Kenny Loggins was born on January 7, 1948, in Everett, Washington. His family moved to several states during his childhood, first Detroit, then Alhambra, California. Perhaps it was all the moving that made him shy, so he turned to music as a way to get past those feelings. As he learned, he realized he had the voice and talent and a love for the craft. After going to Pasadena City College, he played with the band “Gator Creek” and signed with Mercury Records. His second group was short-lived, “Second Helping.” However, it was a progression to a solo career since he was a successful songwriter and pianist. His first job outside the groups was as a songwriter for Wingate Music. The same year he started, several songs made it to “Nitty Gritty Dirt Band” albums. The album was the first after a long hiatus which helped bolster his career further. Loggins’ first solo effort after the duo Loggins and Jo Dee Messina was “Celebrate Me Home.” At the same time, he started writing for movie soundtracks which later became his niche. Throughout his career, he’s released many albums that showed his range, including “Return to Pooh Corner,” a children’s album. In 2005, he reunited with Messina and together they did another tour. Two years later, he released the solo album “How About Now.” He followed it with another children’s album, “All Join In.” In 2021, “At the Movies” was released as part of Record Store Day. Kenny Loggins has many fantastic songs with so many hits and approximately four years of singing and songwriting. These are the 10 Best Kenny Loggins Songs of All-Time.
10. What A Fool Believes
Michael McDonald started writing this song. However, it wasn’t until he teamed up with Kenny Loggins he could finish the piece. When McDonald arrived at Loggins’ house, he heard him playing a piano chord and knew it belonged in the music. Together, they bounced ideas off each other until they finally finished the song.
9. I’m Free (Heaven Help The Man)
Kenny Loggins and Kevin Bacon gained recognition after this movie hit theatres. Several of Loggins’s songs were featured in the film, including this one that is about the age-old theme, love conquers all. It’s also a song about going outside your comfort zone and facing every obstacle life throws in your way, no matter the odds.
8. The Great Adventure
According to 10 News, this is one of Loggins’s favorite songs in his catalog. He wrote it for the San Diego Zoo after he and his family visited. Additionally, it was used to pitch his book “Footloose” in the gift shop. The children’s books are about a group of animals released from the zoo and dance to the song. Later, Loggins found out the zoo has a channel in local hospitals, and he recorded a song for it.
7. This Is It
Michael McDonald and Kenny Loggins wrote a lot of songs together, including “This Is It.” Even though they had the melody, they couldn’t quite find the words for the songs. However, they later realized that the organic process is what made this song such a classic. Before recording the final version, they eliminated and reworked many of the lines. Additionally, it was written during a tumultuous time in Loggins’ life when his father was in the hospital after a cancer diagnosis.
6. Celebrate Me Home
This was Loggins’ first single after leaving Loggins and Messina. Barba Streisand first sang it on “A Star Is Born,” which Loggins turned down a leading role. While writing this song, he met Stresands boyfriend, Jon Peters, leading to more movie songwriting and more hit songs.
5. For The First Time
Like many songs in Loggins catalog, this song made it to a movie soundtrack; One Fine Day, starring Michelle Pfeiffer and George Clooney. James Newton Howard wrote and created the piece for the movie with Jud Friedman and Alan Rich. Later in the year, Rod Steward covered it. It was nominated for an Oscar but lost to “You Must Love Me” by Madonna.
4. I’m Alright
This song was featured in the cult classic Caddyshack. According to American Songwriter, Loggins started writing about Barbara Streisand directly after she finished “A Star Is Born.” Streisand’s ex decided to produce the cult classic and called Loggins since they’d worked together on “A Star Is Born.” Parts of the movie’s first cut were the inspiration for many of the lyrics, especially the first scene where one of the main characters is riding his bicycle through the outer edges of town.
According to Pop Icons Blog, David Pitchford, the songwriter, started writing this song stream of consciousness on a yellow legal pad, beginning with “footloose and fancy free.” Afterward, he found several lines which became the basis for the song. The line footloose stood out the most and became the basis for the song featured in a movie with the same title.
2. House At Pooh Corner
This song is written from the children’s book series. It was written when Loggins was a teenager and first recorded by The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band. Twenty years after releasing the song, he added a new line about where he currently was in his life. Initially, the lyrics were about high school graduation, which got him thinking about how Christopher Robin left the Hundred Acre Woods.
1. Danger Zone
One of the most popular movies in the 80s was Top Gun. The overall mood of the movie is captured in this song. It reached number two on the Billboard Charts. However, it started as a gag on the NPR show, All Songs considered. Producers Jerry Bruckheimer and Don Simpson heard it and knew it needed to be on the soundtrack. Before the soundtrack was finished, there were almost a hundred cassette tapes with music to consider.