Friday, May 28, 2010

One for the Record books

We loved the Chi-Lites.  We don't recall buying their records and we certainly won't claim we ever saw them perform live, but when we hear one of their hits we can't help but sing along.

The group had 11 Top 20 R&B songs during their heyday but it took patience and time to get there. They formed in 1960 and finally broke through with "Have You Seen Her," which made it to No. 3 in 1971.  A year later -- on this very day -- they made it to the top with "Oh Girl."

Credit former cab driver Eugene Record, who wrote and produced the song and provided the soulful falsetto lead to the group's sweet harmonies.  Here was Billboard's Top 5 at the time:

1. Oh Girl, Chi-Lites
2. I'll Take You There. Staple Singers
3. The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face, Roberta Flack
4. Look What You Done For Me, Al Green
5. Candy Man, Sammy Davis Jr.

Record is proof that no matter what kind of shitty gig you've got yourself in, it's possible to reach out and grab your elusive dream.  He died of cancer in 2005 at age 64, but not before leaving an indelible mark with songs like this that are so easy to cozy up to. Put it on your iPod now and it'll always be there when you need it.

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