I’m not sure what we should be celebrating more at midnight on this New Year’s Eve, the start of 2021 or the fact that we survived 2020. Maybe a little bit of both. But there’s no question that Kool & The Gang will be on the playlist.
In 1980, the Jersey City group released what would become their only #1 hit. To this day, “Celebration” is heard at weddings, bar mitzvahs, sporting events, and any other kind of happy occasion. According to Songfacts, the song was even played to help welcome home the 52 freed American hostages from Iran in 1981.
As many great songs as they’ve written and recorded over the years, “Celebration” is still the first one that comes to mind when we think of Kool & The Gang. In an interview with Billboard, lead singer J.T. Taylor said that his mother told him, “You’re gonna play this song for the rest of your life, so get ready!” She was right. However, if you had to perform one song for more than forty years, you could do a lot worse than the world’s favorite party anthem.