Sunday, September 3, 2017

"The Heat Is On" by Glenn Frey

Top 10 Alert!
Song#:  2151
Date:  12/08/1984
Debut:  81
Peak:  2
Weeks:  24
Genre:  Rock, Soundtrack

Pop Bits:  Frey's post-Eagles solo career was going fine. He had two gold albums under his belt along with a pair of Top 20 Pop singles. Yet, he still hadn't broken through with a major hit like his former bandmate Don Henley. That changed when this song from the soundtrack to the hit Eddie Murphy film Beverly Hills Cop was released. The song started a little slow, but the success of the film boosted the song and soon it became Frey's first Pop Top 10 single. It would also reach #4 at Rock. The soundtrack album wouldn't be released until the following spring, but once it was it sold very well and would reach #1 for two weeks during the summer. It would be certified double-platinum. Later on, the soundtrack would win the Grammy for Best Score Soundtrack for Visual Media.

ReduxReview:  I think Frey got lucky here. This is the song that established him as a true solo star. It was also beneficial that he had an open mind to sing a song that he did not write that was going to be featured in a big commercial film. Doing this was considered by some artists as "selling out," but Frey dove in and came out on top. At the time I was just "eh" about the song. Especially after it was incessantly played on the radio. I tired of it real quick. However, it is a really solid tune. Frey pulls it off very well even though the sound of this is more in line with Huey Lewis. My guess is that Faltermeyer and Forsey wrote this with Lewis in mind. It also helped that it fit the film like a glove.

ReduxRating:  8/10

Trivia:  In an interview, Frey relayed the story of how this song came about. His manager encouraged him to attend an early screening of Beverly Hills Cop in hopes that Frey might be able to get a song on the soundtrack. Other artists, like Stevie Wonder and The Pointer Sisters, attended the same screening. Frey thought there was no chance he could get a song in the film. But then a couple of months later he got a call asking if he would listen to a song that was written by Harold Faltermeyer and Keith Forsey. They asked if he would be interested in providing the vocals to the track. Frey thought the song was good and the style seemed to fit him, so he agreed. Frey went into the studio and did the vocals. The next day he did some background vocals and provided a guitar solo. He was paid for the work and that was it. The quick work ended up becoming Frey's first Top 10 hit. The song would be Frey's first, and only, charting single that he didn't write or co-write.


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