Thursday, June 18, 2015

The Top 500 Songs of the Rock Era*: #220-211

If you have been catching each segment of The Top 500 Songs of the Rock Era*, you have been listening to the greatest music over the last 60 years!  More is coming after the jump:


Blue Bayou 
Linda Ronstadt

"Linda and her music will always be beautiful."

"So moving, soulful, beautiful, heartful...on and on, it's the Best!!"

"One of the best female voices that ever lived."

The vocal and interpretation by Ronstadt cannot be beat."

"A vocal masterpiece."


"One of the greats."

"Blue Bayou" was originally recorded by Roy Orbison in 1963, but stalled at #29.  Orbison wrote the song with Joe Melson, whom he hooked up with on the great songs "Crying" and "Only The Lonely".  Linda Ronstadt took the song to far greater fame, as she did with nearly every remake she recorded. Orbison talked about "Blue Bayou" with the British magazine New Musical Express:

Take a song like 'Blue Bayou' for instance, that's simply a song about being on the road.  And that is really a happy song.  It probably sounds very strange to you for me to say that.  The fellow's bound and determined to get back to where you sleep all day and the catfish play and the sailing boats and the girls and all that stuff.  It's a beautiful thought. Now granted that it is a sad song, a lonely song, but it's a loneliness that precedes happiness.  

Don Henley, who was once the drummer in Linda's backing band, but went on to form one of the top groups of the Rock Era in the Eagles, sang backing vocals on the song.  Ronstadt released the single August 23, 1977 on Asylum Records from her Simple Dreams album. 

The song faced tough competition, but "Blue Bayou" was up to the task.  Rock Era listeners also heard "How Deep Is Your Love", "Stayin' Alive", and "Night Fever" by the Bee Gees, Debbie Boone's "You Light Up My Life", "Don't Stop" and "You Make Loving Fun" by Fleetwood Mac, "Just The Way You Are" by Billy Joel, Andy Gibb's "I Just Want To Be Your Everything", "If I Can't Have You" by Yvonne Elliman, "We Are The Champions" by Queen, "Sometimes When We Touch" by Dan Hill, Player's "Baby Come Back", and Eric Clapton's "Lay Down Sally".  

"Blue Bayou" rose to #3 for 4 weeks, it was #2 for 2 weeks on the Country chart, and also received play on the Adult chart.  As Ronstadt also simultaneously owned another huge hit in "It's So Easy", she became the first artist since the Beatles to score two Top 5 songs at the same time.  The song also peaked at #3 in New Zealand.

 Ronstadt also recorded the song in Spanish ("Lago Azul"), which became popular in Spanish-speaking countries.  To date, "Blue Bayou" has sold 2 million singles, helped sell 4.5 million albums, and has topped four million in radio airplay.


From This Moment On
Shania Twain


"Incredibly beautiful song."

"The lyrics are so beautiful and meaningful."

"Amazing song."

"Very awesome song."

"Everyone can relate to this song."

"A very beautiful song--love it."


Here's one of just five songs from the year 1998 to make The Top 500*.

This artist, part of a desperately poor family in Timmins, Ontario, Canada, began singing in bars at the age of eight to help pay her family's bills. She earned 20 dollars between midnight and one in the morning performing after the bar had stopped serving. Although she didn't like the experience, Eilleen Twain believes that this was her performing arts school on the road. "My deepest passion was music and it helped," she said. "There were moments when I thought, 'I hate this.' I hated going into bars and being with drunks. But I loved the music and so I survived".

After graduating from high school, Twain joined the band Longshot. But the death of her parents in a car accident forced her to take care of her younger siblings. After a few years, they moved out on their own, and Eilleen recorded a demo tape to present to record executives.  A few of them were interested, and Eilleen signed a recording contract with Mercury Records. 
She changed her first name to Shania, and released her self-titled debut album in 1993. It did not initially sell well, but an influential producer who would soon become a big part of Twain's life was impressed. Robert John "Mutt" Lange offered to write songs with her and produce her next album, The Woman in Me. The two became very close over the next several weeks, and married on December 28, 1993. The Woman in Me started Shania on her way, selling over 14 million albums worldwide.

