mark craney

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On this day in music history: August 28, 1978 - “I Just Wanna Stop” by Gino Vannelli is released. Written by Ross Vannelli, it is the thirteenth single and biggest hit for the Canadian born singer, songwriter and musician. Vannelli is one of three brothers born into a musical family in Montreal. By his teens, Gino is writing songs and performing which lead to him signing with RCA Records in 1970 just after graduating from high school. Released under the stage name “Vann-Elli”, his debut single “Gina Bold” (#92 Can) scrapes the bottom of the Canadian singles chart, he puts his music career plans on hold to attend college and study music. Leaving Canada for New York City, Vannelli is unable to find steady work there or attract any record label attention, so he and his brother Joe go to Los Angeles in a last ditch attempt to land a record deal. The pair go to A&M Records in Hollywood and stand out in front of the gate, hoping to audition for the label. As luck would have it, they’re able to attract label co-founder Herb Alpert’s attention who invite them on to the lot to audition for him. Alpert likes what he hears immediately and signs Gino to a contract with A&M. His first album “Crazy Life” released in 1973 fails to generate any hits, but the follow up “Powerful People” in 1974 spins off his first chart single “People Gotta Move” (#22 Pop). The song also leads to Gino making his first US television appearance on Soul Train in early 1975, making him only the second white musician to appear on the show. Releasing three more albums over the next few years, Vannelli experiences his biggest success with his sixth album “Brother To Brother” in 1978. Produced by Gino and his brothers Joe and Ross, all of the songs are also written by Gino and Ross. The mid tempo blue eyed soul song “I Just Wanna Stop” is written by Ross Vannelli. Recorded at Davlen Sound Studios in Hollywood in mid 1978, the track features Yellowjackets bassist Jimmy Haslip, Carlos Rios (guitar), Mark Craney (drums), Joe Vannelli (electric piano, synthesizers), Manolo Badrena of Weather Report (percussion), Ernie Watts (saxophone), Julia Tillman Waters, Maxine Willard Waters, Ross Vannelli and Stephanie Spruill (background vocals). Issued as the first single from “Brother To Brother”, “I Just Wanna Stop” quickly becomes a multi-format smash hitting #1 in Vannelli’s native Canada, and peaking at #4 on the Billboard Hot 100 on December 9, 1978, #4 on the Adult Contemporary chart, and #21 on the R&B singles chart. The success of “Stop” propels the accompanying album into the top twenty on the Top 200, and to Platinum status in the US and Canada.