The original version of this song appeared on a Righteous Brothers Album in 1975 called “The son’s of Mrs Righteous” and released as a single without chart success. It was then recorded as an instrumental and included on the album Disco Party by Percy Faith Orchestra in 1975. It was written by Willie Harry Wilson.
In June 1978 South African all girl band Clout released a cover version that entered the UK charts at #64 and reached #2 staying in the charts for 15 weeks. It went on to sell over 500,000 copies alone in the UK. It became a big hit in Europe reaching #1 in Germany, Denmark and Ireland, #2 in Switzerland, The Netherlands and Belgium. It also hit #1 in their native South Africa, Australia and New Zealand. It made #67 in the US.
This Rock Pop track was produced by Grahame Beggs.
The story from the lyrics is about Sam being lonely and waiting for a girl to come home to him. From afar another girl wishes she was with him and really wants him to know she is willing to be a substitute whenever he needs it.
In the Righteous Brothers version the lyric “Sam” was “Girl”. Gloria Gaynor released a version of the song around the same time as Clout in the US but the single was flipped over and the B side “I Will Survive” became a massive international hit instead.
This is one of my favorite singles of all time. It evokes memories of a hot summer but also reminds me of the passing of my Grand Mother, a time when life was changing for me as a 16/17 year old leaving school 12 months before and 6 months into my working life.