Tuesday, March 6, 2012

"Sailing" by Christopher Cross - March 6th 80's Quest Song/Band of the Day

At the outset of the 1980's Christopher Cross was wildly popular. He released a number of soft-hits that were all over the radio stations. I was especially fond of today’s 80’s Quest song, "Sailing" I really thought it was quite beautiful and captured the feeling of being on a boat gliding over the waves with the wind blowing.  I owned his first album and listened to it often.   I don’t know what happened with him. He had hit after hit, and won award after award, and wrote the theme song for a popular Dudley Moore film and then just dropped off the radio. I don’t know if it was because the record company didn’t know what to do with his image (he was a bit chubby…and you know how horrible record companies are about people who look less than camera-ready). But it’s a shame his run of luck didn’t continue so we could have heard more pretty songs from him.
Christopher Cross was born in San Antonio, Texas to an army family. His real name is Christopher Geppert.
He began fronting one of Austin, Texas’ leading cover bands, all the while writing his own original songs. In 1978 Warner Brothers records signed him.
His self-titled debut album was released in 1980 and became a blockbuster spawning the hits "Sailing" which went to #1 on the charts, "Ride Like the Wind" which went to #2 and featured Michael McDonald of The Doobie Brothers on backing vocals, "Never Be the Same" which went to #15, and "Say You’ll Be Mine" which went to #20. Nicolette Larson also provided backing vocals on the album.
In 1981 the album won five Grammy Awards. He is the only solo artist to win all four General Field Grammy Awards in the same year: Best Record, Best Album, Best Song and Best New Artist.
In the Fall of 1981 Cross released the theme song to the movie "Arthur" starring Dudley Moore called "Arthur’s Theme (The Best That You Can Do)" which was co-written by Cross along with Peter Allen, Burt Bacharach, and Carole Bayer Sager. It won the Academy Award for Best Original Song.
In 1983 he released his second album, Another Page, which included the hit songs "All Right", "No Time for Talk" and "Think of Laura". This song sprung up the charts when it was featured on the smash U.S. soap opera, "General Hospital" in support of an immensely popular storyline about wildly popular characters Luke Spencer and Laura Webber. It was played a lot on the show during the time when Laura had disappeared off a pier and was presumed dead.

Check out this photo I found of Anthony Geary and Genie Francis, the actors who played Luke and Laura, and get ready to feel old: 

For a guy so on top of the world, his fame soon faded suddenly. His 1985 album, Every Turn of the World sold poorly and spawned only one minor hit song "Charm the Snake" which got to #68 on the charts. His next album 1998’s, Back of My Mind did not produce any Top 40 Hits.
In 1992 he recorded an album that was released only in Europe called Rendezvous. It is considered by many to be Cross’ finest work. In 1995 he released another album, Window, which he had hoped would be his American comeback. In 1998 he released a double-CD, Walking in Avalon. One disc contains studio recordings, while the other contains live greatest hits. The original songs were later issued separately on a 1999 release called Red Room.
He has continued touring and opening for various acts. In 2007 he recorded a Christmas album, A Christopher Cross Christmas and released a new studio album in 2011 called Dr. Faith. The next Cross-family member we may soon hear from his daughter, Madison. She is interested in singing and has traveled and been on stage with her dad. She is studying acting at New York University in Manhattan.


Well, it's not far down to paradise, at least it's not for me
And if the wind is right you can sail away and find tranquility
Oh, the canvas can do miracles, just you wait and see.
Believe me.

It's not far to never-never land, no reason to pretend
And if the wind is right you can find the joy of innocence again
Oh, the canvas can do miracles, just you wait and see.
Believe me.

Sailing takes me away to where I've always heard it could be
Just a dream and the wind to carry me
And soon I will be free

Fantasy, it gets the best of me
When I'm sailing
All caught up in the reverie, every word is a symphony
Won't you believe me?


Well it's not far back to sanity, at least it's not for me
And if the wind is right you can sail away and find serenity
Oh, the canvas can do miracles, just you wait and see.
Believe me.


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