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This is a catchy Pop song with mild sexual innuendo that is far removed from the band's earlier work. The Steve Miller Band started out as a Blues band in the '60s, evolving into a Rock band in the '70s.
Miller is one of several established Rock artists to release a slick Pop song in the early '80s. ZZ Top, Van Halen, and Yes also had hits with highly produced songs featuring synthesizers. They all lost some core fans as a result, but gained many more.
Six months before this came out, Miller released an album called Circle Of Love, which tanked.
This was the first video Miller made. MTV was becoming a force, and you needed a video to sell records. It featured magicians performing various tricks. Miller is in the video wearing sunglasses while playing the guitar and moving in slow motion. (thanks, chet - saratoga springs, NY)
Sugar Ray covered this in 1999 on their album 14:59.
This was the third Steve Miller Band single to hit US #1, following "The Joker
" and "Rock 'n' Me." (thanks, Brad Wind - Miami, FL)
The lyrics were inspired by Diana Ross and the Supremes, whom Miller had met while performing together on NBC's Hullabaloo in 1966. "'Abracadabra' started off as a great piece of music with really atrocious lyrics," Miller explained to The Dallas Morning News. "One day I was out skiing in Sun Valley and, lo and behold, who did I see on the mountain but Diana Ross. I skied down off the mountain to go have lunch. I had played with Diana Ross and the Supremes on Hullabaloo in the '60s, and I started thinking about the Supremes and I wrote the lyrics to 'Abracadabra' in 15 minutes."
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