“If You Never Say Goodbye”: Warner Brothers Drops the Ball

Dionne Warwicke’s first album for Warner Brothers in 1972, sadly, was her last with masterful songwriting duo, Burt Bacharach and Hal David, their partnership in the process of dissolution.  How perplexing that Warner Brothers would lure Dionne with a 5-million dollar contract (big money in 1971) but then only release one single from 1972 album, Dionne – and not even include “If You Never Say Goodbye” as the B-side:

Such an obvious radio contender, the song would appear to be one that got away from them.

Dionne Warwicke's 1972 album Dionne

Sir Christopher Scott: Synthesizer Magician

During the 1970s when progressive rock, pop and soul were at their peak, a number of wizard keyboardists enjoyed superstar status:  Rick Wakeman, Keith Emerson, Stevie Wonder, Jan Hammer, Billy Preston, Jon Lord, Bernie Worrell.

And Sir Christopher Scott.

I learned this when I picked up Sir Scott’s 1970 Decca LP, More Switched on Bacharach :

“Here’s a second helping of great music untouched by human hands.  More of the really magical songs of Burt Bacharach and Hal David are played electronically by that genius of the Moog synthesizer, that wonder of the switches and plugs, Sir Christopher Scott.”

Secret for success?   Magic + music = Sir Christopher Scott:

“And that’s the secret of Sir Christopher Scott and his patch cords, plugs, electronic gear, and mind full of ideas:  what he does is magic, but it’s always music.”

Sir Christopher Scott II

Raindrops Keep Fallin’ On My Head- Sir Christopher Scott

[Pssst:  Click on the triangle above to hear “Raindrops Keep Fallin’ On My Head” by Sir Christopher Scott]

“South American Getaway”: Sunshine Pop’s Case of the Blahs

This track sounds like a collaboration between Burt Bacharach and Brian Wilson – only it isn’t.  Although it wants to be:

Just like The 5th Dimension’s “Dimension 5ive,” this is technically a vocal tune yet one without lyrics.  It also has that sunny Southern California vibe – at first – but by song’s end, I would have to describe the overriding emotion as closer to melancholy.  Sunshine pop contemplating its navel … orange.

I found this Burt Bacharach composition – “South American Getaway” – on the soundtrack to the film, Butch Cassidy & the Sundance Kid – released 1969, roughly the same time period as “Dimension 5ive.”  These two songs together might comprise sunshine pop’s “progressive peak.”   But are there other songs that merit inclusion in such an elite group?