Australian charts: 1974
“The Air That I Breathe” is a ballad written by Albert Hammond and Mike Hazlewood, initially recorded by Albert Hammond, but a major hit for The Hollies in 1974. The audio engineering was done by Alan Parsons. In an interview, Parsons noted that Eric Clapton once said that the first note of “The Air That I Breathe” had more soul than anything he’d ever heard.
In the book Behind The Hits, Albert Hammond explained the inspiration for the song: “I just fell in love with a girl,” he said. “We had some kind of short affair. I just fell in love so bad, I guess I needed to be with my family. I was so lonely in Los Angeles.”
So he moved to LA for a girl, but the song isn’t really about her – it’s more inspired by the loneliness he felt living there and his longing to be back with loved ones in a familiar place – he learned that in Los Angeles, everyone has a car and there’s no mingling in the streets like there is in New York. And then there’s the smog…
The Air That I Breathe reached no 2 on the Go-Set National Top 40 in June 1974.
This song is also on our Spotify playlist.
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