You Take My Breath Away by Rex Smith (Columbia, 1979)

Teen idol Rex Smith hit the Top 10 in the summer of 79 with this dreamy ballad. It was from the soundtrack of a coming-of-age NBC TV movie called Sooner or Later, which is basically about Rex as an upcoming musician and the 13 year old that falls in love with him. Somehow it hinges oh her lying to him and saying she’s 16, as if that would hold up in a court case against Rex. But I digress..

I’m sure every young girl who saw this movie pretended she was the moony-eyed Jessie looking up at Rex hoping she was the one who took his breath away, which probably accounted for its popularity and Gold single status. Every time I hear this song I think of Vicki, the older daughter of a woman who babysat my brother and was a few years older than me. Whenever I would go over to house I would go up to her room which was a converted attic. We sit on the floor and she would give me all of her Grease trading card doubles. She would put this 45 on her portable record player and stare at her Rex Smith. I would watch this puzzled yet fascinated, this girl so moved by this song, just like poor Jessie, irregardless of cheesy sentiments, like ‘you’re every song I sing, you’re the music that I play” and unable to take her eyes off a guy who’s hair was every bit as long and feathery as hers.

I wonder what she think now if she heard that song again. If you hear this again Vicki, tell me what you think…

As an aside, take a look at the Columbia logo on the 45. The C resembles Pac-Man and the A resembles one of the ghosts. Did this logo come out in 1979, a year before Pac-Man debuted. Is that why Pac-Man Fever was released on the Columbia label in 1982?

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