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The Essential Love Songs of Philadelphia: “You Make My Dreams” by Hall & Oates

Hall & Oates’ You Make My Dreams 45 | via Twitter

Every day leading up to Valentine’s Day this year, The Key is recapping 14 songs that scream “love” just as strongly as they scream “Philly.” The Essential Love Songs of Philadelphia continues with “You Make My Dreams” from Hall & Oates’ 1980 album Voices.

The thing about hit songs, though: sometimes they become so massively, immensely popular, that pop culture completely takes over. It’s like that songwriter’s aphorism: it doesn’t belong to you anymore, it belongs to the world. And the world often steers it down a path that maybe the songwriter did not exactly have in mind, but probably they’re making such bank that they don’t care all that much.

I was thinking about this earlier in the week, when I heard “Bargain” from The Who’s 1971 album Who’s Next, a record that predated my birth by a solid seven years — meaning I never got to experience that song in its unadulterated form. What do I think of when I hear “Bargain”? I think of car commercials, obnoxious car commercials played ad infinitum on television and commercial radio. And even though it’s a perfectly fine classic rock song from a perfectly fine classic rock album, I will never hear that when it comes on; I will always hear a button-down shirt-and-tie guy with slicked-back hair and a booming voice trying to sell me a 24-month lease on a new Mazda with no money down and no interest for the first six months, or what the heck ever.

“You Make My Dreams” from Daryl Hall and John Oates suffers a similar fate; I will never hear that song without thinking of some drunk uncle archetype attempting to sloppily cut a rug at Sandy and Bobby’s wedding at the Pennsauken Country Club ballroom but it’s like 10:45 at night and he’s been going hard on the Jack and Cokes since happy hour and all the bopping and clapping pushes him over the edge, causing him to trip over Sandy’s train and shove past Aunt Gladys, relieving his GI tract of the salisbury steak and mashed potatoes from a couple hours before, all over the centerpiece no less. Poor, poor Hall & Oates.

Is wedding vomit a fair image to have in mind when listening to one of their most popular songs? Hardly. The Philadelphia born and bred, Temple University-schooled hitmaking duo might have leaned hard into the overly-polished, overly-saccharine production of the 80s as they entered their second decade of making music — they might have crafted their songs for maximum accessibility and appeal, at the expense of the nuance of the blue-eyed soul classics from Abandoned Luncheonette but that doesn’t mean they’re not sincere. Hall & Oates are corny, yes, but they’re not monsters. Continue reading →

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Listen to John Oates chat with Kristen Kurtis on the XPN Morning Show

                  John Oates | photo by Philip Murphy | courtesy of Wolfson Entertainment, Inc.

 

John Oates called into the XPN Morning show to chat with Kristen Kurtis about his memoir Change of Seasons, his new solo album Arkansas, the new Hall & Oates song “Philly Forget Me Not” with Train, and the 2018 HoagieNation Festival. Listen to the interview below.

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Fitz and the Tantrums, Tommy Conwell, Train join Hall & Oates’ Hoagie Nation Fest

Fitz and the Tantrums | photo by Ben Wong for WXPN | brotherlylost.com
Fitz and the Tantrums | photo by Ben Wong for WXPN | brotherlylost.com

Word snuck out back in December about Philly soul/pop staples Hall & Oates‘ second edition of the HoagieNation Festival, set for Saturday, May 26th at the Festival Pier at Penn’s Landing. At that point, all we knew was that the smooth hitmakers were once again headlining the gig, but today we have news about some of the artists who will be joining them on the festival. Continue reading →

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Watch Hall & Oates perform a “Private Eyes” classic on Fallon

Hall and Oates
The Fillmore Philly | Photo by Kate McCann for WXPN | katemccannphotography.com

Rock and Roll Hall of Famers Hall & Oates have been around for almost 45 years now, and the Philly legends still find time to bring the funk to late night television. Jimmy Fallon, a known H&O superfan, had the band on The Tonight Show last night to perform “I Can’t Go For That,” their 4th #1 single and the 2nd from their 1981 smash album, Private Eyes. Continue reading →

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Just Announced: Philly legends Hall & Oates to headline the BB&T Pavilion in July

Hall and Oates | Photo by Kate McCann for WXPN

Nostalgic Philadelphians, rejoice! Philly legends Hall & Oates are coming home — well, technically Camden, but close enough — for a show at the BB&T Pavilion on July 10th. The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame duo can’t seem to get enough of their hometown as of late, having just played the grand opening at the Fillmore in October.

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Hall & Oates, Brandi Carlile, Frank Turner, Mister Wives, and more to open Fillmore Philly

Hall & Oates | Photo courtesy of the artist.
Hall & Oates | Photo via facebook.com/hallandoates

Philly’s newest venue, The Fillmore Philadelphia, located in Fishtown’s historic Ajax Metal Company building, has announced their opening lineup of bands playing in October.

Opening the new venue on Thursday, October 1st are the legendary Hall & Oates. Tickets to all the shows go on sale this Thursday, June 4th at 10:00 a.m. Continue reading →

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John Oates gives the gift of a Daytrotter Session two days after his birthday

Illustration by Johnnie Cluney | Courtesy of daytrotter.com
Illustration by Johnnie Cluney | Courtesy of daytrotter.com

It’s the gift that keeps on giving. John Oates of Rock and Roll Hall of Famers (as of tomorrow) Hall & Oates, recently recorded a Daytrotter Session released today as a small present to fans from Oates who turned 65 on April 7.

Typically, the Rock Island-based Daytrotter sessions series features musicians are up and coming artists, but Oates is an obvious exception. With over 18 albums during his duo days, he released Good Road to Follow this past March which features three EPs with collabos from Vince Gill, Hot Chelle Rae and Ryan Tedder of OneRepublic.

His recorded Daytrotter session features “Stone Cold Love,” “Edge of the World, ” “This Is the Life,” and “Lose It In Louisiana” off of the new release as well as a cover of John Hurt’s “Stack O Lee.”

And in case you haven’t had enough of John Oates this week, check his guest appearance with other Philly favorites The Roots on the Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon earlier this week. Take note of his Phillies guitar.