Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Hall and Oates--You Make My Dreams (1981)

     Hall and Oates have by far become the most popular duo in the history of rock music. Their blend of genres, which they called, rock and soul resulted in 34 chart entries with six of them hitting number one and ten others being in the top 10.
     Darryl Hohl and John Oates met as members of rival bands. At the Adelphi Ballroom in Philadelphia in 1967, there was a "battle of the bands" competition. Darryl was a member of The Temptones, and John, The Masters. Sometime during the proceedings a fight broke out between members of rival street gangs and shots rang out. Both men headed towards a service elevator for safety. While in their hiding place they got to talking and discovered that not only were they into the same music, but they both were students at Temple University. They began to hang out together, and eventually became roommates although they wouldn't actually begin working together musically for another couple of years.
     In 1970, they began working seriously as a duo and in 1972 was offered a contract. They were obviously talented, but an early problem developed as both men skipped around different genres. Listening to their early/mid 70's output now, you can hear them struggling to find a sound. They would skip from folk to rock, to soul. On several occasions, this would catch fire as it did with the singles, "She's Gone" (released in 74'...became a top ten hit on re-release in 76'), "Sara Smiles" (76) and Rich Girl (77).
      It was the blue eyed soul path they would eventually head down towards as the 70s turned into the 80s, and it was there they struck gold.. "You Lost That Lovin' Feeling" in 1980 got things rolling, but it was, "Kiss On My List" in early 1981 that put the duo on the path of becoming one of the biggest artists of the decade. The massive years from a chart perspective was from 81-84, but they were to put songs on the charts as late as 2005.
     They will still perform together from time to time, but both men have spent individual projects..  Both  have released solo albums, and Hall has been a part of the successful, "Live from Darryl's House" 


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