Hard to Say I'm Sorry

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"Hard to Say I'm Sorry"
Single by Chicago
from the album Chicago 16
B-side "Sonny Think Twice"
Released May 27, 1982
Format 7" single
Recorded 1982
Genre Soft rock
Length 5:08 (Album Version, with "Get Away")
3:51 (Alternate Edit)
3:40 (Single Version)
Label Full Moon/Warner Bros.
Writer(s) Peter Cetera and David Foster
Producer(s) David Foster
Certification Gold (RIAA)
Chicago singles chronology
"Song for You"
(1980)
"Hard to Say I'm Sorry"
(1982)
"Love Me Tomorrow"
(1982)

"Hard to Say I'm Sorry / Get Away" is a 1982 Billboard Hot 100 #1 hit ballad performed by American rock group Chicago, written by band member Peter Cetera and producer David Foster from the album Chicago 16, released in 1982. The song hit number one for two weeks on the Billboard Hot 100 chart on September 11 of that year.[1] It was their first top 50 hit since "No Tell Lover" in 1978.

History[edit]

The song, as well as the album on which it is featured, was a marked departure from Chicago's traditional soft rock, horns-driven sound, taking on a polished and modern feel. There were minimal horns on the track, instead featuring more layered synthesizers and heavier distorted electric guitars in a contemporary 1980s styling. This was done to revitalize the band that was considered by some to be past its commercial prime at the time.[citation needed]

The album version of "Hard to Say I'm Sorry" segued into a second song titled "Get Away," which was closer to the older horn-driven Chicago sound. Most adult contemporary radio stations at the time did not play the entire album track, however, choosing to cut it off just before "Hard to Say I'm Sorry" segued into "Get Away." About half the Top 40 radio stations played the longer version with "Get Away".[citation needed]

Deviating from Chicago's practice of having mostly band members playing on their albums, "Hard to Say I'm Sorry" featured several session musicians. The song featured producer David Foster on the piano, as well as three members of the American rock band Toto: Steve Lukather on guitar, while David Paich and Steve Porcaro both contributed synthesizers. The song's vocals were performed by Peter Cetera.

The song was also featured in the movie and soundtrack for "Summer Lovers", a 1982 film written and directed by Randal Kleiser, starring Peter Gallagher, Daryl Hannah and Valerie Quennessen, and filmed on location on the island of Santorini, Greece.

Music video[edit]

The band appears in a black colored room with diamonds on the wall. Danny Seraphine magically appears from his drum kit.

Personnel[edit]

Charts[edit]

Chart (1982) Peak
position
Australian Singles Chart[2] 4
Austrian Singles Chart[3] 5
Belgian (Flanders) Singles Chart[4] 15
Canadian Singles Chart[5] 1
German Singles Chart[6] 6
New Zealand Singles Chart[7] 13
Swiss Singles Chart[8] 1
UK Singles Chart[9] 4
US Billboard Hot 100[1] 1
US Adult Contemporary[1] 1
Preceded by
"Even the Nights Are Better" by Air Supply
Billboard Adult Contemporary (chart) number-one single
August 21, 1982 – September 4, 1982
Succeeded by
"Blue Eyes" by Elton John
Preceded by
"Abracadabra" by Steve Miller Band
Billboard Hot 100 number one single
September 11, 1982 – September 18, 1982
Succeeded by
"Abracadabra" by Steve Miller Band
Preceded by
"Eye of the Tiger" by Survivor
Canadian Singles Chart
September 11, 1982 – September 18, 1982
Succeeded by
"Jack & Diane" by John Mellencamp
Preceded by
"Abracadabra" by Steve Miller Band
Swiss number-one single
September 26, 1982 – October 3, 1982
Succeeded by
"I Know There's Something Going On" by Anni-Frid Lyngstad

Az Yet feat. Peter Cetera version[edit]

"Hard to Say I'm Sorry"
Single by Az Yet feat. Peter Cetera
from the album Az Yet
Released February 4, 1997
Format CD
Recorded 1996
Genre R&B, adult contemporary
Length 3:14
Label LaFace Records
Writer(s) Peter Cetera and David Foster
Producer(s) Babyface
Az Yet feat. Peter Cetera singles chronology
"Last Night"
(1996)
"Hard to Say I'm Sorry"
(1997)
"You're the Inspiration"
(1997)

In 1996, the R&B band Az Yet included a cover version on their self-titled debut album. The single, which featured cameo vocals by Peter Cetera, was produced by legendary songwriter Babyface and reached the Top 10 on the Billboard Hot 100. The single reached platinum status[10] and was nominated for a Grammy Award (Best Performance by an R&B Group or Duo).

