Week 21: Sweethearts

By: Ark1

May 21 2009

Tags: ,

Category: 1967


Greetings everyone.

I’m back once again for week 21 with the debut album from Peaches & Herb from 1967 on Date Records. I recently found this LP in good condition for a really nice price and simply wanted to bring it to the 4 Brothers spotlight for its greatness. So here is a nice fresh rip for all who may have missed it. I hope that you enjoy it!

Soulbrotha and I were talking about this LP shortly after I had told him I picked it up from the record store. He brought to my attention that a classic commercial in the 80’s featured the song “Close Your Eyes” from this album right at the beginning. Some of you may remember the commercial from when growing up, or even own the collection called “Hey Love” (if a guest of your home didn’t permanently “borrow” it). Too bad they don’t offer compilations like this any more!

For those of you who aren’t familiar with the history of Herb & Peaches (all 5 of them), here is a little history lesson courtesy of Wikipedia…


Herb Fame (born Herbert Feemster, October 1, 1942, in Anacostia, Washington, D.C.), sang in church and neighborhood groups as a child. After graduation from high school, he worked in a local record store, where he eventually met record producer Van McCoy. McCoy agreed to let Fame audition, and decided to record him with Francine Barker, the lead singer of another group he was producing. The duo impressed McCoy so much that he released singles to local radio stations.

Francine “Peaches” Barker was born in 1947 in Washington, D.C. Before joining with Herb, Peaches started her own singing group, The Sweet Things. Peaches & Herb had a string of successful singles in the next two years with the songs “Let’s Fall in Love”, “Close Your Eyes” (a #8 hit on the Billboard Hot 100 chart in 1967, and also their debut single), “For Your Love”, and “Love Is Strange”. Despite the duo’s burgeoning success, Barker chose to leave the duo because of the rigours of touring. During this time she also worked as a solo artist. One of their more popular tunes was “Angels in the Sky” released on Columbia Records.

Marlene Mack initially replaced Barker for touring, becoming the second of the five “Peaches”; however Barker’s voice remained on the albums. The new duo continued to chart with such singles as “Two Little Kids” and “When He Touches Me”. However their popularity began to fade. Depressed by the slumping prospects of his partnership with Mack, Fame chose to retire from the music industry in 1970, after which time he got a job at the Washington, D.C. police department.

“Peaches & Herb” lay dormant until Fame decided to re-enter the music business in 1976. In his search for a new “Peaches”, Herb again enlisted the assistance of Van McCoy , who suggested that Linda Greene would be suitable for the position. Fame met Greene and concurred, leading to the formation of the most successful of the “Peaches & Herb” incarnations.

Herb & Linda recorded seven (including the album released in Argentina) albums together the first album Peaches & Herb was recorded for MCA Records and produced by Van McCoy but it generated no hits. They switched labels to MVP/Polydor for the next four and released 2 Hot, which went gold. It contained the songs “Shake Your Groove Thing” which peaked at #5, on the Billboard Hot 100 in March 1979, and “Reunited”, the follow-up single, which reached #1 on both the Hot 100 and the Billboard R&B chart. It was also a chart-topper in Canada. “Reunited” was nominated for a Grammy Award for Song of the Year in 1980. The final album they recorded together before going their separate ways was for The Entertainment Company a boutique label distributed through Columbia Records.

Unable to repeat the success of 2 Hot with their subsequent albums, Greene and Fame decided to retire their partnership in 1983.

Fame again chose to revive his entertainment career in 1990, with the help of a fourth “Peaches” – Patrice Hawthorne. She is now the bandleader of her own orchestra. Nevertheless, Fame retained his job with the police department. Although some suggested that Fame’s position with the police demonstrated a somewhat less than serious approach to his professional music career, his unstable financial situation was the result of unpaid royalties. In 2001, Fame and Greene hired Artists Rights Enforcement Corporation who introduced them to music industry attorneys Oren Warshavsky and Steven Ames Brown. The attorneys brought a lawsuit against MVP Records, which was, at that time, headed by Christine Perren. Under cross examination at trial by Warshavsky, Perren broke down in tears after Warshavsky pointed out a series of contradictions in MVP’s defense. The result was that Fame and Greene received royalties and were entitled to significant income, as well as reinstatement of certain rights. Fame was then able to leave the police and focus again on his music career.


If I had to choose a favorite song from this album it would have to be “Close Your Eyes”, previously a hit for the Five Keys. I am sure you all will distinguish a favorite track of your own as you listen to it – but this is definitely mine:

I am really glad I added this to my vinyl collection – and lucky for you, I found a couple of websites that have the album for sale for a reasonable price if you want to own it too! Try this one right here, or the copy lurking around over here – both for about the same price. This is without a doubt a memorable soul record that everyone is sure to enjoy!

Until next time…Peace!

(Ps. Oh yeah, if you know of the great Blogsportsoul blog, you may be aware that this album also was posted there back in September of ’08. He has a wonderful blog and you should check out his spot for a ton of great albums!)

33 comments on “Week 21: Sweethearts”

  1. Enjoy! Great work as usual, Arkane1…and as always, please leave a comment and share your opinions on the post!

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  2. Some sweet music to help my soul during my school exams …

    Thanks a lot broz!

