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Sunday, June 15, 2014

Love You Inside Out

Hi, everyone!  I think I'm more or less fully recovered from the 2014 Relay for Life now to post these blogs on a regular schedule again!  Let me give you a little bit of advice for all of you.  If you're going to do a marathon lap of nine miles, take frequent breaks, drink a lot of water, wear sensible shoes, and definitely make sure you apply liberal amounts of Bengay, or whatever pain relieving ointment you have in your medicine cabinet immediately after sitting down.  Your muscles and joints will thank you later.

And before I begin with this blog, I do want to take a moment to reflect on the passing of Casey Kasem, who passed away earlier today at the age of 82.  Casey Kasem was such a huge part of my life, and one of the main influences behind my cultivation of pop culture history.  For years, I remember watching him on television voicing the role of Shaggy on just about every incarnation of the Scooby-Doo cartoon series.  I also used to watch his video show on NBC's Saturday Morning line-up, and I listened to him every Saturday afternoon hosting Casey's Top 40, or American Top 40, or whatever name you remember the show going by.  Every time I heard his voice, I can still picture myself struggling with algebra homework while listening to him read off his long distance dedications.  He truly was a legend in his own right, and he will be missed terribly.

But as Casey Kasem would always say...on with the countdown...or in this case, blog entry.

In the meantime, HAPPY FATHER'S DAY to all the dads out there in the world!  Especially my own father who is celebrating his 48th year of being a dad (my eldest sibling was born 48 years ago this year).  My goodness, that's a lot of bookshelf building, lawn mowing, bicycle tire inflating, and toy fixing!

Now, this is where the blog gets somewhat frustrating.  Earlier this year, I promised myself that for every entry in the SUNDAY JUKEBOX feature (barring the Advent Calendar in December), I would be featuring a song that hit #1 on the Billboard Hot 100.  And this week, on account of it being Father's Day, I would try to post a song that had to do with fathers and fatherhood.  Unfortunately, I came up empty.  The only two songs that I could think of spur of the moment that could have been perfect for this entry were Luther Vandross' "Dance With My Father" and Bob Carlisle's "Butterfly Kisses".  And neither one of those songs made it to the #1 spot on the Hot 100.  So, those choices were out.

And, it wasn't as if the choices that I did have were any better.  Let's see what I had to choose from, shall we?

The Purple People Eater/SHEB WOOLEY (Um...not quite)

Mrs. Robinson/SIMON & GARFUNKLE (Good song...not really the best choice)

You're The One That I Want/JOHN TRAVOLTA & OLIVIA NEWTON-JOHN (Would've worked if I didn't already do a blog on "Grease")

One More Try - GEORGE MICHAEL (Next, please.)

The Boy Is Mine - BRANDY & MONICA (No...just, no.)

Lollipop - L'IL WAYNE (Um...what?)

Boom Boom Pow - BLACK EYED PEAS (?!?!?)

Yeah.  You see what I mean?

Okay, so if choosing a song based on fathers was out of the question...why not pick a song performed by a man (or group of men) who were fathers themselves?  Yeah.  That could work.

In fact, in this song spotlight, the three men who made up this group certainly had a lot of experience being fathers.  The three men had a total of eleven children with their respective wives and partners.  And while there is nobody in the world who can call themselves a perfect dad (except maybe Ward Cleaver, and even that is saying a lot), these guys certainly did try.

Barry Gibb certainly had a lot of experience being a father.  With his wife, Linda, they had five children between 1973 and 1991!

Robin Gibb had two children with his first wife in the 1970s, a child with his second wife in the 1980s...and another child that he fathered with a housekeeper in 2008, bringing his total to four kids overall.

And while Maurice Gibb did struggle with some personal issues involving alcohol, the death of his brother Andy in 1988 helped him fight his way back to sobriety and he was well enough to host a recommitment ceremony with his wife, whom he had two children with.

Again, if you tally up the math, that's eleven children.

