Friday, July 25, 2008

Bobby Caldwell on the Finally Friday Freakout

Oh, my was it a long four day week for me. Three days of non-stop yammering, moving, thinking, listing and a cushy bed to plop in.  I loved the bed at the Westin St. Francis. If you are going to have a torrid heart breaking affair then a clean cushy bed is the place to start it up in style.

I came home with the BlogHer virus aka a community shared summer cold. I recommend liquids, aspirin and before bedtime a slug of wine for the aches. Which is where I’m headed after the end of the week ramble.

Up until I search for a video I have never known what Bobby Caldwell looked like. I did not care.  No one who loves “What You Won’t Do” cares what the man looks like.  Twenty five years ago it was an issue. This looks like one of those promotional only (before MTV) videos but check it out.

Bobby Caldwell's What You Won't Do"

Black radio stations did play white performers on soul music stations. Some of the Righteous Brothers tunes slipped in, Van Morrison certainly was spun on turntables with Blue Money, Domino and that other little tune he sang from time to time. There were others. Most of the time the race of the performer was not mentioned. The assumption was that it was an African American performer.

What this meant for the early Blue-eyed soul performers was that their photos generally was not on the album cover and when folks went to the show is when an awakening happened. If the performer was solid and could perform in real-time there was no problem. They were musically adopted.

I knew that Bobby Caldwell was white. Most folks did after the record hit the charts. I don’t thinks black people had had a problem once they were hooked on the song. It was the promoters, the A/R people and those with money at stake that were racially twitchy.

I also want to point out that Bobby is not a one song wonder. There are 14 albums but how does he get played on contemporary radio stations? Hip Hop and Rap stations won’t play him. Oldies stations will only play that one song and so called Contemporary Adult formats will not innovate and allow new music for older audiences to be presented.

Yes, I’ve croaked about this before. But radio will not listen and newspapers are learning a little bit but not fast enough and forget about what we currently call television.

I’m going to hug my mp3 player and go nappy time. Enjoy.

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