About Daryl Hall & John Oates
Daryl Hall & John Oates, colloquially referred to as Hall & Oates, are an American pop rock duo formed in 1970 in Philadelphia. Daryl Hall is generally the lead vocalist; John Oates primarily plays electric guitar and provides backing vocals. The two write most of the songs they perform, separately or in collaboration. They achieved their greatest fame from the mid-1970s to the mid-1980s with a fusion of rock and roll and rhythm and blues.
Hall and Oates have sold an estimated 40 million records, making them the best selling music duo in history. They are best known for their six No. 1 hits on the Billboard Hot 100: "Rich Girl", "Kiss on My List", "Private Eyes", "I Can't Go for That ", "Maneater", and "Out of Touch", as well as many other songs which charted in the Top 40 including the singles "You Make My Dreams", "She's Gone", "Say It Isn't So" and "Sara Smile". In total, they had 34 chart hits on the US Billboard Hot 100, seven RIAA platinum albums, and six RIAA gold albums.Billboard magazine named them the most successful duo of the rock era, surpassing Simon & Garfunkel and The Everly Brothers. They have achieved moderate success in the United Kingdom with two UK top ten albums, spending a total of 117 weeks in the UK top 75 album charts and 84 weeks in the top 75 of the UK Singles Chart.
In 2003, Hall and Oates were inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame. Billboard magazine had Hall and Oates at No. 15 on their list of the 100 greatest artists of all time and the No. 1 duo, while VH1 placed the duo as No. 99 on their list of the 100 greatest artists of all time. They were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in April 2014. On September 2, 2016, they received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.
Daryl Franklin Hohl and John William Oates first met at the Adelphi Ballroom in Philadelphia in 1967. At the time they met, each was heading his own musical group, Hall with The Temptones and Oates with The Masters. They were there for a band competition when gunfire rang out between two rival gangs, and in trying to escape, they ran to the same service elevator. On further discovering that they were interested in the same music and that both were attending Philadelphia's Temple University, they started spending time together on a regular basis and eventually shared a number of apartments in the city. One of the apartments they shared had "Hall & Oates" on the mailbox, which became the duo's name. It would take them another two years to form a musical duo, and three years after that, they signed to Atlantic Records and released their debut album. The two didn't start working together seriously until 1970 after Oates got back from an extended stay in Europe.
Early in their recording careers, Hall and Oates had trouble clearly defining their sound, alternating among folk, soul, rock and pop. None of their early albums - Whole Oats, Abandoned Luncheonette and War Babies - were very successful. Despite being produced by such big-name producers as Arif Mardin and Todd Rundgren, they had no hit singles during this time period, though Abandoned Luncheonette contained "She's Gone". This song would be covered by Lou Rawls and Tavares before Atlantic Records re-released the Hall and Oates version in 1976. "She's Gone," as covered by Tavares, did go to Number One on the R&B charts in 1974. It was originally written for Hall's first wife, Bryna Lublin , and initially inspired by Oates' being stood up on a date on New Year's Eve. Another Abandoned Luncheonette single, "Las Vegas Turnaround", was written about Hall's girlfriend, flight attendant and future songwriting collaborator Sara Allen. Despite the fact that none of the Atlantic albums was a huge national hit, in Minneapolis–St. Paul, a number of tracks on Abandoned Luncheonette received significant airplay on local FM station KQRS, making it a local hit. This and the other regional success the album achieved were enough to push the album into the charts, reaching #33 on Nov. 20, 1976 and staying on the charts for 38 weeks.
Hall and Oates left Atlantic Records after the release of War Babies to join RCA Records. Their first album for the new label, Daryl Hall & John Oates , was their first legitimate success. It contained the ballad "Sara Smile," a song Hall wrote for his aforementioned girlfriend Sara Allen. It also featured an album cover in which Hall and Oates are overly made up with cosmetic blush to the point where they looked like women, especially the long-haired and clean-shaven Hall. Hall would later say in an interview for VH1's Behind the Music that he looked like "the girl I always wanted to go out with" on that album cover. This cover was made by Pierre LaRoche, who created Ziggy Stardust for David Bowie.
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