Monday, March 27, 2017

Songoftheday 3/27/17 - Everyday love me your own special way, melt all my heart away with a smile...

"Always And Forever" - Whistle
from the album Always and Forever (1990)
Billboard Hot 100 peak: #35
Weeks in the Top-40: 4

Today's song of the day comes from the group Whistle, who started out as a rap act from Brooklyn in the mid-1980's. Releasing their self-titled debut album in 1986, their first single "Nothing Serious (Just Buggin')", was a moderately successful R&B hit in the U.S. at #17 and on the dance list at #18, but despite the fact that it missed the pop chart altogether, the single became big overseas, landing at #7 on the British singles chart. Another song from the set, the freestyle/hip-hop mesh of "Barbara's Bedroom", also made the R&B top-40 at #31. Changing out a couple members to go from a trio to a foursome, they re-emerged as a predominantly singing group on their second effort Transformation, which landed three songs on the R&B chart with the third, the break-up ballad "Right Next To Me", becoming their first to reach the pop chart at #60. So to gain on the momentum from that success, Whistle's third album started out not only with another lead single ballad, but a cover of one of the most known love songs in the "quiet storm" canon. "Always And Forever", written by the late great Rod Temperton, leader of the disco band Heatwave, originally went to #2 on the R&B chart and #18 on the American pop Hot 100 in 1978, and has become a wedding/prom staple since...


Whistle goes it the neo-doowop treatment to this like New Edition did to 60s songs on their Under The Blue Moon set...


Their version of "Always And Forever" became their sole top-40 pop hit in June of 1990. The single was their biggest soul radio hit, reaching #9 on the R&B chart in Billboard. They followed with an uptempo record, "Bad Habit", which climbed to #40 R&B while the remixes nabbed them a second club hit at #13. A third single, "Do You Care", featuring jazz-soul saxophonist Najee, was also a minor soul hit at #69. In 1992, the group released their fourth and final album, Get The Love, with two minor R&B hits, the latest being "I Am" at #92. They split not long after that.

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Besides Whistle, many acts have tackled a cover of the song. In 1985, dance-soul singer Nicole McCloud had her first success with her version, which went to #66 R&B...


...and in 1994, Luther Vandross added the song to his cover album Songs. Released as a single, it went to #16 on the American R&B chart, #25 on the Adult Contemporary radio list, #58 pop, and #20 over in the UK...


Up tomorrow: Quirky modern rockers are hanging with cheapskates.

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