Single Review: Paula Abdul “Promise of a New Day”

Promise of a New Day
Album: Spellbound
Year: 1991

A fresh start rejunvates Paula Abdul in the carefree “Promise of a New Day.”

Tropical flutes and stern bass open the single. Abdul is refreshed after absorbing the beauty of the ocean and hearing birds call to one another. She believes it will be nature will be as wonderful tomorrow. (“Eagle’s calling and he’s calling your name/Tides are turning bringing winds of change/Why do I feel this way/The promise of a new day.”)

In the chorus, the background singers repeat sing the short chorus. (“the promise, promise/the promise of a new day.”)

Time passes subtly and without notice. With another hour or so, she will approach love. But it’s the possibilities of tomorrow which will determine if the love is authentic. (“As through time the earth moves under my feet/One step closer to make love complete/What has the final say/The promise of a new day.”)

The drum machines rattle unremarkably. Next, is the the tropical flutes have a brief solo which lead to the bridge. Unfortunately, the tropical aspects are downplayed and cut down to be a gimmick.

In the bridge, Abduls sings that there is much to be discovered about the world. Shocking events will happen. Technology will advance. However, the only constant is people will wake up to another day to help their friends, family, etc. (“And so time over time/What will change the world/No one knows(no one knows)/So the only promise is a day to live, to give/And to share with one another.”)

Abdul says that people learn from their errors. Its sets the tone for the next generation, allowing them to look at history and know the slip-up cannot happen again. The children can feel the possibilities of something big. (“See the wisdom from mistakes in our past/Hear the younger generation ask/Why do I feel this way/The promise of a new day.”)

The bridge is sung again to end the single.

The flighty “Promise of a New Day” delivers it’s message in an unintentional campy New Age package. However, despite the criticism, the single is charming. Its dance beat is warm and mellow. Abdul also sells the wholesome message with heart, even if the lyrics are a bit over-the-top.


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