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Stars on 45

Stars on 45 were a Dutch novelty pop act that was briefly very popular in the UK, Europe and the US in the very early 1980s. The band, which consisted solely of studio session musicians under the direction of Jaap Eggermont, formerly of Golden Earring, popularised the medley, by recreating hit songs as faithfully as possible and stringing them together, with a common tempo and relentless underlying drum track. The point was to provide a dancable disco record which used familiar tunes.

Apart from the recreated songs, an original chorus and hook was added at intervals to help string differing sections together. The lyrics and a MIDI rendition of the most successful single can be read/heard here.

The first such release, Stars on 45, featuring songs from The Beatles, went to Number 1 in the US, and Number 2 in the UK, and several follow up records did well too. An album followed, featuring medleys using the songs of ABBA, Stevie Wonder and Motown, but the formula was short-lived, and a second album sold less well and was the last from Stars on 45. The format cropped up a few times by other acts in the 1980s, for example by Jive Bunny and the Mastermixers, as well as a series of "Hit Mix" albums (e.g. "Hit Mix 86", a medley of many hits from that year).

The '45' in the title refers to the playback speed of a vinyl record single - 45 rpm. Such singles were often simply called "45s" (information provided for the benefit of anyone born after 1984).