I Can't Go for That (No Can Do)
|"I Can't Go for That (No Can Do)"|
|Single by Hall & Oates|
|from the album Private Eyes|
|Released||December 14, 1981|
|Genre||Synthpop, funk, R&B, blue-eyed soul|
|Length||3:39 (7" DJ edit)
3:50 (7" remix)
5:09 (album version)
6:04 (12" single)
|Writer(s)||Daryl Hall, John Oates, Sara Allen|
|Producer||Hall & Oates|
|Hall & Oates singles chronology|
"I Can't Go for That (No Can Do)" is a 1981 song recorded by Daryl Hall and John Oates.
On January 30, 1982, "I Can't Go for That" ended a 10-week run at the top of the Hot 100 by Olivia Newton-John's song, "Physical" (which had knocked out Hall & Oates' "Private Eyes" from the top spot). The song also went to number one on the Hot Dance Club Play chart for one week in January 1982.
Thanks to heavy airplay on urban contemporary radio stations, "I Can't Go for That" also topped the U.S. R&B chart, a rare feat for a White act. According to the Hall and Oates biography, Hall, upon learning that "I Can't Go For That" had gone to number one on the R&B chart, wrote in his diary, "I'm the head soul brother in the U.S. Where to now?"
"I Can't Go for That (No Can Do)" is one of 14 Hall and Oates songs that have been played on the radio over one million times, according to BMI.
Daryl Hall sketched out the basic song one evening at a music studio in New York City in 1981 after a recording session for the Private Eyes album. Hall began to play a bass line on a Korg organ, and sound engineer Neil Kernon recorded the result. Hall then came up with a guitar riff, which he and Oates worked on together. The next day, Hall and Sara Allen worked on the lyrics.
Awards and accolades
"I Can't Go for That" was voted number six on VH1's list of "The 100 Greatest Songs of the '80s."
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In 2010, The Bird and the Bee covered this song for their tribute album Interpreting the Masters Volume 1: A Tribute to Daryl Hall and John Oates.
This song was also covered by Nicki Bluhm and The Gramblers in their very successful "Van Sessions" series which they recorded while driving from one gig to the next. It became a viral hit on YouTube. It features Ms. Bluhm not only singing, but playing the sax solo on a kazoo while driving the van. This version has actually been endorsed by Hall and Oates.
Influence on Jackson's "Billie Jean"
According to Daryl Hall, during the recording of “We Are the World”, Jackson approached him and admitted to lifting the bass line for "Billie Jean" from a Hall and Oates song, apparently referring to "I Can't Go For That (No Can Do)". Hall says that he told Jackson that he had lifted the bass line from another song himself, and that it was "something we all do."
Samples and interpolations in other songs
- 1989 - "Say No Go" - De La Soul
- 1993 - "V.S.O.P" - Above the Law
- 1996 - "So Deep" - Dan-e-o
- 1997 - "I'll Do Anything" - Heavy D
- 1998 - "I Can't Go for That" - 2 Live Crew
- 1999 - "Wait 'Til I Get Home" - C-Note
- 2001 - "Traffic" - Stereo MC's
- 2002 - "4 Myself" Mac Dre ft. Devious and Dubee
- 2003 - "Take Me To Your Leader" - King Geedorah
- 2003 - "Sunrise" - Simply Red
- 2004 - "I Can't Go For That/Happy People Remix" - Notorious B.I.G. / R. Kelly ("Happy People" samples Spandau Ballet's "True")
- 2006 - "Give and Go" - Girl Talk
- 2006 - "Can't Go On" - Örten
- 2006 - "Mama (Loves a Crackhead)" - Plan B
Some songs have included a vocal interpolation of the chorus, including:
- 1996 - "My Crew Can't Go for That" - Trigger tha Gambler
- 2000 - "Can't Go for That" - Tamia
- 2006 - "No Can Do" - Tech N9ne
Other songs have included a re-recorded variation of the song's famous descending arpeggio, including:
- 2000 - "After Party" - Koffee Brown
The melody was used in the 2008 MGMT single "Electric Feel".
Additionally, the JP/PAL Version of Sonic CD's Boss music beat is sampled from this song.
|Canadian Singles Chart||2|
|Netherlands Singles Chart||13|
|New Zealand Singles Chart||5|
|Swedish Singles Chart||10|
|UK Singles Chart||8|
|US Billboard Hot 100||1|
|US Billboard Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs||1|
|US Billboard Hot Dance Club Songs||1|
|US Billboard Adult Contemporary||12|
- Classic Tracks: Hall & Oates "I Can't Go For That (No Can Do)", Gary Eskow, Mix Online, April 1, 2006
- Classic Tracks: Hall & Oates "I Can't Go For That (No Can Do)", Gary Eskow, Mix Online, April 1, 2006 "Listening to 'I Can't Go for That' after letting it drift out of the mind for a while, one can clearly identify this track — one of the first pop hits to feature a drum machine — as a precursor to Michael Jackson's 'Billie Jean' and the generation of songs built on drum machine tracks that came in its wake. “No question about it,” Hall agrees. “Michael Jackson once said directly to me that he hoped I didn't mind that he copped that groove. That's okay; it's something we all do. [Eddie] Van Halen told me that he copied the synth part from ‘Kiss on My List’ and used it in ‘Jump.’ I don't have a problem with that at all."
- Hall, Daryl (July 10, 2009). "Michael Jackson Remembered: Daryl Hall on the Ultimate Video Star". The Rolling Stone. Retrieved October 15, 2010."He sort of clung to Diana Ross pretty much, but at one point I was off to the side and he came over to me and said, 'I hope you don't mind, but I stole Billie Jean from you,' and I said, 'It's all right, man, I just ripped the base line off, so can you!'"
- "SamplesDB — Hall & Oats's Tracks". Retrieved April 4, 2009.
"Physical" by Olivia Newton-John
|Billboard Hot 100 number-one single
January 30, 1982
"Centerfold" by The J. Geils Band
"Turn Your Love Around" by George Benson
|Billboard Hot Soul Singles number-one single
January 30, 1982
"Call Me" by Skyy
"Wordy Rappinghood" / "Genius of Love" by Tom Tom Club
|Billboard Hot Dance Club Play number-one single
January 23, 1982
"You're the One for Me " by D. Train