SotD82 - Part 4

Inspired by our series of articles looking back at music released 30 years ago, Jimmy Hunter takes a step further back in time to give us some more Songs of the Day from 40 years back, SotD82...

Find Jimmy's other SotD82 articles here

For some bizarre reason I always think our first choice this week as a record that came out in the late ‘70s. No, I’ve no idea why. Don’t Stop Believin’ by Journey, has had a huge amount of praise (once lauded as the perfect rock song) and commercially, had its fair share of success. But it took over 27 years for that to happen in the UK. Catapulted into British consciousness by a performance on the X Factor by Joe McElderry (I encourage you to not go there!!) it soared up the charts. Further reappearances may have been down to a very credible Glee cover [Eh?? What??? Oh no… nonono… NOT GLEE!!??!! – Ed]. There are obvious, and key, hooks in this record: the piano intro (with a chord progression that continues through most of the record) with Steve Perry’s vocals soaring and the guitar after the first verse… I’ll stop now [You can STOP mentioning Glee!!! – Ed]. There’s the original studio/album version for you to enjoy and a cracking live version too!

Studio version:

Fab live version:

[and the Glee version - Ed]:

For those who (kind of) know me, this next choice may not surprise you (that much). However, for those who think I only like pop/disco, well, you’re mistaken. Electronica features large in my collection as does prog rock – I give you our second choice, Child of the Universe by Barclay James Harvest. Though it was never a hit in the UK, it did fairly well in Europe, and like a number of other prog rock bands throughout the ‘70s, BJH found what seemed to be a natural audience in Europe, mainly France and especially Germany. Yet again, I always think this is a record from the ‘70s [I see a theme emerging – Ed] but I always seem to associate prog(ish) rock with that decade.

from Concert For the People: Berlin 1982

The longevity of Hall & Oates is remarkable. Written off by more than a few (especially in the UK) as pop-fluff nonsense, I think their talent and skills as songwriters and producers have proved many naysayers wrong: their induction into the Songwriters’ Hall of Fame is evidence of this. As is a long string of both critically and/or commercially successful records. This is probably when I first became aware of them – that said, I don’t have any of their records [Is there a point to all this? – Ed]. I picked this record because it’s kind of a signature tune for the pair – and once I found the Cee Lo Green collab, that sealed the deal.

Superb live version, Cee Lo Green sharing the lead vocal:

And since this is (allegedly) all about the music, here’s the extended 12” mix:

It proved very difficult to find a decent, watchable live version of this final record – or even a version where it’s performed by the band. So, I’ve got the full length album version in which you can immerse yourselves. No, it’s fine, no need to thank me [We won’t – Ed], because Dazz is a band not much heard of here in the UK but Let It Whip was a breakthrough single in the US, soaring to the top of the Billboard R&B chart. I do remember hearing this in a club at the time and I’ve not listened to it since then. It’s very much of its time, yes, and it’s not the most exciting record you’ll hear, true. Yet I find its soul/funk/jazz rhythm very infectious.

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