1975 David Geddes – Blind Man In The Bleachers
David Idema grew up in Michigan and joined the Grand Rapids band The Fredric in the late sixties as their drummer and vocalist. The band released an album on Forte Records in 1968 but could not generate any interest outside of Michigan. The group signed to Capitol Records and changed their name to The Rock Garden in 1970. The group seems to have disbanded without recording any additional music.
David attended the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor and did some work on a solo career. He released the single House on Holly Road on Buddah Records in 1972, but once again found no traction outside of his home state. Discouraged, David abandoned his musical career and began work on a law degree at Wayne State University in Detroit.
Paul Vance was a songwriter and producer who co-wrote over 300 songs Lee Pockriss during his career. Some of the hits they wrote included Catch A Falling Star, Itsy Bitsy Teenie Weenie Yellow Polka Dot Bikini, and What Will Mary Say. Paul had heard David’s singing and thought he would be perfect for a song he and Lee had written.
Paul produced David’s recording of the teenage tragedy song Run, Joey, Run for Big Tree Records. Perhaps hoping for better luck, David changed his name to David Geddes for the record, using the name of a street in Ann Arbor. The single was a surprise hit, reaching #5 on the Hot 100 in 1975. The usual suspects also performed the song on the television show Glee on May 4, 2010, and poked fun at that performance several times in later episodes.
David’s next single came out a few months later from an album that was also produced by Paul. Blind Man In The Bleachers is another song about a tragedy, but it was about the death of a father rather than a teenager. In its own way, it had a happy ending. Well, arguably happy. The single peaked at #18 on the Hot 100 in late 1975.
Country artist Kenny Starr had the biggest hit of his career when he covered Blind Man In The Bleachers and reached #2 on the US Country chart in early 1976. His version even crossed over to the pop chart, although it peaked at only #58.
Paul produced at least three more singles for David, but none of them charted and David faded into obscurity.
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