Hall and Oates singles always found the right combination

Daryl Hall, left, and John Oates

Daryl Hall, left, and John Oates

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Daryl Hall and John Oates are the most successful pop pair of all-time with more higher charting hits than any other duo. Here's a guide to some of their biggest.

"She's Gone," 1974/1976, No. 60/No. 7

In 1974, nobody much cared where Hall's or Oates' girlfriend (the two shared vocals pretty equally on this song) disappeared to and the single sank like a stone. Both Lou Rawls and Tavares covered the song before Hall and Oates re-released it in 1976, when it went to No. 7.

"Sara Smile," 1976, No. 4

"Sara Smile" (Hall's girlfriend and future co-songwriter at the time was named Sara Allen) established the duo as a national act. The album, from which the single came, was simply called "Daryl Hall & John Oates" (the same credit on all future albums, despite the world referring to them forevermore as "Hall & Oates"). The cover featured the duo looking like they had been attacked by a Mary Kay cosmetics sales person on PCP.

"Rich Girl," 1977, No. 1

The band's first No. 1 was actually inspired by a man (a rich young man who was a former boyfriend of Sara Allen's). The song was included on the duo's album "Bigger Than the Both of Us" — unfortunately, everything but Oates' mustache and Hall's hair got smaller over the next few years.

"Kiss On My List," 1981, No. 1

After four years of low-charting and no-charting singles, Hall and Oates self-produced the album "Voices." Good move. A cover of the Righteous Brothers' hit "You've Lost That Lovin' Feelin'" (the first single from the album) opened radio back up to the group, but "Kiss On My List" set the tone for the group's biggest decade. Success increased as Hall's hair got shorter!

"You Make My Dreams," 1981, No. 5

Also from the album "Voices," this song has made people feel good for 30 years. It's become a favorite on TV and movie soundtracks, including the movies "Step Brothers," "Dumb and Dumberer," "(500) Days of Summer" and "The Wedding Singer" and the TV shows "King of the Hill," "Glee" and "The Office." To paraphrase Louis Jordan, if this song can't make you feel better Jack, you're dead.

"Private Eyes," 1981, No. 1

As much bounce for the ounce as "You Make My Dreams," but with much more 1980s synthesizers and a cheesy MTV video that simply features the band in and out of trenchcoats. I guess Oates is in disguise as an entomologist who carries a big black caterpillar on his upper lip.

"I Can't Go for That (No Can Do)," 1982, No. 1

According to Hall, Michael Jackson admitted to stealing the bass line for "Billie Jean" from this song, but Hall said that was fine because he lifted it from another song himself. The hit became a favorite source for samples by R&B and rap artists.

"Maneater," 1982, No. 1

Filled with that saxophone style that defined the 1980s and a video that featured a black panther wandering around a set and not eating anybody, Oates got some screen time playing guitar and only a "whoo" or two. Although he was co-writing songs, playing guitar and very much part of the team, at this point, it began to appear like Oates was the Garfunkel of the group ...

"Family Man," 1983, No. 6

Bet you didn't know that this is a cover of a single co-written and performed (with vocals by Maggie Reilly) by Mike Oldfield, the creator of "Tubular Bells," which became the theme for "The Exorcist." Hall and Oates' version is better. But take heart, Mike: Hall and Oates probably would've turned "The Exorcist" into a feel-good movie.

"Jingle Bell Rock," 1983 (didn't chart)

Not bad as a Christmas cover goes (Bobby Helms and Brenda Lee would approve), but in the campy video Hall and Oates look like metrosexual buddies having a Christmas glee club get together.

"Say It Isn't So," 1983, No. 2

The guys have the smooth upbeat formula down for sure here, but, really, is this one that ever comes to mind?

"Adult Education," 1984, No. 8

Duuude, what's the deal with the nearly naked people in this video and why is Oates not wearing a shirt under that jacket? The lyrics don't say anything about teenage sacrifices! This is better than I remembered!

"Out of Touch," 1984, No. 1

The band's last great single with a thumping bass, echo-y vocals and a video that features the band interacting with some giant's drum kit.

"Method of Modern Love," 1984, No. 5

This is another one of those learn-how-to-spell songs and it sounds a little dated now.

"Everything Your Heart Desires," 1988, No. 3

While Hall and Oates would never disappear from classic pop and adult contemporary radio, this was the duo's last Top 10 hit. Note to successful artists: Spoken word sections in songs often precede a career plunge.

"So Close," 1990, No. 11

Jon Bon Jovi co-wrote and co-produced this track, which was Hall and Oates' last appearance in the Top 20. It's a power ballad ripe for rediscovery.

Despite the lack of radio hits, Hall and Oates survived (except for Oates' iconic mustache) into the new millennium with a young generation discovering and celebrating them all the more.

Daryl Hall & John Oates

When: 8 p.m. Friday, Dec. 14

Where: Tennessee Theatre

Tickets: Sold out

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