How Do I Make You

Album: Mad Love (1980)
Charted: 10


  • This was the first hit song Billy Steinberg wrote. He went on to write 5 US #1 hits, including "Eternal Flame," "Like A Virgin" and "True Colors." He explains how Rondstadt came to record the song: "The band I had at that time was called Billy Thermal. And Billy, of course, is my name, and Thermal is a little town in the Coachella Valley where my dad had a vineyard. So I worked on that farm of his at that time. So I decided to call my band Billy Thermal. And that was the band that was signed to Planet Records with Richard Perry. The guitar player in the band was a guy from Florida who was living in L.A., his name was Craig Hull. And Craig's girlfriend at that time was a pretty well-known songwriter named Wendy Waldman. And Wendy would sometimes tour with Linda Ronstadt as a background vocalist. So without asking my permission or anything, Wendy and Craig played the Billy Thermal demos for Linda Ronstadt, and Linda liked the song 'How Do I Make You.'"
  • Steinberg: "I remember, the song 'My Sharona' came out by The Knack, and I thought it was just like ear candy. It was just really exciting. So I think my song, 'How Do I Make You' was a little bit influenced by 'My Sharona.'" (Check out our interview with Billy Steinberg.)

Comments: 2

  • Barry from Sauquoit, NyOn December 21st 1979, Linda Ronstadt hosted and performed at a benefit concert* for her boyfriend Jerry Brown, who at the time was governor of California but running for President...
    She didn't have a record on Billboard's Hot Top 100 chart at the time; but a little over five weeks later on January 27th, 1980 her "How Do I Make You" entered the chart at position #68, and on March 23rd it would peak at #10 {for 2 weeks} and it stayed on the chart for 16 weeks...
    May God bless and watch over Ms. Ronstadt...
    * Also appearing at the concert were the Eagles and Chicago...
  • Ken from Louisville, KyThis was Linda's attempt of being a new wave rocker, rather than a ballad singer.
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