The Hook Sidestep

Not a dance move.  This is my feeble attempt to keep up the “two entries per month” I established long ago.  I’m still (officially) thinking through #2 in the Hooks and Worms series.  This post harkens back to my discussion of “same song/different interpretation” but, at least nominally, also has a “hook”.

B.J. Thomas had already charted several times before his release of Hooked on a Feeling.  In fact his previous hit, Eyes of a New York Woman was written by Mark James, also the composer of Hooked.  Incidentally, James also had some success with other artists who recorded his songs… including Elvis (Suspicious Minds) and Willie Nelson (Always on My Mind).  But… back to B.J.T.  Using a sitar in a pop song at this time (1968) was hardly unique but still somewhat a novelty.  Listen for “the hook” with this recording which reached #5 in 1969 on the Billboard Charts.

Shortly after Thomas reached #1 with Raindrops Keep Fallin’ On My Head written by Bacharach and David (from the movie Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid).

Different interpretation.  Different hook.  Swedish band Blue Swede used a chant ( “ouga chaka”) borrowed from a 1972 cover of the song (Jonathan King) to score a #1 hit for themselves in 1974.  Here they are “doing it live”…

And, as a little postscript to this entry, Thomas recently (2013) released The Living Room Sessions in which he revisited many of his hits in a more intimate acoustic environment… one of which was Hooked on a Feeling

And, as for Hooks and Worms #2, stay tuned…

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