Rupert Holmes: Escape (The Piña Colada Song)
Stephen Bishop: On and On
Little River Band: Lonesome Loser
Ned Doheny : Get It Up For Love
Gino Vannelli - I Just Wanna Stop
Janis Ian: At Seventeen
Steely Dan - Reelin' In The Years
Cat Stevens: Can’t Keep It In
Hard rock had been established as a mainstream genre by 1965. From the end of the 1960s, it became common to divide mainstream rock music into soft and hard rock,
with both emerging as major radio formats in the US.
Soft rock was often derived from folk rock, using acoustic instruments and putting more emphasis on melody and harmonies. Major artists included Carole King, Cat Stevens, James Taylor
Soft rock songs generally tend to focus on themes like love, everyday life and relationships. The genre tends to make heavy use of acoustic guitars, pianos, synthesizers and sometimessaxophones. The electric guitars in soft rock are normally faint and high-pitched.
On April 1, 1970, Phil Spector remixed the Beatles' single "The Long and Winding Road" with a symphonic orchestra, giving them a "Middle of the road" (MOR) appeal and a "softer" rock sound than had been customary in the 60s, the heyday of acid rock's popularity. Spector did this without the Beatles' knowledge, and in the resulting furor they disbanded a few days later, although the song became an influential hit. The Carpenters' hit version of "(They Long to Be) Close to You" that summer, followed by Bread's "Make It with You", were harbingers of the softer sound that was coming to dominate the charts.
It reached its commercial peak in the mid-to-late 1970s with acts such as Billy Joel, Elton John, Chicago, Toto, England Dan & John Ford Coley, Air Supply, Seals and Crofts, America and the reformedFleetwood Mac, whose Rumours (1977) was the best-selling album of the decade. By 1977, some radio stations, like New York's WTFM and WYNY, had switched to an all-soft-rock format. By the 1980s, tastes had changed and radio formats reflected this change, including musical artists such as Journey.
The radio format evolved into what came to be known as "adult contemporary" or "adult album alternative", a format that has less overt rock bias than its forebear radio categorization.