Songs with Earlier Histories Than the Hit Version

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Tagged: Captain & Tennille

Lonely Night (Angel Face)

Written and first recorded by Neil Sedaka (1975).
Hit version by Captain & Tennille (US #3/MOR #1 1975).

From the wiki: “‘Lonely Night (Angel Face)’ was written by Neil Sedaka. Sedaka first recorded the track for his 1975 album, The Hungry Years. The following year, the song was turned into a hit single by Captain & Tennille, who had previously recorded and scored a #1 hit with Sedaka’s ‘Love Will Keep Us Together‘. Their recording of ‘Lonely Night” became the duo’s third-straight Top 5.”

Muskrat Love

Written and originally recorded (as “Muskrat Candlelight”) by Willis Alan Ramsey (1972).
Also recorded (as “Sun Down”) by Lani Hall (1972).
Hit versions by America (US #67/MOR #11 1973), Captain & Tennille (US #4/MOR #1 1976).

From the wiki: “‘Muskrat Love’ is a pop song by written by Willis Alan Ramsey depicting a romantic liaison between two anthropomorphic muskrats named Susie and Sam. The song was first recorded by Ramsey on the critically acclaimed album Willis Alan Ramsey (1972) on which the song was titled ‘Muskrat Candlelight’. Ramsey is an American singer-songwriter, a cult legend among fans of Americana and Texas country.

“America recorded ‘Muskrat Love’ for their 1973 album Hat Trick, marking the second time the band had recorded a song not written by a member of America. David Dickey, bassist for the group, brought ‘Muskrat Candlelight’ to the group’s attention. According to Beckley ‘to us it sounded like a very bluesy, quirky tune. We just felt it was quirky and commercial, and we worked it up.’ Dan Peek would recall that America’s label Warner Bros. ‘hated’ the track and ‘begged us not to release it as a single…We were stupid to press the issue but we liked the song for its easy, acoustic, harmonic beauty not realizing that perhaps it was badly cast for us in order to retain the fairly hip image we had eked out’. In a 2012 interview Gerry Beckley said of ‘Muskrat Love’: ‘It’s a polarizing little number. After concerts, some people tell us they can’t believe we didn’t play it, while others go out of their way to thank us for not performing it.’

I Write the Songs

Originally recorded by Captain & Tennille (May 1975).
Hit versions by David Cassidy (UK #11 July 1975), Barry Manilow (US #1 Oct 1975).
Also recorded by Bruce Johnston, composer (1977).

No. Barry Manilow did not ‘write the songs’. ‘I Write the Songs’ was written by Bruce Johnston, of the The Beach Boys, in 1975.

Love Will Keep Us Together

Written and first recorded by Neil Sedaka (UK 1973).
Hit versions by Mac & Katie Kissoon (NETH #12 1973), Captain & Tennille (US #1/UK #32 1975).

From the wiki: “The song first appeared on Neil Sedaka’s 1973 album The Tra-La Days Are Over which did not have a US release, with Sedaka’s version of the song making its US album debut on the 1974 compilation album Sedaka’s Back.

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