September 1973 – We’re an American Band by Grand Funk

September 1973 – a song popular in this month – We’re an American Band by Grand Funk

Sometimes they were known as either Grand Funk Railroad or GFR.

Interesting facts We’re an American Band & Grand Funk

The lyrics are about little things that were going on the road during the Phoenix tour. All of them are true. Don explains the line, “Up all night with Freddie King, I’ve got to tell you, poker’s his thing”

Regarding the line, “four young chiquitas in Omaha,” Don Brewer told us that it came from a situation where they checked into a hotel in Omaha, Nebraska. “There were four groupies in the lobby waiting to see the band,” he said. “‘Four young chiquitas’ sounded a lot better than ‘four young groupies’ or ‘four young girls.'”

Grand Funk was one of the best-selling bands of the ’70s, and this was their biggest hit. Critics were often very harsh, especially Rolling Stone magazine, but they had a huge fan base and got lots of radio play.

This was the first of two #1 singles by Grand Funk – the other was their remake of “The Loco-Motion” a year later.

Dismissed by critics and radio programmers, Grand Funk was able to sell over 20 million albums through constant touring. They frequently sold out stadiums and arenas.

This information was provided by Songfacts.com

August 1973 – Let’s Get It On by Marvin Gaye

Originally written by 1950s one-hit-wonder Ed Townsend (“For Your Love” in 1958), the song originally addressed the author’s desire to get on with life after beating alcoholism.

Interesting facts about Let’s Get It On & Marvin Gaye

Marvin Gaye completely changed the lyrics (and meaning) to the song after meeting Janis Hunter, the woman who would become his second wife.

“Let’s Get It On” was the title track of Gaye’s 1973 album. It topped the Billboard Pop Singles chart for two weeks and the Billboard Soul Singles chart for eight weeks.

One of Motown Records’ most successful artists, Gaye was married to Anna Gordy, who was the sister of Motown founder Berry Gordy.

One of his last public performances was singing the US national anthem at the 1983 NBA All-Star game. At the time, performers were expected to give a restrained and traditional performance when singing the national anthem, but Gaye delivered an emotional performance similar to other songs he would sing in concert.

This song has appeared in a variety of TV shows, movies and commercials, often for comic effect to imply an imminent romantic encounter. Some of the media uses include the TV shows The Simpsons, The Sopranos, Scrubs, House, Ugly Betty, Charmed, Spin City and The King of Queens.

Movie uses include Into the Night (1985), Queens Logic (1991), The Inkwell (1994), Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me (1999), High Fidelity (2000), Crossroads (2002), Something’s Gotta Give (2003), Mr. 3000 (2004), Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason (2004), The Change-Up (2011), and The Dictator (2012).

This information was provided by Songfacts.com

August 1973 – Ramblin Man by The Allman Brothers

August 1973 – a song popular in this month – Ramblin Man by The Allman Brothers

This is based on a 1951 Hank Williams song of the same title. It’s about a guy whose travels take him to many places, and he takes life as it comes.

Interesting facts about Ramblin Man & The Allman Brothers

This was The Allman’s first top 10 hit.

The band played this on the premiere of an ABC show called In Concert. It was their first national TV appearance, and also Berry Oakley’s last performance, as the bass player died in a motorcycle accident a week later.

Early names for the band included The Escorts, The 31st of February, Hour Glass, Almanac, and The Allman Joys.

A short part of this song appears in the 1973 movie The Exorcist. It’s used in a bar scene when the priest is in the bar.

This was kept out of the #1 spot by Cher’s “Half Breed.” Gregg Allman married Cher in 1975.

This information was provided by Songfacts.com

listening to my 70’s

The MacDill Air Force Base has an excellent gym that includes 2 outdoor tracks.  When I am feeling up to it and my body allows, I make a trip to the gym to walk the track.  My usual length to walk is 1 ½ miles.  And if my back allows, I will sometimes push it to 2 miles.  Even though I am walking around a track and seeing the same views, I do enjoy the outside.  With the warmth of the sunshine and the breeze of the wind, I feel good.  What makes the walking even better is listening to my music.  The earplugs are in and you know I am listening to my 70’s music.

