First recorded (as “Now We’re Starting Over Again”) by Dionne Warwick (UK #76 1981).
Other hit version by Natalie Cole (MOR #5/CAN #12/UK #56 1990).
From the wiki: “‘Starting Over Again’ was composed by Michael Masser and Gerry Goffin as ‘Now We’re Starting Over Again’, and was first recorded in 1981 by Dionne Warwick to augment the live performance tracks released on her album Hot! Live and Otherwise. Produced by co-writer Masser, and not released in the US as a promotional single, ‘Now We’re Starting Over Again’ did see distribution as a single in other countries and did chart in the UK where it peaked at #76.
“Natalie Cole’s arrangement of ‘Starting Over Again’, also produced by Masser, was released in late 1989 in the UK and early 1990 in the US, the fifth of five promotional singles released from her 1989 album Good to Be Back. Although the single did not chart Hot 100 or R&B, it did peak at #5 on the Billboard Adult Contemporary chart, and also charted in Canada and the UK.”
First recorded by Goldie (1966).
Hit versions by Dusty Springfield (UK #10/AUS #9/SNG #6 1966), The Byrds (US #89 1967).
Also recorded by Carole King (1970 |1980), Larry Lurex aka Freddie Mercury (1973).
From the wiki: “Billed as ‘Goldie’ (of Goldie & the Gingerbreads), Genya Raven released the original version of the classic Carole King-Gerry Goffin composition “Goin’ Back” in the spring of 1966. However, this single was withdrawn within a week by producer Andrew Loog Oldham, due to disagreements with Goffin and King over altered lyrics. King then decided to record “Goin’ Back” herself, but ultimately she offered it to Dusty Springfield instead who would record it three months later, making the UK Top-10 singles chart immediately in the wake of her UK #1 hit ‘You Don’t Have to Say You Love Me‘.
Co-written and first recorded (as a demo) by Carole King (1967).
Hit version by The Monkees (US #3/CAN #2/UK #11 1967).
From the wiki: “‘Pleasant Valley Sunday’ was written by Gerry Goffin and Carole King, and was first recorded in 1967 as a demo by King. Goffin’s and King’s inspiration for the name was a street named Pleasant Valley Way, in West Orange, New Jersey where they were living at the time. The road follows a valley through several communities among the Watchung Mountains. The lyrics were a social commentary on status symbols, creature comforts, life in suburbia and ‘keeping up with the Joneses’.
“The Monkees’ single peaked at #3 on the Billboard Hot 100 and was featured in the second season of their television series. The Monkees. ‘Pleasant Valley Sunday’ also appeared on the fourth Monkees album, Pisces, Aquarius, Capricorn & Jones Ltd., in November 1967. While mono copies of the album had the same version heard on the single, stereo copies had a version using a different take of the first verse and an additional backing vocal during the break.”
First recorded (as a demo) by Carole King (1961).
Also recorded by Dion & the Belmonts (1961), The Beatles (1962, released 2009).
Hit versions by Bobby Vee (US #1/UK #3 1961), Bobby Vinton (US #33 1968).
From the wiki: “‘Take Good Care of My Baby’ was written by Carole King and Gerry Goffin, and was first recorded by King as a demo in 1961.
“Dion & the Belmonts were the first to record the song for commercial release but their version was not published until release of the album Runaround Sue in the slipstream of Bobby Vee’s #1 hit. The song was covered by The Beatles during their failed audition at Decca Records on January 1, 1962 but was unreleased until 2009.
“In 1968, ‘Take Good Care’ became a hit again, this time for Bobby Vinton.”
First recorded by Thelma Houston (1973).
Hit version by Diana Ross (US #1/R&B #14/UK #5/CAN #4 1975).
From the wiki: “‘Do You Know Where You’re Going To’ was written by Michael Masser and Gerry Goffin (‘You Make Me Feel Like a Natural Woman‘, ‘Up on the Roof‘), and was first recorded in 1973 by Thelma Houston for a New Zealand-only single release (Tamla Motown 872). In 1975, the song was repurposed by Masser and used as the theme to the movie Mahogany. Sung in the film by Diana Ross, it became one of the most recognizable elements of the film. The song topped the US Billboard Hot 100 in 1975, and was also nominated for the 1975 Academy Award for Best Original Song.”
Written and first recorded (as a demo) by Carole King (1967).
Hit versions by Aretha Franklin (US #8/R&B #2 1967), Celine Dion (MOR #31 1995), Mary J. Blige (R&B #39/UK #23 1995).
Also recorded by Carole King (1971).
From the wiki: “Written by the celebrated partnership of Gerry Goffin and Carole King, ‘You Make Me Feel (Like a Natural Woman)’ was inspired by Atlantic Records co-owner and producer Jerry Wexler.
“As recounted in his autobiography, Wexler, a student of African-American musical culture, had been mulling over the concept of the ‘natural man’, when he drove by Goffin on the streets of New York. Wexler shouted out to him he wanted a ‘natural woman’ song for Aretha Franklin’s next album. In thanks, Goffin and King granted Wexler a co-writing credit.
“Franklin’s recording features all three Franklin sisters, including Erma and Carolyn singing backup. Erma had a record deal in the ’60s, but didn’t have much success. Her biggest hit was her 1967 original recording of ‘Piece Of My Heart‘, made famous by Janis Joplin.”
“In 1987, the song achieved worldwide success with a cover version by Hawaiian singer Glenn Medeiros. Medeiros had originally released his cover version on a small independent label at the age of 16, after winning a local radio talent contest in Hawaii. A visiting radio executive from KZZP in Phoenix, Arizona, heard the song and took the record back to Phoenix, where, through word of mouth, it grew to become an international hit.”
