Songs with Earlier Histories Than the Hit Version

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Tagged: Carole Bayer Sager

On the Way to the Sky

Co-written and first recorded by Carole Bayer-Sager (1981).
Hit version by co-writer Neil Diamond (US #27/MOR #4 1982).

From the wiki: “‘On the Way to the Sky’ was written by Neil Diamond and Carole Bayer Sager. First recorded and released by Bayer-Sager in 1981. on her album Sometimes Late At Night, the song would become a chart hit for co-writer Diamond in 1982 when released as the title track promotional single for his fourteenth studio album, On the Way to the Sky.”

I’d Rather Leave While I’m in Love

Co-written and first recorded by Carole Bayer Sager (1977).
Also recorded by Peter Allen, co-writer (1979).
Hit version by Rita Coolidge (US #38/MOR #3/C&W #32/CAN AC #1 1979).

From the wiki: “I’d Rather Leave While I’m In Love” is a song co-written by Peter Allen (‘Don’t Cry Out Loud‘) and Carol Bayer-Sager, and popularized in 1979 by Rita Coolidge, was first recorded in 1977 by Bayer Sager. Co-writer Allen recorded his own version of ‘I’d Rather Leave While I’m In Love’ in 1979 for his album I Could Have Been a Sailor.

“The song about breaking up was sung originally by its two songwriters, who both had married and later split up with famous spouses: Allen, from Liza Minnelli; Bayer Sager, from producer Andrew Sager.

That’s What Friends Are For

First recorded by Rod Stewart (1982).
Hit version by Dionne Warwick, Elton John, Stevie Wonder & Gladys Knight (US #1/R&B #1/UK #16/CAN #1/AUS #1 1985).

From the wiki: “‘That’s What Friends Are For’ was written by Burt Bacharach and Carole Bayer Sager (‘Everchanging Times‘) and was first recorded in 1982 by Rod Stewart for the soundtrack of the film Night Shift.

“The Dionne Warwick & Friends cover recording in 1984 was a one-off collaboration featuring Warwick, Gladys Knight, Elton John and Stevie Wonder. It was released as a charity fund-raising single in the U.S. and U.K. to benefit the American Foundation for AIDS Research. Sales from the song raised over US$3 million for that cause.”

Everchanging Times

First recorded by Siedah Garrett (MOR #30/R&B #44 1987).
Other hit version by Aretha Franklin feat. Michael McDonald (MOR #11/R&B #19 1992).

From the wiki: “‘Everchanging Times’ was co-written by Burt Bacharach and Carole Bayer Sager (‘That’s What Friends Are For‘) and was first recorded by Siedah Garrett for the Baby Boom movie soundtrack. Released as a single, Garrett’s arrangement peaked at #44 on the R&B singles chart.

“In 1992, ‘Everchanging Times’ was covered by Aretha Franklin for her thirty-sixth studio album What You See Is What You Sweat with Michael McDonald having featured vocals. The song served as the fourth single from the album. Franklin’s single did not chart on the Billboard Hot 100 but did peaked at #11 on the Adult Contemporary singles chart and #19 on the Hot R&B chart.”

A Groovy Kind of Love

First recorded by Diane & Annita (1965).
Hit versions by The Mindbenders (US# 2/UK #2 1966), Phil Collins (US #1/UK #1 1988).

From the wiki: “‘A Groovy Kind of Love’ is a pop song written by then-teenage songwriters Toni Wine (‘Candida‘) and Carole Bayer Sager (‘I Can Hear Music‘, ‘That’s What Friends Are For‘). The song title was an early use of the then-new slang word ‘groovy’.

“Wine, who was 17 years old when she wrote the song, said, ‘Carole came up with ‘Groovy kinda… groovy kinda… groovy…’ and we’re all just saying, ‘Kinda groovy, kinda groovy, kinda…’ and I don’t exactly know who came up with ‘Love’, but it was ‘Groovy kind of love’. And we did it. We wrote it in 20 minutes.’ The song was heavily based on the Rondo movement of Sonatina in G major by Muzio Clementi. It was picked up for publishing by Screen Gems Music.

When I Need You

Co-written and first recorded by Albert Hammond (1976).
Hit version by Leo Sayer (US #1/UK #1 1977).

From the wiki: “‘When I Need You’ is a popular song written by Albert Hammond (‘It Never Rains in Southern California’, ‘The Air That I Breathe‘) and Carole Bayer Sager (‘A Groovy Kind of Love‘, ‘That’s What Friends Are For’, ‘Theme to Arthur‘). Its first appearance was as the title track of Hammond’s 1976 album When I Need You. Leo Sayer’s version, produced by Richard Perry, was a massive hit worldwide, reaching #1 on the UK Singles Chart for three weeks in February 1977 after three of his earlier singles had stalled at #2. It also reached #1 on both the Billboard Hot 100 for a single week in May 1977 and the Hot Adult Contemporary Tracks.”