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The beats of the music back in that decade took me through puberty, from a 10-year-old kid to a 20-year-old young man. That decade many things were taking place good and bad; but the music helped me get through it all.

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Thank you to artist such as Blonde, John Denver, The Bee Gees, Elton John, ABBA, Queen, Donna Summer, Roberta Flack, The Jackson 5, Diana Ross, Olivia Newton-John and so many, many more.

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Those artists I still listen to today and are they are still here for me today, helping me to keep moving; lifting my spirits and taking me to a different time when life seemed so effortless and easy, fun, crazy with no worries.

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This current decade many things have taken place good and bad: and this music continued to help me get through it all.

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So, there I am walking my 1 ½ miles and sometimes pushing 2 miles, listening and being taken away for a little while to another time.

June 1973 – Feelin Stronger Every Day by Chicago

June 1973 – a song popular in this month – Feelin Stronger Every Day by Chicago

“Feelin’ Stronger Every Day” was written by Peter Cetera (vocalist, bassist) and James Pankow (trombones, percussion) of Chicago.

Interesting facts about Feelin Stronger Every Day & Chicago

It was released as a single from their two-time multi-platinum album Chicago VI.

This was their second #1 album on the US album charts, their third two-time platinum album, and they would yet have two more consecutive #1’s on the US album charts

Their original name was “Chicago Transit Authority,” and their first album had the same name. The group was forced to shorten it to “Chicago” after the city of Chicago said: you can’t use that name, period!

Chicago was a spin-off of the group The Buckinghams. The Buckingham’s “Foreign Policy” sounds exactly like Chicago, with a political agenda that dominated their early albums.

Chicago focused on protest and political songs but they discovered the money was in Rock ‘n’ Roll love songs so they dropped the political agenda and concentrated on commercial pop-rock after the third album

This information was provided by Songfacts.com

May 1973 – Long Train Runnin by Doobie Brothers

May 1973 – a song popular in this month – Long Train Runnin by Doobie Brothers

Doobie Brothers guitarist and lead singer Tom Johnston wrote this song, which they played live for three years before recording.

Interesting facts about Long Train Runnin & Doobie Brothers

Always a crowd-pleaser when The Doobies play this live, it starts with a very recognizable guitar riff that Johnston came up with. When he came up with the riff, Johnston didn’t think it was anything out of the ordinary.

The Doobie Brothers from 1970 to 1975 featured most vocals from Tom Johnston and Patrick Simmons. The band was more Rock-oriented and was heard on what is now known on Classic Rock stations.

McDonald was brought in when Johnston fell ill and could not tour in 1975. He and Jeff “Skunk” Baxter both recorded with Steely Dan.

Before landing on the name The Doobie Brothers, the band originally went by Pud.

This did not originally chart in the UK. However in 1993 it became the Doobie Brothers only British Top 10 hit when a remixed version climbed to #7 on the singles chart.

Girl group Bananarama scored a #30 hit in the UK with their cover version, in which they were backed by The Gypsy Kings.

This information was provided by Songfacts.com

March 1973 – Killing Me Softly with His Song by Roberta Flack

March 1973 – a song popular in this month – Killing Me Softly with His Song by Roberta Flack

The story goes that the song was inspired by Don McLean, a singer/songwriter famous for his hit “American Pie.”

Interesting facts about Killing Me Softly with His Song & Roberta Flack

McLean said he had no idea the song was about him. ‘Someone called me and said a song had been written about me and it was #1,’ McLean recalled.

This was written by the songwriting team of Charles Fox and Norman Gimbel, and first recorded by Lori Lieberman in 1972.

Flack heard Lieberman’s version on an in-flight tape recorder while flying from Los Angeles to New York. She loved the title and lyrics and decided to record it herself.

This won Grammys in 1974 for Record of the Year, Song of the Year, and Best Female Pop Vocal. Flack’s “First Time Ever I Saw Your Face” won Record of the Year the previous year, making her the first artist to win the award 2 consecutive years.

Toni Collette, Hugh Grant and Nicholas Hoult performed this in the film About A Boy.

