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Throwback Tracks--July 7, 2016

{MUSIC}

The Guys from {MUSIC}

Throwback Tracks--July 7, 2016

Shaun Cordingley

Roamed through the 1970s this week, primarily because the {PODCAST} this week is going to be discussing films from that decade, so I wanted to get a fun range of songs from the 70s here.

The Guys From do not hold the rights to any of these songs, it is more our hope to expose our readers to new (*cough*) and different retro music, or re-expose them to things they may have forgotten about.

At the top of each section, will be the song name, followed by the artists' name linked to their website (if possible...which is totally hit and miss with oldies), so you can fall down the rabbit hole, finding and supporting what you dig.



Some Kind of Wonderful - Grand Funk Railroad

Michigan's Grand Funk Railroad, a(nother) blues-rock band starts us off this week with "Some Kind of Wonderful" and were one of the biggest bands in the world in the 1970s...to the extent that David Fricke of Rolling Stone has said "You cannot talk about rock in the 1970s without talking about Grand Funk Railroad".

This is probably another one of those cases where we should be surprised it took them this long to hit the list, but long-time Throwback Track readers/listeners are probably getting a little tired of hearing that...

"Some Kind of Wonderful" was the first single from Grand Funk's 9th studio album All the Girls in the World Beware!!!, and peaked at #3 in the US. This is also one of those songs that has two different versions, and about a bazillion covers (so I am sure you have heard this song one way or another before)...but as far as I'm concerned, this is the best version. Bar none.

Sundown - Gordon Lightfoot

I realize this is dangerously close to country music, a genre I do not like...at all...but this 1974 folk song from Canadian singer/songwriter Gordon Lightfoot, is one of those songs that I will stop and sing along to pretty much every time I hear it.

"Sundown" was Lightfoot's only song to hit #1 on the Billboard 100, and the album Sundown is probably the peak of his folk (and acoustic) work, as after this album, he did move more into using electric/electronic instruments. Sundown hit #1 in both Canada and the US, which is not really a surprise, considering how damn good "Sundown" itself is...

Ooh Child - The Five Stairsteps

The Five Stairsteps, or the "first family of soul" were an all-family soul band from Chicago who's biggest hit was "O-o-h Child", a song that you might know because of it's recent inclusion in Guardians of the Galaxy (kinda, as it's what Star Lord is singing to distract Ronan at the end...).

This is just one of those feel-good songs that the 1970s were really, really good at pumping out, and perhaps for that reason, it has been covered oodles of times, and has been used in a pile of other television and films...because it's just one of those songs, you know...it's hard to put your finger on it, but you just get a grin from "O-O-h Child", and it does not feel as dated as a lot of 1970s music does.

Also, you're welcome for the amazing Soul Train footage video.

I Want You to Want Me - Cheap Trick

Cheap Trick, an American power-pop rock band had a strange path to stardom for the time; they were Big in Japan.

"I Want You to Want Me", an excellent example of their easily accessable, pop, yet hard rock style did not even chart in the US upon it's release in September 1977...but it went to #1 in Japan, then the band (on the success of "I Want You to Want Me" and "Clock Strikes Ten") went to the Nippon Bukodan in Tokyo, recorded what turned out to be their most successful album overall Cheap Trick at Bukodan (a live album from their concerts there) and then ended up re-releasing the live "I Want You" which eventually climbed to #7.

You just never know when you make something, what it's going to do....and for Cheap Trick, they have been called "The American Beatles" in the Japanese press...and their Japanese fans launched them to more success at home.

Piano Man - Billy Joel

This, surprisingly, was Billy Joel's first hit, released in 1973, and is a fictionalized re-telling of the time Joel spent working as a lounge-singer.

Think about that, Billy Joel burst onto the scene with "Piano Man", a song that most singer/songwriters would kill to have once in their careers, and Joel starts with it.

I shouldn't have to say too much here: Billy Joel has 33 Top 40 hits spanning over a career that has lasted over 40 years, wracked up 23 Grammys, Songwriters Hall of Fame, Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, Kennedy Center Honors....and is one of the best-selling artists of all time.

This is the first, and will not be the last time Billy Joel shows up on a Throwback Tracks.

It's Billy Joel.



Here is the June 2016 Throwback Playlist , done in the usual fashion of trying to make it sound a bit like a set (which is never easy without transitions, or just yapping until I change genres), but, yay! Playlist!

In case you missed our previous Throwback Track playlists, here they are:

May 2016 Throwback Playlist

April 2016 Throwback Playlist

Don't forget to check out the latest Tuesday Tunes for your new music fix, and I will see you again next Thursday with some new....oldies...

-S (@Shauncord)