Climax Blues Band – I Love You

This is a very likable ballad that was a big hit in 1981. It peaked at #12 in the Billboard 100. This song developed a large following and continues to get airplay on many radio stations. The legendary Nicky Hopkins played on this track.

Derek Holt who was the bass player wrote the song. None of the band liked it. They would not even tour to support it. He would have the last laugh as this came from an interview with Derek.

Derek: Up until the ‘Flying the Flag’ album, we used to split songwriting royalties four equal ways as we were all credited with writing songs. For this album, we had a meeting to discuss starting to have songwriting credit split separately. I lost the argument to keep it all the same as before and ended up gaining 100% of my own song. Ironic!

When the song became a hit (also it was the start of me then becoming a lead singer which worried the others), we had a major U.S. tour booked but both Colin and Pete didn’t want to “go on the road to promote my career”. So even with a song high up on the U.S. charts, they actually chose not to back me up instead of just being grateful for another hit. I never got to tour and sing the song live so I feel slightly cheated out of performing it. But it became a really popular radio song and of course, a lot of people fell in love because of it. I also get emails from people who actually got married because of it even had it played at their “first dance” at their reception.


From Songfacts.

Bass player Derek Holt wrote this song. He told us: “It was about meeting my first wife, meeting the lady that’s going to encourage me to do what I did best, and that was be a musician, with no qualms about it. I used to go away from home, used to leave her behind, and used to come back. I was a hippie, a drinking hippie with really long hair. We had a great time – I’m meeting my wife since then I’ve never looked back. You know, pretty much out living a dream, because, ‘Ooo, I love you.’ You could say it’s for one person, but it’s quite generic. At that particular moment in time, everything was right. You know, usually, songs appear from nowhere, and that one appeared in a couple of hours. Why I have no idea, but it did. And I guess the influence was the person I was with at the time.”

Holt: “That song was written in my house. After a couple of hours just sitting in my studio I came up with this song I Love You – words, solo, drums, the whole thing. And I thought, ‘Well, it’s a lovely song.’ We had a guy come over from L.A., an American producer called John Ryan, who arrived in Stafford to do some pre-production on an album that we were going to record in Los Angeles called Flying The Flag. So he came to England and spent probably 2 weeks with us going through all the tracks that we’d got. And he said, ‘Does anybody have any more songs?’ I’d already played my song to the band and they didn’t really like it; it was a little bit too lovey, so I said to John Ryan, ‘I’ve got this song called ‘I Love You.” He said, ‘Well, play it for me.’ So I plugged in my cassette, played it, then he said, ‘That’s a hit.’ Just like that. Everybody just sort of looked at each other and said, ‘Oh, bloody hell.’ So anyway, we ended up going to Los Angeles, and that song was recorded with just me and the drummer because the other two guys weren’t really into the song. So it’s me, the drummer, and a fantastic keyboard player named Nicky Hopkins. He’s since died, unfortunately. He was the sort of legendary keyboard player, he played with The Stones and lots of people like that, and he was great. So it was me, Nicky Hopkins and the drummer in the studio. We all sat down together and played the basic backing track. I then put the bass on it, sang it, did all the harmonies, then I got Pete – the guitarist – to play the lead solo, which was the solo that I wanted to be played. So he played the solo, because he was the guitarist – reluctantly. Then John Ryan said, ‘This song needs some strings.’ So he got a string section in at whatever cost it was, which also pissed the other guys in the band off to think that the strings were a big part of my song. Then Warner Brothers arrived to hear all the tracks, and everybody was blown away by ‘I Love You,’ this song that I believed in, the producer believed in, but none of the other guys did, and it became a hit. And it’s just unbelievable that nobody else in the band recognized it other than the producer and me. So the story’s quite phenomenal, really. And it’s also probably one of the reasons why the band split up in the end because they weren’t into playing it live, and I was. The song was in the charts, we had the tour booked, and two guys in the band said, ‘We’re not going to go to America to promote Derek Holt’s career.’ How’s that for faith?”


I Love You

When I was younger man I hadn’t a care
Foolin’ around, hitting the town, growing my hair
You came along and stole my heart when you entered my life
Ooh babe you got what it takes so I made you my wife

Since then I never looked back
It’s almost like living a dream
And ooh I love you

You came along from far away and found me here
I was playin’ around, feeling down, hittin’ the beer
You picked me up from off the floor and gave me a smile
You said you’re much too young, your life ain’t begun, let’s walk for awhile

And as my head was spinnin’ ’round
I gazed into your eyes
And thought ooh I want you

Thank you babe for being a friend
And shinin’ your light in my life
‘Cause ooh I need you

As my head was comin’ round
I gazed into your eyes
And thought ooh I want you

Thanks again for being my friend
And straightenin’ out my life
‘Cause ooh I need you

Since then I never looked back
It’s almost like livin’ a dream
Oh I got you

If ever a man had it all
It would have to be me
And ooh I love you

Author: Badfinger (Max)

Power Pop fan, Baseball fan, old movie and tv show fan... and a songwriter, bass and guitar player.

One thought on “Climax Blues Band – I Love You”

  1. Lovely song, wish it got more airplay on oldies radio. You’d never guess it was the same band that did “Couldn’t get it right” if you didn’t know it, would you? Both excellent, but totally different vibes

    Liked by 1 person

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