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Livin’ It Up (Friday Night) – Bell and James

Bell and James album features Livin it Up (Friday night)Today’s hit is a completely forgotten one-hit wonder that should be resurrected in a movie soundtrack or remade by Lady Gaga or Black Eyed Peas. “Livin’ It Up (Friday Night)” by Bell and James is a quintessential party song. It’s about nothing more than busting out this Friday night.

This song could have been recorded by The SOS Band who gave the world “Take Your Time (Do it Right).” It’s another song with unnecessary parentheses in the title. Someone, please, explain to me why the title of this song couldn’t have been “Livin’ It Up Friday Night” instead of “Livin’ It Up (Friday Night).” I think all songwriters should be given a quota that they can only use one parenthetical song title in their career in the same way that writers should only be alloted a single use of a semi-colon; like this one I’m using right now.

Yet again, I digress.

Bell and James are like Hall and Oates. But a little more disco-ey. With double the mustaches of Hall and Oates, which somehow makes them more powerful.

Over a two-year period between 1978 and 1980, Leroy Bell and Casey James released three albums as Bell and James. Only a single song charted and that’s the brilliantly infectious, magnificently joyous “Livin’ It Up (Friday Night)” that reached #15 on the Billboard Top 40 in 1979 making Bell and James a one-hit wonder.

Listen to “Livin’ It Up (Friday Night)” by Bell and James

Livin’ it up, livin’ it up
Oh, yeah, Friday night
Livin’ it up, livin’ it up at last
Living it up, livin’ it up
Oh, yeah, Friday night
Livin’ it up, livin’ it up at last

Only on a Friday
Never on a Sunday
Never on a Monday

How did these guys get their chance in the limelight? Connections, of course. Leroy Bell’s uncle is Thom Bell and if you know anything about 1970s soul music, you realize Thom Bell was a genius songwriter and producer who contributed significantly to the success of The Stylistics, The Delfonics and, my personal favorite, The Spinners. These bands all had multiple hits, but the backing group for many of these Philly soul bands was none other than MFSB, who are one-hit wonders for “TSOP (The Sound of Philadelphia),” which was a number one single AND also is guilty of the non-essential parenthetical song title.

It’s more proof that everything in one-hit wonder land is connected.

Listen to more disco one-hit wonders

Buy “Livin’ It Up (Friday Night)” by Bell and James

Written by

I'm an obsessive music collector, cataloger, commenter and trivia nut. Sometimes I'm even a listener. One-hit wonders have always been a guilty pleasure.

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3 Responses to "Livin’ It Up (Friday Night) – Bell and James"

  1. Tonia says:

    Even though I was in the 5th grade and could not live it up on a Friday night I still liked this song.

  2. Michael Waterman says:

    I loved it too, Tonia. A forgotten disco classic. Although the extended version I posted gets a little tedious. It’s a much better 3-minute song.

  3. hm insulators says:

    Not forgotten in Phoenix–I think both KOOL-FM 94.5 and KAJM (“Mega 104.3”) play it.

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