Twain and Lange co-wrote this song while attending a soccer game in Italy. As Twain explained, "We were in Italy two years ago, and we were at a soccer game. My husband loves sports. I don't know the game that well, so my mind drifted and I started writing." Twain and Lange were married from 1994-2008.

The original version was a duet between Shania and country singer Bryan White. That one wasn't good enough (Twain's first choice for a partner was Elton John), so Shania recorded it solo, with instrumentation from the Brooklyn Philharmonic Orchestra. Twain released the single March 14, 1998 from her blockbuster album Come On Over.

The top competition for the song came from Twain's "You're Still The One", "Candle In The Wind 1997" by Elton John, "The Boy Is Mine" from Monica and Brandy, "My Heart Will Go On" by Celine Dion, "Truly, Madly, Deeply" from Savage Garden, and Jewel's "You Were Meant For Me".

"From This Moment On" went to #4 overall, but was a #1 smash for six weeks on the more-important Adult Contemporary chart in the United States. It also reached #1 in Canada, #2 in Australia, and #9 in the U.K.

Twain won American Music Awards for Favorite Female Artist and Favorite Country Female Artist, Billboard Awards for Female Artist of the Year, Top 100 Singles Artist--Female, a Blockbuster Award for Favorite Female Artist--Country. and BMI Pop Songwriter of the Year.

"From This Moment On" helped sell a phenomenal 24 million albums in the U.S. and over 40 million worldwide. Come On Over is the top-selling album in history by a female artist. The song has garnered four million radio airplays.



Coward Of The County
Kenny Rogers
"I love this song."
"This song is beautiful.  It's the one song that can make me cry."
"This song is phenomenal on so many levels."
"This song is a classic."
"Wonderful song."
"Awesome song."
"Amazing storytelling."

When the group the First Edition broke up, it left Kenny Rogers $65,000 in debt.  He more than made up for that in his solo career, which began in 1975.  Rogers went on to bridge the gap between country and rock, and is one of the most-awarded and rewarded artists of our time.

Roger Bowling and Billy Ed Wheeler combined to write this classic for Kenny Rogers.  Rogers was on fire in the late 70's, collecting 10 Top 5 songs among adults over a five-year period, and he continued that amazing run with this song.  

Rogers released "Coward Of The County" as a single from his Triple Platinum album Kenny on November 12, 1979.
The song ran into a host of other great songs at the time:  "Another Brick In The Wall" by Pink Floyd, Queen's "Crazy Little Thing Called Love", "Rock With You" from Michael Jackson, "My Sharona" by the Knack, Blondie's "Call Me", "The Rose" by Bette Midler, "Heartache Tonight" and "I Can't Tell You Why" by the Eagles,  "Babe" by Styx, "Don't Fall In Love With A Dreamer" by Kenny Rogers & Kim Carnes, "Lost In Love" from Air Supply, "Still" by the Commodores, and "You Decorated My Life" from Rogers.
"Coward Of The County" achieved a solid #3 for 4 weeks, with 8 weeks in the Top 10.  It also reached #5 on the Adult Contemporary chart, and was one of the biggest Country hits of the '80s, going to #1 for three weeks.  The song really struck a chord in Ireland, going to #1 for six weeks there.  Rogers also landed at #1 in the U.K., Canada, and New Zealand,  #3 in Austria, and #8 in the Netherlands and Switzerland.
"Coward Of The County" topped one million in single sales and helped sell 22 million albums.  To date, the song has registered two million airplays.


Van Halen


"Classic song!"
"One of my favorite songs ever."

"Great song!"

"Four minutes of pure joy."

"Eddie's solo is a milestone."

"Incredible song."

"Super cool!"

Elite guitarist Eddie Van Halen wrote the synthesizer line to this classic in 1981, three years before it became a hit, but the other members of the group rejected it.  Then in 1983, ace producer Ted Templeman asked lead singer David Lee Roth to take another listen to it.  This time, Roth liked the song, and came up with the lyrics.   
Eddie calls his guitar solo part in "Jump" "the best guitar part I never wrote", a tongue-in-cheek comment because the solo was spliced together from several takes.
Van Halen recorded this song at Eddie's 5150 Studios in Studio City, California.  They released the single in December of 1983 from their album 1984.  We guess it could be said that Van Halen got the "jump" on the new year.  Templeman talked about the session to Neil Zlzower for his book Van Halen:  A Visual History 1978-1984

 [Engineer] Donn [Landee] and Ed put the track down alone in the middle of the night.  We recut it once in one take for sonic reasons.  Dave wrote the lyrics that afternoon in the backseat of his Mercury convertible.  We finished all vocals that afternoon and mixed it that evening.

