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Artist: David Soul
Label: Private Stock Records
Writer: Tony Macaulay
Growing up in the seventies, I just loved the now-legendary TV cop show Starsky & Hutch. No wonder, as the show was pretty much made for teens. I don’t know what I’d think of it now as most of their police work consisted of high-speed driving in Starsky’s Ford Gran Torino and performing hood slides, which they perfected long before the Dukes of Hazzard and others. Paul Michael Glaser played David Michael Starsky and David Soul played Kenneth Richard “Hutch” Hutchinson. Hutch was the more serious and intellectual one. The actor, David Soul had a number one hit in April 1977 with Don’t Give Up On Us, while the show was still running. You’d be forgiven for thinking that David Soul was one of those actors who wanted to be a singer, but such was not the case. He was a singer who happened upon acting.
David Soul was born David Solberg, the son of a Lutheran minister and a US diplomatic advisor. He dropped out of high school during the ’60s not to become an actor, but to become a folk singer. He did well, even opening for The Byrds and The Doors. Seeking a gimmick, he sent a photo of himself in a ski mask to the William Morris Agency and ended up on the Merv Griffin show, singing as ‘The Covered Man’ at least 20 times. The covered man was signed by MGM Records and released some singles, which flopped.
Soul soon ditched the mask and was discovered once again, this time by a casting director. He started acting in movies and television in 1966 and landed a regular role on the TV show Here Come the Brides in 1968, playing Joshua Bolt, the younger brother of Jeremy Bolt, played by Bobby Sherman. He then had a brief run with Owen Marshall, Counselor at law, playing opposite Lee Majors. This show was directed by none other than Steven Spielberg. He has, in all, appeared in at least 14 movies and 27 television shows.
Starsky and Hutch was Soul’s third regular television role (although not his third appearance on TV) and the one that gave him the greatest visibility. Trying to take advantage of this high-profile role, he once again began singing and recording, this time with Private Stock Records.
Don’t Give Up On US was his only big hit in the US, reaching no. 1 in April 1977 and spending 19 weeks on the Billboard Hot 100 chart as well as reaching no. 1 on the adult contemporary chart.
He had a few singles in the top 100, including Going in With My Eyes Open and Silver Lady, but never reached the top 40 again, although both songs reached the top of the charts in other countries.
Starsky & Hutch ran on ABC until May 1979 and Soul continued to appear in television and movies up until 2013, including the TV movie, Salem’s Lot. He also continued releasing albums, the last Gold, in 2020, as well as several compilation albums.
Listen to David Soul Sing Don’t Give Up On Us
Owen Wilson’s Hutch Sings Don’t Give Up On Us Baby in the Movie
In the comedic film reimagining of Starsky and Hutch with Owen Wilson and Ben Stiller, there is a silly, funny, cute, and touching scene where ‘Hutch,’ played by Owen Wilson sings Don’t Give Up On Us Baby for Starsky (Ben Stiller)a and the duo’s dates while accompanying himself on acoustic guitar. This tribute to David Soul hit just the right note. Soul and Paul Michael Glaser both make cameo appearances in the movie.