1976 The Doobie Brothers – Takin’ It To The Streets
Jeff suggested the band hire a singer/songwriter that he had worked with while active with Steely Dan: Michael McDonald. Michael initially worked with the band during the rest of their current tour in 1975.
The band’s contract required a new album in 1976, but Tom was struggling with a bleeding ulcer besides his other health issues and could not work on the album.
Instead, Michael added his songwriting abilities to the efforts of band members Jeff, Tiran Porter, and Patrick Simmons. One of his songs, Takin’ It to the Streets became the title of the album and its first single.
The single peaked at #13 on the Hot 100 in early 1976.
The band’s next single got no higher than #87 on the Hot 100. A second song by Michael, It Keeps You Running, reached #37 on the Hot 100. A cover version by Carly Simon also reached #27 on the Adult Contemporary chart later in the year.
The Doobie’s career skidded to a halt after that minor hit. Their next album in 1977 produced nothing that reached the top forty. The lone success from Livin’ on the Fault Line was a song written by Michael with Carly; she released a cover version of the album cut You Belong To Me and took the song to the top ten on the Hot 100.
No album came out from the band in 1978, so it would be 1979 before they released one of the band’s most successful singles, the chart-topping What A Fool Believes.
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