After the Love Has Gone

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For the Steps song, see After the Love Has Gone (Steps song).
"After the Love Has Gone"
Single by Earth, Wind & Fire
from the album I Am
B-side "Rock That"
Released July 12, 1979
Format 7", 12"
Recorded September 1978
Genre R&B
Length 4:24 (Album version)
3:55 (7" version)
Label ARC/Columbia
Writer(s) David Foster, Jay Graydon, Bill Champlin
Producer(s) Maurice White
Certification Gold (RIAA)
Earth, Wind & Fire singles chronology
"Boogie Wonderland"
(1979)
"After the Love Has Gone"
(1979)
"In the Stone"
(1979)

"After the Love Has Gone" is a 1979 hit single for Earth, Wind & Fire, written by David Foster, Jay Graydon, and Bill Champlin for the album I Am. It reached #2 on the Billboard Hot 100 singles chart for two weeks, behind The Knack's smash hit "My Sharona".[1]

Background[edit]

One of the song's writers David Foster worked on an album for Motown Records singer Jaye P. Morgan. The album was released in Japan and never took off in the United States. Foster later went to Motown to let the executives hear some of the material. Foster was in the middle of a song and ad-libbed the chorus to "After The Love Has Gone", as he had forgotten the words. Foster and Jay Graydon called Bill Champlin to ask him to write lyrics to the music. At the time, Foster was producing Champlin's 1978 solo debut Single for Full Moon/Epic Records and was working with Earth, Wind & Fire around the time they were recording their album I Am. Foster then showed Maurice White the song, which White loved and wanted to record it. Foster and Graydon later told Champlin that the song was being pulled off his album for inclusion on Earth, Wind & Fire's album - to which Champlin agreed to having the track removed.[2] According to former manager turned Sony Music Entertainment CEO Tommy Mottola, Foster previously offered the song to Hall and Oates, but they rejected it, as they weren't interested in singing songs written by anyone other than themselves.[3]

Group member Verdine White revealed that "After the Love Has Gone" was one of their most difficult songs to record:

"The track was based on a vibe. We cut it about six, seven times, and Maurice just said, "No, it's not right yet. We'll come back and get it tomorrow. It's not right yet". And then one day we nailed it, and it was right. The way it felt. It sounded like Earth, Wind & Fire".

[4]

Reception[edit]

"After the Love Has Gone" was nominated for a Grammy for Record of the Year and won for Best R&B Vocal Performance by a Duo or Group.[5] The song also won a Best R & B Song Grammy Award for Foster, Graydon and Champlin as its composers. "After the Love Has Gone" has been placed on Bruce Pollock's list of The 7,500 Most Important Songs of 1944-2000.[6]

A record of the single "After the Love Has Gone".

"After the Love Has Gone" was very successful commercially, selling over a million copies in the US, and has been certified Gold, as up until the RIAA lowered the sales levels for certified singles in 1989, a Gold single equaled 1 million units sold; it has also been certified silver in the UK by the British Phonographic Industry.[7][8]

It was used to particularly haunting effect in a famous episode of the television series WKRP in Cincinnati which paid homage to the real-life disaster of the December 3, 1979, Cincinnati concert by The Who. Venus Flytrap, the night DJ portrayed by Tim Reid, played the song after his on-air announcement that numerous youngsters were killed by a stampede of concertgoers. The song was also heard on an earlier episode, in a scene where staffer Bailey Quarters was brooding over being stood up on a planned date with morning drive DJ Johnny Fever.

Covers and samples[edit]

All three of the song's writers covered the song on the only album release by the band Airplay (a band made up of Graydon, Foster, and Tommy Funderburk) featuring Bill Champlin on chorus vocals in 1980, making it the second commercially released cover of the song, after James Last's version on his 1979 album The Non Stop Dancing Sound of the 80's.

In 1981, Lynn Davis released a version of the song on Stanley Turrentine's album Tender Togetherness.

In 1993, Jay Graydon also released a version of the song on his solo album (Airplay for the Planet) on which Bill Champlin provided the lead vocals. (As a trivia sidenote: At the time it was written, the song was originally intended for a solo album that Bill Champlin was recording [1978's (Single)], which was being produced by David Foster. The songwriters agreed to let Earth, Wind & Fire release the song first on the I Am album instead.)

David Benoit and Russ Freeman also covered the song, under their 1994 collaboration album, The Benoit/Freeman Project, with Vesta Williams and Phil Perry on vocals.

UK boyband Damage has covered the song, as well as artists such as Donny Osmond on his album Somewhere in Time and 112 on the album New York Undercover: A Night at Natalie's.[9] The song was sampled by Ryan Shaw in 2008.

Norman Brown also covered the song in his 1996 smooth jazz album Better Days Ahead.

Kurt Elling, a Chicago-based Grammy-winning jazz vocalist, covered this song on his 2011 release The Gate.

Filipino R&B singer Jay R covered the song on his 2008 album, Soul In Love.

Personnel[edit]

Chart performance[edit]

References[edit]

External links[edit]