I’d Like To Teach the World To Sing (In Perfect Harmony) – The New Seekers – 1971

The New Seekers single coverFrom soft drink jingle to a #1 hit – The New Seekers’ hit, I’d Like To Teach the World To Sing (In Perfect Harmony), sold over one million copies back in 1971.

fan mail

Recently a seventiesmusic follower commented that I had, so far, failed to mention one of his favourite bands – The New Seekers. Enter the Twilight Zone, because that very afternoon, as fate would have it (!), while driving around town, I heard said band’s song, I’d Like to Teach the World to Sing (In Perfect Harmony).

down memory lane

The New Seekers 2The New Seekers have a special place in my memory because their predecessors, The Seekers, are probably the first band I remember hearing on a regular basis.

My mum loved The Seekers and had most of their records. I would listen to them, revel in the harmonies and dream of Judith Durham (only about 20 years older than me!).

the birth of the new seekers

The Seekers were a Melbourne based quartet who achieved international success in throughout the 60s. With four million selling singles, they sold over 60 million records worldwide.

When The Seekers broke up, band member Keith Potger gathered a number of UK musicians and formed The New Seekers. After releasing one single, the band’s make-up was reworked and a place found for the wonderful voice of Lyn Paul (although she does not sing the lead vocal in I’d Like To Teach the World To Sing (In Perfect Harmony)).

The band found instant success with a cover of Melanie Safka‘s song, What Have They Done To My Song, Ma (Look What They’ve Done To My Song, Ma, in the USA.

i’d like to teach the world to sing (in perfect harmony) fax

  • I’d Like to Teach the World to Sing (in Perfect Harmony) began life as an advertising jingle for Coca-Cola. It was so popular that it was re-recorded as a full-length song.
  • The New Seekers did not, initially have time to record the song. That meant it was recorded by a group of studio singers who named themselves The Hillside Singers. Their version reached #13 on the Billboard Hot 100.
  • When The New Seekers finally recorded I’d Like to Teach the World to Sing (in Perfect Harmony) they had an instant hit. It sold 96,000 copies in one day and, eventually, 12 million total.
  • I’d Like to Teach the World to Sing (in Perfect Harmony) was a #1 hit in the UK and peaked at #7 in the US.
  • I’d Like to Teach the World to Sing (in Perfect Harmony) has sold over one million copies in the UK alone.
  • The Coca-Cola Company waived any claim on royalties to I’d Like to Teach the World to Sing (in Perfect Harmony), instead donating $80,000 to UNICEF.
  • The song is credited to veteran songwriters, Roger Cook and Roger Greenaway, with original jingle writers, Bill Backer and Billy Davis, also gaining credit.
  • Oasis were sued after their recording Shakermaker borrowed the melody and some lyrics from I’d Like to Teach the World to Sing (in Perfect Harmony). As a kinda-response, in 1996, Oasis tribute band No Way Sis released a cover of I’d Like to Teach the World to Sing (in Perfect Harmony). It peaked at #27 on the UK charts.
  • I’d Like to Teach the World to Sing (in Perfect Harmony) lyrics.

i’d like to teach the world to sing (in perfect harmony) – the new seekers – 1971 – video

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4 Responses to I’d Like To Teach the World To Sing (In Perfect Harmony) – The New Seekers – 1971

  1. wozza says:

    The New Seekers? Someone’s favourite band?? You’re having a bubble bath GK. Clearly you’re making it up. I can forgive your mum The Seekers coz, well, it’s yer mum. But The New Seekers??? Yikes.

  2. Greg.K. says:

    🙂 I would never question the musical likes of another person – our taste buds are all a little different. And, I have to admit, while the New Seekers aren’t my cup of tea, I have always had a soft spot for The Seekers, thanks to my mum – provided they’re not singing that dreadful Morningtown Ride!!

  3. Phil Hughes says:

    Thanks Wozza,
    The New Seekers featuring the great Peter Doyle and Lyn Paul were fabulous.
    Check out their promo video of Pinball Wizard.
    They sold 35 million records, and their albums contain some of the finest harmonies ever heard.
    At least they could sing. Lyn Paul still can, she is the very best.
    The New Seekers 1970-1974, still my favourite to this day.
    So who do you like? Kind regards, PHIL HUGHES. UK.

    • Greg.K. says:

      The great thing about music is that we all have different tastes. Sometimes we find ourselves drawn to music that others find little merit in.
      One of the things I love about the 70s is that it was an era where there was so much variety in music. From Ernie and his milk-cart, to smokin’ on the water with Deep Purple…
      And, the thing I enjoy about the seventiesmusic blog (which is not as well written or researched as I’d like due to time constraints) is that even I am never too sure what song will be featured next, and I never know what the reaction of people will be.
      I think, so far, almost every song I’ve featured has drawn at least one or two likes on Facebook. (well, maybe Stars on 45 was an exception :-))
      And, that’s the magic of music… we all enjoy different stuff… and, if you love it, then tell the world about it.

      And, for the record, next time I hear The Carpenters on the radio – I’m gonna feature that song (as long as it’s not the awful Top of the World) because, I reckon, that girl could sing!!

      🙂

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