Friday, April 20, 2018

"Cherish" by Kool & the Gang

Top 10 Alert!
Gold Record Alert!
Song#:  2379
Date:  07/06/1985
Debut:  70
Peak:  2
Weeks:  25
Genre:  Adult Contemporary, Pop, R&B

Pop Bits:  The Gang's sixteenth studio LP Emergency was certainly on fire. With two Pop Top 10 hits already in the bag, including the R&B #1 "Fresh," the album was already selling better than their previous two efforts. However, the band was not done yet. For a third single, they dropped this sentimental ballad. Over time, its popularity grew until it finally spent three weeks in the runner-up spot at Pop. The single also got to #1 at R&B for a week and #1 at AC where it stayed in that position for six weeks. It was a huge crossover hit for the band that pushed Emergency to double-platinum sales. It would be the biggest selling studio album of their career.

ReduxReview:  I wasn't a big fan of "Fresh," so when this saccharine ditty came out, I wasn't having any part of it. I thought it was complete drivel. The lyrics were just so sappy and the single version's ocean and seagull sounds certainly didn't help. I always imagined that the seagulls were screaming "stop it, stop it!" Now, even though I really don't like this tune, I do appreciate the writing. The band tapped right into that formula that can make masses of people like a song - an easy, singable, catchy melody and chorus, along with simple chord changes that make it easy for folks to play. Add in wedding reception worthy lyrics and a hit was born. I still think it's sentimental claptrap, but it's hard to deny that the band hit a real crossover sweet spot with this one.

ReduxRating:  5/10

Trivia:  This was one of only two songs that were successful enough at multiple formats to make three different year-end top singles charts for 1985. "Cherish" did well enough to come in at #17 for the year at Pop, #13 at R&B and #1 at AC. In addition to being the top charting song at AC for 1985, it would end up being the top charting AC song for the 1980s. The other song to reach all three year-end charts for 1985 was Whitney Houston's #1 hit "Saving All My Love for You." It finished at #5 for the year at R&B, #16 at AC, and #23 Pop.


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