"Jump" came out at a time when MTV (which used to stand for "music television") was hot, and the song benefited tremendously from the video exposure.  Roth directed the video, which was nominated for three MTV Video Music Awards, and won for Best Stage Performance.  But shooting the video was tense, as producer Robert Lombard said in the book I Want My MTV:  " I was trying to keep the peace, because I felt tension amongst them.  David thought he was bigger than the rest of them."

The switch to synthesizers and more popular material caused a riff between Eddie and Roth, who left the band soon afterwards.  Of course, Roth never did much of anything on his own, while Van Halen was one of the top acts of the '80s and early '90s.

"Jump" was making its run during one of the best times of the Rock Era.  Check out its competition:  "Hello", and "All Night Long" by Lionel Richie, "Thriller" from Michael Jackson, "Islands In The Stream" by Kenny Rogers & Dolly Parton, Billy Joel's "Uptown Girl", "Against All Odds" from Phil Collins, Tina Turner's comeback smash "What's Love Got To Do With It", "Total Eclipse Of The Heart" by Bonnie Tyler, "I Guess That's Why They Call It The Blues" by Elton John, "Time After Time" by Cyndi Lauper, "Footloose" from Kenny Loggins, "Let's Hear It For The Boy" by Deniece Williams, and "Dancing In The Dark" by Bruce Springsteen.

"Jump" became a monster #1 song of 5 weeks, with 10 weeks in the Top 10 in the United States.  It catapulted to #2 in Australia and Ireland, #4 in Germany, Austria, and Switzerland, and #7 in the U.K. and France.

"Jump" not only went Gold but helped sell 11 million albums.


I Will Survive 
Gloria Gaynor 

"Very empowering."
"This will survive forever."
"This song is so uplifting."
"Classic song about internal strength."
"Truly great song about emotions and zeal to live."
"One of my favorites."

This incredible classic is about continuing on after a bad relationship.  It has come to mean many things to different people, but for the person who wrote the lyrics, Dino Fekaris, the song was about moving on after being fired from Motown Records.  
They let me go after almost seven years.  I was an unemployed songwriter contemplating my fate.  I turned the TV on, and there it was: a song I had written for a movie theme titled "Generation" was playing right then (the song was performed by Rare Earth).  I took that as an omen that things were going to work out for me.  I remember jumping up and down on the bed saying, 'I'm going to make it.  I'm going to be a songwriter.  I will survive!


Freddie Perren collaborated with Fekaris for the melody to the song.  Perren was a co-writer on three #1 songs for the Jackson 5--"ABC", "The Love You Save", and "I Want You Back".  Fekaris, meanwhile, had penned another song with an optimistic tone, "I Just Want To Celebrate" for Rare Earth, along with songs for the Temptations and the Four Tops.
When Perren and Fekaris finished this song, they didn't have anyone to sing it.  The two agreed that the next diva that came their way would get the song.  Gloria Gaynor was the gal of the moment--her record company called Perren asking for help on the song "Substitute".  Gloria got the bonus of a lifetime, not only getting help on that song, but being given this incredible song. 
Gaynor learned the song from a demo of the song that Perren and Fekaris made for her, and both songs were recorded.  To a person, everyone in the studio knew that "I Will Survive" was the superior song, but the record company had specifically ordered "Substitute", and released that as the single on October 23, 1978.  "I Will Survive" was placed on the flip side. 
To no one's surprise at the session, "Substitute" peaked at #107.  However, great songs will most of the time find their way to be heard, no matter what the circumstances.  In this case, DJ's at discos began playing the "B" side of the single, and reaction was unanimous--everyone simply loved the song.  Radio stations began playing "I Will Survive", and Polydor was forced to press singles with it as the "A' side. 
The song went head to head with some great songs:  "My Sharona" by the Knack, "Too Much Heaven" by the Bee Gees, "My Life" from Billy Joel, "You Don't Bring Me Flowers" by Barbra Streisand and Neil Diamond, Exile's classic "Kiss You All Over", "Reunited" from Peaches & Herb, "Le Freak" by Chic, "Do Ya Think I'm Sexy?" from Rod Stewart, Donna Summer's "Hot Stuff", "She Believes In Me" by Kenny Rogers, "You Needed Me" by Anne Murray, and "What A Fool Believes" from the Doobie Brothers.   

