It’s time for another Battle of the Bands and today I’m featuring the song If You Don’t Know Me By Now. Give a listen to the two contenders and vote which version you like best in the Comments section. I’ll post the results in 6 days!
“If You Don’t Know Me by Now” is a song written by Kenny Gamble and Leon Huff and recorded by the Philly soul musical group Harold Melvin & the Blue Notes, which became their first hit after being released as a single in 1972 topping the US R&B chart and peaking at number three on the US Pop chart.
The song was originally written for Labelle (a trio led by Patti LaBelle) but they never recorded it. Much like the issue with “I Miss You” and The Dells passing on it, the song’s composers Kenny Gamble and Leon Huff gave the song to Harold Melvin & the Blue Notes, which featured Teddy Pendergrass as lead vocalist. In addition to the single release, the song was included on their debut album I Miss You.
Harold Melvin and the Blue Notes version: THIS IS NOT PART OF THE BATTLE! Presented for your listening pleasure only.
This is such a great song and I had four strong contenders that I was considering using, including Joe Stampley’s version and Martina McBride’s very emotional rendition but decided on using the popular version by Simply Red and the reggae version by Jamaican band Zap Pow, which is also very good…plus they bring something different to the party. Here are this battle’s contenders:
Contender #1: Simply Red
It was covered by the English pop/soul band Simply Red, also becoming their best-known hit after reaching number one on the U.S. Hot 100 on July 15, 1989 and at number thirty-eight on the Hot Black Singles chart. It peaked at number two in the UK Singles Chart. It also topped the Canadian Singles Chart.
Contender #2: Zap Pow
Zap Pow was a Jamaican reggae band, whose members have included guitarist Dwight Pinkney, singer Beres Hammond and trumpeter David Madden. They existed from 1969 to 1979. This is a fantastic version of this song with some excellent trumpet work.
TIME TO VOTE! Which version do you like better and why? And when you’re done voting, please visit these other BOTB participants and check out their cool battles:
- Stephen T. McCarthy’s Battle of the Bands Blog
- Tossing it Out
- Mike’s Ramblings
- Curious as a Cathy
- The Sound of One Hand Typing
- dcrelief ~ Battle of the Bands
- Shady Dell Music & Memories
- Cherdo on the Flipside
- THE DOGLADY’S DEN
- Jingle Jangle Jungle
- Janie Junebug Righting and Editing
- Jeffrey A. Scott
- Holli’s Hoots and Hollers
- Quiet Laughter
- Your Daily Dose
- Evil Pop Tart