Track listing[edit]

CD-Single

  1. "Hard To Say I'm Sorry" (David Foster Remix) 3:17
  2. "Hard To Say I'm Sorry" (Album Version) 3:14

Charts[edit]

Chart (1997) Peak
position
Australian Singles Chart[11] 5
Canadian Singles Chart[12] 26
Dutch Singles Chart[13] 3
German Singles Chart[14] 72
New Zealand Singles Chart[15] 1
Swedish Singles Chart[16] 59
UK Singles Chart[17] 7
US Billboard Hot 100[18] 8
US Rhythmic Top 40[18] 9
Preceded by
"I Shot the Sheriff" by Warren G
New Zealand Singles Chart
April 27, 1997 – May 4, 1997
Succeeded by
"Don't Leave Me" by Blackstreet

Other cover versions[edit]

  • In 1983, a Czech cover of the song, titled "Černý páv" (The Black Peacock), was recorded by Hana Zagorová feat. Stanislav Hložek and Petr Kotvald
  • In 1996, a Brooklyn based group named "Intrigue" also made a cover of the song. It was included in their debut album Acoustic Soul.
  • In 1999, a Eurodance remix of the song, titled "Hold Me Now", was recorded by DJ Kaos for Dancemania SPEED 3.
  • In 2003, the Canadian boy band b4-4 recorded a cover version included as a bonus track on the "limited edition" of their second album In Your Face.
  • In 2005, Idol 2005 contestant Jonah Hallberg covered the song on the compilation released by the show featuring a song covered by each finalist.
  • In 2007, Irish boy band Westlife covered the song on the B-side to their single "Home", the first single from the album Back Home.
  • In 2008, Barry Manilow covered the song on his album The Greatest Songs of the Eighties.
  • In 2010, Yuna Ito recorded a cover version of the song as part of her project Yuna Ito ~ Respects, the third cover of the project, released on September 29.

Sampling[edit]

  • German eurodance group Aquagen sampled the verses of the song (omitting the chorus) on the 2002 album Weekender.[19] The song was also remixed in 2009 as "Hard to Say I'm Sorry 2K9" on Aquagen's 2009 album So Far So Good (The Very Best Of).

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c "Chicago – Awards". Allmusic. Rovi Corporation. Retrieved August 17, 2012. 
  2. ^ "Hits of the World – Australia". Billboard 94 (41): 79. October 16, 1982. ISSN 0006-2510. Retrieved January 15, 2013. 
  3. ^ "Chicago – Hard to Say I'm Sorry – Austriancharts.at". Austriancharts.at (in German). Hung Medien. Retrieved January 15, 2013. 
  4. ^ "Ultratop.be – Chicago – Hard to Say I'm Sorry". Ultratop (in Dutch). Hung Medien. Retrieved January 15, 2013. 
  5. ^ "50 Singles". RPM 36 (4). September 11, 1982. ISSN 0033-7064. Retrieved January 15, 2013. 
  6. ^ "Top 100 Single". Charts.de (in German). Media Control. Retrieved January 15, 2013. 
  7. ^ "Charts.org.nz – Chicago – Hard to Say I'm Sorry". Charts.org.nz. Hung Medien. Retrieved January 15, 2013. 
  8. ^ "Chicago – Hard to Say I'm Sorry – Hitparade.ch". Hitparade.ch (in German). Hung Medien. Retrieved January 15, 2013. 
  9. ^ "1982-10-09 Top 40 Official UK Singles Archive | Official Charts". Official Charts Company. Retrieved January 15, 2013. 
  10. ^ RIAA Gold & Platinum Searchable Database - Az Yet Singles, Retrieved on 2009-07-16
  11. ^ "Australian-charts.com – Az Yet feat. Peter Cetera – Hard to Say I'm Sorry". Australian-charts.com. Hung Medien. Retrieved January 15, 2013. 
  12. ^ "100 Hit Tracks". RPM 65 (18). July 7, 1997. ISSN 0033-7064. Retrieved January 15, 2013. 
  13. ^ "Dutchchart.nl – Az Yet feat. Peter Cetera – Hard to Say I'm Sorry". GfK Dutch Charts (in Dutch). Hung Medien. Retrieved January 15, 2013. 
  14. ^ "Single – Az Yet feat. Peter Cetera, Hard to Say I'm Sorry". Chart.de (in German). Media Control. Retrieved January 15, 2013. 
  15. ^ "Charts.org.nz – Az Yet feat. Peter Cetera – Hard to Say I'm Sorry". Charts.org.nz. Hung Medien. Retrieved January 15, 2013. 
  16. ^ "Swedishcharts.com – Az Yet feat. Peter Cetera – Hard to Say I'm Sorry". Swedishcharts.com. Hung Medien. Retrieved January 15, 2013. 
  17. ^ "1997-06-21 Top 40 Official UK Singles Archive | Official Charts". Official Charts Company. Retrieved January 15, 2013. 
  18. ^ a b "Az Yet – Awards". Allmusic. Rovi Corporation. Retrieved January 15, 2013. 
  19. ^ Aquagen - Hard To Say I'm Sorry (CD). Discogs.com.

External links[edit]