♫ If You Could Read My Mind ♫

I had a number of songs in my head to play for you tonight, but … turns out I’ve played them all.  So, I happened across one by Gordon Lightfoot that somehow I haven’t yet played, and it happens to be one I like!

Written by Lightfoot and released in 1970, this song was inspired by the breakup of his first marriage.  In the liner notes of his boxed set Songbook, he describes it as “A song about the failure of marriage.”

At the request of his daughter, Ingrid, he performs the lyrics with a slight change now: the line “I’m just trying to understand the feelings that you lack” is altered to “I’m just trying to understand the feelings that we lack.” He has said in an interview that the difficulty with writing songs inspired by personal stories is that there is not always the emotional distance and clarity to make lyrical improvements such as the one his daughter suggested.

In 1987 Lightfoot filed a lawsuit against the composer of Whitney Houston’s hit The Greatest Love of All, Michael Masser, alleging plagiarism of 24 bars of If You Could Read My Mind; the transitional section that begins “I decided long ago never to walk in anyone’s shadow” of the Masser song has the same melody as “I never thought I could feel this way and I got to say that I just don’t get it; I don’t know where we went wrong but the feeling’s gone and I just can’t get it back” of Lightfoot’s song. Lightfoot has stated that he dropped the lawsuit when he felt it was having a negative effect on the singer Houston, as the lawsuit was about the writer and not her. He also said that he didn’t want people thinking that he had stolen his melody from Masser. The case was settled out of court and Masser issued a public apology.

The song reached #1 in both Canada and the U.S., and #30 in the UK.

If You Could Read My Mind
Gordon Lightfoot

If you could read my mind love
What a tale my thoughts could tell
Just like an old time movie
About a ghost from a wishing well
In a castle dark or a fortress strong
With chains upon my feet
You know that ghost is me
And I will never be set free
As long as I’m a ghost you can see

If I could read your mind love
What a tale your thoughts could tell
Just like a paperback novel
The kind the drugstore sells
When you reach the part where the heartaches
Come the hero would be me
Heroes often fail
And you won’t read that book again
Because the ending’s just too hard to take

I walk away like a movie star
Who gets burned in a three way script
Enter number two, a movie queen
To play the scene of bringing all the good things out in me
But for now love lets be real

I never thought I could act this way
And I’ve got to say that I just don’t get it
I don’t know where we went wrong
But the feelings gone and I just can’t get it back

If you could read my mind love
What a tale my thoughts could tell
Just like an old time movie about a ghost from a wishing well
In a castle dark or a fortress strong
With chains upon my feet
The story always ends
And if you read between the lines
You’ll know that I’m just trying to understand
The feeling that you left

I never thought I could feel this way
And I’ve got to say that I just don’t get it
I don’t know where we went wrong
But the feeling’s gone
And I just can’t get it back

Source: LyricFind
Songwriters: Gordon Lightfoot
If You Could Read My Mind lyrics © Warner Chappell Music, Inc

♫ Touch Me In The Morning ♫

I received a request to play this song on this date by a friend who wishes to remain anonymous.  Never let it be said that I don’t aim to please!  It didn’t hurt that I happen to like this song, too.

Released in 1973 on the Motown label, this song was written by ballad lyricist Ron Miller and songwriter/producer Michael Masser. It was Diana Ross’ first hit produced by Masser; he continued to produce more songs for her over the years.

Ross felt that this song was too difficult for her and recorded several takes on it. In a documentary about her, Masser said that she tried very hard to “get the vocals right for this particular song” and that it was a “draining experience.” As it happened, it became her longest-charting Pop record and also became her first #1 Adult Contemporary hit.

Miller explained how the song came together:

“I had already dreamed up this title, ‘Touch Me in the Morning,’ but I didn’t have the vaguest idea what it meant … So I analyzed Diane as a person. I said, ‘Well, this girl is out on her own now. She’s an adult and a movie star. She’s also a contemporary woman and … much more liberal about expressing her sexual values. Whereas once upon a time, only a man could say something like that, now a liberated woman like Diane could. However, though she’s ostensibly a sophisticated woman, she’s still crying inside to be touched in the morning.’ It was just a very cold, calculated and wonderful job of crafting.”

It marked a turning point in the career of Diana Ross, reinvigorating her singing career, coming immediately after her Academy Award nomination for Best Actress in her acting debut, Lady Sings the Blues.

