Fact: Christopher Cross and Kenny Loggins Owe Their Careers to Michael McDonald

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Thu, Sep 15, 2011 at 6:00 AM

click to enlarge The father of love child Zach Galifianakis?
  • The father of love child Zach Galifianakis?
When we first heard that Christopher Cross and Kenny Loggins will have two separate shows this Friday, Sept 16 in the Los Angeles area -- Cross in Newport Beach and Loggins in Santa Clarita -- our immediate response was, "Which one is Michael McDonald gonna be at?!"

Now, we don't know if the notoriously muffle-voiced, soul-singing Doobie Brother is going to do a guest shot at either show. But if we were in Chris' or Kenny's shoes, we'd call up our old buddy and ask him if he would like to turn in an appearance.

After all, it it weren't for Michael McDonald collaborating with these soft-rock heavyweights back in the day, they wouldn't have had much of a career.

We're serious about this, yo!

Let's start with Cross. Oh sure, we've all practically grown up to the sounds of this Grammy-winning, one-album wonder performing "Sailing" or that theme from Arthur (the funny, Dudley Moore original, not that bitch-ass, Russell Brand remake). But we also shouldn't forget that Cross' first taste of success came when his debut single "Ride Like the Wind" hit number two on the U.S. charts. And we're pretty sure it became a hit because it had McDonald on backing vocals, memorably echoing, "Such a long way to go!" in the chorus. (SCTV fans may remember Rick Moranis doing his impression of an always-on-the-go McDonald singing the verse in this skit.)

As for Loggins, the usually rocking-and-rolling performer has done his most soulful work whenever he teamed up with McDonald. It's all started when they wrote "What a Fool Believes" for Loggins' Nightwatch LP in 1978, which, of course, McDonald would take to his Doobie brethren and make one of their biggest hits a year later. But they didn't stop there. The pair would also collabo on the Loggins songs "This Is It" and "Heart to Heart," songs that, thanks to McDonald's blue-eyed-soul input (not to mention his easily recognizable, background vocals) gave Loggins quite the street cred with R & B listeners.

Once again, we have no word on whether McDonald will either jam with Cross in Newport Beach at the Hyatt Regency or smooth it out with Loggins at the Santa Clarita Performing Arts Center on Friday night. In a perfect world, McDonald would make it to both shows. Man, if only Toto was around the same night, looking for Mike to sing background on "I'll Be Over You," then it would be a perfect storm of yacht rock!

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