Sunday, March 30, 2014

"Never Too Much" by Luther Vandross

Song#:  0772
Date:  10/10/1981
Debut:  85
Peak:  33
Weeks:  15
Genre:  R&B

Pop Bits:  Vandross initially began his music career in the shadows of others as a background vocalist. Most famously, he sang on David Bowie's 1975 "Young Americans" LP (and co-wrote the song "Fascination" with Bowie) and performed on the subsequent tour. But it would be a few more years before he would begin to make a name for himself as a solo artist. Singing with the group Change, he would lead two songs to #1 on the dance chart, "The Glow of Love" and "Searchin'." He left that group and got signed to Epic where he recorded his debut album "Never Too Much." This title track single became a #1 hit at R&B and reach the Top 40 at pop. The album would also reach #1 and would nab him two Grammy nominations. One for Best New Artist and one for Best R&B Vocal Performance Male.

ReduxReview:  I think this song is appreciated much more now than on initial release. It was an R&B smash, but pop seemed a bit resistant. Regardless, it turned out to be a classic Luther song and the one that jump started his career. It's a pretty terrific jam.

ReduxRating:  8/10

Trivia:  Although "Never Too Much" was his official solo debut, Vandross did make an earlier attempt at a recording career. After his work with Bowie, Vandross assembled a group called Luther. They were signed to Cotillion Records and they recorded two albums in 1976 and 1977. Despite a couple minor R&B chart songs, the LP's fizzled and they were dropped from the label.


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