There are so many things you can say about this sad, say goodbye love song. When you pay attention to the lyrics and Lenny Williams’s voice, those R & B vocals along with the collaboration of the instruments tend to make this song a timeless piece. There are other songs out there expressing a couple’s break up and their way of saying goodbye. This song is right up there with them and it can be a tear-jerker if someone is in the position of losing someone they love.
This song about a tough goodbye was written by Tower of Power saxophone players Emilio Castillo and Stephen “Doc” Kupka. Castillo came up with the lyrics, which were inspired by a girl named Sharon, about whom he wrote the song “You’re Still A Young Man.”
In our interview with Castillo, he explained: “Basically it says our relationship is ending and how hard it is to say goodbye to her. I write a lot about specific situations, but I let the song play out in a general way.”
This was the biggest chart hit for Tower of Power, reaching #17 on the Hot 100 and #11 on the R&B chart. Emilio Castillo told us: “We wrote it in one sitting and as soon as we were done writing it I knew it was going to be a hit. I actually called my manager and I said, ‘We wrote a hit.’ He said, ‘Yeah, sure.’ I go, ‘No, I’m serious. We wrote a hit.’ I played it for him over the phone and he heard a verse and the chorus and he goes, ‘Damn, I think you’re right.'”
While the group itself never had a bigger hit, the Tower of Power horn section played on several tracks for other artists that did very well. Among them: “Don’t Let The Sun Go Down On Me” by Elton John, “The Power of Love” by Huey Lewis & the News, and “Everybody’s Everything” by Santana.
Song Lyrics –
Ain’t nothin’ I can say, nothin’ I can do,
I feel so bad, yeah, I feel so blue.
I got to make it right for everyone concerned
even if it’s me if it means it’s me what’s gettin’ burned.
‘Cause I could never make you unhappy, no, I couldn’t do that girl,
only wish I didn’t have to love you do, makes it so, so very hard to go.
(backgrounds-So very hard to go)
‘Cause I love you so, (backgrounds answer-So very hard to go),
ah, I love you do.
2nd Verse: I knew the time would come,
I’d have to pay for my mistakes,
I can’t blame you for what you’re doin’ to me girl,
even tho’ my heartaches.
Your dreams have all come true just the way you planned them,
so I’ll just step aside, I’m gon step aside and lend a helping hand then.
‘Cause I could never make you unhappy, no I couldn’t do that girl,
only wish I didn’t love you so, makes it so, so very hard to go.
(Backgrounds-So very hard to go)
‘Cause I love you so (backgrounds answer-so very hard to go)
Oh, I love you so (backgrounds answer again-so very hard to go)
And it ain’t easy to walk away when a man loves somebody (so very hard to go) hey, hey, hey, hey.
Writer/s: EMILIO CASTILLO, STEPHEN DOC KUPKA