5th track from “Robbie Dupree” (1980). For my money, “Hot Rod Hearts” is even better than Robbie’s bigger hit “Steal Away.” One reason is the awesomely efficient lyrics. Just consider these words from the first verse:
Cheek to cheek
Sweatshirt to sweater
It may not seem like much, but that’s kinda the point. And when you’re talking about young love, well, there’s absolutely no cooler rhyme anywhere!
Plus, there’s the killer harmony. This is the best song Michael McDonald never sang backing vocals on. I give kudos to Bill Labounty, a vocal and songwriting legend himself, who manages to channel an even greater legend. How does that work exactly? Who knows, but this is gold, Jerry, gold, I tell ya!
And best of all (for me at least), I was there. I was there in the summer of 1980, toiling away on my first job when this was a shiny new song sharing radio bandwidth with the likes of “Real Love” by The Doobies, “Biggest Part Of Me” by Ambrosia, “I Can’t Tell You Why” by the Eagles, and “Ride Like The Wind” by Christopher Cross. The smoothness was just so…well, smooth. And palpable. And I remember it like it was yesterday. OMG, like, how incredibly lucky can one person be? 🙂