April 29, 2015

Bow Wow Wow - When The Going Gets Tough, The Tough Get Going (1983)













Artist:  Bow Wow Wow
Title:  When The Going Gets Tough, The Tough Get Going
Release:  1983
Format:  LP
Label:  RCA Records
Catalog#  PL-25458

“When The Going Gets Tough, The Tough Get Going” is a 1983 album by Bow Wow Wow and was released on the RCA Records label. It was their third and final studio album.
Producer Mike Chapman, who had recently worked with Pat Benatar and Blondie, came on board for Bow Wow Wow’s When the Going Gets Tough the Tough Get Going set. Perhaps it’s Chapman’s involvement that finds lead singer Annabella Lwin sounding a bit like Debbie Harry at times. This 1983 album was also the first that had no writers from outside the band contributing. When the Going Gets Tough is a well-polished, well-executed effort that holds some surprises mainly in the fact that there is more diversity than on prior Bow Wow Wow records. Chapman adds a gloss to the ballads “Lonesome Tonight” and the dreamy “Love Me,” with Lwin toning down her usual frantic delivery. “The Man Mountain” sounds like an old folk song. And, there’s also the straight-ahead, playful pop that you’d expect from the band on the ultra-hooky single “Do You Wanna Hold Me” and “Tommy Tucker,” which begins as a nursery rhyme and concludes with a quasi-football chant.


Side one
1.  Aphrodisiac  (2:58)
2.  Do You Wanna Hold Me?  (3:14)
3.  Roustabout  (2:20)
4.  Lonesome Tonight  (2:47)
5.  Love Me  (3:28)
6.  What’s The Time (Hey Buddy)  (3:06)

Side two
1.  Mario (Your Own Way To Paradise)  (2:54)
2.  Quiver (Arrows In My)  (3:14)
3.  The Man Mountain  (2:26)
4.  Rikki Dee  (3:02)
5.  Tommy Tucker  (2:44)
6.  Love, Peace And Harmony  (2:50)

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Robert Palmer - Pride (1983)













Artist:  Robert Palmer
Title:  Pride
Release:  1983
Format:  LP
Label:  Island Records
Catalog#  205240

“Pride” (Robert Palmer’s eighth solo album) certainly isn’t Robert Palmer’s finest hour due to a number of uncharacteristically weak tracks, but it’s interesting enough in spurts, thanks to Palmer’s eclectic nature. More than anything, the album works as an uneven middle ground between the crisp lo-fi electronics of Clues and the moody rock of Riptide. Perhaps here more than on his previous albums, the strong songs are forced to carry the weight of some lesser efforts. But the standout tracks are quite good: the invigorating and thoroughly catchy “Pride” shows an obvious Bahamian influence with its steel drums and unusual syncopation; “Deadline,” a clear sequel to “Looking for Clues,” is just as catchy and fun; “It’s Not Difficult” and “Say You Will” mine Gary Numan and Thomas Dolby territory, and both are fitted with addictive vocal passages. Palmer stumbles somewhat as producer, too often offering up cheesy synth horns and failing to end songs in a satisfying way. Too many of the songs simply stop on a dime, and others fade out randomly, giving the impression they’ve been edited for the airwaves or that they’re demos. Unlike most Palmer albums, “Pride” features some true stinkers: “Dance for Me” struggles awkwardly to be sexy; “The Silver Gun” makes no sense with its film score lite effects and Palmer singing in Urdu. Elsewhere, songs straddle brilliance and mediocrity. An example is the Kool & the Gang cover, “You Can Have It (Take My Heart),” which fails despite Palmer’s wonderfully droll delivery, because it’s desperately underproduced and lacking punch. “What You Waiting For” is a near-classic, with a great off-kilter chorus.


Side one
1.  Pride  (3:27)
2.  Deadline  (3:53)
3. Want You More  (3:26)
4.  Dance for Me  (3:42)
5.  You Are in My System  (4:20)

Side two
1.  It’s Not Difficult  (3:41)
2.  Say You Will  (3:46)
3.  You Can Have It (Take My Heart)  (3:07)
4.  What You Waiting For  (3:44)
5.  The Silver Gun  (5:33)

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Sneaker - Sneaker (1981)













Artist:  Sneaker
Title:  Sneaker
Release:  1981
Format:  LP
Label:  Handshake Records
Catalog#  204361

The band Sneaker was formed in Los Angeles in 1973 and would probably not be remembered at all aside from their status as one-hit wonders and their association with Doobie Brother/Steely Dan guitarist Jeff “Skunk” Baxter. Featuring dual lead vocalists Mitch Crane and Michael Carey Schneider, guitarist Tim Torrance, keyboardist Jim King, bass player Michael Cottage, and drummer Mike Hughes, they were signed to Handshake Records, releasing a self-titled album of soft pop in 1981. In addition to Baxter’s involvement, David Foster and noted session player Paulinho da Costa also contributed. Their one shot at glory came in the form of the airy ballad “More Than Just the Two of Us.
Their first hit “Don’t Let Me In?” was a Steely Dan song, which Becker and Fagen never recorded it themselves.

 

Side one
1.  Don’t Let Me In  (3:45)
2.  More Than Just The Two Of Us  (4:20)
3.  One By One  (2:45)
4.  Jaymes  (3:42)
5.  In Time  (4:40)

Side two
1.  Get Up, Get Out  (3:33)
2.  Looking For Someone Like You  (4:08)
3.  Millionaire  (4:20)
4.  No More Lonely Days  (5:05)

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The Band - The Last Waltz (1978)













Artist:  The Band
Title:  The Last Waltz
Release:  1978
Format:  3LP Boxset
Label:  Warner Bros. Records
Catalog#  WB 66076

“The Last Waltz”, a farewell concert on Thanksgiving 1976 promoted by Bill Graham and turned into a timeless documentary by Scorsese, was released as a triple-album set in 1978.
It was the last concert by The Band with its classic line up. Many artists invited to participate in the Band’s farewell concert: Ronnie Hawkins, Dr. John, Muddy Waters, Van Morrison, Neil Young, The Staple Singers, Emmylou Harris, Eric Clapton, and Bob Dylan.
Among the tracks added are a version of Louis Jordan’s “Caldonia” featuring Muddy Waters and Pinetop Perkins trading off the vocal, a radically reworked version of the live favorite “Rag Mama Rag”, Neil Young and Joni Mitchell joining The Band on “Acadian Driftwood”, a blistering take on the Stage Fright classic “W. S. Walcott Medicine Show”, excerpts from a pair of instrumental jams involving several of the concert’s guest performers, and the concert closer, “Don’t Do It”.


