The ‘80s: Crowded House’s ‘Crowded House’

Neil Finn, Paul Hester, and Nick Seymour left their former bands in the mid1980s and formed the band Crowded House, a name derived from the cramped space in their apartment in West Hollywood where they lived while recording their debut album. Fortunately, close quarters seemed to have no impact on the band’s creativity; Crowded House released their eponymous debut album in 1986 and became the darling of fans and critics alike. The album was a multi-platinum hit, topping the charts in Seymour and Hester’s homeland of Australia, peaking at #3 in Seymour’s homeland of New Zealand, and hitting the top 20 in the U.S. Fun Fact: Seymour, who is also a professional artist, CrowdedHousedesigned the album cover..

The band’s first single, “Mean To Me,” hit the top 40 in Australia, the only country in which it was released. They followed up with the tune “World Where You Live,” their first international single, which made a modest appearance on the U.S. charts, peaking at #65. While their third single, “Now We’re Getting Somewhere,” failed to chart in the states, it would be their fourth single that would strike gold not only in the states, but worldwide.

The rock ballad “Don’t Dream It’s Over” was released in the fall of 1986, and to say it was the band’s breakthrough track would be an understatement. The tune topped the charts in Canada and New Zealand, and cracked the top 10 in Australia. In the states, the song made it to the top 20 on the album rock tracks chart, the top 10 on the adult contemporary chart, and peaked at #2 on the pop chart.

Riding on the momentum of the previous single, the band released their fifth and final single from the album, “Something So Strong,” a danceable, pop tune which hit the top 10 on the pop and rock charts in the states.

—Montrose Cunningham

Montrose Cunningham is a Dallas, Texas-based, independent funk/rock/soul artist and devoted music aficionado, with a Master of Science degree in Marketing. When he isn’t digging through the crates–digital and analog–he’s jamming with his band or hanging with his daughters, sometimes at the same time. Purchase his release Inertia at, follow him on Twitter @MontroseC and check out his blog, Daddy Rock Star.

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