"Talk It Over" - Grayson Hugh
from the album Blind To Reason (1988)
Billboard Hot 100 peak: #19 (one week)
Weeks in the Top-40: 8
Today's song of the day comes from Grayson Hugh, a singer/songwriter from Connecticut who started out as a pianist/composer behind many dance troupes like Prometheus Dance, and releasing an independent album back in 1980, before scoring a major-label deal in the mid-decade. He put out his second set, Blind To Reason in 1988, and it was a collection of blue-eyed soul that caught fans of Hall & Oates with a voice more than a little reminiscent of Sam Cooke. This is most apparent in the retro-styled first single, "Talk It Over" with had the fortune-cookie tag of "in bed"...
"Talk It Over" became Grayson's sole top-40 pop hit in September of 1989. The song also climbed to #9 on Billboard's Adult Contemporary (or "easy listening") chart, and stayed on the radio list for thirty weeks. Internationally, the record was a hit Down Under, going to #4 in Australia.
Hugh's follow-up single, "Bring It All Back", which continued the easy-going soul vibe, also went to #9 on the Adult Contemporary chart, and stopped at #87 on the pop Hot 100. In 1990, Grayson collaborated with veteran R&B singer Betty Wright ("Clean Up Woman") for a cover of the 1981 Champaign hit "How 'Bout Us" for the movie True Love, and made the top-40 on the soul chart at #30 and slipped into the pop list at #67. He released one more little-noticed but worth seeking out album, Road To Freedom, before going back behind the scenes. He's since taught at Berklee and released two more indie albums in the 2000s.
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Hugh's version was actually a remake of a song first getting noticed as single from Olivia Newton-John, which missed the chart sadly the year before...
...and here's Grayson appearing on the Today Show to promote the single, with Bryant Gumbel dancing around the "OMG, you're white" question...
Up tomorrow: The Fab (& Rob) Fakes are expecting a downer.