Chicago - If You Leave Me Now - 1977




"If You Leave Me Now" is a song by the American rock group Chicago, from their album Chicago X. It was written and sung by bass player Peter Cetera and released as a single on July 31, 1976. It is also the title of a Chicago compilation album released by Columbia Records (Columbia 38590) in 1983.


The single topped the Billboard Hot 100 on October 23, 1976, and stayed there for two weeks, making it the first number one hit for the group as well as hitting number one on the Easy Listening charts. "If You Leave Me Now" was also Chicago's biggest hit internationally, topping the charts in other countries such as the UK, Australia, Ireland, Canada, and Netherlands. In the UK it maintained the number one position for three weeks. It was one of only five "non-disco" songs to make it to number one in the US in a nine-month period of 1976. According to writer Zachary Houle of PopMatters, "The song was so pervasive on radio upon its release that, reportedly, those tuning in in New York could hear the song playing on four different stations, each with varying formats, simultaneously."




Personnel:


Peter Cetera – lead and backing vocals, bass

Robert Lamm – Fender Rhodes electric piano

Danny Seraphine – drums

Laudir de Oliveira – congas, shakers, finger cymbals, wind chimes

Jimmy Pankow – trombone

Lee Loughnane – trumpet

Walt Parazaider – woodwinds

James William Guercio – lead and rhythm acoustic guitar

Jimmie Haskell – string, French horn orchestrations

French horns played by Gene Sherry and George Hyde




According to Mike Stahl, Chicago's live audio engineer during the 1970s, Terry Kath would always "quietly" walk off stage when the band was about to perform "If You Leave Me Now" because he was not present in the studio when the band recorded the song, and since he wasn't on the recording "he would never, ever play it live." However, recordings exist of Kath playing bass on the song during the band's 1977 tour.







Lyrics


If you leave me now, you'll take away the biggest part of me

Ooohh no

Baby please don't go

And if you leave me now, you'll take away the very heart of me

Ooohh no

Baby please don't go

Ooohh girl

I just want you to stay


A love like ours is love that's hard to find

How could we let it slip away

We've come too far to leave it all behind

How could we end it all this way

When tomorrow comes and we'll both regret

The things we said today


A love like ours is love that's hard to find

How could we let it slip away

We've come too far to leave it all behind

How could we end it all this way

When tomorrow comes and we'll both regret

The things we said today


If you leave me now, you'll take away the biggest part of me

Ooohh no

Baby please don't go

Ooohh girl

I just got to have you by my side

Ooohh no

Baby please don't go

Ooohh mama

I just got to have your loving here

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