Hot Streets

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Hot Streets
Chicago - Hot Streets.jpg
(From left to right)
Donnie Dacus, Lee Loughnane, Danny Seraphine, Peter Cetera, James Pankow
Studio album by
ReleasedOctober 2, 1978
RecordedMay–June 1978
StudioCriteria Studios, Miami, Record Plant, Los Angeles and A & R Recording, New York City[1]
GenreRock, jazz rock, disco
Length41:53
LabelColumbia
ProducerPhil Ramone and Chicago
Chicago chronology
Chicago XI
(1977)
Hot Streets
(1978)
Chicago 13
(1979)
Singles from Hot Streets
  1. "Alive Again"
    Released: October 1978
  2. "No Tell Lover"
    Released: December 1978
  3. "Gone Long Gone"
    Released: March 1979
Professional ratings
Review scores
SourceRating
AllMusic2.5/5 stars[2]

Hot Streets is the tenth studio album (twelfth overall) by the American band Chicago, released in 1978. In many ways, Hot Streets marked the beginning of a new era for the band, turning to disco music, a move which would be derided in retrospect. This was the band's first album with all-new material released since their second that did not have a numbered title. It was also the first album not to feature original guitarist/vocalist Terry Kath, who died from an accidental self-inflicted gunshot wound in January 1978. He was replaced by Donnie Dacus on this album.

Background[edit]

Having worked with James William Guercio since their 1969 debut, Chicago decided to part ways with the producer following the release of Chicago XI in 1977. However, a bigger change for the group was the death of guitarist Terry Kath in January 1978, who unintentionally shot himself at a roadie's house while playing with one of his guns. The members of the band were devastated by his death, and considered breaking up. Kath was one of the key players who most defined the rhythmic sound of the band. After the initial shock waned, the group decided that they still had something to offer musically, and carried on.

Phil Ramone, who had mixed some of their earlier albums, was called upon to co-produce their new effort. But before Chicago could begin recording, they had to contend with the difficult process of finding a new guitarist. Accomplished guitarist Donnie Dacus was chosen, bringing his own distinctive style to the group's music. Prior to joining Chicago, Dacus had worked with both Roger McGuinn and Stephen Stills.

Recording sessions took place both in Miami and Los Angeles that spring, after years of working at Guercio's Caribou Ranch in Colorado. By the end of the sessions, the band felt as though they were still in a strong musical position even after the loss of Kath. Recording the album Spirits Having Flown next door at the same Miami studio, some of the tracks featured the Bee Gees and their keyboardist, Blue Weaver. The Gibb brothers added vocals to the song "Little Miss Lovin'" while Weaver added synthesized strings to "No Tell Lover" and "Show Me The Way". In turn, Chicago's horn section played on Spirits Having Flown, most notably on the hit single "Too Much Heaven".

To mark their new beginning, the band broke with tradition by giving their album a title, rather than a number. Having chosen the title Hot Streets, the album cover featured a picture of the band (shot by photographer Norman Seeff) rather than just the group logo. Because a later marketing survey noted that consumers expected to see the logo on the cover, Chicago's logo returned in the form of a high-rise building for the follow-up album, Chicago 13.[citation needed]

The album was released in October 1978, preceded by a release of the lead single "Alive Again". Hot Streets was another hit for the group, who had been concerned that the public might not accept them without Kath. Although the album went platinum, and Chicago scored a second top-twenty hit with "No Tell Lover", Hot Streets was the first Chicago album since their debut that failed to reach the US Top 10; fittingly, the band's twelfth album peaked at #12.

Following the release of Chicago 13 and at the end of the Christmas 1979 tour, Dacus would be released from the group, bringing his short tenure with Chicago to an abrupt end.

In 2003, Hot Streets was remastered and reissued by Rhino Records with an alternate version of Lamm's "Love Was New" sung by Dacus as a bonus track.

Track listing[edit]

Side One
No.TitleWriter(s)VocalsLength
1."Alive Again"PankowCetera4:08
2."The Greatest Love on Earth"Seraphine/David "Hawk" WolinskiCetera3:18
3."Little Miss Lovin'"CeteraCetera (featuring the Bee Gees)4:36
4."Hot Streets"LammLamm5:20
5."Take a Chance"Loughnane/Lawrence "Stash" WagnerDacus4:42
Side Two
No.TitleWriter(s)VocalsLength
6."Gone Long Gone"CeteraCetera4:00
7."Ain't It Time"Dacus/Seraphine/Warner SchwebkeDacus, with Cetera4:12
8."Love Was New"LammLamm3:30
9."No Tell Lover"Cetera/Loughnane/SeraphineCetera, with Dacus4:13
10."Show Me the Way"Seraphine/WolinskiLamm3:36

Personnel[edit]

Chicago[edit]

Additional personnel[edit]

Production[edit]

  • Produced by Phil Ramone and Chicago
  • Associate Producer – Carol Peters
  • Engineered by Jim Boyer, Don Gehman and Lee DeCarlo.
  • Assistant Engineers – Peter Lewis, Dave Martone and Kevin Ryan.
  • Mixed by Jim Boyer and Phil Ramone
  • Mastered by Ted Jensen at Sterling Sound (New York, NY).
  • Photography and Design – Norman Seeff
  • Logo – Nick Fasciano

Charts[edit]

AlbumBillboard (North America)

Year Chart Position
1978 Pop Albums 12

SinglesBillboard (North America)

Year Single Chart Position
1978 "Alive Again" Pop Singles 14
1979 "No Tell Lover" Pop Singles 14
1979 "Gone Long Gone" Pop Singles 73
1979 "No Tell Lover" Adult Contemporary 5

References[edit]