Side one
1.  Theme from The Last Waltz  (feat. The Orchestra)  (3:28)
2.  Up On Cripple Creek  (4:44)
3.  Who Do You Love  (feat. Ronie Hawkins)  (4:16)
4.  Helpless  (feat. Neil Young)  (5:47)
5.  Stage Fright  (4:25)

Side two
1.  Coyote  (feat. Joni Mitchell)  (5:50)
2.  Dry Your Eyes  (feat. Neil Diamond)  (3:57)
3.  It Makes No Difference  (6:48)
4.  Such A Night  (feat. David Bromberg, Dr. John)  (4:00)

Side three
1.  The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down  (4:34)
2.  Mystery Train  (4:59)
3.  Mannish Boy  (feat. Muddy Waters)  (6:54)
4.  Further On Up the Road  (feat. Eric Clapton)  (5:08)

Side four
1.  The Shape I’m In  (4:06)
2.  Down South in New Orléans  (3:06)
3.  Ophelia  (3:53)
4.  Tura Lura Lural (That’s An Irish Lullaby)  (feat. Van Morrison)  (4:15)
5.  Caravan  (feat. Van Morrison)  (6:02)

Side five
1.  Life Is A Carnival  (4:32)
2.  Baby, Let Me Follow You Down  (3:00)
3.  I Don’t Believe You  (feat. Bob Dylan)  (3:23)
4.  Forever Young  (feat. Bob Dylan)  (4:42)
5.  Baby, Let Me Follow You Down (reprise)  (feat. Bob Dylan)  (2:46)
6.  I Shall Be Released  (6:22)

Side six
1.  The Well  (3:27)
2.  Evangeline  (feat. Emmylou Harris)  (3:17)
3.  Out of the Blue  (3:03)
4.  The Weight  (feat. The Staples)  (4:38)
5.  The Last Waltz Refrain  (1:28)
6.  Theme from The Last Waltz  (3:22)

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Bette Midler - The Rose (Soundtrack) (1980)













Artist:  Bette Midler
Title:  The Rose (Soundtrack)
Release:  1980
Format:  LP
Label:  Atlantic Records
Catalog#  ATL 50681

“The Rose” is the soundtrack to the feature film of the same name starring Bette Midler which was released in 1980. Midler performs all the songs on the album, with the exception of the instrumental “Camellia”. The soundtrack was apart from the title track entirely recorded live and also features concert monologues, with Midler portraying the character “The Rose”, loosely based on legendary blues singer Janis Joplin. The soundtrack was produced by Paul A. Rothchild, who in fact also had worked with Joplin on what was to become her final album before her death in 1970, entitled “Pearl” and released posthumously. Midler’s portrayal of “The Rose”, which was her acting debut, earned her an Oscar nomination for Best Actress in 1980 and became the start of her career in movies.
The first single to be lifted off the soundtrack was Midler’s rendition of Percy Sledge’s “When a Man Loves a Woman” which became a moderate chart hit.
“The Rose” soundtrack also included one song that since its original release has become a mainstay in Midler’s live repertoire, Jerry Ragovoy’s despairing blues ballad “Stay With Me”.


Side one
1.  Whose Side Are You On?  (4:30)
2.  Midnight In Memphis  (3:44)
3.  Concert Monologue  (2:22)
4.  When a Man Loves a Woman  (5:20)
5.  Sold My Soul To Rock ‘N’ Roll  (3:42)
6.  Keep On Rockin’  (4:03)

Side two
1.  Love Me With A Feeling  (3:54)
2.  Camelia  (3:25)
3.  Homecoming Monologue  (1:23)
4.  Stay with Me  (5:42)
5.  Let Me Call You Sweetheart  (1:35)
6.  The Rose (Studio recording)  (3:42)

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Genesis - And Then There Were Three (1978)













Artist:  Genesis
Title:  …And Then There Were Three…
Release:  1978
Format:  LP
Label:  Charisma Records
Catalog#  9124023

“…And Then There Were Three…” is the ninth studio album by the British band Genesis and was released in 1978. It is the band’s first album as a trio.
The title “…And Then There Were Three…” is a reference to the recent departure of Steve Hackett, reducing Genesis to a trio. The song “Scenes From a Night’s Dream” is based on the adventures of comic strip character Little Nemo, and is the first Genesis song whose lyrics were written entirely by Phil Collins. “Say It’s Alright Joe” is a torch song about a drunk who goes into a drunken stupor.
The album produced the song “Follow You Follow Me”, which also became Genesis’ first hit US single.
While many of the songs were still progressive in terms of instrumentation and lyrics, the arrangements went from the more classical, movement-style composition of previous albums to the more standard verse/chorus/bridge format of popular songwriting. This was the final Genesis album to use a Mellotron.


Side one
1.  Down and Out  (5:26)
2.  Undertow  (4:46)
3.  Ballad of Big  (4:50)
4.  Snowbound  (4:31)
5.  Burning Rope  (7:10)

Side two
1.  Deep in the Motherlode  (5:15)
2.  Many Too Many  (3:31)
3.  Scenes from a Night’s Dream  (3:30)
4.  Say It’s Alright Joe  (4:21)
5.  The Lady Lies  (6:08)
6.  Follow You Follow Me  (4:02)

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Mark Knopfler - Local Hero (1983)













Artist:  Mark Knopfler
Title:  Local Hero (Soundtrack)
Release:  1983
Format:  LP
Label:  Vertigo Records
Catalog#  811038-1

“Local Hero” is Mark Knopfler’s soundtrack album for the 1983 film Local Hero, produced by David Puttnam, written and directed by Bill Forsyth.
Dire Straits leader Mark Knopfler’s intricate, introspective fingerpicked guitar stylings make a perfect musical complement to the wistful tone of Bill Forsyth’s comedy film, Local Hero. This album was billed as a Knopfler solo album rather than an original soundtrack album, with the notation “music…for the film.” Knopfler brings along Dire Straits associates Alan Clark (keyboards) and John Illsley (bass), plus session aces like saxophonist Mike Brecker, vibes player Mike Mainieri, and drummers Steve Jordan and Terry Williams. The low-key music picks up traces of Scottish music, but most of it just sounds like Dire Straits doing instrumentals, especially the recurring theme, one of Knopfler’s more memorable melodies. Gerry Rafferty sings the one vocal selection, “That’s the Way It Always Starts.”


Side one
1.  The Rocks and the Water  (3:30)
2.  Wild Theme  (3:40)
3.  Freeway Flyer  (1:50)
4.  Boomtown (Variation Louis’ Favourite)  (4:10)
5.  The Way It Always Starts  (vocals: Gerry Rafferty)  (4:08)
6.  The Rocks and the Thunder  (0:40)
7.  The Ceilidh and the Northern Lights  (4:07)

Side two
1.  The Mist Covered Mountains  (5:13)
2.  The Ceilidh: Louis’ Favourite/Billy’s Tune  (3:42)
3.  Whistle Theme  (0:51)
4.  Smooching  (5:05)
5.  Stargazer  (1:31)
6.  The Rocks and the Thunder  (0:40)
7.  Going Home: Theme of the Local Hero  (4:55)

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The Doobie Brothers - Takin´ It To The Streets (1976)













Artist:  The Doobie Brothers
Title:  Takin´ It To The Streets
Release:  1976
Format:  LP
Label:  Warner Bros. Records
Catalog#  WB 56196

“Takin’ It to the Streets” is the sixth studio album by American rock band The Doobie Brothers, released in 1976. It was the first to feature Michael McDonald on lead vocals.
They showed an ability to expand on the lyricism of Patrick Simmons and Baxter’s writing on “Wheels of Fortune,” while the title track introduced McDonald’s white funk sound cold to their output, successfully. Simmons’ “8th Avenue Shuffle” vaguely recalled “Black Water,” only with an urban theme and a more self-consciously soul sound (with extraordinarily beautiful choruses and a thick, rippling guitar break). “Rio” and “It Keeps You Runnin’” both manage to sound like Steely Dan tracks and that’s a compliment while Tiran Porter’s hauntingly beautiful “For Someone Special” was a pure soul classic right in the midst of all of these higher-energy pieces. Tom Johnston’s “Turn It Loose” is a last look back to their earlier sound, while Simmons’ “Carry Me Away” shows off the new interplay and sounds that were to carry the group into the 1980s, with gorgeous playing and singing all around.


