yes he changed the line) and it worked quite well.

  • MJ

    The link to the song is bwoken. :(

  • heyzeus

    this has always been one of my favorite songs; thanks for giving it some love.

  • Maura Johnston

    fixed now! sorry!!!

  • We Don’t Live in the 60s

    Always did think he deserved a lot more credit for “People Move On.”

  • We Don’t Live in the 60s

    Always did think he deserved a lot more credit for “People Move On.”

  • Maura Johnston

    i listened to that album every day for a year, no lie.

  • kerry

    Ah, thanks for the little reminder to put this one on. I, too, listened to it frequently, if not constantly when it first came out, then in little spurts every couple years since. I think it’s time for another round . . .