Romantics lead guitarist Mike Skill recently released a new version of his band’s classic 1980 tune “What I Like About You.” It’s available now via streaming services and will be included on Skill’s debut solo album Skill…Mike Skill, due out on September 10.
Skill tells ABC Audio that he thinks his new version “kicks a**.”
Mike co-wrote “What I Like About You” with founding Romantics drummer Jimmy Marinos, who sang lead on the original track. But since frontman Wally Palmar handled lead vocal duties on most of The Romantics’ tunes, Skill says his solo project gives him the chance to make it “known that I’m able to get out there and sing songs as well.”
The updated rendition of “What I Like About You” features Skill on both lead and backing vocals, guitars and bass, with current Romantics member Brad Elvis on drums.
Mike reveals that he began recording the new version so the The Romantics could offer it for use in movies, TV shows and commercials, but that plan fell through. Then, when the COVID pandemic last year quashed plans for the band to celebrate their 40th anniversary, Skill found himself with extra time on his hands.
He began gathering songs for his first solo album, and decided to include his new version of “What I Like About You” in the project, and release it as a single to mark its 41st anniversary.
To record his updated version, Skill says, “I brought out the old Hiwatts, the same amps I used on the original song. The Rickenbacker [guitars]…I wanted to make sure it had that really crisp, raw energy — a real…thump to it. And it came out that way. [It] turned out really good.”
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