Barry Manilow – Looks Like We Made It

First Hit #1: July 23, 1977

This is a strange mess of a song. It seems like it should be sad, about people who should have moved on from their old relationship contemplating rekindling that, in spite of the rest of their lives making that a terrible idea. Yet, the chorus is triumphant, which seems like an odd choice since it’s not triumphant in context. It’s about the people in the song having made it and having been successful, which is good, but then they still can’t get over each other anyway, which is bad. I can’t help but think the desire for a hit kind of overrode what the song was actually about, which doesn’t result in something bad so much as something very confused. The person writing the lyrics and the person composing the song seem to have contradictory goals.

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One Response to Barry Manilow – Looks Like We Made It

  1. RBerman says:

    Great point about the lyrical/musical disconnect. Lyricist Will Jennings, who has a bazillion hits and awards to his name, admits how often this song has been misunderstood, with no apparent awareness (perhaps he’s just being tactful instead of blaming Ron Dante, the producer) that it’s the fault of his lyric being wedded to such a bouyantly produced chorus. I could imagine the same chorus melody, sung and produced much more pensively (a la Manilow’s own “Weekend in New England” for instance), yielding a completely different effect. Instead, the desire to replicate the optimistic “#1 HIT!!!” feel of “I Write the Songs” sabotages the regretful message.

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