So You Are A Star- Remembering The Hudson Brothers

Hi. Remember The Hudson Brothers? They had a great primetime variety series on CBS-TV in the summer of 1974. "The Hudson Brothers Show" did so well as a summer replacement series that CBS put in a quick order for a Saturday morning version to debut the following month. Becoming "The Hudson Brothers Razzle Dazzle Show," the boys graced our TV sets through 1975. Mark, Brett, and Bill had been making records since 1972, originally under the name "Hudson." By the time their second album was picking up speed, Casablanca Records scurried to put together a soundtrack album to tie in with their TV success. "Hollywood Situation," from 1974, offers songs heard in both TV series as well as a comedy skit called "The Adventures of Chucky Margolis," one of the more popular segments from both series. This album, along with the TV push, scored them a hit with the Beatlesque "So You Are A Star." Even as their TV career was nearing its end, they scored a big hit in 1975 with "Rendezvous." This is from their Rocket Records debut called "Ba-Fa." As an FYI, I should mention that Bill is the father of actress Kate Hudson (he was married to Goldie Hawn at the time). I haven't heard much from Brett since, but Mark has been busy collaborating with, producing, and touring with Ringo Starr in recent years. Their songs were all solid AM pop material, mostly penned by the three brothers themselves. I'm sharing mp3's of "Hollywood Situation" and "Ba-Fa" at my blog,  Check it out! daddykin

Hudson Brothers

You bet I remember the Hudson Brothers! They were the Marx Brothers of rock and roll, and just like those siblings, all had tremendous musical talent. I still have the Hollywood Situation LP. Of course 'So You Are A Star' is the track best known for this LP, but there are other gems on this album with a lot more grit and punch. The brothers shared writing credits for all the songs on the record. The title track is one of the most underrated and underplayed rock songs of the 1970's. The words and heavy sound of the song is not often heard in music that is considered bubblegum. As is another favorite of mine 'Three of Us', another heavier song with a killer guitar solo. Even with such a bubble-gum sounding title, 'Coochie Coochie Coo' it is a great rock and roll number, with a gutty vocal by Mark. 'Cry Cry Cry' gives Eric Carmen a run for his money with its mixture of sweetness and hard rock downbeat. Other songs have distinct melodies and are well crafted. The comedy track with Chucky Margolis (one of my favorite segments in the TV shows) ends with a joke of a 'trippier' kind, but still plays well amongst younger listeners. All in all an exceptional album for such an underrated group.

With such talent, why didn't the Hudson Brothers continue with their success? I think the Hudson Brothers' problem was the industry. It usually happens to most performers who gain success from television shows. The Monkees, the Osmonds, Sonny & Cher and others all fell victim to the demands of television executives who felt that acting stupid and putting on dumb costumes in front of the camera is a sure recipe for success. Instead, it only served to obscure their obvious musical talents in the public's mind. Anyway, the Hudson Brothers are well remembered in this music fan's mind.