1969 SONG OF THE DAY- ‘TAKE A LETTER MARIA’- R.B. GREAVES

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1969 Song of the Day is “Take A Letter Maria’ by R.B. Greaves. R.B. Greaves born Ronald Bertram Aloysius Greaves III on the U.S. Army’s Air Forces base in Georgetown, Guyana was an American soul singer the nephew of Sam Cooke. Greaves grew up on a Seminole Indian reservation and moved to England in the early 60’s.  “Take A Letter Maria” was written by Greaves and would turn out to be not only his first hit- but his biggest success by far- going to #2 on the Billboard Hot 100 in late 1969. The Fifth Dimension’s Wedding Bell Blues is the song that kept it from reaching the top. The song  was recorded at Muscle Shoals Sound Studio and produced by Atlantic Records President  Ahmet  Ertegun- and released on Atlantic Records. Take A Letter Maria with its Latin music feel was an immediate success upon release. R.B. Greaves would only have one more hit- a cover of the Burt Bacharach- Hal David song “Always Something There To Remind Me”- which had been a hit originally by Dionne Warwick and decades later by Pet Shop Boys- went to #27 for Greaves. A promising star to his career- I don’t know what happened- his follow up album didn’t come about until 1977 and it did nothing chart wise and that was R.B’s recording career. He died in 2012 at 68.

 

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