“Lowdown“ is a hit song originally recorded in 1976 by Boz Scaggs for his mainstream-breakthrough album, Silk Degrees. The song was co-written by Scaggs and David Paich. Paich, along with fellow “Lowdown” session musicians Louie Shelton, David Hungate, and Jeffrey Porcaro, would later help form the band Toto.
Initially, Silk Degrees received a lukewarm commercial response and, similarly, the first single released from the album, “It’s Over” just barely cracked the top 40 on the Billboard Pop Singles chart, peaking at #38. One day, however, a Cleveland R&B radio DJ began playing “Lowdown” straight off the album. This was during a time period when DJs had much more say in what got played. Public response was very positive and soon Scaggs’ record label, Columbia, sent the song to other R&B-oriented radio stations for airplay. It began receiving airplay on Top 40 Pop stations as well, and when it was officially released as a single in June 1976, it went on to become Scaggs’ first major hit, eventually peaking at number three on the Billboard Pop Singles chart. It was also successful on the R&B and Disco Singles charts, peaking at number five on both. The song was also a major hit in Canada, peaking at number two. It was a minor hit in the UK, reaching #28. Scaggs is quoted as saying that the success of “Lowdown” was ‘an accident’ and that, even though it was their favorite from Silk Degrees, he and the others involved in the making of the song thought there ‘wasn’t a chance in hell’ that the song would have been released as a single. The single was certified gold by the RIAA for sales of one million copies and would go on to win the Grammy Award for Best R&B song of 1976.
Silk Degrees is the seventh album by Boz Scaggs, released on Columbia Records in 1976. The album peaked at #2 and spent 115 weeks on the Billboard 200. It has been certified five times platinum by the RIAA and remains Scaggs’s best selling album. Silk Degrees spawned four singles, of which “It’s Over”, “Lowdown”, and […]