Thursday, August 15, 2013

B4 3 Dog Nite: Shambala

Sometimes song publishers and authors play two ends against the middle by shopping a song to a multiplicity of artists. On the surface, that’s what happened in 1973 with Daniel Moore’s composition “Shambala.” Simultaneously, two versions of the song were on the charts – B.W. Stevenson’s country tinged interpretation and the hit version by Three Dog Night.

The tale of the two versions may not have been that jaded, as Moore and Stevenson were songwriting partners and the two penned Stevenson’s biggest hit “My Maria.” Moore was also signed to ABC Dunhill as an artist and a songwriter to their house publishing company. Since Three Dog Night also recorded for ABC Dunhill, their knowledge of the song may have come directly from ABC.

Stevenson’s recording was released exactly one week before Three Dog Night’s single and the race up the charts began. You know the rest of the story – Three Dog Night’s version won the contest and peaked at #3. Stevenson’s single stalled at #66 and stayed on the charts a total of eight weeks.

“Shambala” was Three Dog Night’s sixth million selling single and appeared on their 1973 album “Cyan.” Cory Wells sang the lead on the hit version, but today we provide the alternate B.W. Stevenson recording.

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