Midge Ure is convinced his chart battle with Joe Dolce actually made Ultravox’s hit ‘Vienna’ a bigger success in the long-run.
The new wave band’s track was pitched against Joe’s ‘Shaddap You Face’ in the race for the UK number one spot back in February 1981 but the novelty song won out and kept ‘Vienna’ off the top of the UK Singles Chart for three weeks.
‘Vienna’ peaked at number two but still became the band’s biggest hit – and Midge is convinced ‘Shaddap You Face’ had a lot to do with how the song is remembered. He told Classic Pop magazine: “That ghost will never be laid to rest. It’s the novelty factor. That’s why people are still talking about ‘Vienna’ today. If it had got to number one, no one would be bothered.”
The band’s album of the same name also missed out on the top spot as it failed to overtake Kate Bush’s classic record ‘Hounds of Love’ but Midge insists he didn’t feel bad about it because he was a fan of the singer’s work. He joked: “I bought ‘Hounds of Love’ so I probably shot myself in the foot there.”
Midge and Kate went on to work together, recording the track ‘Sister and Brother’ for his 1988 solo album ‘Answers to Nothing’.
The musician went on to talk about his lengthy career in the spotlight – insisting he found the best way to deal with the highs and lows is to not take yourself too seriously.
He added: “Sometimes you’re a genius and the next you’re a moron. That’s how life is. You can’t take it too seriously. “
He previously opened up about his love of music in an interview with the Glasgow Times and insisted his years in Ultravox were some of the best of his life. Midge said: “Ultravox was a great band to be in, it was a great time to be in a band.”
He added: “Music’s a wonderful thing, like smells, you hear something, or you smell something and it instantly takes you back. With music from the past it instantly takes you back to who you were hanging about with and what you were wearing and who you thought you wanted to be when you were a kid, and it’s one of the few things that can actually do that.”