Love Grows (Where My Rosemary Goes) – Edison Lighthouse – 1970

November 24, 2011

Love Grows (Where My Rosemary Goes) only just sneaks into 70s music. Performed by one hit wonders Edison Lighthouse, it made it to #1 on the UK singles chart on 31 January 1970.

generic bands / generic music  –  the chicken or the egg?

Which comes first, a band or a hit song? Usually you’d assume it’s the band. They get together, write some music, play some gigs, put out an album and, hey presto, if they’re lucky they get a hit record. Not always so in the 70s.

Love Grows (Where My Rosemary Goes) was written by a pair of songwriters known as Tony Macaulay and Barry Mason. It was then recorded by Tony Burrows – who is a story in himself, more about him soon – and released as a single.

The song became a hit.  That meant appearances on television music shows.  That meant a band had to be quickly assembled. Somebody uncovered a little known group called Greenfields who, after a week of rehearsing, appeared on Top of the Pops as Edison Lighthouse where they mimed (Milli Vanilli eat ya heart out!) Love Grows (Where My Rosemary Goes).

tony burrows

The creation of hit songs in the studio by session musicians was a common phenomenon in the late 60s and early 70s. Songs like Sugar, Sugar by The Archies and Tracy by The Cufflinks were all hits before the bands were put together to promote them.

One singer who shared a number of hits with a number of such bands is Tony Burrows. Now, before you ask, “Who?” consider this; Tony Burrows is credited with singing lead on hit singles for more groups than any other recording artist ever. And that includes both the UK and US Singles’ Charts.

Consider this – Tony sang on:

  • Edison Lighthouse’s Love Grows (Where My Rosemary Goes) – February 1970.
  • White Plains’ My Baby Loves Lovin’ – March 1970.
  • The Pipkins’ Gimme Dat Ding – April 1970.
  • The Brotherhood of Man’s United We Stand – June 1970.

In February 1970, Tony became the first and only person to ever appear on BBC Television’s Top of the Pops fronting three different bands in one single episode. He sang for Edison Lighthouse, White Plains, and The Pipkins – that’s pretty amazing but, that’s the 70s for ya!

love grows (where my rosemary goes) fax

  • Love Grows (Where My Rosemary Goes) is the fastest climbing number 1 hit record in history.
  • Love Grows (Where My Rosemary Goes) peaked at #1 on the UK singles chart on January 31 1970. It stayed there for five weeks. It also reached #5 on the US chart and #3 in Canada
  • Anni-Frid Lyngstad – who went on to become the brunette Abba girl – covered Love Goes (Where My Rosemary Goes) in 1970. It was called, Där du går lämnar kärleken spår (Where you go, love leaves traces).
  • The piano on Love Grows (Where my Rosemary Goes) is played by session musician, Rick Wakeman.
  • Edison Lighthouse did release a follow-up to Love Grows (Where My Rosemary Goes). It was called, It’s Up to You Petula – it made no impression whatsoever on the charts.
  • Edison Lighthouse’s Love Grows (Where My Rosemary Goes) features in the closing scenes of the movie Shallow Hal and is in the movie Little Manhattan where it’s sung by Freedy Johnston. It’s also mentioned in the movie Reservoir Dogs – you hear a DJ talking about it and introducing it in the background as the movie action takes place. The actual song is not played, however.
  • Love Grows (Where My Rosemary Goes) features in an episode of television drama, The Sopranos.
  • Love Grows (Where My Rosemary Goes) lyrics.

Där du går lämnar kärleken spår by Anni-Frid Lyngstad.

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Hotel California – The Eagles – 1977.

November 17, 2011

Hotel California-Eagles-single coverThe title track of one of the highest selling albums of all time, The Eagles’ Hotel California was a #1 single in the US in May 1977.

honesty time

Okay, I gotta be honest. I really like the Eagles – I mean I REALLY like The Eagles – but I also really dislike this song. In fact, of all songs, Hotel California would rate as one of those I dislike the most.

In fact, as a treatment for insomnia, this song is superior to most sleeping pills on the market! But, other people love it, some even suggesting it is the best song of all time, and that’s what makes music so much fun.

the eagles

The Eagles formed in Los Angeles in 1971 and have been phenomenally successful.

The band has had;

  • Five #1 singles
  • Six #1 albums
  • Six Grammy awards
  • Five American Music Awards.

