Tainted Love (Sire/Warner Brothers, 1981)
Tainted Love was composed by Ed Cobb, formerly of the American pop music group The Four Preps. It was originally recorded by Gloria Jones in 1965. Jones became the girlfriend of glam rock musician Marc Bolan of T. Rex. She joined the band as a keyboardist and backing vocalist. Jones used Tainted Love as the B-side to My Bad Boy’s Comin Home which was a commercial flop that failed to chart. In 1981, English synth pop duo Soft Cells covered the song and gave a memorable performance on the BBC music show, Top of the Pops which led to Tainted Love finally topping the charts (in the UK) and becoming the best selling single of 1981 also in the UK. Becoming a major hit during the second British Invasion (of the 80s), Tainted Love spent a (then) record 43 weeks on Billboard’s Hot 100 and peaked at #8. Tainted Love also topped Australian, Belgian, Canadian, West German and South African pop charts.