#MusicMonday – July 20, 2020

I’m (and Music Monday is) alright, nobody worry about me (and Music Monday)!

Welcome to Caddyshack week on Allison’s Written Words!  Released on July 25, 1980, the film is on the cusp of its 40th anniversary.  For the film, a cult following was unheard of in its initial release.  For the soundtrack, it was a chance for Kenny Loggins, still in the earliest years of his solo career, to find his niche as “The King of the Soundtrack.”

It’s good to be the King!

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This week, I’ll be talking about my memories of the film, but for today, we’re going to look at the soundtrack, because the music (at least, to me) is just as memorable as the movie.

Image: Wikipedia

Caddyshack: Music From The Motion Picture Soundtrack, was released in the summer of 1980, shortly before the release of the film.  The score was composed by Johnny Mandel (who recently passed away at the age of 94), a composer with a long history of feature films and television, including the theme for Too Close for Comfort, which premiered several months after this movie hit theaters, and also starred Ted Knight (Johnny Mandel filmography – Wikipedia).

Four of the soundtrack’s offerings came from none other than Kenny Loggins, fresh off 1979’s Keep the Fire, with an offering from Journey (the whole Kenny Loggins-Steve Perry association obviously began here, am I right?), The Beat, and Hilly Michaels.

Only one single was released from the soundtrack, and of course, it is the one we all know and love – “I’m Alright” by Kenny Loggins.  There’s two different versions of the song – the one that is played on the radio, featured on both Kenny Loggins and soundtrack compilation albums, and the Caddyshack version, which features this very beautiful opening that depicts morning at a golf course.

Sans gopher, of course.  We had chipmunks!

If you ever wanted to know what it was like to work at a golf course and arrive at 6:50 am, just before your shift starts, as the sprinklers are coming on and the sun is rising, that version is what plays in your head.

The song itself is a staple of Kenny Loggins concerts, sans dramatic opening, but complete with “Dip dip dip dip dip dip dip dip,” because this song would not be *this song* without the “dip” lyric!  When we saw Kenny Loggins in concert twice (three if you count the livestream concert my husband I saw recently), this is the part you wait for.  Ok, it was the part myself, my husband, and my mom waited for – that absolutely necessary lyric that makes you (ok, me) go “ooooh!”

The song reached #7 on the Billboard Hot 100, and the B-side of the single was the beautiful “Lead The Way” (co-penned by Loggins and his then-wife, Eva Loggins).  Loggins also offered up “Mr. Night” (or The Caddy Appreciation Day Pool Scene Song), and “Make The Move,” which feels like a fun jam session-type song, the kind of song you picture his band just recording randomly.

Journey’s contribution to the album was “Any Way You Want It,” released in February 1980 on their album Departure.  In that single’s release, it reached #23 on the Billboard Hot 100.

There’s other songs used throughout the film that didn’t make the cut for the soundtrack that round out the music of the film:

  1. “Summertime Blues” – Eddie Cochran
  2. “Boogie Wonderland” – Earth Wind & Fire ft. The Emotions
  3. “Waltz of the Flowers” – Pyotr Tchaikovsky
  4. “Ballad of the Green Berets” – Barry Sadler
  5. “The Gold Diggers’ Song (We’re in the Money)” – Harry Warren
  6. “Theme From ‘Jaws'”- John Williams
  7. “The Burning Bush” – Elmer Bernstein
  8. “Tchaikovsky’s 1812 Overture”- Henry Adolph Harmonica Slavonica

I’m still not sure how “Boogie Wonderland” (1979, Billboard Hot 100 #6) didn’t make it to the album.  I also just love how it looks like the band, the whitest-sounding group in existence, best known for their “Dance of the Living Dead,” could all of a sudden capture the sound of a 1970s R&B group.

Don’t worry about Earth Wind and Fire, they have a shot at the Caddyshack soundtrack…the second one.  But hey, “Turn on (The Beatbox)” is catchy!

A Moderate Success

While the only released single performed well on the charts, and has endured as a Kenny Loggins standard over the years, Caddyshack’s soundtrack was only a moderate success in its initial release, reaching #78 on the Billboard 200, and was re-released in 2010.

I have the soundtrack, and if you go beyond the Kenny Loggins songs (and the Journey song), what you get is a good soundtrack that doesn’t seem to get the due it deserves.  Maybe it does now, 40 years later, but in 1980, #78 doesn’t seem so great.

But, of course, don’t weep for Kenny Loggins, he gets plenty of appreciation here

Listen To Caddyshack…The Soundtrack!

Like the film it came from, the soundtrack just seemed like an underappreciated gem of the time.  Honestly, what were people in 1980 interested in that a great soundtrack – and the movie it rode in on – were not insanely successful?

That’s a story for another day…perhaps a story for this week?

Kenny Loggins, the gopher, and Chevy Chase will return.  Because there was a sequel…and a soundtrack to go with it.  Guess what I’ll be talking about next Monday?

Trust me, the soundtrack is worth talking about!

Have a great Monday, and enjoy the music!


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