1980 Neil Diamond – September Morn
Neil Diamond spent some of his early career as a songwriter in the infamous Brill Building.
Bang Records released Neil’s second album, Just For You, in 1967. Neil had three singles from the album reach the top twenty on the Hot 100 that year. The album also included Neil’s version of I’m A Believer, a song that the Monkees covered and took to the top of the charts in 1966/1967.
Neil developed several reasons to be unhappy with his treatment by Bang Records and signed with Uni Records in 1968. While his new music quickly took Neil back into the top ten, Bang Records continued to release singles that they owned the rights to. While some of the singles were simply re-issues (like Solitary Man), Bang Records modified other songs by adding horns and strings added to the backgrounds (like Shilo). In 1971, Bang Records added orchestra backing to his original version of I’m A Believer and reissued it as a single that peaked at #51 on the Hot 100.
Lawsuits between Neil and Bang Records continued until Neil won in court in 1977, after which he bought back all his recordings on Bang Records.
Neil released the title song from his album September Morn in late 1979. The single peaked at #17 on the Hot 100 in early 1980 and reached #2 on the Adult The Adult Contemporary chart.
Since he once again owned his original recordings, Neil recorded a new version of I’m A Believer on the album and used it for the b-side of September Morn.
Similar to the remake that Neil Sedaka gave his early hit Breaking Up Is Hard To Do, Neil rerecorded a slow version of I’m A Believer on an album in 2010.
In 2018, Neil announced that he had been diagnosed with Parkinson’s Disease and retired from live shows. He has continued to record new music, including the 2020 album Classic Diamonds. He recorded the album with the London Symphony Orchestra. It included yet another version of I’m A Believer.
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