Genius of Love (5:34)

Cover of Tom Tom Club

From Tom Tom Club and 35 other releases

“Genius of Love” is a 1981 song by Tom Tom Club from their eponymous debut album, Tom Tom Club.

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“Genius of Love” was Tom Tom Club’s second single. Although the album had not been released in North America, over a hundred thousand copies of the single sold as imports from Island Records’s UK, at which point Sire Records made a deal to release the single and the album in North America in late 1981.

“Genius of Love” was a huge hit making the top 40 on the US Billboard Hot 100 (Peaking at #31), in the clubs and on the R&B and dance charts, soon earning the Tom Tom Club LP a Gold Sales Award in 1982. Despite its relatively low chart position in the United Kingdom, the song received a great deal of airplay on UK radio and became a club favorite in Britain, helped by the popularity of the accompanying video. A song based on the keyboards-and-bass rhythm in “Genius of Love” was used in a long-running TV advertising campaign in the UK by the Bird’s desserts company in the second half of the 1980s, the commercials featuring a spin on the psychedelic animation of the Tom Tom Club video using rudimentary CGI. In 2002 it was also used in a popular TV commercial for Kia cars.

The song’s narrator implies that her boyfriend is a “maven of funk mutation” and compares him to James Brown, Bob Marley, Smokey Robinson, Hamilton Bohannon, George Clinton, Bootsy Collins, Sly And Robbie, and Kurtis Blow.

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