Side one
1.  Wheels of Fortune  (4:54)
2.  Takin’ It to the Streets  (3:56)
3.  8th Avenue Shuffle  (4:39)
4.  Losin’ End  (3:39)

Side two
1.  Rio  (3:49)
2.  For Someone Special  (5:04)
3.  It Keeps You Runnin’  (4:20)
4.  Turn It Loose  (3:53)
5.  Carry Me Away  (4:09)

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Supertramp - Even In The Quietest Moments (1977)













Artist:  Supertramp
Title:  Even In The Quietest Moments
Release:  1977
Format:  LP
Label:  A&M Records
Catalog#  28600 XOT

“Even in the Quietest Moments” is the fifth album by progressive rock band Supertramp, released in April 1977. The album was recorded mainly at Caribou Ranch Studios in Colorado with overdubs, vocals and mixing completed at The Record Plant in Los Angeles and was Supertramp’s first album to use engineer Peter Henderson, who would work with the band for their next three albums as well.
The title of Even in the Quietest Moments… isn’t much of an exaggeration this 1977 album finds Supertramp indulging in some of their quietest moments, spending almost the album in a subdued mood. Actually, the cover photo picture of a snow-covered piano sitting on a mountain gives a good indication of what the album sounds like: it’s elegant yet mildly absurd, witty but kind of obscure. It also feels more pop than it actually is, despite the opening single, “Give a Little Bit,” their poppiest song to date, as well as their biggest hit. If the rest of the album doesn’t boast another song as tight or concise as this “Downstream” comes close but it doesn’t have the same hook, while “Babaji,” a pseudo-spiritual moment that falls from the pop mark; the other four tracks clock in well over six minutes, with the closer, “Fool’s Overture,” reaching nearly 11 minutes it nevertheless places a greater emphasis on melody and gentle textures than any previous Supertramp release. So, it’s a transitional album, bridging the gap between “Crime of the Century” and the forthcoming “Breakfast in America”, and even if it’s not as full formed as either, it nevertheless has plenty of fine moments aside from “Give a Little Bit,” including the music hall shuffle of “Loverboy,” the Euro-artiness of “From Now On,” and the “Fool on a Hill” allusions on “Fool’s Overture.”


Side one
1.  Give a Little Bit  (4:13)
2.  Lover Boy  (6:49)
3.  Even in the Quietest Moments  (6:31)
4.  Downstream  (4:04)

Side two
1.  Babaji  (4:51)
2.  From Now On  (6:21)
3.  Fool’s Overture  (10:52)

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Boz Scaggs - Silk Degrees (1976)













Artist:  Boz Scaggs
Title:  Silk Degrees
Release:  1976
Format:  LP
Label:  CBS Records
Catalog#  81193

“Silk Degrees” is the seventh album by Boz Scaggs, released on Columbia Records in 1976. The album peaked at #2 and spent 115 weeks on the Billboard 200. It has been certified five times platinum by the RIAA and remains Scaggs’ best selling album. The album was recorded at Davlen Sound Studios and Hollywood Sound Studios, Los Angeles. Among the accompanying musicians, David Paich, Jeff Porcaro, and David Hungate would go on to become band members in Toto.
The laid-back singer hit the R&B charts in a big way with the addictive, sly “Lowdown” (which has been sampled by more than a few rappers and remains a favorite among baby-boomer soul fans) and expressed his love of smooth soul music almost as well on the appealing “What Can I Say.” But Scaggs was essentially a pop/rocker, and in that area he has a considerable amount of fun on “Lido Shuffle” (another major hit single), “What Do You Want the Girl to Do,” and “Jump Street.” Meanwhile, “We’re All Alone” (the latter was later a hit for Rita Coolidge.) and “Harbor Lights” became staples on adult contemporary radio. Though not remarkable, the ballads have more heart than most of the bland material dominating that format.


Side one
1.  What Can I Say  (2:59)
2.  Georgia  (3:54)
3.  Jump Street  (5:10)
4.  What Do You Want The Girl To Do  (3:49)
5.  Harbor Lights  (5:55)

Side two
1.  Lowdown  (5:15)
2.  It’s Over  (2:48)
3.  Love Me Tomorrow  (3:14)
4.  Lido Shuffle  (3:40)
5.  We’re All Alone  (4:10)

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Led Zeppelin - Houses Of The Holy (1973)













Artist:  Led Zeppelin
Title:  Houses Of The Holy
Release:  1973
Format:  LP
Label:  Atlantic Records
Catalog#  ATL 50014

“Houses Of The Holy” is the fifth studio album by British rock band Led Zeppelin, released by Atlantic Records on 28 March 1973. It is their first album composed of entirely original material, and represents a musical turning point for the band, who had begun to record songs with more layering and production techniques.
This album was a stylistic turning point in the lifespan of Led Zeppelin. Guitar riffs became more layered within Page’s production techniques and departed from the blues influences of earlier records. In the album’s opening opus, “The Song Remains the Same”, and its intricate companion suite, “The Rain Song”, Robert Plant’s lyrics matured toward a less overt form of the mysticism and fantasy of previous efforts. Houses of the Holy also featured styles not heard on the first four Led Zeppelin albums. For example, “D’yer Mak’er” is a reggae-based tune (the name of the song being derived from the phonetic spelling of the British pronunciation of “Jamaica”); “No Quarter” features atmospheric keyboard sounds and an acoustic piano solo from Jones; “The Crunge” is a funk tribute to James Brown; and “The Rain Song” is embellished by Jones on his newly acquired mellotron. The album’s closing song “The Ocean”, which features an a cappella section and a doo-wop influenced coda, is dedicated to “the ocean” of fans who were massing to Led Zeppelin concerts at this point of the band’s career.
In 2012, it was ranked #148 on Rolling Stone magazine’s list of the 500 greatest albums of all time. The title track was recorded for the album, but was delayed until the band’s next release, Physical Graffiti, two years later.


Side one
1.  The Song Remains the Same  (5:32)
2.  The Rain Song  (7:39)
3.  Over the Hills and Far Away  (4:50)
4.  The Crunge  (3:17)

Side two
1.  Dancing Days  (3:43)
2.  D’yer Mak’er  (4:23)
3.  No Quarter  (7:00)
4.  The Ocean  (4:31)

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Santana - Amigos (1976)













Artist:  Santana
Title:  Amigos
Release:  1976
Format:  LP
Label:  CBS Records
Catalog#  86005

“Amigos” is the seventh studio album from Santana.
By the release of “Amigos” only Carlos Santana and David Brown remained from the band that conquered Woodstock, and only Carlos had been in the band continuously since. Meanwhile, the group had made some effort to arrest its commercial slide, hiring an outside producer, David Rubinson, and taking a tighter, more up-tempo, and more vocal approach to its music. The overt jazz influences were replaced by strains of R&B/funk and Mexican folk music. The result was an album more dynamic than any Santana album released before.
The album contained a minor US hit single in “Let It Shine”. In Europe the song “Europa” was released as a single and became a top ten hit in several countries.


