The song “867-5309/Jenny” deserves to be on the soundtrack of the 1980s.
Tommy Tutone, responsible for the song, is coming to Tulsa.
Tommy “Tutone” Heath will perform a solo show at 6 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 10, at Soul City of Tulsa, 1621 E. 11th St. Tulsa power pop music artist Dwight Twilley is expected to make a guest appearance.
Led by vocalist/guitarist Tommy Heath and lead guitarist Jim Keller, Tommy Tutone started out as a twangy bar band in San Francisco in the late 1970s. The band rocked with a traditional five-piece configuration: two guitarists, bassist, keyboards and drummer.
The band, after exploring other trails, fine-tuned a stylized power pop sound and, skinny neckties and all, demonstrated the modernized new wave/power pop style on a first single, “Angels Say No.”
The 1981 release of an even catchier follow-up single, “867-5309/Jenny,” coincided conveniently with the golden age of MTV.
The video for the song featured Heath and Keller battling over a blond in a tavern. Said a news release: “It was as goofy as any other contemporary pop-rock clip on MTV at that time, but the hooks in the song’s intro and chorus were undeniably infectious.”
The song — which reached No. 4 and went gold — became the band’s biggest hit. Six years ago, VH1 ranked it No. 4 among the 100 greatest songs of the ’80s.
Tommy Tutone broke up after a third album. In 1994, Heath released a country album. In 1998, he released a new Tommy Tutone album. Then came a 2008 follow-up solo album featuring original songs that paid tribute to his love of country and soul music. His latest album (“Beautiful Ending”) is a new chapter in a continuing career.
Said the news release: “Merging elements of rock and roll, country, rockabilly and soul, Tutone offers a memorable album of what very well could be his finest work.”
The album features a title single and an interpretation of the classic Jim Croce song “Operator.”