Song of the Day: Harold Melvin & The Blue Notes, “If You Don’t Know Me By Now” #rmf

While Detroit is maybe the center of the Soul Music Universe, there are two other important centers of Soul music, Philadelphia and Memphis. Philly’s reputation as a Soul music center is largely due to Philadelphia International Records, the record label founded by songwriters and producers Kenneth Gamble and Leon Huff as well as Thom Bell, their long-time collaborator. What distinguishes Philly Soul from Motown are funk and jazz influences and rich orchestration. A good example is "If You Don’t Know Me By Now" by Harold Melvin & The Blue Notes. They were signed to Philadelphia International in 1971, and after several singles released the song in September 1972. It rose quickly on the R&B chart, peaking at #1, as well as peaking at #3 on the Hot 100, and was certified Gold by RIAA, who also chose it as one of the "Songs of the Century." It was covered by the British band Simply Red in 1989 and reached #1 on the R&B and Adult Contemporary charts that year.

19 thoughts on “Song of the Day: Harold Melvin & The Blue Notes, “If You Don’t Know Me By Now” #rmf

  1. I LOVE “If You Don’t Know Me By Now,” but I had no idea it originated with Harold Melvin & The Blue Notes. You taught me something.

    Love,
    Janie

    Like

  2. I’ve always loved this song. My dad is an even worse singer than me (and that’s saying something) but when this came on the radio he would sing. I think that’s endeared the song to me even more.

    Like

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