"I Will Survive" rumbled to #1 for 3 weeks, with 13 weeks in a very solid Top 10.  It also proved it was a multi-format hit; #4 on the R&B chart and #9 on the Adult chart.  The song also hit #1 in the U.K., Canada and Ireland, #2 in France, #3 in Finland and Sweden, #4 in Norway, #5 in Australia and the Netherlands, #7 in Germany, and #10 in New Zealand. 

"I Will Survive" has sold over two million singles, helped sell 1.5 million albums, and won the Grammy Award for Best Disco Recording.
What can one say?  The song has become an anthem, an inspiration to the depressed.  Gaynor had this to say about her classic:  "I love the empowering effect, I love the encouraging effect.  It's a timeless lyric that addresses a timeless concern."
"I Will Survive" is the best that either songwriter has ever come up with.  The lyrics describe the protagonist's discovery of personal strength after a devastating breakup, delivered with increasing confidence in an amazing performance by Gaynor, and backed by a stirring instrumental arrangement.
Aretha Franklin and Diana Ross are among the artists who have covered the song.  "I Will Survive" has been reproduced in 20 languages.  The song has lived up to its title, placing in the Top 100 every decade since it came out by different artists.  Safire entered the chart with a remake in 1989 and peaked with it in 1990.  Chantay recorded a slower, jazzier version of the song in 1996.  The Pussycat Dolls included "I Will Survive" as a sample to their song "Hush Hush; Hush Hush" in 2009.  And the Glee Cast combined the song with Destiny Child's "Survivor" in 2011.  But Gaynor's of course is far and away the most famous.  
Perren and Fekaris formed their own production duo, also taking "Reunited" to #1 for Peaches & Herb the following year. 



Aretha Franklin

"I love the background singers--they make it even more of a perfect song."
"Best song ever created."
"This song is WOW!"
"A great classic."
"Fabulous song."

"What a great song!" 


Otis Redding originally wrote this song as a ballad for Speedo Sims, who intended to record it with his group, the Singing Demons.  Redding then rewrote the lyrics and sped it up, but when Speedo and the group went into the studio, they were unable to record a good version.  So Redding recorded it himself for his album Otis Blue.  Otis landed at #5 on the Black chart and #35 overall, and performed the song at the Monterey Pop Festival.  Redding song commented on the song shortly before his death in 1967:

That's one of my favorite songs because it has a better groove than any of my records.  It says something, too: 'What you want, baby, you got it; what you need, baby, you got it; all I'm asking for is a little respect when I come home'.

  Aretha Franklin had just signed with Atlantic Records in 1967, and she scored her first big hit with "I Never Loved A Man (The Way I Love You)".  On the heels of that success, Atlantic arranged a recording session to enable Franklin to release an album.  When Aretha Franklin covered "Respect" two years after Redding, not only was the perspective from a woman instead of a man, but the music was significantly different, and Aretha added in the now-famous "R-E-S-P-E-C-T" and "sock it to me" lyrics.  Franklin's sister Carolyn came up with the idea to spell out "Respect", according to engineer Tom Dowd.  Carolyn and another sister, Erma, sang the backing vocals on the "sock it to me" section.  The "TCB" in the song means "taking care of business". 
Franklin had the good fortune to record the song at the Atlantic Studios in New York City with musicians who became famously known as the Muscle Shoals Rhythm Section.  They had previously played sessions in Nashville, Tennessee and Muscle Shoals, Alabama, before starting their own studio, Muscle Shoals Sound Studios.
As the Redding version had no bridge section, producer Jerry Wexler added one that featured King Curtis' tenor saxophone solo over the chords from Sam and Dave's song "When Something Is Wrong With My Baby".

