Category: just to be close to you

On this day in music history: October 9, 1976 – “Just To Be Close To You” by The Commodores hits #1 on the Billboard R&B singles charts for 2 weeks, also peaking at #7 on the Hot 100 on November 27, 1976. Written by Lionel Richie, it is the second chart topping single for the R&B/Funk band from Tuskegee, AL. Following the success of their first R&B chart topper “Slippery When Wet” and the top five R&B and pop smash “Sweet Love” (#2 R&B, #5 Pop), The Commodores  continue to build and expand their fan base. Having penned the ballad “Sweet Love”, Lionel Richie becomes a creative force to be reckoned with in the band, following that success. Richie takes advice from veteran Motown producer Hal Davis who advises Richie, “the key to this (music) business is year after year.” Davis means that the only way you can sustain a long career is to consistently make hits year after year. Taking that seriously into consideration, Lionel focuses upon and fine tunes his songwriting talents. This work ethic helps turn him into one of the most successful songwriters of all time. One of the first songs he writes for the bands fourth album is the ballad “Just To Be Close To You”. The nearly six and a half minute track (edited down to under three and a half minutes for single release) quickly become a hit on R&B radio, though they initially face resistance from some major pop stations, feeling that that the song is “too black”. Listener demand forces the hand of many radio programmers and it become The Commodores second major pop hit. Issued as the first single in August of 1976, “Just To Be Close To You" becomes a firm fan favorite, and a highlight of the bands live performances. The single also drives the accompanying album “Hot On The Tracks” to number one on the Billboard R&B album chart, becoming their first chart topping album and to number twelve on the Top 200.

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On this day in music history: June 27, 1976 – “Hot On The Tracks”, the fourth album by The Commodores is released. Produced by James Anthony Carmichael and The Commodores, it is recorded at Motown Recording Studios in Hollywood, CA in Early 1976. Building on the momentum of their previous three albums “Machine Gun”, “Caught In The Act” and “Movin’ On” (the latter two both released in 1975), The Commodores return to the studio at the beginning of 1976 to record what becomes their most successful album to date. Though all of the band members contribute to the writing of the album, their fourth release sees Lionel Richie beginning to emerge as a major creative force in the band. Richie writes or co-writes six of the albums nine songs. Upon its release, the album broadens The Commodores rapidly growing fan base, both solidifying their solid R&B following, and setting the stage for the even larger pop crossover success they experience in the coming year and beyond. It spins off the hit singles “Fancy Dancer” (#9 R&B, #39 Pop) and “Just To Be Close To You” (#1 R&B, #7 Pop). “Hot On The Tracks” spends six weeks (non-consecutive) at number one on the Billboard R&B album chart, peaking at number twelve on the Top 200.

Help support the Behind The Grooves music blog with a donation by clicking on the link at: PayPal.Me/jharris1228

On this day in music history: October 9, 1976 – “Just To Be Close To You” by The Commodores hits #1 on the Billboard R&B singles charts for 2 weeks, also peaking at #7 on the Hot 100 on November 27, 1976. Written by Lionel Richie, it is the second chart topping single for the R&B/Funk band from Tuskegee, AL. Following the success of their first R&B chart topper “Slippery When Wet” and the top five R&B and pop smash “Sweet Love” (#2 R&B, #5 Pop), The Commodores  continue to build and expand their fan base. Having penned the ballad “Sweet Love”, Lionel Richie becomes a creative force to be reckoned with in the band, following that success. Richie takes advice from veteran Motown producer Hal Davis who advises Richie, “the key to this (music) business is year after year.” Davis means that the only way you can sustain a long career is to consistently make hits year after year. Taking that seriously into consideration, Lionel focuses upon and fine tunes his songwriting talents. This work ethic helps turn him into one of the most successful songwriters of all time. One of the first songs he writes for the bands fourth album is the ballad “Just To Be Close To You”. The nearly six and a half minute track (edited down to under three and a half minutes for single release) quickly become a hit on R&B radio, though they initially face resistance from some major pop stations, feeling that that the song is “too black”. Listener demand forces the hand of many radio programmers and it become The Commodores second major pop hit. Issued as the first single in August of 1976, “Just To Be Close To You" becomes a firm fan favorite, and a highlight of the bands live performances. The single also drives the accompanying album “Hot On The Tracks” to number one on the Billboard R&B album chart, becoming their first chart topping album and to number twelve on the Top 200.

On this day in music history: June 27, 1976 – “Hot On The Tracks”, the fourth album by The Commodores is released. Produced by James Anthony Carmichael and The Commodores, it is recorded at Motown Recording Studios in Hollywood, CA in Early 1976. Building on the momentum of their previous three albums “Machine Gun”, “Caught In The Act” and “Movin’ On” (the latter two both released in 1975), The Commodores return to the studio at the beginning of 1976 to record what becomes their most successful album to date. Though all of the band members contribute to the writing of the album, their fourth release sees Lionel Richie beginning to emerge as a major creative force in the band. Richie writes or co-writes six of the albums nine songs. Upon its release, the album broadens The Commodores rapidly growing fan base, both solidifying their solid R&B following, and setting the stage for the even larger pop crossover success they experience in the coming year and beyond. It spins off the hit singles “Fancy Dancer” (#9 R&B, #39 Pop) and “Just To Be Close To You” (#1 R&B, #7 Pop). “Hot On The Tracks” spends six weeks (non-consecutive) at number one on the Billboard R&B album chart, peaking at number twelve on the Top 200.