Side one
1.  Dance Sister Dance (Baila Mi Hermana)  (8:20)
2.  Take Me With You  (5:25)
3.  Let Me  (5:08)

Side two
1.  Gitano  (6:12)
2.  Tell Me Are You Tired  (5:44)
3.  Europa (Earth’s Cry Heaven’s Smile)  (5:08)
4.  Let It Shine  (6:18)

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George Baker Selection - Paloma Blanca (1975)













Artist:  George Baker Selection
Title:  Paloma Blanca
Release:  1975
Format:  LP
Label:  Negram Records
Catalog#  NR 106

George Baker (born Johannes Bouwens, 8 December 1944, Hoorn, North Holland) is a Dutch singer and songwriter best known for his global hit Paloma Blanca. He was the lead singer of the pop musical ensemble, George Baker Selection.
Their fifth album “Paloma Blanca” was released in 1975, and the single “Paloma Blanca” reached #1 in the charts in several countries.
“Paloma Blanca” is frothy, anonymous European pop, marrying chipper romp-in-the-country melodies with beats that borrow from disco, polka, mariachi, and pseudo-Eastern European gypsy music. Echoes of faux country music are heard sometimes as well, in tunes like “As Long as the Sun Will Shine.” It ends up sounding like those hack bands you see grinning away in the “it’s a small world after all” corners of amusement theme parks, the commercial success of this stuff being the most notable difference.
After the George Baker Selection split up in 1978, Baker performed as a solo artist until 1985, when he briefly returned with a new George Baker Selection. Since 1989 he has once again worked solo. In 2005 he released a remix of the song “Una Paloma Blanca” for the film Too Fat Too Furious.


Side one
1.  Dreamboat  (4:32)
2.  Rose Marie  (3:00)
3.  I’ve Been Away Too Long  (4:33)
4.  Sing A Song Of Love  (3:25)
5.  Don’t Break This Heart (Of Mine)  (2:45)
6.  Jane (3:48)

Side two
1.  Darling  (4:03)
2.  Love Me Like I Love You  (3:49)
3.  Alone  (3:25)
4.  Padre  (3:13)
5.  Paloma Blanca  (3:49)
6.  Some Words  (3:25)

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Jack Jersey - Sings Country (1976)













Artist:  Jack Jersey
Title:  Sings Country
Release:  1976
Format:  LP
Label:  EMI Records
Catalog#  5C 064-25416

Jack Jersey, born op 18 juli 1941 as Jack de Nijs in Tjimahi op Java.
De Nijs family moves in 1951 to the Netherlands, Roosendaal, Noord-Brabant.
In the sixties Jack de Nijs plays in many band. In 1973 Jack de Nijs changes his artists name to Jack Jersey and releases his first single “I´m Calling” with a reference sound and style like Elvis Presley. Even The Jordanaires (Elvis Presley’s backing group), regulary giving their appearances to songs, like on the album “I Wonder”, which also reached the albums charts in the United States.
On the album “Jack Jersey Sings Country” Jersey also sings country songs, with some covers from Kris Kristofferson, Merle Haggard, and Conway Twitty.


Side one
1.  Me and Bobby McGee  (2:46)
2.  After sweet memories  (2:45)
3.  No other love  (2:44)
4.  Gone girl  (4:00)
5.  Sing me back home  (2:39)
6.  The reasons why  (2:04)

Side two
1.  Help me make it through the night  (3:06)
2.  Love lovin lover  (2:14)
3.  Let it be me  (2:50)
4.  How many  (3:04)
5.  Hello darling  (2:28)
6.  Mary-Jane  (2:25)

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Pussycat - First Of All (1976)













Artist:  Pussycat
Title:  First Of All
Release:  1976
Format:  LP
Label:  EMI Records
Catalog#  5C 064-25419

Pussycat emerged during the 1970s thanks to the musical aspirations of the Kowalczyk sisters Tonny Willé, Betty Drastra, and Marianne Hensen. Growing up in Limburg, Netherlands, the girls first came to the public’s attention as Zingende Zusjes (the Singing Sisters), with a well-received repertoire of German-language songs. Adding a female drummer to the brew, the group completely revamped its sound and changed its name, becoming the BG’s from Holland a direct nod to the burgeoning big beat movement sweeping the country, and the youthful assumption that they would break out of their local scene.
With the sisters still the core members of the group, by early 1975 they had recruited drummer Theo Coumans, bassist Theo Wetzels, and guitarist John Theunissen, and updated their image once again, now finally emerging as Pussycat. Signing to the EMI label, they recorded the album “First Of All” in 1976 with their first single, “Mississippi.” The song became a massive seller for Pussycat, pushing them into the charts across Europe and England, where it reached number one in August 1976.


Side one
1.  Georgie  (2:27)
2.  Pasadena  (3:57)
3.  Boulevard De La Madeleine  (2:55)
4.  What Did They Do To The People  (3:03)
5.  Mexicali Lane  (3:10)
6.  Take Me  (2:40)

Side two
1.  Missisisippi  (4:33)
2.  Delany  (3:18)
3.  Do It  (2:17)
4.  Help Me Living On  (3:49)
5.  Just A Woman  (3:40)
6.  Bad Boy  (3:41)

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Wings - Wings At The Speed Of Sound (1976)













Artist:  Wings
Title:  Wings At The Speed Of Sound
Release:  1976
Format:  LP
Label:  EMI-Bovema Records
Catalog#  5C 062-97581

“Wings at the Speed of Sound” is the fifth album by Wings and was recorded and issued in 1976. It displays a McCartney who is experimenting with new sounds as he always had; in this case, one of the new sounds is disco. The fact that there is virtually no hard rock pretense on this album rubbed a lot of narrow minded rock critics the wrong way.
Wings band member Denny Laine covered “Time to Hide” and “The Note You Never Wrote”
The Album was released the same month as the start of Paul McCartney’s first post-Beatles tour of the U.S., this album stayed at number one seven weeks and featured the number one single “Silly Love Songs” and the Top Ten “Let ‘Em In.” Without the hoopla, it’s actually a mediocre effort not helped by having other members of Wings contribute songs, although it contains one of those lost McCartney gems, the rocker “Beware My Love.”


Side one
1.  Let ‘Em In  (5:10)
2.  The Note You Never Wrote  (4:19)
3.  She’s My Baby  (3:06)
4.  Beware My Love  (6:27)
5.  Wino Junko  (5:19)

Side two
1.  Silly Love Songs  (5:53)
2.  Cook of the House  (2:37)
3.  Time to Hide  (4:32)
4.  Must Do Something About It  (3:42)
5.  San Ferry Anne  (2:06)
6.  Warm and Beautiful  (3:12)

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April 25, 2015

Ray Parker Jr. & Raydio - A Woman Needs Love (1981)













Artist:  Ray Parker Jr. & Raydio
Title:  A Woman Needs Love
Release: 1981
Format:  LP
Label:  Arista Records
Catalog# 203414

“A Woman Needs Love” is the fourth and final album by the group Raydio, led by guitarist/singer/songwriter Ray Parker, Jr.
“A Woman Needs Love “followed “Two Places at the Same Time” as the second of two albums credited to Ray Parker Jr. & Raydio. It was the first time Parker got the front sleeve to himself a signal that he had become the focal point, even though Raydio was his baby from the beginning. While Arnell Carmichael continued to provide some lead and background vocals, Parker stepped up making the most out of his limited range and performed the entirety of the lead on the album's first single. "A Woman Needs Love (Just Like You Do)," a clever and efficient slice of adult contemporary bubblegum R&B, addressed men, appealed to women, and threw in a shrewd reference to "Jack and Jill." It topped Billboard's Soul chart and came three spots short of topping the Hot 100. The album's other two charting singles  "It's Your Night," a soft funk number featuring Cheryl Lynn, and the wistful "That Old Song," where Gene Page-arranged strings play as much of a role as Parker and Carmichael didn't fare nearly as well. Other notables include the very Heatwave/Rob Temperton-like "All in the Way You Get Down," as well as "Still in the Groove," a sequel to the previous year's instrumental funk hit "For Those Who Like to Groove." As usual, RPJ's likable, sly, and affable nature makes the lesser material go down easy.