Two of The Eagles’ albums rank among the twenty best-selling albums of all time – Greatest Hits (1971–1975) (42 million sold) and Hotel California.  The album Hotel California comes in at #37 in Rolling Stone magazine’s 500 Greatest Albums of All Time and The Eagles come in at #75 in the Rolling Stone magazine’s 2004 list of the 100 Greatest Artists of All Time.

In total they’ve sold over 120 million albums worldwide and are the highest selling American band of all time.

All that’s not too bad for a band that started life as Linda Ronstadt’s backing band! Although, admittedly, they only played one gig with her – obviously destined for greater things.

In 1998 The Eagles were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. On that night all seven past and present members of the band turned out and performed Hotel California.

hotel california fax

  • Hotel California is from the Eagles’ album of the same name.
  • The single Hotel California was released in February 1977 and was written by Eagles members Don Felder, Don Henley and Glenn Frey.
  • Hotel California reached #1 on the US singles chart in May 1977.
  • It sold over 1,000,000 copies and won the 1977 Record of the Year Grammy. The Eagles did not show up to collect their award because Don Henley believed music shouldn’t be reduced to a contest.
  • In 2009, Hotel California had sold over 1,000,000 digital downloads.
  • The lyrics have led to many strange interpretations. Some Christian evangelists suggested Hotel California referred to a San Francisco hotel purchased by Anton LaVey (founder of the Church of Satan) and converted into a place of Satanic worship. Others suggested that Hotel California was a State Mental Hospital. Don Henley said it was simply,

“Our interpretation of the high life in Los Angeles. It’s basically a song about the dark underbelly of the American dream and about excess in America, something we knew a lot about.”

  • The use of the word “steely” in the words of Hotel California (“They stab it with their steely knives but they just can’t kill the beast”) was a passing reference to Steely Dan, who had used the words, “Turn up the Eagles, the neighbours are listening” in their song Everything You Did.
  • Hotel California lyrics.

Gimme Some Lovin’ – Spencer Davis Group – 1971 (1966).

November 8, 2011

Spencer Davis Group - Gimme Some Lovin' coverUsed in over twenty movie soundtracks, Gimme Some Lovin’ is one of the most covered songs of all time.  Originally released in 1966 it was re-released on a live album in 1971 meaning it just sneaks into seventiesmusic.

rules made to be broken – again

Okay, so I’m breaking the rules slightly for the second week in a row.

Gimme Some Lovin’ isn’t strictly a 70s song. It was released first by Spencer Davis Group in 1966. But they did release it again in 1971 on a live album. And Olivia Newton John released it on her Totally Hot album in 1978. And the Blues Brothers released it as part of their film soundtrack in 1980. So, it sort of fits in the 70s decade.

And, truth be told, I didn’t hear it on the radio this week either. I heard it in concert. But it was great!

old rockers!

So, I get this email from a local radio station. There’s a contest. Enter your name and go into the draw to win tickets to Anika Moa, Steve Winwood and Steely Dan in concert. I enter and then notice that the closing time for the contest, which has been going for almost a month, is in ten minutes time. “Fat chance I’ve got of winning,” I tell myself.

Well, twenty minutes later – I kid you not, twenty minutes – I get an email saying I won one of the five double tickets. So, off we go.

old rockers never die but their voices can…

Now, here’s the deal when you go to see a blast from the past band; you go to reminisce and remember the songs as they once were. If you expect perfection, you’re gonna be greatly disappointed.  But, if you don’t expect perfection you can have a good time.

And so it was last Friday night. Steely Dan were pretty good considering Don Fagan’s voice ain’t what it used to be – great band though.  And Don realises he’s getting older so he lets his fabulous BV girls carry a lot of the vocals.

but steve…

Having said all I’ve said about old acts not always being what they once were, Steve Winwood’s voice has survived the ravages of time. He still sounds wonderful – just like he did three or four decades ago. From the opening I’m a Man through to the closing Roll With It, he was great. His organ and guitar playing are still spot on. His band rocks!

steve…

Steve was 14 when he joined Spencer Davis Group. He also met and played with Eric Clapton at this time. When he was 20 years old he played organ on the song Voodoo Chile on Jimi Hendrix’s Electric Ladyland album.

In 1969 Steve joined the band Blind Faith. Blind Faith is always referred to as a supergroup because of the inclusion of musicians like Steve, Eric Clapton and Ginger Baker. However, they only actually released one album.

