The music world lost another good one this week with the death of singer-songwriter Andrew Gold. Although he was best known for sugary pop hits such as “Lonely Boy” and “Thank You For Being a Friend,” Gold was an ace songwriter, musician, arranger and vocalist, who created a solid body of solo work and with other artists. In addition to his acclaimed debut album, Andrew Gold, other fine LPs included All This and Heaven Too and What’s Wrong with This Picture? Besides his own recordings, Gold collaborated with the likes of Linda Ronstadt, Art Garfunkel, Freddy Mercury, and Stephen Bishop.
Earlier this year I bought a copy of the expanded version of Gold’s 1978 album All This and Heaven Too, which includes some instrumental outtakes and a live version of the Beatles’ “Dr. Robert.” In addition to hits “Thank You For Being a Friend” (of which there are two versions here) and “Never Let Her Slip Away” (also a hit for the UK band Undercover in the early 90s) the other tracks on the album still sound superb over thirty years later. This was one of those late 70s pop classics that never fully received the acclaim it deserved.
Reading the obituaries of Gold, I was surprised, and disappointed, to find no mention of two groups he once belonged to, Bryndle and Wax. Bryndle — composed of Gold, Karla Bonoff, Wendy Waldman, and Kenny Edwards — formed in 1970 but never got around to releasing an album before breaking up and the members going their separate ways. Gold, Bonoff, and Waldman all recorded solo albums during the following two decades, but the group finally found time to reconvene and record the “debut” Bryndle album in 1995, a wonderful collection of songs highlighted by the members’ shimmering vocal harmonies. In the 1980s Gold also teamed up with 10cc’s Graham Gouldman to form Wax, a group that recorded several underrated albums.