This information was provided by Songfacts.com

February 1973 – Crocodile Rock by Elton John

February 1973 – a song popular in this month – Crocodile Rock by Elton John

This tells the story of a guy in the ’50s and ’60s who frequented a restaurant where the patrons loved an obscure dance called the Crocodile Rock.

Interesting facts about Crocodile Rock & Elton John

This was the first of many #1 singles by Elton John in the US.

Don McLean has mentioned that this is similar to his hit “American Pie,” which came out the previous year. Both songs are about young people in the ’50s obsessed with rock n’ roll, but disappointed when the music “dies.”

Elton performed this on The Muppet Show when he appeared on a Season Two episode in 1977. A very popular song with kids, it made for a great opening number, with Elton performing in a swamp with a crocodile chorus.

This song helped send the Don’t Shoot Me I’m Only the Piano Player album to #1 on both sides of the Atlantic. It was Elton’s first #1 in the UK, but Honky Chateau went to #1 in the US earlier that year.

Before he was a solo artist, John was in a group called Bluesology.

Elton is godfather to several celebrity children, including Sean Lennon (son of John Lennon and Yoko Ono), Brooklyn and Romeo Beckham (sons of David and Victoria Beckham), and Damian Charles (son of Elizabeth Hurley).

At one point, John was responsible for 3% of all records sold on the planet.

This information was provided by Songfacts.com

February 1973 – Right Place Wrong Time by Dr. John

February 1973 – a song popular in this month – Right Place Wrong Time by Dr. John

Easily the most recognized song from Dr. John’s long and varied recorded output, “Right Place, Wrong Time” is a pivotal track that marries the legacy of the good doctor’s New Orleans rhythm-and-blues ancestors to the bold funk that dominated black American music at the time of the record’s release.

Interesting facts about Right Place Wrong Time & Dr. John

Lyrically, “Right Place, Wrong Time” is standard blues fare, documenting in ironic one-liners the singer’s propensity for misfortune.

While “Right Place, Wrong Time” was Dr. John’s lone rise to the top ten of the Billboard Hot 100, the song has been ubiquitous in American popular culture for decades since.

While he Dr. John continued his high-profile session work throughout the 1970s, appearing, for instance, on Carly Simon and James Taylor’s hit, “Mockingbird,” and lending keyboards to Rickie Lee Jones’s Grammy-winning debut, his largest commercial success as a solo artist came with Gumbo’s follow-up: In the Right Place in 1973.

Rebennack was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame as Dr. John in 2011, more than forty years after the birth of his colorful alter ego.

He wrote the theme song for the TV show Blossom, which ran from 1990-1995. In the open, the show’s star Mayim Bialik dances exuberantly to the song. Bialik would later join the cast of the show The Big Bang Theory.

This information was provided by Songfacts.com

January 1973 – Superstition by Stevie Wonder

January 1973 – a song popular in this month – Superstition by Stevie Wonder

Wonder wrote this about the dangers of believing in superstitions.

Interesting facts about Superstition & Stevie Wonder

When Wonder turned 21, he was no longer obligated to Motown Records, and used his clout to sign a deal with the label giving him unprecedented control of his music.

This was Wonder’s second #1 hit in the US. His first was with “Fingertips (Part 2)” in 1963, which he recorded as “Little” Stevie Wonder.

Wonder performed this song on Sesame Street in 1973 during the show’s fourth season. It was recorded at the show’s New York studios at a time when Wonder and his band were playing lots of gigs, and they treated the Sesame Street performance just like any other, extending it to nearly 7 minutes.

The album was called Talking Book because wonder considered the songs akin to chapters in a book that tell a whole story. On the cover is a rare photo of Wonder without his sunglasses on.

According to his official biography, Wonder was born six weeks premature in a Saginaw Hospital. He was kept alive in an incubator for a month, and during this time, too much oxygen was pumped into the incubator, causing him to develop retrolental fibroplasia, now technically known as retinopathy of prematurity, which caused his blindness.

Wonder doesn’t see his blindness as a liability. “Being blind, you don’t judge books by their covers,” he said. “You go through things that are relatively insignificant, and you pick out the things that are more important.”

This information was provided by Songfacts.com