There followed a successful few years with the band Traffic before going solo in 1977.

solo steve

In 1986, Steve’s song Higher Love topped the Billboard Hot 100. He was rewarded with two Grammy’s that year – Record of the Year and Best Male Pop Vocal Performance.

gimme some lovin’ fax

  • Gimme Some Loving was written by Spencer Davis, Steve and his brother Muff Winwood.
  • Now very much a part of Steve’s live act, Gimme Some Lovin’ was originally performed by Spencer Davis Group.
  • Gimme Some Loving peaked at #2 on the UK singles chart in 1966 and at #7 on the US singles chart.
  • Gimme Some Lovin’ is ranked at #244 on Rolling Stone magazine’s list of The 500 Greatest Songs of All Time.
  • Gimme Some Lovin’ has been used in at least three television series, and six commercials.
  • At least twenty movies have featured Gimme Some Lovin’ as part of their soundtrack including; Notting Hill, Good Morning Vietnam, The Blues Brothers, and The Big Chill (one of my all-time favourite movies).
  • Gimme Some Lovin’ is one of the most covered songs of all time having been recorded by; The Blues Brothers, Olivia Newton-John, Chicago, Queen, The Supremes and The Four Tops, Traffic, The Grateful Dead and Hanson.
  • Gimme Some Lovin’ lyrics

Walk This Way – Aerosmith – 1975

November 3, 2011

Released in 1975, Aerosmith’s Walk This Way was re-released in 1977 and reached #10 on the US singles chart.

jammin’

Okay, so I didn’t actually hear this one on the radio this week – I know the seventiesmusic blog rules but even they are made to be broken sometimes.

So, I’m jammin’ with some friends the other day and happen to play the intro riff to The Eagles hit, Life in the Fast Lane. One of my mates says, “Hey, I know that song.”

I say, “Yeah, it’s…”

But before I can finish, he says, “It’s that Aerosmith song.”  He meant, Walk This Way.

Now, is my playing that bad or could it be that they do actually sound similar? I gonna suggest it’s the latter!

the steve tyler conundrum

Aerosmith is fronted by charismatic singer, Steve Tyler. Of course, we often ponder what happens to old hard rockers like Steve and now we know – they end up fronting American Idol.

There’s something of a conundrum here. I mean, I wonder what Steve Tyler would have said in the heyday of Aerosmith if you’d said to him, “One day you’re gonna be a judge on a contest for young manufactured pop stars of varying talent.” He’d have laughed for sure but… well; reality is sometimes stranger than fiction.

Steve’s an interesting guy for all sorts of reasons. He has an amazingly large ego and loves the ladies! He’s known to be both acrobatic and accident prone on stage. While on the Guitar Hero Aerosmith tour in 2009 he actually fell right off the stage injuring his head and neck and breaking his shoulder.

He is, of course, actress Liv Tyler’s father. He’s suffered at least two periods of severe drug addiction.

And, believe it or not, underneath all that cosmetic surgery, he’s 63 years old! (Born 1948).

aerosmith

Aerosmith formed in Boston, in the US in 1971. For many years they were referred to as, “America’s Greatest Rock ‘n’ Roll Band.”

In 1990, Aerosmith won a Grammy award, for Best Rock Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocal for their song Janie’s Got a Gun (their finest single – my opinion). They have since won three more Grammy’s in that category and are second only to U2 in the number of awards won in that category.

In 2001 Aerosmith were inducted into the Rock ‘n’ Roll Hall of Fame. They toured as recently as last year (2010).

walk this way fax

Walk This Way was written by Aerosmith members Steven Tyler and Joe Perry.

Walk The Way was from Aerosmith’s third and bestselling album, Toys in the Attic.

First released in 1975, Walk This Way was re-released in 1977 and peaked at #10 on the Billboard Hot 100.

Walk This Way was covered by rappers Run-D.M.C. (with Aerosmith) on their 1986 album Raising Hell. It won both groups the 1987 Soul Train Music Award for Best Rap Single.  The video is worth watching – see below.

In 2009 VH1 named Walk This Way the 8th greatest hard rock song of all time by VH1 and is on The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame’s list of 500 Songs that Shaped Rock and Roll.

Rolling Stone ranked the original version of Walk This Way at #336 on their list of the 500 Greatest Songs of All Time. Run-D.M.C.’s version comes in at #287.

In 1993, the Walk This Way video featuring Run-D.M.C. was placed at #11 on Rolling Stone’s list of The Top 100 Music Videos.

Walk this way lyrics.

walk this way video

walk this way video featuring run d.m.c.