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by Jim Allen

June 9, 2014

The Burt Bacharach/Hal David Songbook

by Jim Allen  |  June 9, 2014

Without Burt Bacharach and Hal David, two Jewish kids from New York City, pop history as we know it would have sounded very different. Composer Bacharach and lyricist David are best known for the phenomenal string of hits they penned for Dionne Warwick in the '60s, but their output extends far beyond "Walk on By," "I Say a Little Prayer," et al. The key to the Bacharach/David approach was the way they seamlessly and infectiously turned musical and lyrical conventions upside down. Their cool, classy sound ended up all over the radio in the '60s and '70s -- Tom Jones' "What's New, Pussycat," The Carpenters' "Close to You," B.J. Thomas' "Raindrops Keep Falling on My Head," Dusty Springfield's "The Look of Love" and Herb Alpert's "This Guy's in Love With You" are among the dozens of hits that bore the pair's sophisticated signature. And that's not even mentioning the tunes Burt and Hal penned outside their partnership, with other collaborators; modern-day pop practitioners from Adele to Rumer carry the Bacharach/David influence forward. There's never a bad time to revisit the songwriting supermen's colossal catalog, including classics they wrote together and apart.

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