On this day in music history: June 14, 1975 - “Rockin’ Chair” by Gwen McCrae hits #1 on the Billboard R&B singles chart for 1 week, also peaking at #9 on the Hot 100 on August 2, 1975. Written by Clarence Reid and Willie Clarke, it is the biggest hit for the Florida born R&B vocalist. The song is originally written for singer Betty Wright, but when she passes on it, co-writer/producer Clarence Reid records a version of it. When Reid’s version is shelved, Gwen McCrae (the wife of fellow TK Records artist George McCrae (“Rock Your Baby”), is given the opportunity to record it. Using Reid’s already recorded track, McCrae overdubs her vocals on to the multi-track master, with her husband George also contributing background vocals. Released on TK’s Cat Records subsidiary, it quickly becomes a smash on the R&B chart, crossing over to the pop chart two months later. “Rockin’ Chair” sells over a million copies in the US alone. The track is also sampled numerous times by Hip Hop artists, most notably on Blahzay Blahzay’s 1995 single “Danger”.
This issue is dedicated to all things French. Pictured is French interior design and art curator Emilie Bonaventure’s Parisian apartment: Swiss-designed chest of drawers; travertine table by Angela Mangiarotti; 1950s chairs; ’70s brass lamp; wallpaper by David Hicks for Cole & Son from Au Fil des Couleurs; 19th-century plate warmer.