“Baby Come Back” – Player (1977, Player)
All my life I’ve thought of this one-hit wonder as the best song Hall & Oates never wrote. It’s soft-rock/blue-eyed soul at it’s catchiest. Watching the above video it’s easy to appreciate it for the seeming time-capsule it is. Faux white-boy soul, feathered hair and jumpsuits abound. Few realize though that Player actually followed up this classic with another hit “This Time I’m In It For Love” and had not one, but two gold albums, which is better than one would ever expect.
As for this song, it has everything you’d need to find yourself to singing along to it’s charms. From the unforgettable chorus to the double-keyboard (!) attack and the triple-harmonies this song actually has a surprising amount of craft to it. It has tons of small moments to savor too. From the way the lead singer likes to show-off, to the guitar player’s hubris, it’s surprising they weren’t long for the limelight since they look like they all went to Rock Star 101 class. But, alas it wasn’t meant to be.
Seriously though, bands today would chop off their lead singers right arm for a song this killer and immediate. Not surprisingly it went straight to #1 and remains a fun listen, even 38 years after it first came out. Don’t act like you don’t like it too.