Wednesday, August 04, 2021

Song of the Day: 'Hello Stranger' by Barbara Lewis


I must say, in addition to the superior apartment and proximity to the park(s), moving to the Upper West Side has been an aural windfall. Every time a car drives by or we hear music coming from a neighboring dwelling, it's always something good: Like this 1963 No. 3 pop hit -- No. 1 on the R&B chart -- that was blasting outside Zabar's yesterday when I went grocery shopping. 

Barbara Lewis also wrote her biggest hit, which has been covered a number of times. 

Yvonne Elliman, of "If I Can't Have You" fame, said she grew up loving the song. Her version hit No. 15 on the charts in 1977.

And earlier in 1966, the Capitols recorded it as the b-side for their hit "Cool Jerk," which many of us first learned about via the Go-Go's. Would love to know what kind of royalties Lewis has netted on this gem over the years. Wikipedia notes that the film "Moonlight" (2016) featured the song during the scene where the main character is reuinited with his childhood first love.

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