Neil Sedaka’s unfinished song becomes a no.1 hit 19



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Neil Sedaka wrote this 1975 hit with Philip Cody who said it was “his least favourite song”. Elton John was asked to sing Neil’s back-up for this song to ensure airplay on radios.

The song was based on Cody’s grandmother who told stories of her witch friend, Strega. The lyrics then evolved into the idea of bad blood and good vs evil. Cody wanted to re-write the lyrics but Neil and Elton started recording it straight away.

Neil said “The lyrics are a little controversial, with words like ‘bitch’ and such. I like it because it’s not such a goody-goody two-shoes thing.”

Despite not being a “perfect” song, it turned out to be one of Neil’s greatest hits reaching no.1 on The Billboard Top 100 and remained there for three weeks. This hit ironically knocked out Elton John’s song “Island Girl”.


Can you guess Neil’s song? Here is a clue:

It could’ve been me but it was you
Who went and bit off a little bit more than he could chew
You said that you had it made, but you been had
The woman no good, no how, thinkin’ maybe the blood is bad

Listen to Neil Sedaka and Elton John’s “Bad Blood” song


Are you a fan of Neil Sedaka? Do you remember where you were when this song first came out?

Starts at 60 Writers

The Starts at 60 writers team seek out interesting topics and write them especially for you.

  1. I remember meeting Neil Sedaka and his wife back stage at South Juniors ~ it was about 1969 and he was dressed by a guy called Ron Bennett who specialised in menswear. Neil was fantastic.

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