I came up empty handed for the mission that I was on, but what I stumbled onto sent me down memory lane of middle school dances. For most of you, this would be the time of Junior High School, but the school I went to went from Middle School straight to High School.
Now I do realize that many of my younger readers won't be familiar with this music, but for those of us who are of a 'certain age', I hope it takes you for a trip down memory lane as well.
The duo began while they were friends and classmates at W. W. Samuell High School in Dallas, Texas. Seals and Coley performed first as part of Dallas pop/psych group Southwest F.O.B. ("Free on Board"), whose material has been re-released on CD by the Sundazed label.
Seals was the younger brother of Jim Seals of the 1970s soft rock duo Seals and Crofts. Dan's childhood nickname was "England Dan" because he was a fan of English rock band The Beatles, and he occasionally adopted an affected English accent. John Colley's last name was re-spelled "Coley" for ease of pronunciation; "Ford" was added as his middle name for flow purposes, thus England Dan and John Ford Coley.
The duo was released from its contract with A&M after three albums. Undaunted, the pair continued to press on, stumbling upon the song "I'd Really Love to See You Tonight", written by a young Mississippi-based songwriter, Parker McGee. They recorded a demo and played it in the office of Bob Greenberg, a senior VP at Atlantic Records. Atlantic had a subsidiary label named Big Tree in the same office, and Big Tree's founder, Doug Morris, had heard the song through the wall and came into the room. When Greenberg decided against it, Morris said "We want it," and offered them a deal.
Dan Seals became a successful country musician in the 1980s, scoring hits such as "Meet Me in Montana" (with Marie Osmond) and "Bop". John Ford Coley went on to do television and film appearances in the 1980s, and returned to an active touring schedule in the 1990s and 2000s, and co-producer for acts such as Eddie Money (with Vince Gill) and Tom Wurth.
Seals died on March 25, 2009 following treatment for mantle cell lymphoma.
Here are your Friday Five in chronological order:
Nights Are Forever Without You (1976)
I'd Really Love to See You Tonight (1976)
It's Sad to Belong (1977)
We'll Never Have to Say Goodbye Again (1978)
Love Is the Answer (1979)
Did you enjoy this trip down memory lane? What are some of your memories from your Middle School / Junior High School Dances? Tell me about them in the comments below, I'd Love to hear them!
Oh... and for the record.... John Fogerty is not John Ford Coley (but I'm sure you figured that out by now)