Always and Forever (Heatwave song)

"Always and Forever"

Picture sleeve of one of UK vinyl releases
Single by Heatwave
from the album Too Hot to Handle
B-side "Mind Blowing Decisions" (UK)
"Super Soul Sister" (US)
Released December 3, 1977
Format 7" single, 12" single
Recorded 1976
Genre R&B, Soul
Length 3:32 (single edit)
6:14 (album version)
Label GTO (UK)
Epic 50490 (US)
Writer(s) Rod Temperton
Producer(s) Barry Blue
Certification Platinum
Heatwave singles chronology
"Too Hot to Handle"
"Always and Forever"
"The Groove Line"
"Always and Forever"
A sample of Heatwave's "Always and Forever" from Too Hot to Handle

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"Always and Forever" is an R&B song written by Rod Temperton and first recorded by the British-based multinational funk-disco band Heatwave in 1976. Released as a single in 1977, the song is included on Heatwave's debut album Too Hot to Handle and has been covered by numerous artists.

Heatwave version

After the international success of Heatwave's debut single, the disco song "Boogie Nights", "Always and Forever" was chosen as the U.S. follow-up single in late 1977. A ballad featuring lead vocals by Johnnie Wilder, Jr., "Always and Forever" stood out among the band's predominantly disco repertoire and became a successful U.S. hit song in early 1978. It reached #18 on the Billboard Hot 100 in March of that year after peaking at #2 on the Billboard R&B chart, the band's highest showing on that tally. The single was certified platinum by the RIAA.[1] In the UK, the songs "Too Hot to Handle" and "The Groove Line" were released before a double A-sided "Always and Forever" / "Mind Blowing Decisions" was issued in November 1978. This became the band's second top ten on the UK Singles Chart when it spent two weeks at #9 in December of that year.

In the late 1970s through the 1980s it was a popular "slow dance" song at high school proms, particularly in inner-city areas with a high minority population. The song was also played during the slow dance scene in the movie House Party.

In the liner notes to Heatwave's 1996 compilation album The Best of Heatwave: Always and Forever, music writer and former Billboard contributor Brian Chin notes that Wilder "says that it was right around the time of the single release of "Always and Forever" that he knew Heatwave's music would stand the test of time. This pop standard is emblematic of the Heatwave fusion of influences - R&B, teen romance, and both European and American flavors of pop."[2] AllMusic reviewer Craig Lytle states that the song "was and continues to be an ageless piece. Johnnie Wilder's vocal exhibition throughout the vamp is breathtaking."[3]

Chart performance

Weekly singles charts

Chart (1978) Peak
UK [4] 9
U.S. Billboard Hot 100 [5] 18
U.S. Cash Box Top 100 [6] 12
U.S. Billboard Hot Soul Singles[5] 2

Year-end charts

Year-end chart (1978) Position
U.S. Billboard Hot 100 [7] 75
U.S. Cash Box [8] 99

Luther Vandross version

"Always and Forever"
Single by Luther Vandross
from the album Songs
Released September 1994
(U.S., UK)
Format cassette, CD Single
Genre R&B, soul, adult contemporary
Length 4:53
Label Epic Records
Writer(s) Rod Temperton
Producer(s) Walter Afanasieff
Luther Vandross (co-producer)
Luther Vandross singles chronology
"Endless Love"
"Always and Forever"
"Love the One You're With/Going in Circles"

R&B/soul singer Luther Vandross released his cover of "Always and Forever" as the second single from his 1994 album, Songs. His recording earned him a Grammy Award nomination in the category Best Male R&B Vocal performance at the Grammy Awards of 1995 and placed on four Billboard charts, with its best showing on the R&B chart where it reached #16. Vandross' single made the Hot 100 at #58 and also appeared on Billboard adult contemporary and rhythmic top 40 charts.[9]

Track list

US, UK - CD Single[10]

  1. Always And Forever (Radio Edit) - 4:00
  2. Searching - 8:02
  3. The Glow of Love - 6:11
  4. Always And Forever (Live) - 5:03


Chart (1994) Peak
UK Singles Chart 20
US Billboard Hot 100 58
US Billboard Hot R&B Singles 16
US Billboard Hot Adult Contemporary Tracks 25

Other cover versions

Among many artists who have recorded versions of "Always and Forever" is the American R&B vocal group Whistle, who released their single in 1990 from their album of the same name. Their take on the song made the top ten on the Billboard R&B chart, peaking at #9, while also cracking the top of the Hot 100 at #35.[13] Other singers who have recorded the song include Diana Ross, Johnny Mathis, Kenny Rogers, The Four Tops, Alexander O'Neal, Beverley Knight, Silk, Kyla, Nicole McCloud, Navin Kundra, and Cliff Richard in a duet with Candi Staton.

Mexican-American singer Adán Sánchez also recorded a version in Spanish titled "Siempre y para siempre".


  1. Whitburn, Joel (2010). The Billboard Book of Top 40 Hits, 9th Edition (Billboard Publications), page 293.
  2. Liner notes from The Best of Heatwave: Always and Forever, 1996, Sony Music Entertainment.
  3. Too Hot to Handle album review AllMusic. Retrieved 12 August 2009.
  4. 1 2 Heatwave Billboard chart info Retrieved 10 August 2009.
  5. "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2014-12-22. Retrieved 2014-12-22.
  6. "Top 100 Hits of 1978/Top 100 Songs of 1978". Retrieved 2016-10-05.
  7. "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2016-03-04. Retrieved 2015-11-03.
  8. Vandross Billboard chart info Retrieved 10 August 2009.
  9. "Luther Vandross - Always And Forever at Discogs". Retrieved 2016-10-05.
  10. "Luther Vandross - Chart history". Billboard. Retrieved 2016-10-05.
  11. "Chart archive : Luther Vandross". Archived from the original on 2013-01-19. Retrieved 2016-10-05.
  12. Whistle Billboard chart info Retrieved 10 August 2009.

External links

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