Franklin recorded this classic at the Atlantic Studios in New York City on February 14, 1967, and released the single on April 29 from her album I Never Loved a Man the Way I Love You.
If you are a Rock Era fan who lived through the time, consider yourself fortunate--at the time "Respect" was making its move, the following songs were all current:  "Light My Fire" by the Doors, "Groovin'" by the Young Rascals, "Penny Lane" and "Strawberry Fields Forever" by the Beatles, "Happy Together" from the Turtles, "Windy" by the Association, "Up, Up And Away" by the 5th Dimension, "Can't Take My Eyes Off You" by Frankie Valli, and "For What It's Worth" by Buffalo Springfield. 

"Respect" not only dominated the R&B chart for eight weeks; it also gave Franklin her first #1 song, a position it stayed at for two weeks. 

This was Aretha's first big hit in the U.K., where it stopped at #10.  "Respect" also reached #1 in Australia and #2 in Canada.
As we stated in our salute to The Most Important Songs of the Rock Era*, "Respect" helped changed the world.  The feminist movement took the song and ran with it.  It became in fact an anthem for both the Civil Rights and Women's Rights movements. 

"Respect" was inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame in 1987.  In 1999, it was included in the list of the Songs of the Century by the Recording Industry of America.  In 2002, the U.S. Library of Congress added the song to the National Recording Registry.
"Respect" has been featured in numerous movies since then, playing on its perennial popularity as being one of the top songs ever recorded.


Dancing Queen 

Great classic song."
"One of the top songs of all-time.  Picks the soul up."
"Beautiful job by the girls on this signature song."
"One of the best in history."
"One of the most-known intros ever recorded."
"Best song of all-time.  It is a classic."
"Great song from an amazing group."

We're up to one of 19 songs from 1977 in The Top 500*, making 1977 one of the top five years of the Rock Era in terms of the number of songs in the elite special.  It is one of four songs among the all-time best from Sweden.
Songwriters Björn Ulvaeus and Benny Andersson wrote this song, originally written as a dance song titled "Boogaloo".  ABBA manager Stig Anderson suggested the title "Dancing Queen".  When Andersson first played it for Frida Lyngstad, his wife and another member of the group, she burst into tears.  "And that was before me and Agnetha had even sung on it!" she said to the newspaper The Guardian.  "I knew it was absolutely the best song ABBA had ever done."

ABBA recorded the backing track to this classic over two days, August 4-5 in 1975 at Glen Studio in Stocksund, Sweden.  They also recorded the song "Fernando" about this same time, and chose to release it first as a single.  They held on to "Dancing Queen" until the album Arrival was finished.  ABBA recorded the vocals in September, and the song was completed three months later.  

ABBA performed "Dancing Queen" on June 18, 1976 as a televised tribute to Queen Silvia Sommerlath and King Gustaf XVI of Sweden, who were married the following day.  The supergroup released "Dancing Queen" as a single from their great album Arrival on August 16 in Sweden, August 21 in the U.K., and November 12, 1977 in the United States.

"Dancing Queen" faced strong competiton from "Hotel California" and "New Kid In Town" by the Eagles, "Dreams" and "Go Your Own Way" by Fleetwood Mac, "Evergreen" from Barbra Streisand, "Sir Duke" from Stevie Wonder, "Tonight's The Night" by Rod Stewart, "I Just Want To Be Your Everything" by Andy Gibb, "Lucille" by Kenny Rogers, "When I Need You" by Leo Sayer, and Glen Campbell's "Southern Nights".

"Dancing Queen" shuffled up to #1 with 8 weeks in the Top 10 overall in the United States, and it reached #6 on the Adult chart.    It was a huge worldwide hit, reaching #1 in the U.K., Germany, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Ireland, Denmark, the Netherlands, Norway, Sweden (14 weeks at #1), and the Soviet Union, #3 in Finland and Switzerland, #4 in Austria, and #5 in France.

Agnetha Fältskog of the group said, "It's often difficult to know what will be a hit. The exception was 'Dancing Queen'. We all knew it was going to be massive".

