Lost in the ’70s: Cheryl Ladd, “Think It Over”

lit70s

Charlie’s Angels chanteuse Cheryl Ladd was known for two spectacular things: her acting and her singing.

What? What’d you think I was gonna say?

Anyhoo, Ladd got her start as a singer in the early ’70s, back when she was still known as Cheryl Stoppelmoor. In fact, after her first stage-name change to Cherie Moor, she sang as one of Josie’s Pussycats (covered previously in this column) on the Josie and the Pussycats album. A few lean years followed before she was cast as Kris Munroe (Jill’s little sister, of course!) on Charlie’s Angels in 1977, replacing Farrah Fawcett, who left after the first season. The show was wildly popular, so why shouldn’t Ladd try her hand at singing again?

Capitol Records bit (the same label that released Josie and the Pussycats, actually), and the creatively titled Cheryl Ladd was unleashed upon the world in 1978. Lead single “Think It Over” (download) was one of those songs I only heard on the radio during the first hour of American Top 40, aka the Most Awesome Hour of Radio as a Child, since it was the only place I could hear many songs my local Top 40 station wouldn’t play, like “Turning Japanese” by the Vapors or “Island of Lost Souls” by Blondie. “Think It Over” may have been a bigger hit elsewhere, but in Ohio Ladd’s singing career wasn’t greeted with the same enthusiasm as, say, the 3,000th play of Journey’s “Wheel in the Sky.” It did well enough to scrape the Top 40, though, and Ladd set out to flog the single on various variety shows.

Woo! All that hair flipping’s made me lightheaded. And hey, a Brenda Russell cameo! See ya in a few years when you write “Piano in the Dark” and “Get Here,” Brenda!

Cheryl Ladd failed to produce any more hits, but Ladd continued to release albums — one more for Capitol called Dance Forever in 1979, and two Japan-only releases in the early ’80s. Capitol put out a Best of Cheryl Ladd CD in Japan in ’93, but really, why?

“Think It Over” peaked at #34 on the Billboard Hot 100 in 1978.

Get Cheryl Ladd music at Amazon.

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  • JonCummings

    Could she possibly have sounded any more like ON-J?

  • JohnHughes

    I know! She was totally copping country ONJ.

  • http://www.popdose.com DwDunphy

    I know I'm a pig, but yowza. Nice jacket!

  • http://schiing.terjefjelde.com terje

    Brenda Russell wrote “Think It Over,” I think. She recorded a version in 1979, and it's way smooth, very CTI/Creed Taylor-like, with trembling Fender Rhodes and jazz guitar.

  • http://www.popdose.com DwDunphy

    And for those who appreciate context (and the fact that I'm being sarcastic with my previous Yowza) check out my Jessica Simpson piece right here:
    http://popdose.com/dw-dunphy-in-defense-of-jess

  • Pete

    I wonder if she cut her hair short if she's still be flailing her head back and forth like that…then it would really look even more odd.

  • steve

    Thank you for pointing out “The Most Awesome Hour of Radio” being the Bottom 10 of American Top 40 – I totally agree. Just because a song didn't go screaming up the charts to #1 and get totally overplayed on local radio (like Anita Ward's “Ring My Bell” for example) doesn't mean it has no value. Some great nuggets are lost to history but remain in my brain from the one or two times I heard Casey play them in the lower reaches of the Top 40. Many kudos to you if you ever feature Stallion's “Old Fashioned Boy (You're The One)”. And there's many many more I could name, from Lindisfarne to Oak to Sneaker to Photoglo.

  • Ray

    I may be the only one on the planet who has all three of her albums on vinyl (“Cheryl Ladd”, “Dance Forever” and the Japan-only “Take a Chance”. I also have her “Best of Cheryl Ladd” LP on vinyl (again Japan-only) as well as a three-song Japan-only EP called “You Make It Beautiful” (where she performs with Frankie Valli). What can I say, but I loves me some Cheryl Ladd!!!

  • Ray

    I may be the only one on the planet who has all three of her albums on vinyl (“Cheryl Ladd”, “Dance Forever” and the Japan-only “Take a Chance”). I also have her “Best of Cheryl Ladd” LP on vinyl (again Japan-only) as well as a three-song Japan-only EP called “You Make It Beautiful” (where she performs with Frankie Valli). What can I say, but I loves me some Cheryl Ladd!!!

  • Ray

    I may be the only one on the planet who has all three of her albums on vinyl (“Cheryl Ladd”, “Dance Forever” and the Japan-only “Take a Chance”). I also have her “Best of Cheryl Ladd” LP on vinyl (again Japan-only) as well as a three-song Japan-only EP called “You Make It Beautiful” (where she performs with Frankie Valli). What can I say, but I loves me some Cheryl Ladd!!!

  • Cliff Cherry

    Just heard this on SiriusXM 70′s On 7′s AT40 replay from 1978. Also agreed on obscure songs that were great to hear on AT40 and no where else. Anyway I’m a bit surprised (or maybe not) this only hit #34. Nothing spectacular but certainly catchy pop for the time. Possibly her other celebrity got in the way of it being taken seriously (although that certainly didn’t stop Bruce Willis :-p ). Also the only video I can find is this live performance, which does no justice whatsoever to the polished studio version as just played on AT40. Thanks for posting!