The track is about America's involvement in the Vietnam War and the effect it had on the soldiers who served. '19' features sampled dialogue and news reports from Vietnam Requiem, a U.S. ABC television documentary about the post-traumatic stress disorder suffered by veterans.
The title '19' comes from the documentary's claim that the average age of an American combat soldier in the war was nineteen, as compared to the claim of World War II's 26. This claim has since been disputed. Undisputed statistics do not exist, although Southeast Asia Combat Area Casualties Current File (CACCF), the source for the Vietnam Veterans Memorial, shows a disproportionate number of all deaths (38%) were ages 19 or 20. According to the same source, 23 is the average age at time of death (or declaration of death.)
Nineteen topped the pop charts in the UK for five weeks, and reached the top twenty in the USA, where it also topped the dance chart. For a while it was the top selling single in thirteen countries (helped by the fact that versions of the song were recorded in French, Spanish, German and Japanese), and it received the Ivor Novello award for Bestselling Single Of 1985.
The songs English language release came in at least three different 12" versions, each with an alternate cover design. Hardcastle was later sued by ABC for his unauthorized use of samples from the documentary.
Famous record and television producer Simon Fuller named his management company 19 Entertainment after he signed Paul Hardcastle to Chrysalis Records and the single went to number one.
UK progressive rock musician Mike Oldfield claimed that a melodic element of '19' had been copied from a sequence of his multi-million selling concept album, Tubular Bells, and a settlement was made.
Click the link below to download the following:
95 edit version mix
95 the full story 12 inch
Ben Liebrand Dance Mix
hot tracks digital mix
Paul Hardcastle - Eat Your Heart Out - B-Side
special cut mix
The final story
Eat Your Heart Out - B-Side
Paul Hardcastle - 19 - Video