First Hit #1: January 25, 1975
Karen Carpenter had a pleasing voice, and she does an okay cover of Please Mr. Postman. As a B-side, it would have been an enjoyable little novelty that you could listen to once, and then never spin again. As something to play in concert, it’d be a fun little aside and part of a wholly enjoyable night of music. As a version of Please Mr. Postman that was popular, it pales in comparison to The Marvelettes.
The inferiority of this version – and it’s very much inferior – isn’t really Karen Carpenter’s fault, she does a pretty good lead vocal. I’m not sure it’s better than Gladys Horton’s original take, but it’s pretty good. The rest of the song really can’t stack up to it, however. The arrangement is thin, the vocal harmonies provided by Richard Carpenter are weak and indistinct, and while the song does sound like it was fun to record, it also sounds like it was intended as a goof to let off some steam. Great idea, but as a number one hit, it’s disappointing.