Two songs for two lovers who are also beloved, F. and M.:
1. “Sea of Love” went to #2 in the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 pop chart and spent 14 weeks in the top 40, as well as reaching #1 on the R&B chart. In 1959 it sold over one million copies, and was awarded a gold disc. Nonetheless, Phillips was paid only $6800, and received no further royalties for the song or its recording.
Phillips did not release an album to capitalize on his success, due to the unfavorable terms of his deal. “Because I decided to fight for what was rightfully and legally mine, a full album that I recorded was never released. I’m not being paid, nor have I ever been paid, as an artist for ‘Sea of Love’. I never received justice and to this day have not received justice.
2. For the crackle of the record; for white underwear, chest and stomach hair, patterned sweater, patterned bedspread; for deep grief and deep passion; for singing and dancing along when you’re too devastated not to; for the moment at 1:18; for “ooohhhhhhh”; for my favorite lyrics in a song never being the words; for the name Paul (M.!); for F. who loves this, has been this, and always sings along; for F. saying: “Because at any moment he might start crying—”