Raspberries – Go All The Way

I wrote this for Dave’s Turntable Talk at A Sound Day. Be on the lookout for that series at A Sound Day. He has some interesting topics. This one was on One Hit Wonders.

This song has a mixture of The Who, Beach Boys, and The Beatles… a pretty good mixture! I’m cheating a bit…The Raspberries had 4 top 40 hits but this was the only top ten hit and the song they are most known for. The song starts off with a strong Who-like loud riff then continues on with hooks galore.

When people think of The Raspberries this is the song most think of. Personally, I always thought Overnight Sensation was their best song but this one is great and the masses agreed.

The song peaked at #5 on the Billboard 100 and #5 in Canada in 1972. This song was on their self-titled debut album released in 1972. The American and Australian versions of this LP carried a scratch-and-sniff sticker with a strong raspberry scent.

They were one of the 3 great power pop bands of the early 70s. Badfinger, Big Star, and The Raspberries. Out of those three, Badfinger was the most successful but all were good. Many alternative bands that followed would list all three or at least one of them as an influence. The Raspberries released 4 albums in total between 1972 and 1975. They broke up after their last album Starting Over (#143) and the great single Overnight Sensation only charted at #18. After you listen to Go All The Way…check out Overnight Sensation…it’s an epic song.

I moved to a different town when I was 8 and in a new school (we would move back later that year) we went on a field trip to some college. Thinking back, it was a small college and the students there put on a small show for us kids. After the show, they showed us the grounds and I remember Go All The Way booming out of a room. It’s funny how music can send you back to a place and I can remember the smell also.

Eric Carmen said he was inspired by The Rolling Stone’s performance of “Let’s Spend The Night Together” on the Ed Sullivan Show when Mick Jagger had to sing it as “Let’s spend some time together.”

This was before Eric Carmen went solo and started doing ballads and songs on soundtracks such as Dirty Dancing. Carmen hit it big solo but personally, I think his music with the Raspberries was the best he did.

This song appears in the 2000 film Almost Famous but was not included on the soundtrack. It did make the soundtrack to the 2014 film Guardians Of The Galaxy, which went to #1 in America and revived many ’70s hits. My son got the soundtrack mostly for this song.

Fans of the band included John Lennon and Bruce Springsteen. They did reunite in November of 2004 and toured shortly until 2006.

Eric Carmen: “I knew then that I wanted to write a song with an explicitly sexual lyric that the kids would instantly get but the powers that be couldn’t pin me down for.”

Eric Carmen:  “I remember ‘Go All The Way’ vividly. The year was 1971. I was 21. I had been studying for years. I had spent my youth with my head between two stereo speakers listening to The Byrds and The Beatles and later on The Beach Boys – just trying to figure out what combinations of things – whether it was the fourths harmonies that The Byrds were singing on ‘Mr. Tambourine Man’ – I must have worn out 10 copies of that first Byrds album listening to it over and over, and turning off the left side and turning on the right side trying to figure out why these certain combinations of instruments and echo and harmonies made that hair on your arms stand up. I did the same thing with Beatles records, and I tried to learn construction.

Go All The Way

I never knew how complete love could be
‘Til she kissed me and said

Baby, please, go all the way
It feels so right (feels so right)
Being with you here tonight
Please, go all the way
Just hold me close (hold me close)
Don’t ever let me go

I couldn’t say what I wanted to say
‘Til she whispered, I love you

So please, go all the way
It feels so right (feels so right)
Being with you here tonight
Please, go all the way
Just hold me close (hold me close)
Don’t ever let me go

Before her love
I was cruel and mean
I had a hole in the place
Where my heart should have been

But now I’ve changed
And it feels so strange
I come alive when she does
All those things to me

And she says
(Come on) Come on
(Come on) Come on
(Come on) Come on
(Come on)
I need ya (come on)
I love ya (come on)
I need ya (come on)
Oh, oh, baby

Please, go all the way
It feels so right (feels so right)
Being with you here tonight
Please, go all the way
Just hold me close (hold me close)
Don’t ever let me go no

Author: Badfinger (Max)

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

25 thoughts on “Raspberries – Go All The Way”

  1. Absolute killer riff, and the build in tension of the ‘come on, come on’ part says far more mere than the lyrics can convey. This song is a perfect example of how to circumvent prudish censorship by using everything in the songwriters arsenal, not just the lyrics.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That riff is killer and then dissolves nicely into a Beach Boys – Beatles type of place. Yes it’s not hard to read between the lines in this one…and it wasn’t a damn thing no one could say.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Some censors felt that the sexually suggestive lyrics were risqué, which led to a ban by the BBC, although the group preformed the song live on several programs. To circumvent the censors, Carmen devised lyrics that turned around the meaning where the girl is encouraging the guy to go all the way, “I come alive when she does all those things to me, and she says (Come on) Come on”, rather than the stereotypical thing of the guy trying to make the girl have sex with him, which he felt made the song sound more innocent.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Incredible song. When at around 2:05 minutes they go, “come on (come on), come on (come on)” I feel like, “please please me, whoa yeah, like I please you.” It’s got a kickass guitar riff, it’s got some Beatles vibe. This is what truly great looks like in power pop!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It does…it starts off like The Who and ends up like The Beatles/Beach Boys….one of the most perfect power pop songs.

      Like

  4. I always had this song in my top 100 greatest singles of all time and it really is. I’m not sure though if it might have fallen out of the top 100 cuz songs tend to get pushed down and pushed out of the top 100 when you add other songs higher above it, and eventually they kind of get unintentionally displaced and demoted. Lol. But it’s such a great record. I can’t imagine how it could be any better.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It is one of my most favorite power pop songs of all time…my top one will probably always be Baby Blue by Badfinger but this one is great. But…it’s not my favorite song by them…that would be “Overnight Sensation” which I think is just epic.
      This song though has everything.

      Like

      1. Well, I actually have Badfinger higher than Go All the Way in my top 100. Day After Day is somewhere in the top 20, I think or top 30. Or at least it was at one time . I like Day after Day better than Baby Blue but they’re both just about as great.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. It’s that crunchy guitar riff that hooks me on Baby Blue…I like No Matter What also but I think Baby Blue is a little stronger but you can’t go wrong with either.
        Day After Day is so classic sounding with that slide guitar.

        Like

  5. I LOVED this song back in day, and also really liked “I Wanna Be With You” and “Let’s Pretend”. Fast forward 45 years, and Eric Carmen somehow followed me on Twitter! Sadly, he became a MAGA Trump supporter, and I got tired of his political rants so ended up unfollowing him.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. They were one of the bedrock power pop bands…I wish they would have lasted longer. Yea I don’t like hearing rants either about politics….
      Oh… I’ll be posting a new song soon…maybe this weekend from a new artist. The reason I know about him is because my son is going to college and majoring in film and he worked on the video. The guy goes by the name of “Cort”

      Liked by 1 person

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