The song sold over one million copies in the U.S. and three million worldwide, and helped sell seven million albums in the United States alone.  The song has registered over four million radio airplays.  In 1999, "Dancing Queen" was selected as one of the Songs of the Century by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA).  In 2002, a poll in the U.K. found that "Dancing Queen" was #8 in the "Top 50 Favourite U.K. #1's".  The Phonographic Performance Limited performing rights group listed the 75 songs that had been played the most in Great Britain on the radio, in clubs and on jukeboxes.  "Dancing Queen" was #8 on that list.

 "Dancing Queen" was featured in the 1994 Australian movie Muriel's Wedding.  That appearance led to an historic revival of ABBA's music.  Bjorn and Benny wrote the play Mamma Mia! centered around the group's songs, and the play opened on both Broadway and London's West End in 1999.  Mamma Mia! is still going strong as one of the top plays month after month, year after year, and it was developed into a movie starring Meryl Streep in 2008. 

Over 40 artists have covered the song since ABBA recorded their classic in 1976.


Brown Eyed Girl 
Van Morrison

"Great song!"



"My favorite song."


"One of the best songs of the '60s."
"Fantastic song."
"Great song.  Great musician."
"A song for everyone."

After the breakup of the group Them, Van Morrison returned to Belfast, Ireland in search of a new recording company.  When Van received a call from Bert Berns, owner of Bang Records, he flew to New York City and hastily signed a recording contract.  Berns had written "Here Comes The Night" for Them, and also produced for Morrison in his solo career.  
Morrison recorded "Brown Eyed Girl" on March 28-29, 1967 at A&R Studios in New York for his album Blowin' Your Mind!.  The Sweet Inspirations provided backing vocals for Morrison; they did the same for Aretha Franklin on "Chain Of Fools" and "I Say A Little Prayer" for Dionne Warwick, and also were the backing singers for Elvis Presley from 1969 until his death.  Morrison released the single in June.
The song came out during one of the most competitive times of the Rock Era, the Summer of 1967, or the "Summer of Love", as it came to be known.  Here is a short list of the songs that were out during "Brown Eyed Girl's" chart run:  Light My Fire", "Ode To Billie Joe", "The Letter" by the Box Tops, "Never My Love" and "Windy" from the Association, "To Sir With Love", "All You Need Is Love" and "A Day In The Life" by the Beatles, "Reflections" by the Supremes, "Can't Take My Eyes Off You" by Frankie Valli, "Up, Up And Away" by the 5th Dimension, and "A Whiter Shade Of Pale" by Procol Harum.  

"Brown Eyed Girl" peaked at #10 against that lineup, sold one million copies and helped sell four million albums.  Now those are not mind-blowing numbers for this range in The Top 500*, and the #10 peak certainly isn't.  But according to BMI (Broadcast Music International), "Brown Eyed Girl" has now been played 10 million times, placing it in the Top 5 in the Rock Era in radio airplay.  Radio likes to play it, even if it isn't a big-seller.
Morrison's experience with Bang Records should give every aspiring artist pause.  He signed the contract without legal advice.  Included in that contract was the stipulation that he pay all expenses incurred for his recordings before any royalties could be received.  Once the expenses were recouped, Morrison says they would become "the subject of some highly creative accounting".  To this day, Morrison says that he has never received any royalties from "Brown Eyed Girl".
"Brown Eyed Girl" was inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame in 2007.  It is also a member of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame's 500 Songs that Shaped Rock and Roll.



You Can't Hurry Love

 "This is great!"

"It doesnt get any better than this--a Holland/Dozier/Holland song with Diana Ross backed by the amazing Florence Ballard and Mary Wilson.   A timeless classic that is often copied will never be bettered."

"A timeless classic."

"This song is simply perfect."

"Awesome song!"

"Love this!"

"Very meaningful lyrics."

The team of Holland-Dozier-Holland wrote another winner for the Supremes.  "You Can't Hurry Love" was based on a Gospel song called "You Can't Hurry God", which was sung by Dorothy Love Coates and the Gospel Harmonettes from Alabama.

The group recorded the song June 11 and July 5, 1966 at the Motown Hitsville U.S.A. studios.  The Supremes later recorded an Italian version of the song--"L'amore verrà" ("Love Will Come").  It is evidence of the group's evolution towards more adult themes and more complex musical arrangements.  As "You Can't Hurry Love" and "You Keep Me Hangin' On" were completed at the same time, it was a tough call as to which single would be released first.  "You Can't Hurry Love" won out, and the Supremes released the single July 25, 1966 from their album The Supremes A' Go-Go.

