January 1974: Carly Simon releases HOTCAKES
When it comes to Carly Simon's fourth studio album, Hotcakes, it's safe to say that the record was a clear case of art imitating life. The warm and joyous LP captured a content Simon, who at the time was living in wedded bliss with fellow recording artist, James Taylor. The singer was also carrying Taylor's baby, as seen on the album's cover, with a visibly pregnant Simon smiling happily in a stark white kitchen.
Following Simon's breakout third full-length, No Secrets, anticipation for Hotcakes was high. Released January 11, 1974, the record was an immediate success, quickly going gold as it soared up the charts. Hotcakes peaked at #3 on the Billboard 200 for the week of March 10, 1974. The #1 album in the country that week: Bob Dylan's Planet Waves.
Driving the album's popularity was lead single "Mockingbird," a duet with James Taylor. The couple's take on the 1963 hit was a radio smash, flying up the Hot 100 to land at #5 for the week of March 24, 1974. The top tune in the U.S. that week: Cher's "Dark Lady."
The second Hotcakes single was the swaying ballad, "Haven't Got Time for the Pain." The dramatic track crashed the top 20, peaking at #14 on the Hot 100 in June 1974. Over on the Adult Contemporary chart, however, the song soared all the way to #2 for the week of July 14, 1974. The song that blocked Simon from #1: John Denver's "Annie's Song."