David Gates

Goodbye Girl

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On the heels of the success of the 1977 film The Goodbye Girl and the popularity of the theme song, former Bread vocalist David Gates released this 1978 album. Featuring his hit song, Goodbye Girl included material culled from his previous solo albums, 1973's First and 1975's Never Let Her Go. However, rather than simply an odds-and-sods collection, the album also included several newly recorded songs with "Took the Last Train," "Overnight Sensation," "California Lady," "Drifter," and "He Don't Know How to Love You." While the album certainly fit into Gates' melodic, laid-back soft rock oeuvre, the new songs found him branching out musically. Perhaps inspired by Labelle's 1974 disco hit "Lady Marmalade," Gates' similarly French-infused, St. Tropez-set "Took the Last Train" was a cutting-edge (for the time) synthesizer and drum machine-driven number featuring the chorus refrain "Viens chez moi/Ce soir va jamais terminer/On va rester toujours ensemble" -- which, loosely translated, means "Come to me/Tonight will never end/We will always be together." The song is a forgotten yacht rock-era anthem that deserves a place next to such classics of the genre as Rupert Holmes' "The PiƱa Colada Song" and Bertie Higgins' "Key Largo." Although Gates was largely responsible for the more mellow end of Bread's output with "California Lady," "Drifter," and "He Don't Know How to Love You," he dug into his Oklahoma roots and displayed his knack for Eagles-style country-rock. Ultimately, Goodbye Girl is a great example of mainstream '70s AOR and still works as a nice single-disc snapshot of Gates' post-Bread work up to that point.

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