Blue-eyed soul was a key part of the American pop sound of the mid-1960s, as Bobby Hatfield and Bill Medley, otherwise known as the Righteous Brothers, enjoyed the fruits of their new deal with Phil Spector and Lester Sill’s Philles label. The landmark single ‘You’ve Lost That Lovin’ Feelin’’ was climbing the charts everywhere and, on 23 January 1965, the duo entered the album chart with the LP of the same name.
Listen to You’ve Lost That Lovin’ Feelin’ right now.
The prelude to this new dawn in Bobby and Bill’s career was the sudden rush by their former label Moonglow to make the most of the fact that ‘Lovin’ Feelin’’ was all over the charts and the radio. The repromoted Right Now! and Some Blue Eyed Soul albums were both on the bestsellers in the early part of January, but now the “brothers” could really start looking forward — or so they thought, until it became clear fairly quickly that they were not going to see eye to eye with Spector, who in turn sold their contract on to Verve/MGM later in 1965.
But for now, their first Philles album had a monster hit to propel it, the Spector collaboration with Barry Mann and Cynthia Weil that led off the record. Not for nothing did fellow entrepreneur Andrew Loog Oldham place an ad in Melody Maker to describe the epic performance and production as “tomorrow’s sound today.”
Spector also co-wrote ‘There’s A Woman’ with the singers for the album, while Medley had a solo credit on ‘Soul City’ and there were covers ranging from Ray Charles’ ‘What’d I Say’ to the obligatory show tunes such as George Gershwin’s ‘Summertime’ and Hammerstein and Kern’s ‘Old Man River.’
The album was the highest new entry on that week’s Top LPs chart at No. 112, then after a climb to No. 68, catapulted to No. 18. It spent four weeks at No. 4 from the end of February, and emphasised that soulfulness by peaking at No. 3 on the R&B chart.
The Righteous Brothers compilation You’ve Lost That Lovin’ Feelin’ can be bought here.
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