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Those Good Old Dreams

GaryAlan

Well-Known Member
Thread Starter
So, given this is one of my Carpenters favorites, I did a bit of digging.
Upon its entry into the Billboard Hot 100 Chart on December 19, 1981,
here are some of the other singles that week:
#13, YESTERDAY'S SONGS -Neil Diamond
#25, SOMEONE COULD LOSE A HEART TONIGHT -Eddie Rabbit
#35, THE OLD SONGS -Barry Manilow
#48, LOVE IN THE FIRST DEGREE - Alabama
#55, LIVING EYES -Bee Gees
#66, BLAZE OF GLORY -Kenny Rogers
#82, Those Good Old Dreams-Carpenters.
 

GDBY2LV

Well-Known Member
#48, which happens to be my favorite Alabama single, and who had their own hit with their version of Touch Me When We’re Dancing. Lots of country pop crossovers at that time.
 

tomswift2002

Well-Known Member
I also like #9 Don’t Stop Believing by Journey and #17 Here I Am (Just When I Though I was Over You by Air Supply and #36 Arthur’s Theme by Christopher Cross.
 

GaryAlan

Well-Known Member
Thread Starter
The statement, February 19, 1983, in Radio & Records Magazine is appropriate to re-read (page 20):
"Although the Carpenters were a substantial commercial success, they received less than full critical credit for their achievements
in revitalizing the middle-of the-road pop tradition. They were probably the single most important act involved in propelling the stagnating pop establishment into the contemporary mainstream. Combining Karen's rich and distinctive vocals with cushions of harmonies derived from the Beach Boys,
and varied instrumental flavoring (even including occasional hard rock guitar, as in "Goodbye To Love"), the Carpenters carved out a highly identifiable sound and could be called one of the founders of the adult contemporary style."
 

Another Son

Well-Known Member
So, given this is one of my Carpenters favorites, I did a bit of digging.
Upon its entry into the Billboard Hot 100 Chart on December 19, 1981,
here are some of the other singles that week:
#13, YESTERDAY'S SONGS -Neil Diamond
#25, SOMEONE COULD LOSE A HEART TONIGHT -Eddie Rabbit
#35, THE OLD SONGS -Barry Manilow
#48, LOVE IN THE FIRST DEGREE - Alabama
#55, LIVING EYES -Bee Gees
#66, BLAZE OF GLORY -Kenny Rogers
#82, Those Good Old Dreams-Carpenters.
I think that you can see here how ‘easy listening’ the US Top 40 charts were, even in 1981. I think it wasn’t beyond the realms of possibility for Carpenters to have a big hit with an easy listening single, at this time, if you consider the music, only.

I think, however, that it’s clear that a whole range of other things came into play in defining which songs would be hits, as often discussed, such as image, support from radio stations and media, record company support, amount of time by the artist already on the scene, momentum or lack thereof from recent big hits, publicity from music industry awards and appearances on awards shows, (for instance, Alabama had a big year in 1981 with winning awards and TV award show appearances), and presence of the artist in other media, (e.g. Neil Diamond and Kenny Rogers had both recently been in hugely successful movies, Kenny’s a TV movie and Neil Diamond, Kenny Rogers, The Bee Gees and Eddie Rabbitt had all fairly recently had their songs in soundtracks for successful / massive movies), etc etc. All these things affected the impact of a new single.

I remember clearly and it still strikes me how ‘Easy Listening’, overall, the top music charts in the USA remained at this time and how these charts weren’t impacted as much by the transformations from various genres sweeping much of the rest of the Western World in previous years, such as punk, ska, reggae, electronica, new wave and new romantic. That’s just an observation, not a criticism, but you could say that other parts of the world were leading in musical innovation, at this time.

‘Those Good Old Dreams’ is also one of my favourites. I still loved my Easy Listening music in 1981, along with the other genres mentioned.
 
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GaryAlan

Well-Known Member
Thread Starter
Looking at that Billboard 1981 chart, the song there that I had never heard before was Bee Gees Living Eyes.
Then, I listened to Living Eyes. My impression is how great a song it is ! Apparently, the song and the accompanying album did not do so well.
Now, as much as I like Neil Diamond, Yesterdays' Songs, while good, is (imho) not up to par with some others (the additional female vocal parts ?).
As for the song The Old Songs, by Barry Manilow, it is much more sparse arrangement-wise than the others (but, the chorus stinks, imho).
Of course, the Alabama song is still a delight. They were the hottest group around that time. Country-pop at its best.
The Eddie Rabbit song is simply un-listenable to me.

So, as great as I believe Those Good Old Dreams is, it perhaps never stood a chance on the charts.
 
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