Ask “Mr. Music”
Jerry Osborne


DEAR JERRY: While watching a disco-era scene during an episode of (I think) “The Simpsons,” they played a little bit of “Baby Come Back.”

This is a song that I liked at lot in the '70s, but haven't heard it anywhere since it came out. In fact, until that show, I had completely forgotten about it.

What is the name of the artist? Was it a one-hit wonder act?
—George DeCosta, Henderson, Nev.

DEAR GEORGE: Made famous by a group known only as Player, “Baby Come Back” (RSO 879) is one of the top hits of the late '70s, reaching No. 1 and surviving for eight months on the charts.

Player cannot be labeled a one-hit wonder band, since they followed “Baby Come Back” with five other hits. One, “This Time I'm in It for Love,” also made the Top 10.

DEAR JERRY: In one of your February columns, you addressed a question about “Desire,” by the Trophies.

What you wrote made me very anxious to hear that doo-wop song, but I haven't been able to find any CDs that feature “Desire.”

In searching Rhino Records, Time-Life Music, and other web sites, this track doesn't seem to be listed at all.

Do you know of any CD with that song that is currently available for purchase?

—Bill Roberson, Huntsville, Ala. DEAR BILL: Other than finding the original Challenge single, I know of only one way to acquire “Desire.”

As you'll recall from the previous column on this tune, the Trophies are none other than Rick Nelson, Glen Campbell, and Jerry Fuller — the lead vocalist on “Desire” being Campbell.

In keeping with their desire to be comprehensive, Bear Family, the German reissue label, added this elusive track to their lavish, 6-CD boxed set, “Ricky Nelson — The American Dream” (BCD-16196).

Since you're online, here is the Bear Family web site:

Among its 180 tracks is everything Nelson recorded for Verve and Imperial, along with his extracurricular and uncredited session work, such as with the Trophies.

For fans of Rick's early recordings, “The American Dream” is essential. However, the investment may be a bit steep if it is only “Desire” you desire.

DEAR JERRY: One of my favorite TV shows is “CSI — Crime Scene Investigation,” and their opening theme song is starting to get to me. It appears to be titled “Who Are You.”

I had never heard this song until they started using it, and they never identify the artist.

Please tell me all there is to know about “Who Are You.”

—Randy McGill, Franklin Park, Ill.

DEAR RANDY: For you, as well as for another CSI devotee, Elizabeth A. Busch, of Harvest, Ala., here is what we found at the crime scene.

“Who Are You” is, appropriately enough, by the Who. A Top 15 hit from 1978 (MCA 40948), the popularity of CSI has certainly created a new generation of customers for this infectious tune. You will find “Who Are You” on several different Who albums and CDs, most notably “Who Are You” (MCA 3050).

IZ ZAT SO? Liverpool-born Peter Beckett got his start in a band named Palladin. He left Palladin and came to America. Once here he joined Friends (the group, not the TV cast).

Eventually, Friends evolved into Skyband. Beckett's next musical adventure came with the formation of Player, and a journey to the top of the charts with “Baby Come Back.”

Notice the common thread here? All of Peter Beckett's bands chose one-word names.

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