Touch Me in the Morning
Diana Ross

Touch me in the morning
Then just walk away
We don’t have tomorrow
But we had yesterday

Wasn’t it me who said that Nothing good’s gonna last forever?
And wasn’t it me who said, Let’s just be glad for the time together?
It must’ve been hard to tell me
That you’ve given all you had to give
I can understand you’re feeling that way
Everybody’s got their life to live

Well, I can say goodbye in the cold morning light
But I can’t watch love die in the warmth of the night
If I’ve got to be strong
Don’t you know I need to have tonight when you’re gone?
Till you go I need to lie here and think about
The last time that you’ll touch me in the morning
Then just close the door
Leave me as you found me, empty like before

Wasn’t it yesterday We used to laugh at the wind behind us?
Didn’t we run away and hope that time wouldn’t try to find us (Didn’t we run)
Didn’t we take each other to a place where no one’s ever been?
Yeah, I really need you near me tonight
‘Cause you’ll never take me there again

Let me watch you go with the sun in my eyes
We’ve seen how love can grow
Now we’ll see how it dies
If I’ve got to be strong
Don’t you know I need to have tonight when you’re gone?
Till you go I need to hold you until the time
Your hands reach out and touch me
In the morning (Mornings where blue and gold and we could feel one another living)
Then just walk away (We walked with a dream to hold and we could take what the world was giving)
We don’t have tomorrow (There’s no tomorrow here, there’s only love and the time to chase it)
But we had yesterday
(But yesterday’s gone my love, there’s only now and it’s time to face it) touch me in the morning

Source: LyricFind
Songwriters: Michael Masser / Ron Miller
Touch Me in the Morning lyrics © Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC, Songtrust Ave

♫ Saving All My Love For You ♫

I get most of my inspiration for my music posts while either showering or rolling smokes, and tonight the same song came into my head during both of those activities.  It was not the song I’m playing, but rather another by Whitney Houston, One Moment in Time.  But, sadly, I played that already.  Yes, I know, I’ve become the master of reduxes, but that’s just it … I’ve relied too heavily on repeating songs I’ve already played lately, so I felt that I needed to present something different.  But, as Ms. Houston was stuck in my head, I went in search of another … not a difficult task, as I love her voice and much of her music.

This was originally recorded by Marilyn McCoo and Billy Davis Jr., who released it on their 1978 album Marilyn & Billy. Although credited to the pair, McCoo did all the lead vocals. Her performance was pure acting: she and Davis had been married since 1969.

The lyrics were written by Gerry Goffin and the music by Michael Masser, who also produced it. The McCoo/Davis version didn’t get much attention, but when Whitney Houston included it on her 1985 debut album, it found a huge audience. Houston went supernova after Saving All My Love for You was released as a single; it became the first of seven consecutive #1 hits for the Ms. Houston, and also topped the R&B and Adult Contemporary charts. It was also her first #1 in the UK.

At the time of release, the adultery theme of the video for Saving All My Love for You generated much media controversy, which led Whitney to insist, “I could never see myself in that position. I wouldn’t just take whatever someone wants to give to me, especially if I am giving a lot to him but not getting that much back. I could never find myself in that situation, but someone else might. The video tells a story but it’s by no means my story.”

I shall withhold the comment that comes to mind about her marriage to Bobby Brown …

Saving All My Love
Whitney Houston

A few stolen moments is all that we share
You’ve got your family and they need you there
Though I’ve tried to resist being last on your list
But no other man’s gonna do
So I’m saving all my love for you

It’s not very easy living all alone
My friends try and tell me find a man of my own
But each time I try I just break down and cry
‘Cause I’d rather be home feeling blue
So I’m saving all my love for you

You used to tell me we’d run away together
Love gives you the right to be free
You said be patient just wait a little longer
But that’s just an old fantasy

I’ve got to get ready just a few minutes more
Gonna get that old feeling when you walk through that door
‘Cause tonight is the night for feeling alright
We’ll be making love the whole night through
So I’m saving all my love for you
Yes, I’m saving all my love
Yes, I’m saving all my love for you

No other woman is gonna love you more
‘Cause tonight is the night that I’m feeling alright
We’ll be making love the whole night through
So I’m saving all my love
Yeah, I’m saving all my lovin’
Yes, I’m saving all my love for you
For you
For you

Source: LyricFind
Songwriters: Gerry Goffin / Michael Masser
Saving All My Love lyrics © Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC, Universal Music Publishing Group

♫ If Ever I’m In Your Arms Again ♫

A few nights ago, I played Tonight I Celebrate My Love by Roberta Flack and Peabo Bryson, which led me to remember (with a little help from a friend) a few other songs from Peabo Bryson that I love.

One such song, If Ever I’m In Your Arms Again, has stuck in my head much of the day today, and despite trying to cough it out, sneeze it out, and smacking myself upside the head a couple of times, it seems to have taken up residence and made itself at home up there.  So, of course you know what that means … from my head to yours!

