“The Closer I Get to You” is a romantic ballad performed by American jazz, soul, R&B, and folk singer-songwriter Roberta Flack and American soul musician Donny Hathaway. The song was written by James Mtume and Reggie Lucas, two former members of Miles Davis’ band, who were members of Flack’s band at the time. Produced by Atlantic Records, the song was released on Flack’s 1977 album Blue Lights in the Basement, and as a single in 1978. It became a major crossover hit, becoming Flack’s biggest commercial hit after her success with her 1973 solo single, “Killing Me Softly with His Song”. Originally set as a solo-single, Flack’s manager, David Franklin, suggested a duet with Hathaway, which resulted in the finished work.
“The Closer I Get to You” spent two weeks as number one on the Hot Soul Singles chart in April 1978, and peaked at number two on the Billboard Hot 100. The song charted in the top ten spots for fourteen weeks in Canada and one week in France. It was eventually certified gold in the United States on May 1978, and became one of their most familiar duets.
Origin of the band’s name
Leigh Nash described the origin of the band’s name on the Late Show with David Letterman:
It comes from a book by C.S. Lewis called Mere Christianity. A little boy asks his father if he can get a sixpence—a very small amount of English currency—to go and get a gift for his father. The father gladly accepts the gift and he’s really happy with it, but he also realizes that he’s not any richer for the transaction. C.S. Lewis was comparing that to his belief that God has given him, and us, the gifts that we possess, and to serve Him the way we should, we should do it humbly—realizing how we got the gifts in the first place.
— Leigh Nash
Christina Judith Perri (born August 19, 1986) is an American singer and songwriter from Bucks County, Pennsylvania. Her debut single “Jar of Hearts” charted after it was featured on the Fox television show So You Think You Can Dance in 2010. The single went on to sell over 3 million copies in the United States and was a hit around the world. In the UK, it reached number three on the charts and spent over 3 months in the UK Top 40. A few months later, Perri released her first extended play, The Ocean Way Sessions.
After “Jar of Hearts” began to gather a large amount of attention, Perri signed a record deal with Atlantic Records. Her debut album, Lovestrong, was released on May 10, 2011. In 2012, she wrote and recorded “A Thousand Years” for the film The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn – Part 1 (2011) and it appears on the accompanying soundtrack. The song went on to sell over 4 million copies in the United States, being certified 4× platinum. Her second EP, A Very Merry Perri Christmas, was released in October 2012. Her second studio album, Head or Heart, was released on April 1, 2014. Its lead single, “Human”, was released on November 18, 2013.
Christina Perri – A Thousand Years [Official Music Video]
“Time After Time” is a song by American singer-songwriter Cyndi Lauper. It was recorded by Lauper for her debut studio album, She’s So Unusual (1983), with Rob Hyman (co-writer and founding member of the rock band The Hooters) contributing backing vocals. The track was produced by Rick Chertoff and released as a single on January 27, 1984. It was the second single to be released from the album and became Lauper’s first #1 hit in the U.S. The song was written in the album’s final stages, after “Girls Just Wanna Have Fun”, “She Bop” and “All Through the Night” had been written. The writing began with the title, which Lauper had seen in TV Guide magazine, referring to the 1979 science fiction film Time After Time.
“Time After Time” is composed of simple keyboard-synth chords, bright, jangly guitars, clock-ticking percussion, and elastic bassline, and lyrically is a love song of devotion. Most music critics gave the song positive reviews, with most commending the song for being a solid and memorable love song, as well as considering the track Lauper’s best song. The song has been selected as one of the Best Love Songs of All Time by many media outlets, including Rolling Stone, Nerve, MTV and many others. “Time After Time” was also nominated for a Grammy Award for Song of the Year at the 1985 edition. The song was a success on the charts, becoming her first number-one single on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 chart on June 9, 1984, and remaining there for two weeks. Worldwide, the song is her most commercially successful single, after “Girls Just Want to Have Fun”, and reached number three on the UK Singles Chart and number six on the ARIA Singles Chart. The song is also known for its numerous covers by a wide range of artists, including Miles Davis, who recorded an instrumental version for his 1985 album, You’re Under Arrest, and Eva Cassidy, whose cover of the song appears on her posthumous album of the same name. R&B singer Lil Mo also covered the song for her 2001 debut album Based on a True Story. An acoustic version was sung by Lauper with Sarah McLachlan on her 2005 album, The Body Acoustic. Lauper has performed the song live with Patti LaBelle twice in 1985 and 2004 and with Sarah McLachlan at the American Music Awards of 2005, as well as with rapper Lil’ Kim in 2009. The song has been featured numerous times in popular culture including the films Napoleon Dynamite, View From the Top, Strictly Ballroom, Up In the Air, John Tucker Must Die, Prom Night, Clockstoppers, Ghosts of Girlfriends Past, Sunny, Paranoia, Good Deeds, Nebraska, Irresistible, This Is Where I Leave You, Brown Sugar, and Romy and Michelle’s High School Reunion as well as the television shows Cold Case, Stars in Their Eyes, Smallville, Veronica Mars, The Simpsons, The New Adventures of Old Christine, Ugly Betty, EastEnders, Accused, Parks and Recreation, Atop the Fourth Wall, Psych, Defiance, Grey’s Anatomy, Glee and My Name is Earl.
Toni Michele Braxton (born October 7, 1967) is an American R&B singer-songwriter, pianist, record producer, actress, television personality, and philanthropist. Rising to fame in the beginning of the 1990s, Braxton quickly established herself as an R&B icon and became one of the best-selling female artists of the 1990s decade, garnering her honorific titles such as the “Queen of R&B” and being recognized as one of the most outstanding voices of this generation.
Her self-titled debut studio album was released in 1993. It sold over 10 million copies worldwide, spawning such hits as “Another Sad Love Song” and “Breathe Again” and earning Braxton three Grammy Awards, including Best New Artist. Released in 1996, her second album, Secrets, continued her acclaim and mega success, selling over 15 million copies globally. The album spawned the Billboard Hot 100 No. 1 hits “You’re Makin’ Me High” and “Un-Break My Heart”, which became her signature song and the second top-selling single of all time by a female artist. Braxton won two Grammy Awards for Secrets. In 2000, her third album, The Heat, was released. It sold over 4 million copies and included the hit single “He Wasn’t Man Enough”, for which Braxton won a Grammy Award. She then released three more studio albums – More Than A Woman (2002), Libra (2005) and Pulse (2010), experiencing personal and label conflicts in between these releases. In 2014, Braxton and long-time collaborator Babyface released a duet album entitled Love, Marriage & Divorce, which earned the duo a Grammy Award in early 2015.
Throughout her career, Braxton has sold over 67 million records, including 41 million albums, worldwide. She has won seven Grammy Awards, nine Billboard Music Awards, seven American Music Awards and several other awards. Aside from her success in music, Braxton has become a television executive producer and personality, being involved in the 7th season of the reality show Dancing with the Stars and in a reality series entitled Braxton Family Values, where Braxton is Executive Producer and star since 2011 on WE tv. Braxton is also an Executive Producer of the spin-off show, starring her younger sister, Tamar-The Tamar & Vince show on WE tv. On September 18, 2011, Braxton was inducted into the Georgia Music Hall of Fame.