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"
ReleasedFebruary 1977
Length4:12 (album version)
3:40 (single version)
Songwriter(s)Alan O'Day
Producer(s)Steve Barri and Michael Omartian
Alan O'Day singles chronology
"Undercover Angel"
"Started Out Dancing, Ended Up Making Love"

"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.


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 US, 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. The success of these two songs means O'Day is among the few singer/songwriters who wrote a chart-topper for themselves and one for another artist.


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]


  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. ^ "Item Display - RPM - Library and Archives Canada". Collectionscanada.gc.ca. 1977-07-23. Retrieved 2019-05-15.
  5. ^ "NZ Top 40 Singles Chart | The Official New Zealand Music Chart". Nztop40.co.nz. 1977-07-24. Retrieved 2016-10-13.
  6. ^ "Alan O'Day Chart History (Hot 100)". Billboard.
  7. ^ Whitburn, Joel (1993). Top Adult Contemporary: 1961–1993. Record Research. p. 179.
  8. ^ "CASH BOX Top 100 Singles". October 14, 1977. Archived from the original on 2015-04-02.
  9. ^ Steffen Hung. "Forum - 1970 (ARIA Charts: Special Occasion Charts)". Australian-charts.com. Archived from the original on 2016-06-02. Retrieved 2016-10-13.
  10. ^ "Top 200 Singles of 1977" (PDF). RPM.
  11. ^ "Top Selling Singles of 1977 | The Official New Zealand Music Chart". Nztop40.co.nz. 1977-12-31. Retrieved 2016-10-13.
  12. ^ "Top 100 Hits of 1977/Top 100 Songs of 1977". Musicoutfitters.com. Retrieved 2016-10-13.
  13. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2016-03-04. Retrieved 2015-07-16.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)

External links[edit]