(Debuted March 29, 1980, Peaked #19, 19 Weeks on the Chart)
"Should've Never Let You Go" works on a couple of different levels. On the surface, it expresses the regret somebody feels after a loved one walks away. Add to that the fact that it is a duet between Neil Sedaka and his then-17 year-old daughter Dara, and that brings up an entirely different vibe. That's an age where both a parent and child are beginning to realize that the day that the child strikes out on her own is fast approaching. That gives the song an entirely different feel.
It's also one of those songs I probably wouldn't have picked up on before I became a father myself. My own daughter is 13 and while I have a few years before I have to worry about her leaving the nest, the day is coming a lot sooner than I am going to be ready for. I understand that, and know it's perfectly normal to wonder how she'll do when she takes on the world without the help of either parent. While I hope she'll remember the lessons she's been taught, it'll still be hard to let go of the little hand that you once held while crossing the street.
In short, I'll be wondering whether I should be repeating the title of this song.
When "Should Have Never Let You Go" hit the Top 40, it made Sedaka the first artist to have a Top 40 hit in the first four decades of the Rock Era. It would also be his last ride in the Top 40. He's still active today, recording new material. Dara is also a singer whose voice is heard in TV and radio commercials.