Airdate – Oct 16, 2022
One of the greatest R&B groups to come out of Chicago was formed in 1957. Originally known as the Roosters, the group changed its name the following year and went on to grace the Billboard pop charts thirty-nine times over the seventeen year period from 1958 – 1975.
Their second charted release went to #2 on the R&B charts and to the 20th position on the Billboard Hot 100 in 1961. Nine years later, in 1970, this song was covered by a 60s pop singer whose career had been on the decline …
With the Iceman, Jerry Butler, singing lead, the Roosters, now known as the Impressions, made it to #11 on pop charts in 1958 with their breakout record, “For Your Precious Love.”
By the fall of 1958, Butler decided to go solo, and Curtis Mayfield became the lead voice and writer for the Impressions. In fact, he wrote that 1961 second charted release, which would eventually be covered nine years later and rebirth a 60s pop singer’s career.
The pop singer’s willingness to rework this former Top 20 song for the 70s pop market was partially due to his friendship with Del Shannon who produced the recording. Playing the keyboards on this cover version was Max Crook, a pioneer of electronic music, who was the featured soloist on Shannon’s 1961 hit “Runaway.”
The remake was well received and climbed to the #3 position on the Billboard Hot 100 and in Canada.
It brought a waning artist back into the limelight – an artist who was readily remembered for his #1 1960 novelty hit, “Itsy Bitsy Teenie Weenie Yellow Polkadot Bikini” and now and then for his 1962 hit version of “Sealed With A Kiss” (#3).
Brian Hyland was 27 years old in 1970 when he finally achieved Top 10 status for the third time with Curtis Mayfield’s “Gypsy Woman,” this week’s Tom Locke moment in time.
YouTube video of this song:
This “Moments In Time” story is yet another example of a “golden oldie” or forgotten favorite that earned its place in the evolution of Rock & Roll.