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Hard to Say I’m Sorry (That You May Never Have Heard this Chicago Song Before!)

These long titles, so full of reference to lyrics, dialogue, and titles. Or is that annoyance so full of lyrics, dialogue, and titles?

Something with “ce” at the end, I guess.

Not to kick the proverbial dead horse of repetition, but I love discussing my passion for the music I grew up with, well, alot of passion. And when I get on a kick about something I’m passionate about, you’re going to hear all about it. Want to get out of knowing any of this? Simple, you can stop reading right here.

Oh, you’re still here? Then let’s share in the passion together!

I’ve been to four (yes, four) concerts in my lifetime – two Bon Jovi concerts (in 2001 at the old Giants Stadium in East Rutherford, NJ, and in 2003 at First Union Center, later Wachovia Center, now Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia, PA), Michael Buble in 2014 at Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City, NJ, and Chicago and Earth Wind and Fire in 2015 at the Borgata in Atlantic City, NJ. And while I enjoyed all of these concerts thoroughly, the one that truly got me on my feet the entire time (and getting me to sing in that tone deaf and cuteness way I mentioned in my George Harrison article – you know, as if I minded!) was the Chicago and Earth Wind and Fire concert.

You thought I was going to say “Michael Buble had me on my feet all night long!”, didn’t you?

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Ok, well, he actually did have me on my feet, but I was in the nosebleeds of Boardwalk Hall, so it was a little dizzying. And his concerts aren’t the kind where you spent the entire evening dancing around in a narrow aisle. Trust me, the temptation was there!

I had the opportunity to see Chicago and Earth Wind and Fire on the last night of their Heart and Soul Tour, on September 6, 2015. It was an event I waited nearly six months for, bragging to anyone who cared, patiently biding the time with other fun things until Labor Day Weekend 2015, when all that came between me and this concert were fourteen rows of chairs.

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Don’t worry, this was a sold out show.

And yes, I did get as close to the stage as I could, for the sake of taking a ridiculous stage selfie.

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I had a list of “choice” songs I really wanted to hear Chicago sing that night, and while I wouldn’t have been disappointed if they didn’t…well, ok, I would have been slightly disappointed if they didn’t do some of what I perceive to be the classics. And there was one particular song I’d been wanting to see/hear live if I ever had the chance, one that probably may seem obscure if you haven’t listened to alot of Chicago’s music, but only because half of the Top 40 stations around in 1982 (and beyond that) chose to play the song.

So you’re all familiar with this song, right?

Uploaded by ChicagoKid1969 (such a choice You Tube username, don’t you think?)

It’s one you likely heard on the radio with some frequency, especially if you listened to Top 40 or Adult Contemporary back in the 1980s (like I did), or still do today (like I do). But what you may (or may not) know is that there is an extended version of this song.

Oh yes, there is! And it’s amazing!

Uploaded by?Carlos’ Chicago Channel

So that extra 1:49 after “Hard to Say I’m Sorry”? This little song with the big horns is classic Chicago as us fans all know it. It’s a song called “Get Away,” and it is included on the album version of “Hard to Say I’m Sorry,” released in 1982 as part of the album Chicago 16. It’s loud, it’s melodious (that is a word, apparently), and it’s the kind of song that makes concertgoers jump up.

I’m not really sure how it’s related to the song it finds itself attached to, and why it isn’t its own song. Because in that small, shining less than two minutes, we get something big, high-energy, and fun, exactly what Chicago is all about. When I first heard this in 2013 – how I managed to miss out on this version is beyond me, but probably because it was only at that time that I really began to truly appreciate the stylings of Chicago on the level I didn’t as a kid. Don’t get me wrong, I’ve always loved their music, but it was only a few years ago where I began to truly appreciate the sound. I could tell you as a kid what songs were Chicago based on the horn section alone, but this song never managed to make my radar. Blame the radio, I guess!

I vowed upon the first listening that if I were ever to see Chicago in concert, I would want to hear this song. In 2013, I didn’t think that would be a reality – the guy I dated at the time did not share my music interests, and didn’t like music in general (how does that happen?). But in 2015 it became a reality, and while this isn’t the exact performance I saw at Borgata, it is from a live performance, and yes, it’s everything you’d expect from the short song.

And if you must know where this is from, it’s from Chicago’s 2010 concert DVD/Blu-Ray,Chicago in Chicago, which also features The Doobie Brothers. I own this Blu-Ray, and I really need to watch it.

But, of course, I lived it (five years later, but better late than never!), and you should too! And this is also further proof that so many years later, this group truly has never lost that Chicago charm!

Uploaded by Music on TV1

Seriously, James Pankow and Lee Loughnane…such energy!

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And in case you needed those lyrics:

When we get there gonna jump in the air.
No one’ll see us ’cause there’s nobody there.
After all, you know we really don’t care.
Hold on. I’m gonna take you there.

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There’s energy, there’s dancing, there’s loudness…and there’s the horn section. So much horn section. It’s Chicago at it’s finest, and I couldn’t have it any other way.

After all, they really don’t care, ’cause they’re gonna take you there. They certainly took me there, and yes…I jumped in the air.

So much overload in those two sentences!

Allison loves Chicago. And she discussed her experience at the Chicago and Earth Wind and Fire concert on her blog in September 2015. If you’d like to know all about her experience (and see some awesome pictures), check out her article here. She gets insane with song titles here too!

While you’re there, you can follow her blog, Allison’s Written Words, and click “Like” to see all of her randomness on your Facebook newsfeed. She also loves Twitter followers, and can be found geeking out at, well, @AllisonGeeksOut.

Allison’s favorite Chicago song, you ask? “25 or 6 to 4.” And this is one of the photos she took during their performance of the song (with Earth Wind and Fire accompanying!).

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(All concert photos are from the author’s collection)

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