The Best Days of My Life
|The Best Days of My Life|
|Studio album by Johnny Mathis|
A&M Recording Studios,
|Johnny Mathis chronology|
The Best Days of My Life is an album by American pop singer Johnny Mathis that was released in January 1979 by Columbia Records. It made its first appearance on Billboard magazine's Top LP's & Tapes chart in the issue dated February 24, 1979, and remained there for seven weeks, peaking at number 122. It also made it to number 38 during a five-week run on the UK album chart.
The first song from the album to reach any of the charts in Billboard was a duet with Jane Olivor entitled "The Last Time I Felt Like This" that was written for the 1978 film Same Time, Next Year and was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Original Song but lost to "Last Dance" from Thank God It's Friday. The duet entered the magazine's list of the 50 most popular Easy Listening records in the US in the issue dated February 24, 1979, and peaked at number 15 over the course of 12 weeks. Another track from the album, "Begin the Beguine", entered that same chart five months later, in the July 21 issue, and got as high as number 37 during its five weeks there. The only song from the album to reach the UK singles chart was "Gone, Gone, Gone", which made its debut there the following month, on August 11, and reached number 15 during a 10-week run.
The album was first released on compact disc in 1989, and on January 27, 2015, Funkytowngrooves released an expanded edition of the album on compact disc that included five bonus tracks, two of which were disco mixes that came out in 1979 on a separate 12-inch single.
People magazine said in its review that "Mathis here returns to the venue that best suits his soft and breathy style" (meaning ballads). The reviewer also references characters in the 1942 film Casablanca in praising the Mathis rendition of "As Time Goes By": "If Sam had sung it so well, Bogey would actually have uttered that famous nonline, 'Play it again.'"
- "Would You Like to Spend the Night with Me" (L. Russell Brown, Irwin Levine) – 3:02
- "As Time Goes By" (Herman Hupfeld) – 4:35
- "The Best Days of My Life" (Cheryl Christiansen, Arnold Goland, Jack Gold) – 3:30
- "Gone, Gone, Gone" (L. Russell Brown, Lisa Hayward) – 3:32
- "The Bottom Line" (Dennis Lambert, Brian Potter) – 3:56
- "The Last Time I Felt Like This" performed with Jane Olivor (Alan Bergman, Marilyn Bergman, Marvin Hamlisch) – 2:57
- "Begin the Beguine" (Cole Porter) – 4:16
- "How Can I Make It on My Own" (Terry Bradford, Nat Kipner) – 4:00
- "There You Are" (Nancy Goland) – 4:12
- "We're in Love" (Patti Austin) – 3:45
- "Begin the Beguine" (Special Disco Version) (Cole Porter) – 8:28
- "Gone, Gone, Gone" (Special Disco Version) (L. Russell Brown, Lisa Hayward) – 6:30
- Disco Mix by John Luongo
- Engineered by Michael Barbiero
- "Begin the Beguine" (Single Mix) (Cole Porter) – 3:56
- "Begin the Beguine" (Disco Mix) (Cole Porter) – 8:28
- "Gone, Gone, Gone" (Disco Mix) (L. Russell Brown, Lisa Hayward) – 6:29
- "Begin the Beguine" (Instrumental) (Cole Porter) – 3:56
- "I Never Said I Love You" (Hal David, Archie Jordan) – 3:38
Rudy Vallee was the first artist to make the charts in Billboard magazine with "As Time Goes By" when he took the song to number 15 in 1931, but after the song was featured in the film Casablanca his recording was reissued and spent four weeks at number one in 1943. "Begin the Beguine" was first put on the charts by Xavier Cugat & His Waldorf-Astoria Orchestra with Don Reid on vocal for two weeks in 1935 when it reached number 13. Patti Austin's "We're in Love" made it to number 90 on the magazine's R&B chart in February 1978, and the Expanded Edition CD bonus track "I Never Said I Love You" was first recorded by Barbara Mandrell for her 1976 album Midnight Angel but was a number 84 pop hit for Orsa Lia that also spent a week at number one on the magazine's Easy Listening chart in 1979.
The liner notes included with the Funkytowngrooves reissue featured a 2014 interview with one of the songwriters of "The Bottom Line", Dennis Lambert, in which he describes the excitement that he and the song's other composer, Brian Potter, felt about the decision to include their song on the album. "'It was one of the highlights of our career as songwriters and remains so to this day. His version...was exactly what we were hoping it would be."
- Tony Calvert – reissue producer
- Jeff James – reissue coordinator
- Matt Murphy – production manager
- Craig Turnbull - release coordinator
- Wallace Create – package design
- Alex Henderson – liner notes
- Matt Bauer - liner notes and research
- Randy Mahon - artist/musician interview coordinator
- Mastered by Sean Brennan at Battery Studios, New York City, from the original master tapes
- (2014) The Best Days of My Life (Expanded Edition) by Johnny Mathis [CD booklet]. New York: Funkytowngrooves FTG 405
- (1978) The Best Days of My Life by Johnny Mathis [album jacket]. New York: Columbia Records JC 35649.
- "The Best Days of My Life - Johnny Mathis". allmusic.com. All Media Network, LLC. Retrieved 16 January 2014.
- "Picks and Pans Review: The Best Days of My Life". People. March 19, 1979.
- (1993) The Music of Johnny Mathis: A Personal Collection by Johnny Mathis [CD booklet]. New York: Columbia Records C4K-48932.
- Whitburn 2010, p. 503.
- "Johnny Mathis - Albums". Official Charts Company. Retrieved 16 January 2014.
- Whitburn 2007, p. 179.
- Wiley 1996, p. 1128.
- "Johnny Mathis". Official Charts Company. Retrieved 17 January 2014.
- "Best Days of My Life [Bonus Tracks] - Johnny Mathis - Release Credits". allmusic.com. All Media Network, LLC. Retrieved 29 January 2015.
- (1979) "Begin the Beguine/Gone, Gone, Gone" by Johnny Mathis [12-inch label]. New York: Columbia Records 23-11002.
- Whitburn 1986, pp. 427, 428.
- Whitburn 1986, p. 116.
- Whitburn 2004, p. 38.
- (1976) Midnight Angel by Barbara Mandrell [album jacket]. Nashville: ABC-Dot Records DOSD 2067.
- Whitburn 2009, p. 572.
- Whitburn 2007, p. 161.
- Whitburn, Joel (1986), Joel Whitburn's Pop Memories, 1890-1954, Record Research Inc., ISBN 0898200830
- Whitburn, Joel (2004), Joel Whitburn Presents Top R&B/Hip-Hop Singles, 1942-2004, Record Research Inc., ISBN 0898201608
- Whitburn, Joel (2007), Joel Whitburn Presents Billboard Top Adult Songs, 1961-2006, Record Research Inc., ISBN 0898201691
- Whitburn, Joel (2010), Joel Whitburn Presents Top Pop Albums, Seventh Edition, Record Research Inc., ISBN 0-89820-183-7
- Wiley, Mason; Bona, Damien (1996), Inside Oscar: The Unofficial History of the Academy Awards, Ballantine Books, ISBN 0345400534