    • Thank you so much for the kind words about those 45s. I’m glad you enjoyed them, and I can’t WAIT to hear how you mix ’em up 😀

      Good luck on those exams, I just finished midterms last week so I feel ya 🙂

      Peace and blessings.

  3. Great post, Ark! I couldn’t take P&H in the 80’s. That “Reunited” song got on my damn nerves (almost as bad as Endless Love)! This is an excellent reminder of the great stuff they started off with.

  4. Yeah, man… good stuff. The original “Peaches” was always the best IMHO. And that Hey Love comp… oh yeah, brother, I GOT my own!!! hehehe 🙂

    Of course, it’s out of print (BOOOOO!), but Amazon’s got the CD reissue for pretty cheap here


    and here


    See y’all when I get back…

    Peace and blessings.

  5. WOW! this stuff sounds incredible, i love that doo-wop sound, thanks again!!!

  6. What up 4 Bros. It’s been a good minute. This is pure goodness right here. Thanks a lot my Brothers. And if anybody is looking for the Hey Love comps. QS Bird has them over at here spot. If you grab ’em leave her a big thank you.

    Link: http://my-quietstorm.blogspot.com/2006/07/hey-love-classic-sound-of-soul-vol-1-2.html


  7. Looking forward to checking this on a holiday weekend. Thanks, Arkane1.

  8. Thanks for the superb post, and the effort you guys put into each and every post. I particularly enjoy the background information, as it gives an extra dimension to the music.

  9. Brother Arkane1,
    Another great choice. I love both their1967 Lp’s on Date label.
    Sadly i do not own any of them on vinyl. So thanks for the clean rip and info’s.
    SB, “Reunited” not that bad. Reminds me my school days and it was the first time i heard about them….later discovered their golden period.

    • Nikos, I actually like the song Reunited. But they used to play that song non-stop on the radio and it kinda ruined my enjoyment of it. 😛

  10. Cant wait to listen to this one!! Much Thanks Arkane1!!!

  11. Thanks for this nice one Ark. Time for some late 60ties reminiscencing 😉

    Btw: love your new spot brothers!

  12. lookin’ forward to this….


  13. Some PnH stuff is a little hit and miss in my opinion, but I trust your judgement, so I’ll give this a go – I’m sure I’ll probably love it! Thanks again!

  14. Thanks 4BB

  15. Finally got aroung to dl’n it YoungBlood. I’ll be back to let you know my thoughts.

  16. Excellent choice Arkane1. As I said before….you too old for your young body. LOL

    Most of the songs had memories that brought a smile to my face…except one.
    How dare they destroy Doris Troy’s “Just One Look”. A cllassic has to be at least the equal of the original. You never put out an inferior version. Right SB?
    I remember when he gave us the Dells do Dionne on the old site. He was talking about remakes and how he usually didn’t like them because they didn’t do the original justice….well.
    There were several remakes on this album…even one made famous by Alfafa (folks my age got the hint)…lol. and I liked them all save that one song….you just can’t destort precious memories of Mavis (my first girlfriend) like that. lol
    Some things are sacred.
    So because of that I have to give this one a 4 out of 5 stars.

  17. Thank you so much. Nice share.

  18. I also started up a site to share some vinyl. vinylseeker.com You site is a weekly visit for me. Thanks again

  19. Wow – It’s been years since I listened to this one. Look forward to it alot. Thank you

  20. Thank You Guys!

  21. The Sweethearts of Soul ! Poor old Herb, unable to hold a partner down – but a real trooper !! Always loved their attacking version of ‘True love’, although the LP generally summons an era where the lights were left ON during the slowie section of the high school dance – the wonderful title track, ‘We belong together’ and ‘I will watch over you’ all would ordinarily draw the one you love deep into your shoulder cup during that harmonised sway, except the latter two tracks may lose a little atmosphere with someone frying bacon near the DJ’s mic !! And thanks El Slick – it was bugging me who originally sang ‘Just one look’.

  22. Sorry Arkane, I think I was listening to Blogsportsoul’s crackly copy – hope your rip skips the bacon fryup – if I can get the link to work – grrr. BTW – great write-up on Herb’s steadfastness, my man.

  23. thanks brilliant album

  24. Another great post Arkane1! Thanks!

  25. Thanks. A nice gem.

  26. Oh,i love Peaches&Herb ,thank you very much for posting

  27. On Your advice I’m gonna give Herb and his oldest Peach a chance. Nice writeup got me hooked, one thing tho’ why not write in plain text which songs are on the album, composers etc. Or do You reckon that information is easily attainable w. a simple Googling of each song tiltle and the background facts are more interesting.

  28. This rare gem is one of Peaches & Herb’s best in my opinion. Thank you for posting it for a listen.

  29. This is Classic. I just want to take the time to thank you guys for the all the work you put into this blog. Im in my 20’s and find it damn near impossible to stumble upon all these gems that were abundant in the 80’s 90’s while the Dj Premiers and Pete Rocks were laying the ground work. Your also giving us a history behind the music which is priceless and also helps me appreciate it more. THANKS!!

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