From the Archives: The Chairmen of the Board
Give Me Just A Little More Time
Today we’re listening to “Give Me Just A Little More Time” by The Chairmen of the Board
For almost as long as there has been air travel, there have been flights between Portland and Seattle. Almost every carrier has offered service at some point.
Similar to the shuttles on the East Coast — or even Acela — these flights were so frequent (and often cheap) that it beat spending 3+ hours on I-5. Occasionally, they’ve replaced vehicle traffic. For example, the interstate was flooded at one point in the mid-90s. Airlines stepped up and added a lot of temporary capacity in the market to keep people and goods moving.
It’s a critical route that still thrives today.
In the 80s-90s, no other carrier offered more frequency than Alaska and its subsidiary Horizon (they’re more intertwined today- and the Horizon name is gone- but I’ll save the AvGeek stuff for another day).
The joke was that you weren’t late for your flight — you were just early for the next one. The airline took that a step further and repurposed it into an ad campaign using “Give Me Just A Little Time” by Detroit’s Chairmen of the Board.
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Released in 1970, The Chairmen of The Board’s “Give Me Just a Little More Time” made it all the way to #3 on the Billboard Hot 100. Though the band was signed to Invictus records, members of Motown’s in-house band, the Funk Brothers, played on the track.
The music/horns are great, but it’s General Johnson’s1 voice that really grabbed me.
In 1992, Kylie Minogue covered it in a track produced by Stock Aitken Waterman, who gave it their unmistakable sound.
And in between, a teen-aged me saw the commercial. The aviation bug had already bitten me — my poor parents occasionally drove me across the metro area to the airport to watch planes take off/land. Hearing this song was a revelation. I’d heard Motown tracks before, but never anything like this. It opened the door to a new world of sound for me.
A few short years later, I would find myself not flying Horizon but working for them on one of the first stops in my aviation career.
“Give Me Just A Little More Time” by The Chairmen of the Board | S/T, 1970
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They don’t make names like that anymore.