Side one
1.  A Woman Needs Love (Just Like You Do)  (4:01)  
2.  Its Your Night  (6:36)  
3.  That Old Song  (4:19)  
4.  All In The Way You Get Down  (3:51) 

Side two
1.  You Can't Fight What You Feel  (5:45)  
2.  Old Pro  (4:42)  
3.  Still The Groove  (6:18)  
4.  So Into You  (4:28)

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The O´Jays - Love And More (1984)














Artist:  The O´Jays
Title:  Love And More
Release: 1984
Format:  LP
Label:  PIR 
Catalog#  PIR 25998

Love and More was released as Philadelphia International was experiencing fallout with their distribution deal with CBS. To make matters worse, the label was down to one proven act: the O'Jays. This 1984 album didn't exactly find the guys at a time of climbing the charts -- quite the contrary. The diminishing returns and poor material of When Will I See You Again lowered the expectations for this album. That's the unfortunate part, because most of Love and More is a thoughtful and mature album. Although the ballads here never let the group down, it's the dance tracks that nearly sink the effort. The so-so "Extraordinary Girl," "Everybody's Dance Krazy," and "Love You Direct" amount to semi-danceable, patently '80s misses. These bombs make the gems of Love and More even more surprising. "I've Got to Fall in Love" and the charming and old-timey "I'm the Kind of Man" attain the elegance and poise of their best work. The emotional ballad "I Really Need You Now" is reminiscent of their 1979 classic, "Hurry Up and Come Back." "Let Me Show You How Much" and the last track, "Give My Love to the Ladies," have a half-remembered though not totally derivative style and sound. Despite its flaws, Love and More is worth seeking out.


Side one
1.  I've Got To Fall In Love  (4:26)  
2.  Extraordinary Girl  (5:10)  
3.  I'm The Kind Of Man (Every Mother Wants Her Daughter To Love)  (3:46)  
4.  Everybody's Dance Krazy  (5:30) 

Side two
1.  Summer Fling  (4:55)  
2.  I Really Need You Now  (4:12)  
3.  Love You Direct  (3:55)  
4.  Let Me Show You (How Much I Really Love You)  (3:54)  
5.  Give My Love To The Ladys  (4:15)

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O´ Bryan - Doin´ Alright (1982)














Artist:  O´ Bryan
Title:  Doin´ Alright
Release: 1982
Format:  LP
Label:  Capitol Records
Catalog#  2C 068-400071

“Doin' Alright” is the debut studio album by R&B singer O'Bryan.
This is where O'Bryan began his five year career in the 1980's! The 20 year old crooner's debut album not only sounds way ahead of its time, but it was a class act (probally many thought it was too formal for the young guy from North Carolina). Sometimes its good to go for what you know as well as what you feel and thats part of the reason why Doin' Alright is my favorite O'Bryan album. All of the tracks on the album were mainly a indirect tribute to many R&B greats (at the time) like Stevie Wonder, Michael Jackson, Rick James, Teddy Pendergrass, the late Donny Hathaway, Smokey Robinson, and Prince. The songs were all produced by O'Bryan, Ron Kersey, and Soul Train host Don Cornelius.


Side one
1.  Right From The Start  (4:21)  
2.  Love Has Found Its Way  (4:26)  
3.  The Gigolo  (4:56)  
4.  It's Over  (5:20) 

Side two
1.  Doin' Alright  (5:22)  
2.  Can't Live Without Your Love  (5:54)   
3.  Mother Nature's Calling  (3:35)  
4.  Still Water (Love)  (4:14)

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Dayton - Feel The Music (1984)














Artist:  Dayton
Title:  Feel The Music
Release: 1984
Format: LP
Label:  Capitol Records
Catalog#  1A 064-7122971

Dayton was a post-disco funk band, formed in Dayton, Ohio, United States by Chris Jones (trumpet, keyboards, vocals) from the band Sun and Shawn Sandridge (guitar, vocals) from Over Night Low. Derrick Armstrong (vocals), Kevin Hurt (drums, percussion), Jennifer Matthews (vocals) and Rachel Beavers (vocals) completed the line up.
Dayton introduced Rahni Harris as vocalist/keyboard player on their third album, “Feel The Music” in 1983, which included "The Sound Of Music".
This is a superb, classic and most over-looked album, not only for the smash hit "The sound of music" but also for the over-all quality of the entire set. The album also includes playfully "Out to night" and one of the most impressive mid tempo tracks for a long time in the sensitive "Promise me", a track that makes you feel pure joy in the deepest place of your heart. The music is sweet, well performed, joyfully, easy listening and over all packed with expressed love to the music. The album is simply highly recommended for anyone that likes R&B/popfunk from the early 80's in particular and good music in general.


Side one
1.  The Sound Of Music  (5:38)  
2.  It Must Be Love  (4:04)  
3.  Out Tonight  (4:56)  
4.  So What  (4:57) 

Side two
1.  Love You Anyway  (4:25)  
2.  Caught In The Middle  (4:40)  
3.  Eyes  (4:11)  
4.  Promise Me  (4:02)  
5.  Lookin' Up  (3:54)

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Mass Production - In A City Groove (1982)














Artist:  Mass Production
Title:  In A City Groove
Release:  1982
Format:  LP
Label:  Cotillion Records
Catalog#  COT 50877

Mass Production was an American funk/disco musical group,” Based in Norfolk, Virginia, the ten-piece group had a series of minor R&B hits in the late 1970s and early 1980s.
Although they never achieved the notoriety they deserved, pound for pound Mass Production was one of the hardest-working outfits in pop/R&B’s heady era of self-contained funk bands. Mass Production was nothing if not a major party band. Sure, some of the material in the band’s catalog, a I& EW&F or some other band seeking higlker consciousness through The Groove, did have somewhat ethereal titles.
Mass Production was big on concepts, both musically and visually “Inner City” a solid groove with a spry, strutting bass line, was the musical centerpiece of 1982’s album “In A City Groove”. The group deciding to disband in 1983.


Side one
1.  Maybe Maybe  (5:17)
2.  Never Ever  (3:34)
3.  One More Chance  (5:25)
4.  I Should Have Known Better  (4:09)

Side two
1.  Rock  (6:17)
2.  Inner City  (5:55)
3.  Solid Love  (4:52)
4.  Weird  (3:32)

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Kashif - Kashif (1983)














Artist:  Kashif
Title:  Kashif
Release: 1983
Format:  LP
Label:  Arista Records
Catalog#  205347

“Kashif” is a the self-titled debut of Kashif. It was a hit that put him on the music scene with his R&B single "I Just Gotta Have You". The album also includes the hits "Stone Love", "Help Yourself to My Love", and "Say Something Love".
Kashif burst onto the music scene with his Billboard R&B single "I Just Gotta Have You." His urgent delivery oozes with vibrancy accompanied by a poppin' rhythm arrangement and some solid change-ups. It peaked at number five after 20 weeks. "Stone Love" commissions a funky bassline and seductive background vocals which contrast Kashif's zealous intonations. With its moderately aggressive rhythm, "Help Yourself to My Love" finds the Brooklyn native patiently cradling the lyric. This album has one good composition after another. Kashif's adamant deliveries are poisely contrasted by cooing background. Though there are no authentic string and horn ensemble, the fomer B.T. Express member gets optimal use of his sythnesizers and keyboards.