Although Maurice died in 2003, and Robin passed on nine years later, Barry Gibb is still alive, as are all eleven children that were born to the legendary pop trio known as the Bee Gees.  And, today's Sunday Jukebox spotlight falls on a song that hit the top of the charts exactly thirty-five years ago this week.  It's a song that held a lot of meaning for the band, and had a distinct impact on the lives of Barry Gibb, as well as the band in general.

Would you like to hear the song now?  I bet you would!

ARTIST:  Bee Gees
SONG:  Love You Inside Out
ALBUM:  Spirits Having Flown
DATE RELEASED:  April 15, 1979

Okay, so the song itself only lasted a week on the charts, sandwiched in between two #1 weeks in which Donna Summer's "Hot Stuff" was the hottest stuff on the pop music scene.  But the song itself with its disco twist certainly earned its position on the Hot 100.  After all, 1979 was the year in which almost every single #1 song was a disco hit, and the final year in which disco was in vogue before people turned their noses up at it. 

I suppose that could have been the very reason why "Love You Inside Out" was the final #1 single the band ever had. 

However, this song marked the beginning of a lot of other things...mainly the shattering of some records, and the tying of others.  Who knew that a love song would have such a huge impact on the history books of pop music, huh?

Let's start with the fact that the song hit #1 on the charts in June 1979.  At that time, this Bee Gees song was the ninth one to hit the #1 spot on the Billboard Hot 100.  Now this might not be such a big deal in the grand scheme of things as several artists have had more than nine hits to top the charts.  Heck, Mariah Carey had twice as many alone!

But here's where the record part comes into play.  The song "Love You Inside Out" was the band's ninth #1 single of their careers...and it was their ninth #1 song of the 1970s!  That's right!  The band achieved the goal of having nine #1 singles in the same decade.  For posterity's sake, here is the complete list.

TRAGEDY (1979)

The proof is in the pudding, my friends.  And during the 1970s, it seemed that everyone wanted to jive talk and catch the night fever from the Bee Gees.  And since I've posted a list of all of the Bee Gees #1 hits, this brings me towards a record that this band had tied with the Beatles!

Take a look at the last six singles that are on the list.  Well, those six singles were six consecutive #1 hits by the Bee Gees...and the only other group to have had that happen to them were the Beatles, who achieved that goal in the mid-1960s - right around the time they were visiting America for the first time.

I suppose that the 1977 film "Saturday Night Fever" had a lot to do with that success.  Until Michael Jackson's "Thriller" was released in 1982, the soundtrack for "Saturday Night Fever" was the biggest selling album of all-time.  If you take a look at where the Bee Gees hit train kicked off, the first single on that list was "How Deep Is Your Love", the main ballad piece of that film.  The success of the film certainly made the Bee Gees popularity skyrocket, and that success helped keep the band at the top of the charts until the natural death of disco came in 1981.

This brings me to record #3, which the Bee Gees broke in 1979, and as of 2014 still hold.  They were the only band to have three consecutive singles to each hit #1 on back-to-back albums.  Taking a look at the six consecutive singles that did hit #1, the first three were from the "Saturday Night Fever" soundtrack, and the last three were from the band's 1979 album "Spirits Having Flown".  Interesting piece of trivia, isn't it?

And finally, there's one more piece of trivia that has to be revealed.  It involves Mr. Barry Gibb.  As many of you already know, Barry was responsible for penning nearly all of the Bee Gees biggest hit singles.  And when the band achieved that feat, he became one of pop music's most respected and successful songwriters, having tied the record held by John Lennon and Paul McCartney!  As a songwriter, Barry Gibb had written #1 songs for his band and other artists during the 1960s, 1970s, 1980s, 1990s, and even the 2000s!  And his songs have been recorded by such artists as Kenny Rogers, Diana Ross, Barbra Streisand, Dionne Warwick, and even his own brother, Andy Gibb!  How is that for talent?

And to close off this blog on the Bee Gees, I will end off with one of the many cover versions of this song.  This one was recorded by Feist (you know, the one who sang 1, 2, 3, 4), and it was a minor hit in Canada in 2005.  Enjoy!

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