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Posted by: In: Other 07 May 2024 Comments: 0


572-Marilyn McCoo and Billy Davis Jr.-You Don’t Have to Be a Star (To Be in My Show)

1976-Number 7 single.

Best Bit-At 1.16. In 1978 Janet Jackson performed this song in the final season of the American ‘CBS’ sitcom ‘Good Times,’ she was 11 years old at the time.

Marilyn McCoo and Billy Davis Jr. are husband and wife, having married in 1969. Marilyn McCoo was born on September 30th, 1943, in Jersey City, New Jersey, United States. At the age of 15, she made her television debut on the American ‘CBS’ ‘Art Linkletter’s Talent Show,’ and then began modelling. After graduating from the ‘Susan Miller Dorsey High School,’ in Los Angeles, California, she enrolled in the ‘University of California, Los Angeles,’ where she earned a degree in business administration. In 1962, she entered the ‘Miss Bronze California beauty pageant,’ where she won ‘Miss Grand Talent.’ In the early to mid 1960’s, Marilyn McCoo was a member of the vocal group the ‘Hi-Fi’s,’ who often opened for Ray Charles (1930-2004) (see also best songs 475 and 185.) She first met Billy Davis Jr. in 1966, when he formed the ‘Versatiles,’ who would soon become the ‘5th Dimension’ (see also best songs 202.)

Billy Davis Jr. was born on June 26th, 1938, in St Louis, Missouri, United States, In 1975 he and Marilyn McCoo left the ‘5th Dimension,’ after a very successful nine years, to pursue their music careers as a duo, and signing with ‘ABC Records.’ They would go on to release three studio Albums between 1976-1978, and a fourth one 30 years later in 2008. In America on the Billboard Hot 100, two of their singles have reached the top 40, with ‘You Don’t Have to Be a Star (To Be in My Show’) making the Number 1 spot, while in the UK this song remains their only chart entry to date. In 1977 they became the first African/American married couple to host a network television series, ‘The Marilyn McCoo & Billy Davis Jr. Show,’ on ‘CBS.’ By 1982 they both decided to pursue solo careers, McCoo going in to acting, appearing in three films between 1989-2021, and also hosting the American music television programme ‘Solid Gold.’ She has also continued to record new music, and tour. In 1982 Billy Davis Jr. recorded a Gospel Album called ‘Let Me Have a Dream,’ and in 2020, he and McCoo released a fifth Album together, called ‘Blackbird: Lennon-McCartney Icons,’ their first new Album together in 12 years.

‘You Don’t Have to Be a Star (To Be in My Show) was the second of three singles released from ‘I Hope We Get to Love in Time,’ which was the debut studio Album by Marilyn McCoo and Billy Davis Jr. from 1976. The song was co-written by James Dean, (1943-2006) and John Glover, with the production being by Don Davis (1938-2014.) James Anthony Dean was born on February 7th, 1943, in Detroit, Michigan, United States, he died from cancer of the spine, at the age of 63. James Dean is best remembered for his work at Motown Records in the 1960’s, often in collaboration with William Weatherspoon, (1936-2005) with whom he co-wrote several hits, including Jimmy Ruffin’s ‘What Becomes of the Brokenhearted,’ (1965-Billboard Number 7 & UK Number 8) and ‘I’ve Passed This Way Before,’ (1966-Billboard Number 17 &UK Number 29.) James Dean was the cousin of the legendary Motown songwriters and producers Eddie Holland and Brian Holland.

‘You Don’t Have to Be a Star (To Be in My Show.) was produced by Don Davis, who was born on October 25th, 1938, in Detroit, Michigan, Unites States, he died after a short illness on June 5th, 2014, at the age of 74. After leaving school, Davis formed his own Jazz group, the ‘Don Davis Trio,’ before becoming a session musician in the Detroit area. Although unaccredited, it is very likely that Davis played guitar on ‘Tamla Motown’s’ first ever hit single ‘Money (That’s What I Want’) by Barrett Strong (1941-2023) (1959-Billboard Number 23.) In the early 1960’s Don Davis joined ‘Stax Records’ in Memphis, where he would write and produce for the American Soul singer Johnnie Taylor, including his 1968 Billboard Number 5 hit ‘Who’s Making Love,’ and then later in 1976, when Taylor had moved to ‘CBS,’ records, they joined forces on the Billboard Number 1 single ‘Disco Lady.’

‘Somebody nobody knows, could steal the tune that you want to hear. So stop your running around, ’cause now you’ve found what was cloudy is clear. Oh honey, there’ll be no cheering from the crowd, just two hearts beating out loud. There’ll be no parades, no TV or stage, only me till your dying day.’