Released in 1984 as a single from his album Straight from the Heart, the single peaked at #6 on the R&B chart and was Bryson’s first Top 10 single on the Billboard Hot 100 chart, where it peaked at #10 during the summer of 1984.  Other than that, though, I find no trivia about the song, and one of my best usual sources, SongFacts, doesn’t even know who Peabo Bryson is!  So, you’ll have to settle for just listening to the music tonight.

If Ever You’re in My Arms Again
Peabo Bryson

It all came so easy
All the lovin’ you gave me
The feelings we shared
And I still can remember
How your touch was so tender
It told me you cared

We had a once in a lifetime
But I just couldn’t see
Until’ it was gone
A second once in a lifetime
May be too much to ask
But I swear from now on

If ever you’re in my arms again
This time I’ll love you much better
If ever you’re in my arms again
This time I’ll hold you forever
This time we’ll never end

Now I’m seen clearly
How I still need you near me
I still love you so
There’s something between us
That won’t ever leave us
There’s no letting go
(No letting go)

We had a once in a lifetime
But I just didn’t know it
‘Til my life fell apart
A second once in a lifetime
Isn’t too much to ask
‘Cause I swear from the heart

If ever you’re in my arms again
This time I’ll love you much better
If ever you’re in my arms again
This time I’ll hold you forever
This time we’ll never end, never end

The best of romances
Deserve second chances
I’ll get to you somehow
‘Cause I promise now

If ever you’re in my arms again
This time I’ll love you much better
If ever you’re in my arms again
This time I’ll hold you forever
This time we’ll never end

If ever you’re in my arms again
This time I’ll love you much better
If ever you’re in my arms again
This time I’ll hold you forever
This time we’ll never end
If ever you’re in my arms again
This time I’ll love you much better
If ever you’re in my arms again
This time I’ll hold you forever
This time we’ll never end
If ever you’re in my arms again

Songwriters: SNOW TOM / MASSER MICHAEL
If Ever You’re in My Arms Again lyrics © Almo Music Corp., Almo-music Corporation, Prince Street Music, Dyad Music, Snow Music, Dyad Music Ltd., Universal Music Corporation, Almo Music Corporation, UNIVERSAL MUSIC CORP OBO PRINCE STREET MUSIC, Almo Music Corp, DYAD MUSIC LTD

♫ Tonight, I Celebrate My Love ♫

In a truly black mood tonight, I was fairly certain there would be no song for tomorrow, but still, while engaged in the mindless activity of rolling smokes, I was flipping around through my playlist and all of a sudden … lightning struck!  ⚡  Who put this one on here?  I didn’t recall it being … be still my heart … Roberta Flack and Peabo Bryson … what a combination!  What a song!

Tonight, I Celebrate My Love is a romantic ballad written by lyricist Gerry Goffin with Michael Masser and recorded by Peabo Bryson and Roberta Flack for their 1983 album of duets: Born to Love.

In the UK, the song would peak at number two in September 1983, affording both Bryson and Flack their alltime best UK chart showing. It was afforded further international success charting in Australia (number 10), Canada (number 4), Finland (number 13), Flemish Belgium (number 8), Ireland (number 5), the Netherlands (number 16), New Zealand (number 11), Norway (number 8), and South Africa (number 4).  Interestingly, it did better in all those places than in the U.S., where it only reached #16!

Tonight I Celebrate My Love
Peabo Bryson, Roberta Flack

Tonight I celebrate my love for you
It seems the natural thing to do

Tonight no one’s gonna find us
We’ll leave the world behind us

When I make love to you
Tonight I celebrate my love for you
And hope that deep inside you’ll feel it, too

Tonight our spirits will be climbing
To a sky filled up with diamonds

When I make love to you, tonight
Tonight I celebrate my love for you
And that midnight sun is gonna come shining through

Tonight there’ll be no distance between us
What I want most to do, is to get close to you
Tonight
Tonight I celebrate my love for you
And soon this old world will seem brand new

Tonight we will both discover how friends turn into lovers
When I make love to you
Tonight I celebrate my love for you
And that midnight sun is gonna come shining through

Tonight there’ll be no distance between us
What I want most to do, is to get close to you
Tonight I celebrate my love for you
Tonight

Songwriters: Gerry Goffin / Michael Masser
Tonight I Celebrate My Love lyrics © Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC, Universal Music Publishing Group

♫ Greatest Love Of All ♫

This song periodically visits inside my head and sometimes sticks around for several days.  I don’t know why, but I awoke this morning with it wafting through the corners of my mind, and it’s still there this evening.  So, you know what that means …

I did not remember George Benson doing this song in 1977, which is odd, for it charted at #2 in Rhythm & Blues, but I was only familiar with Whitney Houston’s fabulous version of this song (I think that when the mind gets old, it runs out of places to store information and just ends up tossing some out through either the nose-holes or ears). Benson’s version was released in 1977, and Whitney’s not until 1985.  Both are excellent … Benson’s a little softer, a bit more mellow than Houston’s, but I like them both.

