Tuesday, April 17, 2018

"Bit By Bit (Theme from Fletch)" by Stephanie Mills

Song#:  2376
Date:  07/06/1985
Debut:  88
Peak:  78
Weeks:  6
Genre:  Dance-Pop, R&B, Soundtrack

Pop Bits:  After three albums for the troubled Casablanca Records label, Mills made a switch over to MCA. Her first effort for the label was this song that was slated to be the theme for the Chevy Chase comedy film Fletch. It was pushed out as a single, but it didn't attract a lot of folks. It stalled at #52 at R&B while circling the bottom of the Pop chart for a few weeks. It did best at Dance where it was able to reach #15. It may not have been the best start to her tenure at MCA, but over the next few years she would end up grabbing five #1 R&B hits for the label.

ReduxReview:  With Harold Faltermeyer coming off of the success of Beverly Hills Cop and the Fletch movie doing well at the box office, it seemed like the soundtrack would have been a success as well, but it pretty much tanked. This urgent tune written by Faltermeyer and Franne Gold tried to capture the same audience that made Beverly Hills Cop soundtrack a massive success, but it just falls short. While it has a solid chorus, the production is just a bit too hyperactive and mechanical. There's no place for Mills to soar like Patti LaBelle did in her songs for BHC. I think the bones are here for a good pop song. It just needs a different arrangement and production.

ReduxRating:  5/10

Trivia:  This song was used as the theme for the movie Fletch, which starred Chevy Chase. A soundtrack was issued out that featured this song plus others by Dan Hartman, John Farnham, The Fixx, and Harold Faltermeyer, who worked on the film's score as well. While Fletch was a solid hit at the time, it has since become a sort of cult movie with a significant following. Based on a a series of novels by Gregory Mcdonald, Chase was not the first choice to lead the film. Both Burt Reynolds and Mick Jagger were considered for the part. However, Mcdonald had approval and didn't like either choice. He then agreed to Chase, even though Mcdonald was not familiar with any of his work. The film was successful enough to spawn a sequel, 1989's Fletch Lives, however it did not do nearly as well as the original.



  1. 5/10 for me as well. It's only OK. I loved the last two songs you reviewed however. I give both of those a 10/10. Back to the Future was an AWESOME movie. Own it on DVD. Love it.

    1. I saw Back to the Future in theaters when it came out. I'm pretty sure my friends and I saw it about four times. Still a fun film.