Our Top 10 Al Jarreau songs list looks back at the songs of one of pop culture’s greatest male vocalists of all time. Al Jarreau has a style all of his own. Blending jazz, R&B, and an incredible sense of scat all together has made Al Jarreau an artist who has entertained millions of music fans for over forty years. Al Jarreau’s first studio album was released in 1975 entitled We Got By. His most recent studio album was released in 2014 titled My Old Friend: Celebrating George Duke. In between those two, he released over thirty studio and live albums. With a catalog of such brilliant records and songs filled with substance, it was hard to pick only ten Al Jarreau songs to present here. Nonetheless, here they are……
# 10 – Rainbow in Your Eyes
We open up our top 10 Al Jarreau songs list very appropriately with Al Jarreau’s first charting single release of his career. The beautiful song “Rainbow In Your Eyes,” was released in 1976. The song was released on Al Jarreau’s second album entitled Glow. This was an album that featured some of the best jazz musicians in the business including Larry Carlton on guitar who had lit up so many of the great Steely Dan songs of the 70s.
Also on the recording were members of The Crusaders including Joe Sample and Wilton Felder. “Rainbow In Your Eyes,” was the album’s opening track. It just broke into the Billboard R&B Charts peaking at number ninety two. The song was written by the legendary Leon Russell.
# 9 – Since I Fell For You
Continuing with our top 10 Al Jarreau Songs list we present Al Jarreau’s stunning vocal performance on the classic standard “Since I Fell For You.” The song was released on the Grammy Award wining album Double Vision released by keyboardist Bob James and saxophonist David Sanborn in 1986. Al Jarreau’s performance of the song was nominated for a Grammy Award. The song was composed by Buddy Johnson in 1945.
# 8 – Never Givin’ Up
Al Jarreau’s “Never Givin’ Up,” is just one of the songs you never get out of your head. How could you not love this song? “Never Givin’ Up,” was released in 1980 on Al Jarreau’s sixth studio album entitled This Time. The song “Never Givin’ Up,” would be released as a single and become Al Jarreau’s first top 40 hit as it peaked at number 26 on the U.S. Billboard R&B music charts. The song was also nominated for a Grammy Award in 1980.
# 7 – Roof Garden
“Roof Garden,” starts out with a pure funk jazz grove complete with a to die for Fender Rhodes lick augmented by some really hit horns setting up a truly great track. A Jarreau is on fire on this one. The way he sings “Does anybody want to go waltzing in the garden” is the epitome of super cool. The song “Roof Garden,” was released in 1981 on the Breakin’ Away album. The song was released as the album’s opening single but it failed to chart on any of the U.S. Billboard music charts.
# 6 – Breakin’ Away
“Breakin’ Away,” was the title track to Al Jarreau’s break-out album Breakin’ Away. The album was released in 1981. It would become one of the most successful jazz-pop albums ever released. The album went to number one on the U.S. Billboard Jazz and R&B charts. The list of A-List brilliant musicians on the record is stunning. From legends such as Steve Lukather and Jeff Porcaro who would form Toto, through big-time names like David Foster, Steve Gadd, George Duke, Tom Scott and so many more, this album just oozed with all-star playing.
# 5 – L Is For Lover
The second half of our Top 10 Al Jarreau songs list presents the very underrated song “L Is For Lover.” The song also stems from one of AL Jarreau’s very underrated albums of the same name. This song smokes. The production on the album especially on the song “L Is For Lover,” is spectacular This one just sounds so good. The album was produced by the great Nile Rogers who just knew how to make fantastic sounding records.
# 4 – Mornin’
Al Jarreau’s “Mornin'” was one of the singer’s big hits. The song was released in 1983 on the album simply titled Jarreau. The song became a top 10 hit for Al Jarreau on the U.S. Billboard R&B charts in 1983. This is one of those songs that just makes you happy when you listen to it, The melody, the groove and of course, Al Jarreau’s upbeat vocals just make you feel good.
# 3 – Moonlighting (Theme)
Everyone loved the television show Moonlighting which featured Bruce Willis and Cybil Sheppard that aired in the 1980s. Al Jarreau sang the great theme song that opened the show and just fit perfectly with the feel of the show’s production. The song “Moonlighting,” would become Al Jarreau’s only number one hit single of his career. The song hit number one on the U.S. Billboard Adult Contemporary charts in 1987.
# 2 – After All
As we begin to wind down our Al Jarreau songs list we turn to an incredible ballad entitled “After All.” The song was released on the album entitled High Crime. The album was released in 1984. The song and album served as the follow-up to AlJarreau’s previous superstar album titled Breakin’ Away. “After All,” was written by Al Jarreau, Jay Graydon, and David Foster.
# 1 – We’re In This Love Together
We close out our Al Jarreau songs list with a great Al Jarreau song that everyone knows. Al Jarreau’s “We’re In This Love Together,” was released in 1981 on the beaming Breakin’ Away album. The song was written by Roger Murrah and Keith Stegall. The song had amazing chart success during a time period when new wave music was huge. So having a jazz song become such a big hit at the time was further proof of the song’s greatness. The song peaked at number 15 on the Billboard Hit 100 making it Al Jarreau’s highest charting single on the Hot 100. It was also a top 10 hit on the Billboard R&B Charts as well as the Adult Contemporary charts.
Updated September 23, 2023
Top 10 Al Jarreau Songs article published on Classic RockHistory.com© 2023
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