Co-written and first recorded by Barry Goldberg (1973).
Hit version by Gladys Knight & The Pips (US #4/R&B #1 1973).
Also recorded by Bob Dylan (bootleg 1984), Joe Cocker (1989), Gerry Goffin, co-writer (1995), Joan Osborne (2007).
From the wiki: “‘I’ve Got to Use My Imagination’ was written by Gerry Goffin (‘Up on the Roof‘, ‘Oh No Not My Baby‘, ‘Saving All My Love for You‘, ‘One Fine Day’) and by Barry Goldberg, and was first recorded by Goldberg in 1973 at Muscle Shoals Sound Studio with co-producers Jerry Wexler and Bob Dylan (also on backing vocals and percussion).
“Goldberg was the pianist behind Dylan at the infamous ‘Dylan goes electric’ Newport Folk Festival performance in 1965 (he was a member of the Paul Butterfield Blues Band that had backed Dylan), and it was Dylan who helped Goldberg secure the deal with Atlantic Records that resulted in the 1974 release of Barry Goldberg.
First recorded by The Shirelles (1964, released 1994).
Hit versions by Maxine Brown (US #24 1964), Manfred Mann (UK# 11 1964), Merry Clayton (US #71/R&B #30 1972), Rod Stewart (UK #6 1973).
Also recorded by Carole King (1980).
From the wiki: “‘Oh No Not My Baby’ was written by Gerry Goffin and Carole King. The first recorded version of the song was by The Shirelles, with the group’s members alternating leads – an approach that ultimately rendered the song unreleasable because it was a great departure from the Shirelle’s ‘standard’ sound. It would not be released until appearing on the compilation Shirelles: Lost and Found in 1994.
“Maxine Brown recalls, then, that Stan Greenberg, Scepter Records executive, gave her the song with the advisement that she had to ‘find the original melody’ from the recording by The Shirelles: ‘They [had gone] so far off by each [group member] taking their own lead, no one knew any more where the real melody stood.’
Co-written by Carole King and first recorded (as “That Old Sweet Roll”) by The City (1969).
Hit version by Blood, Sweat & Tears (US #14 1970).
Also recorded by Dusty Springfield (1969), Carole King (1980).
From the wiki: “‘Hi De Ho’, originally titled ‘That Old Sweet Roll (Hi De Ho)’, was co-written by Carole King (with Gerry Goffin) and first recorded by the band City, Carole King’s late-1960s band with Danny Kortchmar and Charles Larkey. It appeared on the only album recorded by The City, Now That Everything’s Been Said.
“Dusty Springfield covered ‘That Old Sweet Roll’ during the same In Memphis sessions that also produced her hit single, ‘Son of a Preacher Man’. The Springfield recording was released in 1969 as the B-side to the single ‘Willie & Laura Mae Jones’, but was not included on the original album release. It is now included as a bonus track on the CD version of In Memphis.
“Blood, Sweat & Tear’s 1970 recording of the song, now titled ‘Hi De Ho’, would chart into the US Top 20.
“King would re-record ‘Hi De Ho’ in 1980 for her Pearls: Songs of Goffin and King album.”
First recorded (as a demo) by Little Eva (1962).
Hit versions by The Drifters (US #5/R&B #4 1963), Kenny Lynch (UK #10 1962), Julie Grant (UK #33 1963), The Cryan’ Shames (US #85 1968), Laura Nyro (US #92 1970), James Taylor (US #28 1980), Robson & Jerome (UK #1 1995).
Also recorded by Carole King (1970).
From the wiki: “‘Up on the Roof’ is a song written by Gerry Goffin and Carole King, first recorded as a demo in 1962 by Little Eva – their 14-year old babysitter whose singing career Goffin and King had helped launched with ‘The Loco-Motion’ and who the songwriting pair often used for demos. The song was then recorded and commercially released first by The Drifters in July 1962, becoming a major hit in early 1963, peaking at #5 the week of February 9 on the Billboard Hot 100 and #4 on the US R&B Singles chart.
“In the UK the Drifters’ version of ‘Up on the Roof’ failed to reach the Top 50, being trumped by two local cover versions, sung by, respectively, Julie Grant and Kenny Lynch (‘Mountain of Love‘).
“The Kenny Lynch version, which largely replicated the Drifters’ original, was the more successful, reaching #10 UK. The Julie Grant version, which reached #33 UK, was reinvented as a Merseybeat number. Its producer, Tony Hatch, would later be inspired to write Petula Clark’s iconic hit ‘Downtown’, which itself was originally envisioned as being in the style of the Drifters, with whom Hatch had hoped to place it.
First recorded by The Everly Brothers (1962, released 1984).
Hit versions by The Cookies (US #17/R&B #7/UK #50 1962), The Beatles (1963).
From the wiki: “‘Chains’ was composed by the Brill Building husband-and-wife songwriting team Gerry Goffin and Carole King (‘Up on the Roof‘, ‘Crying in the Rain‘, ‘Oh No Not My Baby‘). It was first recorded by the Everly Brothers in 1962 but went unreleased until 1984.
“The same year, ‘Chains’ became a US Top 20 hit for Little Eva’s backing singers, The Cookies (with Earl-Jean McRae (‘I’m Into Something Good‘) singing lead), with an arrangement produced by co-writer Goffin.and later covered by The Beatles.
“Soon thereafter, Herman’s Hermits recorded the song as their debut single, reaching #1 in the UK Singles Chart on 14 September 1964 and staying there for two weeks. The song peaked at #13 in the US later that year.
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