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"Call Me" is a global hit song by the American new wave band Blondie. Released in early 1980 as a single, "Call Me" was #1 for six weeks running on theBillboard Hot 100 chart, where it became the band's biggest single and second #1.[1] It also hit #1 in the UK and Canada, where it became their fourth and second chart-topper respectively. In the year-end charts of 1980 it was Billboard's #1 hit and RPM's #3.[4][5]

ContentsEdit

 [hide*1 Song and single information

Song and single information[edit]Edit

The song was the main theme song of the film American Gigolo. European disco producer Giorgio Moroder originally asked Stevie Nicks from Fleetwood Mac to help compose and perform a song for the soundtrack, but she declined (as a recently signed contract with Modern Records prevented her from working with Moroder). It was at this time that Moroder turned to Debbie Harry and Blondie. Moroder presented Harry with a rough instrumental track called "Man Machine." Harry was asked to write the lyrics and melody, a process that Harry states took only a few hours.[6] Harry stated that the song is about driving, and that "When I was writing it, I pictured the opening scene, driving on the coast of California."[7] The completed song was then recorded by the band, with Moroder producing. The bridge of the original English-language version also includes Harry singing "Call me, my darling" in Italian ("Amore, chiamami") and in French ("Appelle-moi, mon chéri").

In the US, the song was released by three different record companies: the longest version (at 8:06) on the soundtrack album by Polydor, the 7" and 12" on Blondie's label Chrysalis, and a Spanish language 12" version, with lyrics by Buddy and Mary McCluskey, on disco label Salsoul Records. The Spanish version, titled "Llámame", was meant for release in Mexico and some South American countries. This version was also released in the US and the UK and had its CD debut on Chrysalis/EMI's rarities compilation Blonde and Beyond (1993). In 1988, a remixed version by Ben Liebrand taken from the Blondie remix album Once More into the Bleach was issued as a single in the UK. In 2001 the "original long version" appeared as a bonus track on the Autoamerican album re-issue.

Popularity and acclaim[edit]Edit

The single was released in the United States in February 1980. It peaked at No. 1 for six consecutive weeks, and was certified Gold (for one million copies sold) by the RIAA. It also spent four weeks at No. 2 on the US dance chart. The single was also No. 1 on Billboard magazine's 1980 year-end chart. It was released in the UK two months later, where it became Blondie's fourth UK No. 1 single in little over a year. The song was also played on a British Telecomadvert from the 1980s. 25 years after its original release, "Call Me" was ranked at No. 283 on the list of Rolling Stone's 500 Greatest Songs of All Time.

In 1981, the song was also nominated for a Grammy Award for Best Rock Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocal. The song lists at No. 44 on Billboard's All Time Top 100.[8]

Music video[edit]Edit

There were two videos made:

Release history[edit]Edit

1981 Release[edit]Edit

US, UK 7" (CHS 2414)
  1. "Call Me (Theme from American Gigolo)" (7" edit) — 3:32
  2. "Call Me" (7" instrumental) — 3:27
UK 12" (CHS 12 2414)
  1. "Call Me" (7" edit) — 3:32
  2. "Call Me" (Spanish version – 7" edit) — 3:32
  3. "Call Me" (7" instrumental) — 3:27
US 12" (Polydor PRO 124)
  1. "Call Me" (Theme from American Gigolo) — 8:04
  2. "Call Me" (12" instrumental) — 6:10
US 12" (Salsoul SG 341) [promo only]
  1. "Call Me" (Spanish version, extended) — 6:23
  2. "Night Drive" (Reprise) - by Giorgio Morodor — 6:10

1989 Release[edit]Edit

UK 7" (CHS 3342-1)
  1. "Call Me" (Ben Liebrand Remix) — 7:09
  2. "Call Me" (Original Version) — 3:31
UK 12" (CHS 12 3342)
  1. "Call Me" (Ben Liebrand Remix) — 7:09
  2. "Backfired" (Bruce Forrest And Frank Heller Remix) — 6:03
  3. "Call Me" (Original Version) — 3:31
UK CD (CHSCD 3342)
  1. "Call Me" (Ben Liebrand Remix) — 7:09
  2. "Backfired" (Bruce Forrest And Frank Heller Remix) — 6:03
    • Performed by Debbie Harry
  3. "Call Me" (Original Version) — 3:31
  4. "Hanging on the Telephone" — 2:23

Chart performance[edit]Edit

Chart (1980) Peak

position

Australia (Kent Music Report)[9] 4
Austria (Ö3 Austria Top 40)[10] 5
Belgium (Ultratop 50 Flanders)[11] 9
Belgium (BRT Top 30 Flanders)[12] 9
Canada (RPM 100 Singles)[5] 1
France [13] 4
Germany (Media Control Charts)[14] 14
Ireland (IRMA)[15] 2
Italy (FIMI)[16] 11
Japan (Oricon)[17] 12
Netherlands (Dutch Top 40)[18] 9
Netherlands (Single Top 100)[19] 12
New Zealand (Recorded Music NZ)[20] 6
Norway (VG-lista)[21] 2
South Africa (Springbok Radio)[22] 2
Sweden (Sverigetopplistan)[23] 3
Switzerland (Schweizer Hitparade)[24] 3
UK Singles (Official Charts Company)[25] 1
US Billboard Hot 100[26] 1
US BillboardHot Dance Club Play[26] 2
US Record World Singles[27] 1

Year-end charts[edit]Edit

Chart (1980) Peak

position

Canadian RPM 1980 Top 100 Singles[28] 3
US Billboard Hot 100[4] 1

End-of-decade charts[edit]Edit

End of decade (1980–1989) Position
US Billboard Hot 100 8

1988 Remix chart positions[edit]Edit

Chart (1989) Peak

position

UK Singles Chart[29] 61

Sales and certifications[edit]Edit

Region Certification Sales/shipments
Canada (Music Canada)[30] Platinum 10,000^
United Kingdom (BPI)[31] Silver 200,000^
United States (RIAA)[32] Gold 1,000,000^

  • sales figures based on certification alone ^shipments figures based on certification alone xunspecified figures based on certification alone

Chart successions[edit]Edit

[show]Order of precedence

Chipmunks version[edit]Edit

"Call Me"
[1]
Single by The Chipmunks
from the album Chipmunk Punk
Released August 1980
Format Vinyl
Recorded September 1979
Length 3:11 (LP/radio version)

3:49 (12" version)

Label Excelsior Records
Writer(s) Debbie HarryGiorgio Moroder
The Chipmunks singles chronology
"My Sharona"

(1980)

Call Me

(1980)

"On the Road Again"

(1981)

In 1980, KMET DJ Chuck Taylor played the 12" version of this single at double speed and announced, in jest, that it was The Chipmunks' latest single. So many requests came for this "new" Chipmunks release, that Ross Bagdasarian, Jr. and his collaborator Steve Vining rushed to record what would be the Chipmunks' "comeback album", Chipmunk Punk in 1980.[citation needed]

Tracklisting[edit]Edit

US 7" (SIS-1003)
  1. "Call Me" — 3:13
  2. "Refugee" — 3:08

Other cover versions[edit]Edit

Live cover performances[edit]Edit

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