Starland Vocal Band

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Starland Vocal Band
Starland Vocal Band 1977.JPG
Starland Vocal Band : June 1977
Background information
Origin Washington, D.C., USA
Genres Pop, folk rock, country, soft rock
Years active 1976–1981
Labels RCA Records, Windsong Records
Associated acts John Denver
Past members Bill Danoff
Taffy Nivert
Jon Carroll
Margot Chapman

Starland Vocal Band was an American pop band, known primarily for "Afternoon Delight", one of the biggest-selling singles in 1976.

Career[edit]

The group began as Fat City, a husband/wife duo of Bill Danoff and Taffy Nivert. The band was also composed of Jon Carroll (keyboards, vocals) and Margot Chapman (vocals).[1] Carroll and Chapman were also married after meeting as members of the group, but later divorced. Their son Ben Carroll is also a musician.

The group's debut album was the self-titled Starland Vocal Band and included "Afternoon Delight". The song was a #1 hit and the album also charted. The group was nominated for four Grammy Awards and won two—Best Arrangement for Voices and Best New Artist. The follow-up album Rear View Mirror was a failure in comparison, although it was a minor chart entry, spending 13 weeks on the Billboard 200 (reaching a peak of #104). In 2010 Billboard named "Afternoon Delight" the 20th sexiest song of all time.[2]

The band hosted a variety show, The Starland Vocal Band Show, that ran on CBS for six weeks in the summer of 1977. David Letterman was a writer and regular on the show, which also featured Mark Russell, Jeff Altman, and Proctor and Bergman. April Kelly was also a writer for the series.

The band broke up in 1981, unable to match their previous success. Danoff and Nivert divorced shortly afterwards. Each of the band members went on to a solo career.

In 1998 the Starland Vocal Band reunited for a few concerts, often featuring the children of the four original members as vocalists. In 2007, they appeared on a 1970s special on the New Jersey Network (NJN), singing "Afternoon Delight".

Danoff and Nivert co-wrote the hit song "I Guess He'd Rather Be in Colorado" and then "Take Me Home, Country Roads" with John Denver. Denver subsequently signed them to his label Windsong Records.

Discography[edit]

Studio albums[edit]

Year Album details Peak chart
positions
US
1976 Starland Vocal Band
  • Release date: 1976
  • Label: Windsong
20
1977 Rear View Mirror
  • Release date: April 15, 1977
  • Label: Windsong
104
1978 Late Nite Radio
  • Release date: March 1978
  • Label: Windsong
1980 4 X 4
  • Release date: March 11, 1980
  • Label: Windsong
1980 Christmas at Home
  • Release date: November 25, 1980
  • Label: Windsong

Singles[edit]

Year Single Peak chart positions Album
US CAN CAN AC
1976 "Afternoon Delight" 1 1 6 Starland Vocal Band
"California Day" 66 22
1977 "Hail! Hail! Rock and Roll!" 71 92
"Liberated Woman" Rear View Mirror
"The Light of My Life" 36
1978 "Mr. Wrong" 33
"Love, I Thought I Would Never Find Love" Late Nite Radio
1979 "Loving You with My Eyes" 71 26 4 X 4

Awards and nominations[edit]

Grammy Awards[edit]

The Grammy Awards are awarded annually by the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences. Band won two award from five nominations.

Year Recipient Award Result
1977 Starland Vocal Band Best New Artist Won
"Afternoon Delight" Record of the Year Nominated
Best Pop Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocals Nominated
Best Arrangement for Voices (duo, group or chorus) Won

Trivia[edit]

  • The March 8, 2011 episode of Glee featured "Afternoon Delight."
  • In The Simpsons episode "'Round Springfield", Homer Simpson suggests that Lisa get a tattoo of Bleeding Gums Murphy (who died after Lisa performed "Stars and Stripes Forever" at school) just like he did with Starland Vocal Band (to which Homer realizes his mistake and says that the band sucked). Another Simpsons episode ("The Fat and the Furriest") had Lenny, Carl, and Bart dance to and sing Afternoon Delight as Homer gets attacked by a bear.
  • In the 1997 film Good Will Hunting, the main character Will Hunting is forced to visit a hypnotherapist. At first he pretends to be under hypnosis by telling a youthly trauma, but soon he converts his story into the lyrics of "Afternoon Delight" and finishes by singing it, showing he was pretending to be hypnotised. The song is played again over the closing credits.
  • In the movie PCU, Jeremy Piven's character selects the Starland Vocal Band's CD from a group and puts it into the player on repeat and then locks the entertainment center forcing the party goers to hear it over and over again.
  • Afternoon Delight has been played in Frat Pack films such as Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy (a movie where the song is actually sung by the lead characters) and Starsky & Hutch.
  • An episode of Arrested Development involves two different references to "Afternoon Delight". One involving a mixup between a playful term for sex (like in the song) and marijuana, the other was an awkward rendition of the song between relatives Maeby and Michael Bluth and afterwards a duet by George Michael Bluth and Lindsay Bluth.
  • A Sports Night episode refers to Starland Vocal Band winning a Best New Artist award for 1978, beating out Elvis Costello. However, the year was wrong (they won in 1977), and they did not compete against Costello—the other nominees were Boston, The Brothers Johnson, Dr. Buzzard's Original Savannah Band, and Wild Cherry.

References[edit]

External links[edit]

Awards and achievements
Preceded by
Natalie Cole
Grammy Award for Best New Artist
1977
Succeeded by
Debby Boone