What You Won't Do for Love (song)

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"What You Won't Do for Love"
Single by Bobby Caldwell
from the album Bobby Caldwell
B-side "Love Won't Wait"
Released 1978
Recorded 1978
Genre Blue-eyed soul, smooth jazz, R&B, quiet storm
Length 4:45
Label TK
Writer(s) Bobby Caldwell, Alfons Kettner
Producer(s) Ann Holloway
Bobby Caldwell singles chronology
"What You Won't Do for Love"
(1978)
"My Flame"
(1979)

"What You Won't Do for Love" is a blue-eyed soul-styled single written by Bobby Caldwell with Alfons Kettner, which Caldwell recorded for his eponymous debut album, released in 1978 on the TK Records label.

Recording[edit]

After gaining a reputation in Miami clubs as a talented musician, Caldwell was signed to an exclusive contract with TK Records in 1978 by TK Records president Henry Stone. Heading to the studio, Caldwell recorded his first album, which was given a redo after Stone felt the album was good but "didn't have a hit". Caldwell returned to the studio and came up with the final product, which included "What You Won't Do for Love". A significant part of the song's success can be attributed to the memorable horn arrangement written and recorded by legendary Miami arranger Mike Lewis.

Release[edit]

Caldwell wanted the song to be the sixth track on the album since he figured the song's second track, "My Flame", which featured him playing guitar, would be the hit. However, TK Records felt confident that "What You Won't Do for Love" would be the breakout hit. When it was released to R&B radio, TK Records did its best to shield Caldwell's identity hoping not to alienate its predominantly black audience. However, when Caldwell began making performances live on stage, it only increased demand. The song would become Caldwell's most successful single and also his signature song reaching number 9 on the Billboard Hot 100, number 6 on the Hot Selling Soul Singles chart, and number 10 on the Easy Listening chart.[1]

According to the broadcast of American Top 40 for the week ending February 3, 1979, the week in which the song debuted at #38 on the Top 40, a heart-shaped pressing of the single was the most expensive single up to that point. The heart-shaped single was originally released as a promotional item only, but public demand led to 50,000 copies being pressed in time for Valentine's Day 1978 with a retail price of $7.98—about the price of a full LP album at the time.[2] The single was also available on standard round vinyl as well.

Lyrics[edit]

What you won't do

I guess you wonder where I've been I searched to find a love within I came back to let you know Got a thing for you and I can't let go

My friends wonder what is wrong with me Well, I'm in a daze from your love, you see I came back to let you know Got a thing for you and I can't let go

Some people go around the world for love And they may never find what they dream of What you won't do, you do for love

You tried everything but you don't give up In my world only you make me do For love what I would not do

My friends wonder what is wrong with me Well, I'm in a daze from your love, you see I came back to let you know Got a thing for you and I can't let go

I know I only want the best, it's true I can't believe the things I do for you What you won't do, you do for love

You've tried everything but you won't give up In my world, only you make me do For love what I would not do

Make me do for love what I would not do Make me do for love what I would not do Make me do for love what I would not do


Read more: Bobby Caldwell - What You Won't Do For Love Lyrics | MetroLyrics

Go West[edit]

Go West recorded a version on their 1992 album Indian Summer that was released as a single.

Year Song UK Singles chart
1993 "What You Won't Do For Love" 15

Boyz II Men[edit]

The vocal group Boyz II Men released a cover of the song on their 2004 album Throwback, Vol. 1, featuring rapper MC Lyte.

Year Song Hot R&B Singles
2004 "What You Won't Do For Love" 60

Other cover versions[edit]

Elliott Yamin also performed the song as a contestant on American Idol Season 5 in 2006.

Barry Black also performed the song as a contestant on The Voice Season 5 in 2012.

Samples[edit]

"What You Won't Do for Love" has been sampled on the following songs, among others:

Interpolations[edit]

Songs with vocal interpolations of "What You Won't Do For Love" include the following:

Soundtrack appearances[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Whitburn, Joel (2004). Top R&B/Hip-Hop Singles: 1942-2004. Record Research. p. 97. 
  2. ^ "American Top 40," Week Ending February 3, 1979, replayed February 8, 2014, SiriusXM Radio
  3. ^ Video on YouTube
  4. ^ https://www.myspace.com/luciennluciano/music/albums/don-t-get-crazy-explicit-16973252
  5. ^ Video on YouTube
  6. ^ Video on YouTube
  7. ^ Video on YouTube
  8. ^ "2014 Mitsubishi Outlander Sport TV Spot, 'New Beauty' Song Bobby Caldwell". iSpot.tv. Retrieved 26 October 2013. 

External links[edit]