The top competition came from the Association's classic "Cherish", "Paperback Writer" and "Eleanor Rigby" by the Beatles, "Strangers In The Night" by Frank Sinatra, "Good Vibrations" from the Beach Boys, "Sunny" by Bobby Hebb, the Supremes' own "You Keep Me Hangin' On", "Summer In The City" by Lovin' Spoonful, "Reach Out I'll Be There" by the Four Tops, and Donovan's "Sunshine Superman".

"You Can't Hurry Love" topped the Singles chart in the U.S. for two weeks and piled up 8 weeks in the Top 10; it also landed at #1 for 2 weeks on the R&B chart, and achieved #1 in Canada, #3 in Australia, and #6 in the U.K.

Sixteen years later, Phil Collins scored a #1 hit with the song, as "You Can't Hurry Love" became one of a handful of songs in the Rock Era to reach #1 for two different artists.

If you listen carefully to the song "Maneater" by Hall & Oates, you will noticed that the duo copied the bassline of "You Can't Hurry Love".  

"You Can't Hurry Love" helped sell over 11.5 million albums in the U.S. and has achieved four million in airplay.  The song was included in the 500 Songs that Shaped Rock and Roll in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.


Woman In Love
Barbra Streisand


"Gives me strength.  What a powerful voice and song."
"Wow!!!  This music is exciting!"
"A woman who can hold a note with the best of them."
"Superb melody and amazing performance."
"Beautiful song."

This incredible superstar got her first career break when she was hired for $125 a week at the Bon Soir nightclub in 1960.  Barbra Streisand was the opening act for comedian Phyllis Diller.  Over the next six months, some people compared her voice to famous singers such as Judy Garland and Lena Horne, and her ability to charm an audience between songs was warmly accepted as well. 

In 1962, Streisand landed a role opposite Elliott Gould in the musical comedy I Can Get It for You Wholesale at the Schubert Theatre on Broadway.  Barbra received a Tony nomination for Best Supporting Actress.  Oh and by the way, Barbra and Elliott fell in love and were later married.

Over the next 18 years, Streisand divided her time between acting and recording, and she excelled at both.  Barbra shared the Best Actress Award with legendary Katherine Hepburn in 1968 for her role in Funny Girl.  Streisand starred in 11 movies and still somehow found the time to record 29 hits, including 4 #1's.

For her album in 1980, Barbra collaborated with the Bee Gees, and it would wind up as the biggest-selling album of her career.  Originally, only half of the albums songs were to be written by the Gibbs, but Barbra liked the first five so much that she requested more.  Barry and Robin Gibb of the group wrote this great song for her.

Barbra recorded "Woman In Love" at the Middle Ear Studios in Miami Beach, Florida in February of 1980.  She released the song as a single August 16, 1980 from her album Guilty.

"Woman In Love" faced competition from "Lady" by Kenny Rogers, Queen's "Another One Bites The Dust", "It's Still Rock & Roll To Me" by Billy Joel, "All Out Of Love" from Air Supply, "Woman" by John Lennon, "I Love A Rainy Night" from Eddie Rabbitt, "9 To 5" by Dolly Parton, "Upside Down" by Diana Ross, Olivia Newton-John's "Magic", "Angel Of The Morning" by Juice Newton, REO Speedwagon's "Keep On Loving You", "Sailing" by Christopher Cross, and "Celebration" from Kool and the Gang.

"Woman In Love" was a huge hit the world over, hitting #1 in every major country, except it was #2 in New Zealand.  In the United States, and ran Streisand's streak of having at least #1 song a year to four, and the song prevailed at #1 on the Adult Contemporary chart for five weeks.

"Woman In Love" has topped 10 million in sales worldwide, 2 million in the U.S.  It has helped sell 8 million albums and has been played over two million times.

The Gibbs won the Ivor Novello Award for Best Song Musically and Lyrically.
You have heard 10 more of the greatest songs of the last 60 years.  The rest of the special contains incredible songs, and you won't want to miss a day of it!

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