This was written by songwriters Michael Masser and Linda Creed. Linda Creed was recovering from breast cancer when they wrote the song in 1977.  Creed’s cancer claimed her life on April 10, 1986. She was later inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame on the strength of this song and the many hits she co-wrote for The Spinners, The Stylistics, and other acts on the Philadelphia International label.

Masser and Creed wrote this for the 1977 film biography of Muhammad Ali, The Greatest, and the song first appeared on the film’s soundtrack recorded by George Benson. Ali played himself in the movie, essentially recreating his defining moments intercut with clips of his actual fights. Ali was the heavyweight champ at the time of the film’s release.

Since I like both, I offer you your choice …

Greatest Love of All
George Benson/Whitney Houston

I believe the children are our are future
Teach them well and let them lead the way
Show them all the beauty they possess inside
Give them a sense of pride to make it easier
Let the children’s laughter remind us how we used to be
Everybody searching for a hero
People need someone to look up to
I never found anyone who fulfill my needs
A lonely place to be
And so I learned to depend on me

I decided long ago
Never to walk in anyone’s shadows
If I fail, if I succeed
At least I’ll live as I believe
No matter what they take from me
They can’t take away my dignity

Because the greatest
Love of all is happening to me
I found the greatest
Love of all inside of me
The greatest love of all
Is easy to achieve
Learning to love yourself
It is the greatest love of all

I believe the children are our future
Teach them well and let them lead the way
Show them all the beauty they possess inside
Give them a sense of pride to make it easier
Let the children’s laughter remind us how we used to be

I decided long ago
Never to walk in anyone’s shadows
If I fail, if I succeed
At least I’ll live as I believe
No matter what they take from me
They can’t take away my dignity

Because the greatest
Love of all is happening to me
I found the greatest
Love of all inside of me
The greatest love of all
Is easy to achieve
Learning to love yourself
It is the greatest love of all

And if, by chance, that special place
That you’ve been dreaming of
Leads you to a lonely place
Find your strength in love

Songwriters: Linda Creed / Michael Masser
Greatest Love of All lyrics © Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC

♫ Nothing’s Gonna Change My Love For You ♫

This song, written by composers Michael Masser and Gerry Goffin, was first recorded by George Benson in 1984 and released in 1985.  This original version was produced by its own author Michael Masser, and was released as a single only in Europe in 1985. The song was not released as a single in the United States, but nevertheless, Benson recorded two video clips in the U.S. the same year, which were displayed on television programs. Two years later, the song became even more well known for a re-recording by Hawaiian singer Glenn Medeiros, whose 1987 cover eventually topped the charts in several countries.

I like both versions, but am partial to George Benson.  However, since they are both worthy, I am posting both so that you can choose your preference.

Nothing’s Gonna Change My Love For You
George Benson

If I had to live my life without you near me
The days would all be empty
The nights would seem so long
With you I see forever, oh, so clearly
I might have been in love before
But it never felt this strong

Our dreams are young and we both know
They’ll take us where we want to go
Hold me now, touch me now
I don’t want to live without you

Nothing’s gonna change my love for you
You oughta know by now how much I love you
One thing you can be sure of
I’ll never ask for more than your love

Nothing’s gonna change my love for you
You oughta know by now how much I love you
The world may change my whole life through
But nothing’s gonna change my love for you

If the road ahead is not so easy
Our love will lead the way for us
Like a guiding star
I’ll be there for you if you should need me
You don’t have to change a thing
I love you just the way you are

So come with me and share the view
I’ll help you see forever too
Hold me now, touch me now
I don’t want to live without you

Nothing’s gonna change my love for you
You oughta know by now how much I love you
One thing you can be sure of
I’ll never ask for more than your love

Nothing’s gonna change my love for you
You oughta know by now how much I love you
The world may change my whole life through
But nothing’s gonna change my love for

Nothing’s gonna change my love for you
You oughta know by now how much I love you
One thing you can be sure of
I’ll never ask for more than your love

Nothing’s gonna change my love for you
You oughta know by now how much I love you
The world may change my whole life through
But nothing’s gonna change my love for

Nothing’s gonna change my love for you
You oughta know by now how much I love you
One thing you can be sure of
I’ll never ask for more than your love

Nothing’s gonna change my love for you
You oughta know by now how much I love you
The world may change my whole life through
But nothing’s gonna change my love for
Nothing’s gonna change my love for you

Songwriters: Gerry Goffin / Michael Masser
Nothing’s Gonna Change My Love For You lyrics © Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC, Universal Music Publishing Group