Side one
1.  Don't Stop My Love  (4:32)  
2.  Stone Love  (5:26)  
3.  I Just Gotta Have You (Lover Turn Me On)  (5:48)  
4.  Help Yourself To My Love  (4:02) 

Side two
1.  Rumors  (4:16)  
2.  Say Somethin' Love  (5:08)  
3.  The Mood  (4:10)  
5.  All  (4:10)

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April 18, 2015

Van Halen - Women And Children First (1980)














Artist:  Van Halen
Title:  Women And Children First
Release:  1980
Format:  LP
Label:  Warner Bros. Records
Catalog#  WB 56793

“Women and Children First” is the third studio album by American hard rock band Van Halen, released on March 26, 1980 on Warner Bros. Produced by Ted Templeman. The album is the first to feature compositions written solely by the band, and the record where the group started to get heavier, both sonically and, to a lesser extent, thematically.
The opening track, “And the Cradle Will Rock…”, begins with what sounds like a guitar, but is, in fact, a phase shifter-effected Wurlitzer electric piano played through Van Halen’s 1960’s model 100-watt Marshall Plexi amplifier.
The album is somewhat different to their first two albums in the way that it features more studio overdubs. “Could This Be Magic” contains the only female backing vocal ever recorded for a Van Halen song; Nicolette Larson sings during some of the choruses. The rain sound in the background is not an effect. It was raining outside, and they decided to record the sound in stereo using two Neuman KM84 microphones, and add it to the track.
Only one single was released from the album, the keyboard driven “And the Cradle Will Rock…” Although the single was not a success like previous singles, the album itself was well received and further entrenched the band as a popular concert draw. The song “Everybody Wants Some!!” was also a concert staple through the 1984 tour, and continued to be played by David Lee Roth after he left Van Halen.


Side one
1.  And the Cradle Will Rock  (3:31)
2.  Everybody Wants Some  (5:05)
3.  Fools  (5:55)
4.  Romeo Delight  (4:19)

Side two
1.  Tora! Tora!  (0:57)
2.  Loss of Control  (2:36)
3.  Take Your Whiskey Home  (3:09)
4.  Could This Be Magic?  (3:08)
5.  In a Simple Rhyme  (4:33)

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The Dirt Band - An American Dream (1979)














Artist:  The Dirt Band
Title:  An American Dream
Release:  1979
Format:  LP
Label:  United Artists Records
Catalog#  1A 062-82747

Any Nitty Gritty Dirt Band fan who thought the smooth soft rock of 1978’s The Dirt Band was a fluke was proven wrong by the following year’s “American Dream”, which took the template of its predecessor and improved it with a streamlined production and some very strong material. Chief among these, of course, was the title song, a winningly polished take on Rodney Crowell’s clever “American Dream” that became a hit, climbing all the way to 13 on the pop charts and thereby establishing the band in the public’s eyes as the soft rock act they’d become. It’s a brilliant single, one of the best Californian soft rock songs of its era, and American Dream the album delivers at least on the level of sound sonically, it’s a sleek and appealing collection of mid-tempo pop songs, ballads, and lazy jams. It’s the latter that hurt the momentum of the album; although the instrumental “Jas’moon” works better than “White Russian” on The Dirt Band, there are some really silly good-time numbers “New Orleans,” “Happy Feet” that deflate the mellow vibe of the record (as does the reggae-fied cover of “Wolverton Mountain” that closes the LP on a sour note). Though these are stumbles, they don’t hurt the record, since the rest of American Dream glides by on its smooth surfaces all electric pianos, slick guitars, saxophones, and glistening polish and songs as light but appealing as “In Her Eyes,” “Take Me Back,” “Dance the Night Away,” “Do You Feel the Way That I Do,” and “What’s on Your Mind.” This won’t win over the fans lost on The Dirt Band — it would be some time before they returned to the progressive country that made their reputation but this is another small late-’70s soft rock gem.


Side one
1.  An American Dream (Jamaica in the Moonlight ) (3:53)
2.  In Her Eyes  (4:16)
3.  Take Me Back  (3:03)
4.  Jas’moon  (3:27)
5.  Dance the Night Away  (4:21)

Side two
1.  New Orléans  (3:59)
2.  Happy Feet  (3:59)
3.  Do You Feel the Way I Do  (3:58)
4.  What’s On Your Mind  (3:44)
5.  Wolverton Mountain’  (3:16)

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Peter Tosh - Mama Africa (1983)














Artist:  Peter Tosh
Title:  Mama Africa
Release:  1983
Format:  LP
Label:  EMI Records
Catalog#  1A 064-07717

Peter Tosh’s most “accessible” solo album, “Mama Africa” would also be his best seller outside Jamaica, the only one of his albums to break into the U.K. Top 50 and even push into the bottom reaches of the U.S. chart. Toning down the rhetoric, Tosh concentrated on the music, self-producing an album that sounds fantastic from start to finish. Of course, he had help from a boatload of friends, with two separate aggregates of musicians providing backing; Carlton “Santa” Davis and Lebert “Gibby” Morrison fuel one grouping across most of the album, with Sly & Robbie firing the other. There’s a fabulous horn section, a clutch of superb backing singers (including the Tamlins, who accompany Tosh on three songs), and some superb guitar work from Donald Kinsey. The album itself revisits the past while also looking to the future. The updated songs are particularly creative, with the Wailers’ “Stop That Train” totally revitalized through an incredible mix of styles, brilliantly blending R&B, nods to Motown, a faux slide guitar, and a steady reggae beat. Even more astonishing is Tosh’s stunning take on “Johnny B. Goode,” a U.K. Top 50 hit that boasts an intricate rhythm, brass accents, sumptuous keyboards, and Kinsey’s soaring guitar on a song that builds and builds into an absolute crescendo of sound. There’s also a fine revisit of “Maga Dog,” one of Tosh’s nastier songs. But that has little on “Peace Treaty,” whose laid-back beat and chirpy melody can’t hide Tosh’s gloating. Yes, listeners remember his admonition that peace will only be found in the grave, and the cease-fire declared by the gangs would never last. But as gunfire echoes across the track, should the treaty’s collapse really be the cause for celebration? To judge by Tosh’s triumphant I told you so, apparently it is. On a more positive note is the urban meets Kingston sound of “Not Gonna Give It Up,” boasting the Tamlins at their best, and more great guitar licks. The title track is even more infectious, a rocker with a Caribbean flair and a light Afro-beat, as Tosh muses eloquently about his beloved continent. Every track on the album is just as memorable in its own way, as the artist combines styles, genres, moods, and atmospheres across songs old and new. Not Tosh at his most revolutionary, but an album filled with music that remains unforgettable.


