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Eurythmics - Sweet Dreams (Are Made Of This) (1983)

  • Video Views 653,245,684
  • 80's Score80's Score80's Score 80's score: 2.69
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“Sweet Dreams (Are Made of This)” is a song by the British new wave music duo Eurythmics. The song is the title ...

“Sweet Dreams (Are Made of This)” is a song by the British new wave music duo Eurythmics. The song is the title track of their album of the same name and was released as the fourth and final single from the album in early 1983. The song became their breakthrough hit, establishing the duo worldwide. Its music video helped to propel the song to number 2 on the UK Singles Chart and number 1 on the US Billboard Hot 100. It was the first single released by Eurythmics in the US.

“Sweet Dreams (Are Made of This)” is arguably Eurythmics’ signature song. Following its success, their previous single, “Love Is a Stranger”, was re-released and also became a worldwide hit. On Rolling Stone’s The 500 Greatest Songs of All Time issue in 2003, “Sweet Dreams (Are Made of This)” was ranked number 356. In 2020, the song was inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame. Eurythmics have regularly performed the song in all their live sets since 1982, and it is often performed by Annie Lennox on her solo tours.

In 1991, the song was remixed and reissued to promote Eurythmics’ Greatest Hits album. It re-charted in the UK, reaching number 48, and was also a moderate hit in dance clubs. Another remix by Steve Angello was released in France in 2006, along with the track “I’ve Got a Life” (peaking at number 10). Uploaded to YouTube in 2010, the music video has amassed over 400 million views.

Chart performance

“Sweet Dreams” was Eurythmics’ commercial breakthrough in the United Kingdom and all over the world. The single entered the UK chart at number 63 in February 1983 and reached number two the following month. Although it is one of the most successful songs of the genre Synth-Pop of the 80s, it could not reach the first position, since it was blocked by the successful ballad of “Total Eclipse of the Heart” by Bonnie Tyler, only for a week.

“Sweet Dreams” was the first-ever single released by Eurythmics in the United States when it was released in May 1983. The single debuted at number 90 and slowly eased up the chart. By August, the single had reached number two and stayed there for four weeks, kept from the top by the Police’s “Every Breath You Take” before “Sweet Dreams” took the number one spot.

Music video

The music video for “Sweet Dreams” was directed by Chris Ashbrook and filmed in January 1983, shortly before the single and the album was released. The video received heavy airplay on the then-fledgling MTV channel and is widely considered a classic clip from the early-MTV era.

The music video begins with a fist pounding on a table, with the camera panning up to reveal Lennox in a boardroom, with images of a Saturn V launch projected on a screen behind her, which are later replaced by a shot of a crowd walking down a street. Stewart is shown typing on a computer (actually an MCS drum computer). The camera cuts to Lennox and Stewart meditating on the table. Stewart is next shown playing cello in a field. The scene then returns to the boardroom, with Lennox and Stewart lying down on the table, and a cow walking around them. Stewart is shown again typing on the computer, with the cow chewing something right next to him. The scene cuts to the duo in a field, with a herd of cows, and Stewart still typing. Lennox and Stewart are then seen floating in a boat, with Stewart again playing the cello. The video ends with Lennox lying in bed, with the last shot being a book on a nightstand bearing a cover identical to the album. The screen then fades to black as Lennox turns off the bedside lamp.

Lennox’s androgynous visual image, with close-cropped, orange-coloured hair, and attired in a man’s suit brandishing a cane, immediately made her a household name. Her gender-bending image was also explored in other Eurythmics videos such as “Love Is a Stranger” and “Who’s That Girl?” and with her appearance at the 1984 Grammy Awards.

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