Rubbish, piffle, tommyrot, drivel and utter bilge

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

100 Records That Shook The World, #68

You've Lost That Lovin' Feelin'

The Righteous Brothers

The Righteous Brothers Bill Medley and Bobby Hatfield actually began existence as members of a 5-piece group called The Paramours. Performing in a local bar, a marine in the audience shouted out after one of their duets, "That was righteous, brothers!" They remembered the occasion and eventually renamed their group The Righteous Brothers for their first album.

Their first major hit single was "You've Lost That Lovin' Feelin'" on the Philles label in 1965. Produced by Phil Spector, the record is often cited as one of the peak expressions of Spector's Wall of Sound production techniques. It was one of the most successful pop singles of its time, despite exceeding the then standard length for radio play. Indeed, according to BMI, "You've Lost That Lovin' Feelin'" remains the most played song in radio history, estimated to have been broadcast more than eight million times.

It was written by the legendary writing team of Barry Mann and Cynthia Weil ("On Broadway", "We Gotta Get Out Of This Place", "Don't Know Much", "Somewhere Out There", "Running With The Night") along with producer Phil Spector, and a young Cher was part of the choral backing. The Righteous Brothers were actually sceptical about the song's potential, especially Bobby, who, after realizing that his vocal part would not come in until the chorus, asked Spector what he was supposed to do during Medley's solo. Spector, who had a knack for recognising hit potential, told Hatfield: "You can go straight to the f***ing bank."

 The song was also a lot longer than the standard three minute pop song, so Spector had the initial pressings labelled with the time at 3:05 so that it would not get ignored by radio stations. The song topped the charts on both sides of the pond, and Rolling Stone Magazine named it #34 on their list of the 500 Greatest Songs Of All Time.

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