Side one
1.  Mama Africa  (7:58)
2.  Glasshouse  (5:52)
3.  Not Gonna Give It Up  (5:48)
4.  Stop That Train  (3:59)

Side two
1.  Johnny B. Goode  (4:03)
2.  Where You Gonna Run  (4:07)
3.  Peace Treaty  (4:19)
4.  Feel No Way  (3:27)
5.  Maga Dog  (4:24)

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Gruppo Sportivo - 10 Mistakes (1977)














Artist:  Gruppo Sportivo
Title:  10 Mistakes
Release:  1977
Format:  LP
Label:  Ariola Records
Catalog#  25464 XOT

Gruppo Sportivo is een Haagse popband, opgericht in 1976. Eind jaren zeventig behaalde de band op de eerste golven van de new wave een nationale populariteit. Creatieve kracht is Hans Vandenburg (gitaar en zang). Naast hem bestond de oerbezetting uit Max Mollinger (drums), Peter Calicher (toetsen), Eric Wehrmeyer (bas) en de gruppettes Josée van Iersel en Meike Touw (zang). De vaste formule van de band bestond uit popsongs, met veel aandacht voor relativering van personen en situaties, humor (knipogen naar), muziek-citaten en slapstick in de performance; vaak gingen de songs over een ‘antiheld’.
Wat opvalt is de invloed van bands als de B-52’s, maar vooral dat Gruppo Sportivo op momenten misschien nog wel leuker was. De nummers op “10 Mistakes” zitten goed in elkaar, met soms verrassende tempowisselingen, de dames zingen meer dan voortreffelijk en de humor is nog steeds leuk. En de nummers zing je nog steeds met gemak mee. Kortom: een aangename hernieuwde kennismaking met een band die weliswaar niet de faam heeft van de Golden Earring of Herman Brood, maar die met haar pretentieloze frisse en opgewekte rock beroemder verdient te zijn. Meer dus dan alleen maar een mooi tijdsdocument – gewoon een heerlijke popplaat.    http://www.bing.com/translator


Side one
1.  Beep Beep Love  (2:54)
2.  Superman  (6:24)
3.  Lasting Forever  (4:11)
4.  Girls Never Know  (3:18)
5.  I Shot My Manager  (2:48)

Side two
1.  Mission A Paris  (4:17)
2.  Dreamin’  (4:19)
3.  Henri  (4:22)
4.  Armee Monika  (4:57)
5.  Rubber Gun  (3:11)

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Lionel Richie - Lionel Richie (1982)














Artist:  Lionel Richie
Title:  Lionel Richie
Release:  1982
Format:  LP
Label:  Motown Records
Catalog#  542029

“Lionel Richie” is the debut solo album by R&B singer Lionel Richie after leaving the Commodores. It was released in 1982 on Motown Records. The first single, “Truly”, topped the Billboard Hot 100. The key to its success and the reason it was scorned by some Commodores fans is that Richie doesn’t even make a pretense of funk here, leaving behind the loose, elastic grooves of his previous bands (a move that makes sense, since his voice never suited that style particularly well), choosing to concentrate on ballads and sparkly mid-tempo pop, peppered with a few stylish dance grooves. The ballads, of course, provided two big hits with “My Love” and “Truly,” two numbers that illustrate that he was moving ever-closer to mainstream pop, since these are unapologetic AOR slow-dance tunes. The other big hit, “You Are,” is an effervescent, wonderful pop tune that showcases Richie at his sunniest; it’s one of his greatest singles. Throughout the first part of the record, the dance numbers are served up and they’re very good “Serves You Right” has a shiny, propulsive groove, while “Tell Me” jams nicely. After “You Are,” the record bogs down with a couple of ballads that are on the wrong side of adult contemporary too formless, too hookless to really catch hold but they don’t hurt the first seven songs, which form a dynamic mainstream pop-soul record, one of the best the early ’80s had to offer.


Side one
1.  Serves You Right  (5:08)
2.  Wandering Stranger  (5:36)
3.  Tell Me  (5:28)
4.  My Love  (4:05)

Side two
1.  Round And Round  (4:48)
2.  Truly  (3:19)
3.  You Are  (4:49)
4.  You Mean More To Me  (3:01)
5.  Just Put Some Love In Your Heart  (1:21)

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April 12, 2015

REO Speedwagon - Hi-Infidelity (1980)














Artist:  REO Speedwagon
Title:  Hi-Infidelity
Release:  1980
Format:  LP
Label:  Epic Records
Catalog#  EPC 84700

“Hi Infidelity” is the ninth studio album by REO Speedwagon, released in 1980. It went on to become the biggest selling rock LP of 1981. Six songs from this album hit Billboard charts, including “Keep on Loving You” which was the band’s first Number 1 hit. In a way, the group deserved this kind of success. They had been slogging it out in the arenas of the U.S., building up a sizeable audience because they could deliver live. And then, in 1980, they delivered a record that not just summarized their strengths, but captured everything that was good about arena rock. This is the sound of the stadiums in that netherworld between giants like Zeppelin and MTV’s slick, video-ready anthems. This is unabashedly mainstream rock, but there’s a real urgency to the songs and the performances that gives it a real emotional core, even if the production keeps it tied to the early, previsual ’80s. And so what if it does, because this is great arena rock, filled with hooks as expansive as Three Rivers Stadium and as catchy as the flu. That, of course, applies to the record’s two biggest hits the power ballad “Keep on Loving You” and the surging “Take It on the Run” which define their era, but what gives the album real staying power is that the rest of the record works equally well. That’s most apparent on the Bo Diddley-inspired opener, “Don’t Let Him Go,” whose insistent beat sent it to the album rock charts, but also such great album tracks as “Follow My Heart,” the sun-kissed ’60s homage “In Your Letter,” and “Tough Guys.” What’s really great about these songs is not just the sheen of professionalism that makes them addictive to listen to, but there’s a real strain of pathos that runs through these songs — the album’s title isn’t just a clever pun, but a description of the tortured romantic relationships that populate this record’s songs. This is really arena rock’s Blood on the Tracks, albeit by a group of guys instead of a singular vision, but that makes it more affecting, as well as a killer slice of ear candy. It’s easy to dismiss REO Speedwagon, since they weren’t hip at the time, and no amount of historical revisionism will make them cool kitsch.


Side one
1.  Don’t Let Him Go  (3:47)
2.  Keep On Loving You  (3:22)
3.  Follow My Heart  (3:50)
4.  In Your Letter  (3:17)
5.  Take It on the Run  (3:59)

Side two
1.  Tough Guys  (3:50)
2.  Out of Season  (3:07)
3.  Shakin’ It Loose  (2:25)
4.  Someone Tonight  (2:40)
5.  I Wish You Were There  (4:28)

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Carlos Santana - Havana Moon (1983)














Artist:  Carlos Santana
Title:  Havana Moon
Release:  1983
Format:  LP
Label:  CBS Records
Catalog#  25350

“Havana Moon” is a 1983 album by Carlos Santana released as a solo project.
The third Carlos Santana solo album marks a surprising turn toward 1950s rock & roll and Tex-Mex, with covers such as Bo Diddley’s “Who Do You Love”, Chuck Berry’s title song. and also Carlos’ father Jose singing “Vereda Tropical” a song Carlos had first heard when his father was serenading his mother following an argument.
Produced by veteran R&B producers Jerry Wexler and Barry Beckett, the album features an eclectic mix of sidemen, including Booker T. Jones of Booker T & the MG’s, Willie Nelson, and the Fabulous Thunderbirds. “Havana Moon” is a light effort, but it’s one of Santana’s most enjoyable albums.


