Sunday, June 20, 2021

Music History Today: June 21, 2021

June 21, 1975: The Captain & Tennille sat on top of the Billboard singles chart with "Love Will Keep Us Together."

Soft rock was absolutely huge in the mid-’70s. Early-’60s pop artisans like Neil Sedaka, who co-wrote the song, were coming back;

The Captain & Tennille
The Captain & Tennille

Sedaka had just scored a big hit with “Laughter In The Rain.” Stevie Wonder and Elton John were introducing synth sounds to mainstream pop, and there are plenty of those in “Love Will Keep Us Together.” 
Read more: Stereogum 

June 21, 1972: Billy Preston's "Outa-Space" was certified Gold.

There is a direct line between the signature keyboard sound of “Outa-Space” and much of what came later in the use of synthesizers in black music, and specifically a growing subgenre of trippy wow-man funk.

Billy Preston
Billy Preston

Issued initially as the B-side to “I Wrote a Simple Song,” “Outa-Space” arced like a moon shot to No. 2 on the pop charts once enterprising DJs began flipping the single. Preston crafted this way-out new sound on “Outa-Space” by running the clavinet through a wah-wah pedal, while calling out changes to his backing band during an improvised session. Later, he added organ and handclaps. 

Read more: Something Else Reviews

June 21, 1975:  "Midnight Blue" by Melissa Manchester became the new Number 1 Easy Listening song.

Grammy winner Melissa Manchester signed her first publishing deal at the age of 17, before going on to work as a backup singer for Bette Midler.

Melissa Manchester
She first came to prominence as an artist with the 1975 single “Midnight Blue,” which climbed to #6 on Billboard’s Pop chart and hit the #1 spot on the Adult Contemporary rankings. Co-written with Carole Bayer Sager, it was the first of nine Manchester-penned compositions to hit the Top 40. 
Read more: Songcraft

June 21, 1980: Michael Jackson made it to Number 10 with "She's Out Of My Life."

"She's Out of My Life" was written by American songwriter Tom Bahler. The song was released as the fourth single from Jackson's 1979 album Off the Wall.

Michael Jackson
Michael Jackson

Unlike the album's previous singles, which were all up-tempo dance-oriented funk and disco songs, "She's Out of My Life" was an emotional ballad about a painful breakup. Jones had originally intended to save the song for Frank Sinatra. However, he wanted Jackson to record material with more mature themes and "feel the full range of his voice," so he decided to bring the song to Jackson's attention. 

Read more: Wikipedia

June 21, 1982:  Crosby Stills & Nash released the studio album Daylight Again. 

Although Crosby, Stills & Nash had, in effect, been together for well over a decade when Daylight Again (1982) was issued, it was only their third studio long-player of concurrently new material.  Among the most notable are Nash's "Wasted on the Way" -- which was lyrically an ode to the status of the group's union -- and Stills' collaboration with the Curtis Brothers on "Southern Cross." 
Read more: Allmusic

Love Will Keep Us Together
The Captain & Tennille

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