Billboard #1 Hits: #334: “The Night Chicago Died”- Paper Lace. August 17, 1974. #1 for 1 week in Billboard Hot 100.
- Single: “The Night Chicago Died”- Paper Lace
- Record Company-Mercury Records
- Genre: Pop Rock
- Written by Peter Callander and Mitch Murray
- Time: 3:30
- B-side:”Can You Get It When You Want It”
- Album-And Other Bits Of Material
- Grade: A-
- Peaked at #1 1 week in Billboard Hot 100. #3 in UK Singles Chart. #1 in Australia and New Zealand.
Peter Callander and Mitch Murray who wrote this #1 hit- also had a #1 earlier in 1974 with “Billy, Don’t Be A Hero” by Bo Donaldson and The Hayward’s. Paper Lace had a hit with “Billy” in the UK- but their version didn’t make it in the US. The songwriters had never been to Chicago before writing the song- and their knowledge of Chicago was basically through seeing gangster films. “The Night Chicago Died” is a fictional song about a shootout between the police and Al Capone’s gang in Chicago- back in the bad old days. Paper Lace sent a copy of the song to then Chicago Mayor Dick Daley who hated it -A member of Daley’s staff is quoted as saying that Paper Lace should “jump in the Chicago River, placing your heads under water three times and surfacing twice. Pray tell us, are you nuts.”
This is certainly not a great song- but it brings back memories- and I like it!