Chi-Lites – Oh Girl

I hope everyone had a great Christmas Eve, Christmas, and Boxing day. My first non-holiday post since last week…we will start off with the smooth ool soul sound of the Chi-Lites.

This song is a perfect soul/pop song. I need to dive into the Chi-Lites catalog more because the two I know from them the most are this one and Have You Seen Her?

I never knew how to prounce their name until I found this bit of info…you pronounce it Shy-Lites“… This song could be the definition of 1970s soul music. I never knew for sure if it was “shy” Chi like Chicago.

Oh Girl was written and sung by group leader Eugene Record. The other three Chi-Lites  contributed harmonies. Eugene wasn’t enamored of the song after he wrote it but it soon would prove to be his most successful. Eugene, Robert “Squirrel” Lester, and Clarence Johnson formed the doo wop group the Chanteurs in the late ’50s.

In 1964…they changed their name to Marshall & the Chi-Lites, adding the “C” as tribute to their hometown Chicago. By the end of the year, Johnson had left the group and the remaining quartet shortened their name to the Chi-Lites. Over the next four years, the group continued to perform and release independent singles, with Record slowly emerging as the group’s lead singer, songwriter, and producer.

The song peaked at #1 in the Billboard 100, #1 in the R&B Charts, #9 in Canada, and #3 in the UK in 1972.

Members have come and gone in the band. Eugene Record passed away in 2005. The band is still out there performing with Marshall Thompson as the lone original member.

I remember in the 1980s that Paul Young did a really good version of this song. Others to cover this song was Leo Sayer and  Smokey Robinson.

Eugene Record: “I gave Carl Davis 7 songs on a tape and he called me to say there’s a #1 tune on there. I named them all before ‘Oh Girl’ and I thought he was kidding.”

Oh Girl

Oh, girl
I’d be in trouble if you left me now
‘Cause I don’t know where to look for love
I just don’t know how

Oh, girl
How I depend on you
To give me love when I need it
Right on time you would always be

All my friends call me a fool
They say, “Let the woman take care of you”
So I try to be hip and think like the crowd
But even the crowd can’t help me now, oh…oh…oh…oh…oh…oh…

Oh, girl
Tell me what am I gonna do
I know I’ve got a guilty face
Girl, I feel so out of place, oh, yeah…yeah…

Don’t know where to go, who to see, yeah

Oh, girl
I guess I better go
I can save myself a lot of useless tears
Girl, I’ve gotta get away from here

Oh, girl
Pain will double if you leave me now
‘Cause I don’t know where to look for love
And I don’t, I don’t know how

Oh, yeah
Mmm…hmm…

Oh, girl
Why do I love you so, yeah
Mmm…
Better be on my way, I can’t stay

Have you ever seen such a helpless man
Oh…oh…no…