This was the first Spinners single for Atlantic Records, which they signed with in 1972 after nine years at Motown, where they had just a few modest hits, including "It's A Shame
" and "I'll Always Love You." Atlantic paired them with Thom Bell, known for his work with The Stylistics and The Delfonics, whose downtempo songs were very much like "How Could I Let You Get Away." Atlantic released it as the first single over the objections of Bell, who wanted another song they recorded at the same session, "I'll Be Around
," to come first - he wanted to get away from slow heartbreak songs, but Atlantic knew that was his specialty, so "I'll Be Around" was relegated to the B-side. "How Could I Let You Get Away" did fairly well, reaching #14 on the R&B chart and #77 on the Hot 100, but Bell felt very strongly about "I'll Be Around" and convinced the label to try it as a single. He was right: That uptempo track went to #1 R&B and #3 on the Hot 100, kicking off an impressive run of hits for the group.