Synopsis of Pop Music
“Don't forget me when I'm gone,
My heart would break,
I have loved you for so long,
It's all I can take...”
One of the most popular hits of 1986 was “Don’t Forget Me When I’m Gone,” a swinging slice of pop-rock with a glossy, synth-driven sound. It dominated pop radio that summer and also became a favorite at high school proms. The group behind this monolithic hit was a Canadian ensemble known as Glass Tiger. By combining pop songcraft with a high-tech sound, these handsome Canucks scored some notable pop-rock hits in the mid-1980’s. In the process, they became one of Canada’s most successful musical exports of that era.
Glass Tiger began its life as Tokyo, a popular group on the Toronto bar-band circuit. They got their break when the manager of Styx saw the band and took interest in them. Soon enough, they had a record contract and were opening concerts for bands like Culture Club. In 1986, the group teamed up with Jim Vallance, the songwriting partner of Bryan Adams, to produce an album. They renamed themselves Glass Tiger and released The Thin Red Line.
In the summer of 1986, Glass Tiger scored a #2 hit in America with “Don’t Forget When I’m Gone,” an uptempo love song that featured Bryan Adams on backup vocals. At this point, Glass Tiger hit the ground running and dove into a serious concert schedule that saw them opening for groups like the Moody Blues and Journey. They also traveled to Europe as the support act for Tina Turner. In 1987, the ballad-styled “Someday” became a Top-10 hit and a favorite on the radio. Meanwhile, their debut album sold by the millions and also earned them a Grammy nomination.
In 1988, Glass Tiger returned to the pop music scene with Diamond Sun. On this album, the group downplayed the pop touch of The Thin Red Line for a tougher, more rock-oriented sound. It sold well, especially in Canada, and the group continued to tour steadily. They continued in a harder-rocking style in 1991 with Simple Mission. This album got some attention thanks to “My Town,” a duet with Rod Stewart. The band went on tour to the support the album, but disbanded shortly afterwards.
Since disbanding, most of the members of Glass Tiger have stayed involved in music. For instance, Alan Frew has released two solo albums and Sam Reid now runs his studio. Although there has not been a permanent reunion of Glass Tiger, the group has periodically reformed for concerts in the last few years and a new album is rumored to be on the horizon. Just the same, they have already won the hearts of pop fans everywhere with their combination of rock and roll energy and pop smoothness.
Artist Release History1986 - Thin Red Line
1988 - Diamond Sun
1993 - The Best of Glass Tiger: Air Time (compilation)
Pop Sub Categoriesrock
Essential Music AlbumsBest Of Glass Tiger: Air Time (EMI)
Band MembersAlan Frew lead vocals
Sam Reid keyboards, vocals
Al Connelly guitar
Wayne Parker bass
Michael Hanson drums, vocals