Hello It’s Me – Todd Rundgren – 1972

Peaking  at #5 on the US Singles chart, Hello It’s Me is Todd Rundgren‘s best-known song – it’s also the first song he ever wrote.

songs no one knows…

Are there any songs from the 70s that you really like but get the distinct feeling that no one else even remembers? (if you do, click on “comment” below and tell the rest of us).

Of course, we all have them. Truth be told, I’ve got a dozen or more, but right up near the top of the list is Todd Rundgren’s, Hello It’s Me.

go todd

Todd is another of those musicians whose name many people will not recognise but he’s had an incredible influence on the music we know and love.

In 1972 he released the double album Something/Anything? which went gold in the US. The album is pop based and, in parts a little psychedelic. By the late seventies and into the eighties he’d changed style and was working with the progressive rock band Utopia. He’s also been a prolific producer and engineer on the work of other musicians.

Todd’s production work includes: Badfinger’s album, Straight Up; The Band’s fabulous song, Stage Fright; Grand Funk Railroad’s, We’re an American Band; and Meatloaf’s, Bat Out of Hell.

His best-known solo songs are “Hello It’s Me” and “I Saw the Light” which remain on high rotation on classic rock radio stations around the world.

hello it’s me fax

  • Hello It’s Me is the first song Todd Rundgren ever wrote.
  • Hello It’s Me was first recorded by Todd’s band, Nazz. Todd re-recorded it as a solo performer.  He used a slower tempo and put it on his Something/Anything? album – it rose to #5 on the US singles chart.
  • Todd’s second best known song is I Saw the Light, also from the Something/Anything? album.
  • Hello It’s Me was originally the B-side to Nazz’s single, Open My Eyes but stations preferred to play Hello It’s Me rather than the A-side.
  • Some people claim Todd played all the instruments on Hello It’s Me. That’s not true. Being a double album, Something/Anything?  had four sides. Todd played all instruments on sides one, two and three but side four featured a number of other musicians.  Hello It’s Me on side four.
  • Contrary to popular opinion, Stevie Nicks does not sing backing vocals on Hello It’s Me, in fact, she had nothing to do with Todd’s music. There are two interesting musicians on this track, however. Drummer John Siomos was drummer for Peter Frampton on his fabulous Frampton Comes Alive album. Mark “Moogy” Klingman who played organ on the track was in Jimi Hendrix’s first band. He also went to school and played music with the brilliant Andy Kaufmann and played keyboards for Bob Dylan.  He produced Buckets of Rain, Dylan’s duet with Bette Midler.
  • Hello It’s Me appeared at the ending to the pilot of That 70s Show. The same clip was also used as the ending to the show’s series finale.
  • In 2009 Hello It’s Me was used in an ad for Tums, a heartburn remedy.
  • Hello It’s Me appears in the 2011 movie Paul.
  • The Isley Brothers covered Hello It’s Me on their 1974 album Live It Up.
  • In 2007 Mary J. Blige recorded a version of Hello It’s Me for the iTunes edition of her album Growing Pains. John Legend also recorded a version.
  • Hello It’s Me lyrics.

6 Responses to Hello It’s Me – Todd Rundgren – 1972

  1. Miki says:

    Quite right – never heard of . . . ! What’s next?

  2. Greg.K. says:

    Sorry about that 🙂
    It’s a lovely song though. So is his other hit, I Saw The Light.
    So, what obscure songs from the 70s do you remember?

    • MIKI says:

      Guess they were just too obscure, sorry! Sure to be some lesser known great Motown stuff though, which at the time seemed SOOO good, but my brain cells can’t dredge them up!

  3. Greg.K. says:

    It’s funny how many songs you know without remembering that you know them – if you get what I mean…
    You can be driving in your car and a song comes on that you haven’t thought of for years but you can sing all the words.
    The kids hate it when that happens and I’m singin’ along to something they don’t know. 🙂

  4. Miki says:

    So true – and then there’re the remakes that the kids think are new and same thing happens!

    One artist I really like but NEVER hear on radio and cannot fathom why, (think I heard once) is Keb Mo’ who has such a gorgeous voice and covers many 70s songs – the result being a matter of opinion, but not as tragic as Kiri singing pop! Of course he’s not rock, more r & b but think it’s his voice that just draws me into his songs, but then there’s the amazing riffs he’s so excellent with . . .

  5. Greg.K. says:

    Ah – Kevin Moore – yes, he’s great. In a similar vein, Amos Lee who has experienced a little more of his 15 minutes of fame but not much.

    I have albums by both of them and think they are both fantastic.

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