Undercover Angel (song)

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"Undercover Angel"
Undercover Angel label.jpg
Single by Alan O'Day
from the album Appetizers
B-side "Just You"
Released February 1977
Format 45
Length 4:12 (album version)
3:40 (single version)
Label Pacific
Writer(s) Alan O'Day
Producer(s) Steve Barri and Michael Omartian
Alan O'Day singles chronology
"Undercover Angel"
(1977)
"Started Out Dancing, Ended Up Making Love"
(1977)

"Undercover Angel" was a hit single for singer/songwriter Alan O'Day. Certified gold, it reached #1 on the Billboard Hot 100 (one of 1977's ten biggest hits)[1] and #9 on the Australian Singles Chart.

Background[edit]

In 1977, Warner Bros. Music decided to form a special label, Pacific Records, for their composers who also performed. O'Day was the first artist signed, and his first release was "Undercover Angel." The original vinyl pressing was released with the B-side "Just You".

The song, which O'Day described as a "nocturnal novelette", was released without fanfare in February 1977. Within a few months, it had reached #1 in the U.S., even without an album to support it. O'Day said of the experience, "It's wonderful when you find out what feels right, and then it also feels right to other people. That's a songwriter's dream."[2] O'Day had also composed "Angie Baby", a #1 hit for Helen Reddy; "Undercover Angel" thus landed him in a very exclusive club of singer/songwriters who wrote a chart-topper for themselves and one for another artist.

Storyline[edit]

The song begins with a man commiserating his loneliness, when a woman suddenly appears in his bed, and encourages him to make love to her. The rest of the song describes his feelings about her, then he discovers she must leave him, and he is saddened. She tells him to "go find the right one, love her and then, when you look into her eyes you'll see me again."

He then explains that was his story, as apparently he has been singing this song to a woman whom he is trying to seduce, and how he wants to look in her eyes to see if she is the reincarnation of the angel he found.

Chart performance[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Seventies Almanac - 1977". Superseventies.com. Retrieved 2016-10-13. 
  2. ^ ""Undercover Angel" - Alan O'Day". Superseventies.com. Retrieved 2016-10-13. 
  3. ^ "Top RPM Singles: Issue 5238a." RPM. Library and Archives Canada.
  4. ^ "NZ Top 40 Singles Chart | The Official New Zealand Music Chart". Nztop40.co.nz. 1977-07-24. Retrieved 2016-10-13. 
  5. ^ "Alan O'Day – Chart history" Billboard Hot 100 for Alan O'Day.
  6. ^ "CASH BOX Top 100 Singles". October 14, 1977. Archived from the original on 2015-04-02. 
  7. ^ Steffen Hung. "Forum - 1970 (ARIA Charts: Special Occasion Charts)". Australian-charts.com. Archived from the original on 2016-06-02. Retrieved 2016-10-13. 
  8. ^ "Top 200 Singles of 1977" (PDF). RPM. 
  9. ^ "Top Selling Singles of 1977 | The Official New Zealand Music Chart". Nztop40.co.nz. 1977-12-31. Retrieved 2016-10-13. 
  10. ^ "Top 100 Hits of 1977/Top 100 Songs of 1977". Musicoutfitters.com. Retrieved 2016-10-13. 
  11. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2016-03-04. Retrieved 2015-07-16. 

External links[edit]

Preceded by
"Gonna Fly Now (Theme From Rocky)" by Bill Conti
Billboard Hot 100 number-one single
July 9, 1977 (one week)
Succeeded by
"Da Doo Ron Ron" by Shaun Cassidy