|Single by James Blunt|
|from the album All the Lost Souls|
|Released||23 July 2007|
|Format||CD single, digital download|
|Label||Atlantic, Warner, RCA|
|James Blunt, Mark Batson|
|James Blunt singles chronology|
First performed by James Blunt during his Autumn 2006 North American tour, "1973" was released for radio play on 23 July 2007, to selected radio stations around the world. It was made available for download exclusively from the Verizon Wireless network in the United States on the same date. Starting on 7 August 2007, the song was made widely available for digital download, with physical releases being made available from 3 September 2007. The single peaked at number four on the UK Singles Chart.
"1973" was written by James Blunt and Mark Batson. "He was trying to write an English singer-songwriter song, and I was trying the Dr. Dre end of the scale," says Blunt. The song was inspired by the club scene in Ibiza, where Blunt maintains a residence and enjoys the social scene. The song has been remixed by Pete Tong and Dave Spoon as part of their Ibiza 2007 Remix Project, and Tong started playing the remix in July 2007 when acting as DJ at Pacha, the Ibiza club that inspired the song and opened in 1973. Blunt has stated in a radio interview with KISFM on 8 September 2007, that the girl from his lyrics "Simona" was indeed based on a real woman he had met at the club.
The lyrics include references to a few American popular songs: "As Time Goes By", written in 1931 by Herman Hupfeld and popularised by Dooley Wilson playing the character of Sam in the 1942 film Casablanca; "It's the Same Old Song", written by the legendary songwriting team Holland-Dozier-Holland and recorded in 1965 on the Motown label by The Four Tops; "Here We Go Again," popularised in 1967 by Ray Charles and re-popularized as a duet with Norah Jones upon the 2005 posthumous release of Charles' masterwork album, Genius Loves Company, and; "I Can See Clearly Now", written and recorded by Johnny Nash, a song which spent November at the No. 1 spot of the Billboard Hot 100 in 1972.
The single was released on three physical formats. CD1 features a brand new track, "Dear Katie", which was written by Blunt's long-time keyboardist Paul Beard. Beard also provides backing vocals for the song. CD2 includes a live version of "Annie", the video for "1973", plus a further new track, "So Happy", which was written by Felix Howard and Blunt. The 7" vinyl also includes "So Happy".
The video, in which a modern-day Blunt strolls among '70s street scenes, reflects the song's nostalgic tone. "The '70s sound like they were a time of excess and great flamboyance," he says, "but a sense of fun as well." The video was shot in Warsaw, Poland.
The song debuted at number ten on the UK Singles Chart, then peaked at number four, making it Blunt's third top 10 single and his fifth-released single debuting in the UK Singles Chart. In Switzerland, the song debuted at number one, making it his second top 10 hit. It also peaked at number one in Venezuela. In the U.S., the song made its first appearance on the Billboard Bubbling Under Hot 100 Singles, where it peaked at number two.
Billboard Hot 100 Performance: It debuted and peaked at number 73 on the Billboard Hot 100 the week of October 6, 2007 just after the release of the parent album All the Lost Souls on September 14, 2007, spending just three contiguous weeks on the chart and exiting at number 100.
The song peaked at number 60 on the Pop 100. From number 86, the song made a jump to number two on Billboards Eurochart Hot 100 Singles. "1973" is also featured on the compilation album Now That's What I Call Music! 68.
|Austria (Ö3 Austria Top 40)||1|
|Belgium (Ultratop 50 Flanders)||3|
|Belgium (Ultratop 50 Wallonia)||1|
|Brazilian Singles Chart (ABPD)||4|
|Canada (Canadian Hot 100)||51|
|Czech Singles Chart||6|
|Finland (Suomen virallinen lista)||11|
|Germany (Official German Charts)||2|
|Hungarian Singles Chart||11|
|Ireland (Irish Singles Chart)||5|
|Netherlands (Dutch Top 40)||3|
|Netherlands (Single Top 100)||3|
|New Zealand (Recorded Music NZ)||9|
|Poland (Airplay Chart)||3|
|Romanian Singles Chart||31|
|Slovak Airplay Chart||1|
|Switzerland (Schweizer Hitparade)||1|
|Turkish Top 20 Chart||1|
|UK Singles (Official Charts Company)||4|
|US Billboard Hot 100||73|
|US Billboard Adult Top 40||18|
|US Billboard Pop 100||60|
|Venezuela Pop Rock (Record Report)||1|
*sales figures based on certification alone