Lowdown (Chicago song)

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Lowdown Chicago song cover.jpg
Single by Chicago
from the album Chicago III
B-side"Loneliness Is Just a Word"
ReleasedApril 1971
Songwriter(s)Peter Cetera, Danny Seraphine
Producer(s)James William Guercio
Chicago singles chronology
"Beginnings/Colour My World"

"Lowdown" is a song written by Peter Cetera and Danny Seraphine for the rock band Chicago and recorded for their third album Chicago III (1971). It was the second single released from this album,[1] and peaked at  No.  35 on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100.[2]

Cetera provided lead vocals while guitarist Terry Kath used a fuzzbox and wah-wah pedal for his guitar solo and Robert Lamm made prominent use of the Hammond organ.

This was Cetera's second song-writing effort for the group, after "Where Do We Go From Here" on Chicago II. According to group biographer, William James Ruhlmann, Cetera wrote the song with Seraphine despite having been "told" that "Where Do We Go From Here" would probably be his last contribution because " 'the group was very happy with the writers they had, thank you, and we didn't need any more contributions.' " According to Cetera's account, Terry Kath said, " 'Don't you ever tell anybody I ever played guitar on this record’ " and Kath played the song with a less than enthusiastic attitude which took the heart out of the song for Cetera.[3]

According to a 2016 web review, in "Lowdown" Cetera "ties political issues to emotions", " 'Lowdown' features one of the tightest rhythms ever laid down by Seraphine, Kath and Cetera," and "It’s easily one of the best tracks on Chicago III."[4]

A Japanese-language version of the song was recorded in 1972 for the Japan market and released as a single. It would be released digitally on the Japan-only compilation CD The Heart of Chicago 1967-1971 Volume II Special Edition (green cover), which also contains "Questions 67 and 68" sung in Japanese.

The group performed the song live with the Japanese lyrics during tours of Japan in 1972,[5] documented on the Live in Japan album.



  1. ^ "The Chicago Story: Chapter VII – Success". www.chicagotheband.com. Retrieved June 11, 2018.
  2. ^ "Chicago Lowdown Chart History". Billboard. Retrieved June 11, 2018.
  3. ^ Ruhlmann, William James (1980). "Chicago Box Set - Page 4". Chicago Group Portrait (Box Set): Liner Notes. Columbia Records. Retrieved June 11, 2018.
  4. ^ Perplexio (November 19, 2016). "Chicago, "Lowdown" from 'Chicago III' (1971): Saturdays in the Park". Something Else!. Retrieved June 11, 2018.
  5. ^ Miller, Bruce R. (February 10, 2012). "There's plenty of glory in Cetera's life". Sioux City Journal. Sioux City, Iowa, USA. Retrieved June 11, 2018.

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