A face on the wall

As seen in Santiago, Chile:

Brown face

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memories of the ’70s – If I Can’t Have You by Yvonne Elliman

Image result for if I cant have you yvonne ellimanWith the success of numerous songs by the Brothers Gibb, a cover of their song also got a number one hit for Yvonne Elliman with If I Can’t Have You.

Written by Barry, Maurice and Robin Gibb for the Saturday Night Fever soundtrack, the brothers chose Elliman to record the song How Deep is Your Love.

But their manager and head of RSO Records, Robert Stigwood, decided that would be a better song for the Gibbs and wanted Elliman to record If I Can’t Have You for the soundtrack.

Elliman had previously gotten pop success with her fourth album Love Me, and the its title track, which was written by Barry Gibb. It was the first of her albums to make the Billboard charts in 1977.

If I Can’t Have You was the fourth single released from the Saturday Night Fever soundtrack, produced by Freddie Perren, who had also produced Elliman’s Love Me album.

Following on the success of How Deep is Your Love, Night Fever and Stayin’ Alive, If I Can’t Have You was released in January 1978 as a single and hit number one in the second week of May on the Billboard Hot 100 charts.

The single pushed Night Fever from the top of the charts, with RSO Records earning its sixth consecutive number one single, and the Brothers Gibb earning their fourth.

Elliman didn’t want to be just a disco performer and tried to focus on pop music but she was lured back to disco before the end of the decade with the song Love Pains in 1979.

The Saturday Night Fever soundtrack stayed at number one on the Billboard Album charts for 24 weeks and remained on the charts until March 1980 for 120 weeks. It is one of the bestselling soundtracks of all times, with at least 45 million copies sold.



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As seen in Valparaiso, Chile:



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The world needs more…


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memories of the ’80s – Hooked on Classics by The Royal Philharmonic Orchestra

Image result for hooked on classics 1981The beginning of the 1980s, a new way to market classical music came in the form of  Hooked on Classics.

The series, released by K-tel Records, was disliked by traditional classical music fans, but embraced by other music fans and by mainstream radio.

Starting with the single of the same name, the tracks of the album were a mix of the well-known composers such as Tchaikovsky, Beethoven, Mozart, Handel and Gershwin, a pastiche of their best known works.

Performed by conductor Louis Clark (formerly an arranger with Electric Light Orchestra) and the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, the songs were played in an upbeat style, taking influences from disco.

This symphonic rock was perfect for radio thanks to the quirky and different way of producing the classical music. The single and album were released in October 1981, and did well, hitting number two on the British charts and top 10 on the Billboard Hot 100 by February 1982.

The album peaked at number four on the Billboard Album charts, ahd stayed on the charts for 68 weeks, resulting in sequels – Hooked on Classics 2, Hooked on Classics 3 and Hooked on baroque, swing, romance, Mozart and Tchaikovsky among others.

But the first album’s domination was never equalled by the consequent albums throughout the 1980s, but the series continued to be produced.

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Pretty pin-up

Pretty lady of Valparaiso:


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memories of the ’70s – K-tel 20 Power Hits

Image resultIn the 1970s, many young listeners learned of new music through the K-tel Records compilations, like an early success: K-tel 20 Power Hits.

In the late 1960s, K-tel saw the possibility of a new way of marketing music and released its first compilation, 25 Country Hits under K-tel Records.

The company had been focused on selling a wide range of items through television commercials, but mainly kitchen gadgets, like the Veg-o-matic and Feather Touch Knife.

Selling its initial pressing, the company realized that many people wanted to hear the hits from radio on their own stereo.

Consequent successes included polka and pop music, and in 1973, K-tel released 20 Power Hits, its first rock ‘n’ roll compilation album. With each album, K-tel negotiated with directly with artists and labels for the song.

The album, like what had been done before, was marketed with television commercials and focused on the tag line “20 Original Hits! 20 Original Stars!” focusing viewers on the well-known aspect of each song.

The compilation included Elton John (Crocodile Rock, Rocket Man), Cliff Richard (Power to All Our Friends, Free (Wishing Well), Deep Purple (Woman from Tokyo), Cat Stevens (Can’t Keep It In) and Daniel Boone (Skydiver, Sunshine Lover) as well as songs from Kincaid, Wizzard, The Windows, Chris Montez and Albert West.

At a time when only albums featuring one musician or band was the norm, compilations became a newfangled option that spawned an entire industry helmed by K-tel Records.



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