“If I Can’t Have You”… I don’t want nobody, baby!

The year was 1978 and The Bee Gees were at the height of their fame, with the soundtrack to Saturday
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The year was 1978 and The Bee Gees were at the height of their fame, with the soundtrack to Saturday Night Fever a roaring success. They wrote the song “If I Can’t Have You” and Yvonne Elliman sang it for the Saturday Night Fever album. A month later, the band recorded it as a B-side to “Stayin’ Alive”.

It was originally intended that Yvonne would sing another ballad – the Bee Gees’ classic “How Deep Is Your Love”. It wasn’t to be – RSO Records chairman and Bee Gees manager Robert Stigwood said the Bee Gees themselves had to record “How Deep Is Your Love” and Elliman would sing the disco track “If I Can’t Have You”.

It was successful all round with a number one hit for both the Bee Gees’ and Elliman respectively.

Sadly Yvonne Elliman wasn’t to become a household name beyond her SNF success and she dropped out of the music scene in the 1980s.

Despite this, we remember this song as a love disco tune and can still sing along to the lyrics today:

Don’t know why
I’m survivin’ ev’ry lonely day
When there’s got to be no chance for me
My life would end
And it doesn’t matter how I cry
My tears, so far, are a waste of time
If I turn away
Am I strong enough to see it through
Go crazy is what I will do

If I can’t have you
I don’t want nobody baby
If I can’t have you, uh-huh, oh
If I can’t have you
I don’t want nobody baby
If I can’t have you, uh-ho

What are your memories of this song?

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