Daily Archives: May 29, 2020

A Song You Like From The ’70s

30-Day Song Challenge, Day 13: A Song You Like From The ’70s

Hot Chocolate was a British soul band that gained some notoriety for having an interracial lineup (as if being a British soul band wasn’t notable enough). They pulled off the impressive feat of scoring at least one hit single in the UK every year between 1970 and 1984. Curiously, they were far less successful here in the US, where they charted only eight times during that same period, and only five of those singles cracked the top 40. Their biggest US hit, however, has become a beloved classic that returned to the top 10 in three different decades and has been featured in a dozen films and several TV series, notably The Full Monty and the first Tales of the City miniseries that aired on PBS back in 1993. For me, it’s emblematic of the ’70s, encapsulating that weird combination of permissiveness and naivete that is my biggest impression of that era. It’s also just plain fun. I don’t have any specific memories associated with the song, but it never fails to lift my spirits when I hear it.

Ladies and gentlemen, I present “You Sexy Thing” by Hot Chocolate, released in their home country in 1975 and hitting number three on the US charts a year later:

[Incidentally, I debated whether it was appropriate to post this particular song today, given the civil unrest going on in Minneapolis and other cities because yet another of our black citizens has died at the hands of a policeman. Is it in poor taste to be promoting a superficial dance tune under such grim circumstances? I don’t know… maybe. But you know what? A song like this is exactly what I need to hear right now, when it honestly feels like the damn country is about to blow apart. It’s so demoralizing to think that Americans can be better than this, but they just fucking won’t. And I can’t think about it anymore tonight.]

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