Co-written and first recorded by Bill Champlin (1979 unreleased).
Hit version by Earth, Wind & Fire (1979).
Also recorded by Airplay (1980).
[Bill Champlin video is not currently available]
From the wiki: “‘After the Love Has Gone’ was written by David Foster, Jay Graydon and Bill Champlin. Champlin was the first to record the song (produced by Foster) but the recording went unreleased. Airplay, the recording group formed by Foster and Graydon, did produce and release a cover of ‘After the Love’ in 1980 with Graydon singing lead. Graydon tells the story (from Songfacts.com) of how the song came into being: ‘David Foster produced an album for Jaye P. Morgan in 1976 … Then he was at Motown playing some songs with Jaye to try to get a deal over there. He was in the middle of playing a song and he forgot the chorus, and he ad-libbed the chorus to ‘After The Love Has Gone.’
“‘He comes over to my house, and we went into my little dinky studio. He sits down at the piano, and he says, ‘Listen to this chorus.’ He plays it, and I said, ‘Hey, here’s an idea for a verse.’ And I went, ‘da da dom da da bom ba da da da.’ And he just immediately continued on with that, and we had the whole song written in about a 1/2-hour or 45-minutes.
“‘Then, we called Champlin: ‘Bill, get over here, we need a lyric.’ David recorded it with Champlin, maybe three different versions. He got one that he really liked, though. But, then, David was also writing with Maurice White for Earth, Wind & Fire for the I Am album. He played the song for Maurice, and Maurice loved it. David called me and says, ‘Hey, man, Earth, Wind & Fire wants to record it, but I don’t want to tell Champlin that it’s gonna have to get pulled off his record. Will you do it?’ I said, ‘I sure will.’ (laughs) I called Bill and I said, ‘Bill, here’s the story.’ And he says, ‘I’m not an idiot, man.’ (laughing) I said, ‘I’m glad you say you’re not an idiot. Because they say this thing’s gonna be a single for sure. And this could be big.’ Needless to say, that song still generates good money. It’s unbelievable.’
“‘After the Love Has Gone’ is the only song on I Am that Maurice White didn’t have a part in writing. According to Graydon, they still had to give him part of the publishing, ‘because we were young and stupid.
“Airplay was a short-lived band, formed by composers Foster and Graydon. The group’s self-titled 1980 album included ‘Nothin’ You Can Do About It’ (later recorded by Manhattan Transfer) and a cover of ‘After the Love Has Gone’, co-written by Foster and Graydon.”
Earth, Wind & Fire, “After the Love Has Gone” (1979):
Airplay, “After the Love Has Gone” (1980):