Side one
1.  Watch Your Step  (3:49)
2.  Lightnin’  (3:50)
3.  Who Do You Love  (2:54)
4.  Mudbone  (5:50)
5.  One With You  (5:17)

Side two
1.  Ecuador  (1:10)
2.  Tales Of Kilimanjaro  (4:51)
3.  Havana Moon  (4:11)
4.  Daughter Of The Night  (4:18)
5.  They All Went To Mexico  (4:59)
6.  Vereda Tropical  (4:58)

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Prince - Sign “O” the Times (1986)














Artist:  Prince
Title:  Sign “O” the Times
Release:  1986
Format:  2 LP
Label:  Paisley Park Records
Catalog#  925577-1

Sign “O” the Times, is the ninth studio album by American recording artist Prince. It was Prince’s first “solo” album following his departure from The Revolution; the symbol between the quotes is a peace sign. The album’s music draws on funk, soul, psychedelic pop, and rock music. “Sign o’ the Times” features lyrical themes such as the depressing state of the world in the title track, gender identity/androgyny in “If I Was Your Girlfriend”, party funk in “Housequake”, sexual lust in “It”, replacing a loved one in “I Could Never Take the Place of Your Man”, and spiritual enlightenment in “The Cross”. The album also had an accompanying concert film of the same name. Two of the album’s songs were first recorded in 1982: “Strange Relationship” and “I Could Never Take the Place of Your Man”. Prince did additional work on both for their placement on the Dream Factory project and involved the “Wendy & Lisa” partnership of Wendy Melvoin and Lisa Coleman on the former. When the project was canceled, “Strange Relationship” was further updated for Camille. The remaining tracks were recorded between March and December 1986. The surviving Camille tracks feature a playful sped-up vocal. “U Got the Look” was also recorded in this manner, though it was not intended for the Camille album.
The double album was Prince’s most diverse album to date, featuring a wide array of musical styles rock, pop, soul and funk with various cues taken from dance, electronic, and jazz styles as well. The album marked a return to Prince’s self-contained recording process, with the artist performing and arranging nearly all the album’s music single-handedly. As a result, many of the tracks have a sparer, more funk-oriented, and at times, more electronic feel than Prince’s previous few records recorded with The Revolution. In addition to the album’s eclecticism, many critics have identified the record as one of Prince’s most adventurous, with radically minimalist, experimental arrangements on songs like “Housequake”, “The Ballad of Dorothy Parker”, and “Forever in My Life”.


Side one
1.  Sign o’ the Times  (4:57)
2.  Play in the Sunshine  (5:05)
3.  Housequake  (4:42)
4.  The Ballad of Dorothy Parker  (4:01)

Side two
1.  It  (5:09)
2.  Starfish and Coffee  (2:50)
3.  Slow Love  (4:22)
4.  Hot Thing  (5:39)
5.  Forever in My Life  (3:30)

Side three
1.  U Got the Look”  (featuring Sheena Easton)  (3:47)
2.  If I Was Your Girlfriend  (5:01)
3.  Strange Relationship  (4:01)
4.  I Could Never Take the Place of Your Man  (6:29)

Side four
1.  The Cross  (4:48)
2.  It’s Gonna Be a Beautiful Night  (9:01)
3.  Adore  (6:30)

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Rush - Grace Under Pressure (1984)














Artist:  Rush
Title:  Grace Under Pressure
Release:  1984
Format:  LP
Label:  Mercury Records
Catalog#  818476-1

“Grace Under Pressure” is the tenth studio album by Canadian rock band Rush, released in 1984. It is the first Rush album since 1975’s “Fly by Night” to not be produced by Terry Brown, who was replaced by Peter Henderson (Supertramp, Paul McCartney). The change resulted in a slightly more accessible sound than its predecessor, “Signals”, and marked the beginning of a period where many Rush fans feel that synths and electronics were used too prominently in effect pushing guitarist Alex Lifeson into the background. The songwriting and lyrics were still strong however, as evidenced by the video/single “Distant Early Warning” (a tale about nuclear war) and the often-overlooked highlight “Kid Gloves,” one of the album’s few songs to feature Lifeson upfront. Other standouts include a tribute to a friend of the band who had recently passed away, “Afterimage,” the disturbing “Red Sector A” (which details a concentration camp), and one of Rush’s first funk-based songs, “The Enemy Within.” Whereas most other rock bands formed in the 1970s put out unfocused and uninspired work in the 1980s (which sounds very dated), Rush’s “Grace Under Pressure” remains an exception.


Side one
1.  Distant Early Warning  (4:45)
2.  Afterimage  (5:00)
3.  Red Sector A  (5:08)
4.  The Enemy Within  (4:33)

Side two
1.  The Body Electric  (4:58)
2.  Kid Gloves  (4:16)
3.  Red Lenses  (4:39)
4.  Between The Wheels  (5:36)

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Luther Vandross - The Night I Fell In Love (1985)













Artist:  Luther Vandross
Title:  The Night I Fell In Love
Release:  1985
Format:  LP
Label:  Epic Records
Catalog#  EPC 26387

“The Night I Fell in Love” is the fourth studio album by American R&B/soul singer Luther Vandross, released in 1985. In 1986, it was nominated for one Grammy Award, “Best R&B Vocal Performance, Male”, and two American Music Awards, “Favorite Soul/R&B Male Artist” and “Favorite Soul/R&B Album”. The first single “‘Til My Baby Comes Home” is notable for featuring Billy Preston on organ.
Luther adapts a more laid-back, sophisticated approach on his fourth record, which is also a true masterpiece. The only tracks that really sound anything like the his previous three records are the singles “Til My Baby Comes Home” and “It’s Over Now,” and even these two numbers don’t have the bouncy timbre of his earlier single sides. Luther’s voice and delivery, as usual, are phenomenal, and his production and arrangements could not improved upon. However, it is his underrated songwriting ability that “The Night I Fell In Love” is really a showcase for.
In particular, the title track, “My Sensitivity (Gets In The Way),” and the haunting “Other Side Of The World” are brilliantly-composed and sound like long-lost jazz classics. Luther also covers Brenda Russell’s “If Only For One Night” and Stevie Wonder’s “Creepin'” (which are sequenced together), and his exceptional, titillating renditions of these songs are perfect compliments to the remainder of the album.


Side one
1.  ‘Til My Baby Comes Home  (5:31)
2.  The Night I Fell in Love  (6:06)
3.  If Only for One Night  (4:15)
4.  Creepin’  (4:04)

Side two
1.  It’s Over Now  (6:09)
2.  Wait for Love  (5:16)
3.  My Sensitivity (Gets in the Way)  (4:10)
4.  Other Side of the World  (5:58)


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April 09, 2015

Boz Scaggs - Middle Man (1980)














Artist:  Boz Scaggs
Title:  Middle Man
Release:  1980
Format:  LP
Label:  CBS
Catalog#  86094

“Middle Man” is the ninth album by Boz Scaggs, released on Columbia Records in 1980. Scaggs re-hired the members of the band Toto as session musicians, and shared song-writing credits with them.
Scaggs nonetheless caps off the decade with equal nods to his ’70s hitmaking formulas and the newer, shinier production techniques of the coming decade. The synthesizer rocker “Angel You” and the title track are given the full in-vogue androgynous treatment, while the opener “Jo Jo” and “Simone” are pages taken from his Here’s the Low Down-era grooves that wedded soulful vocals against a flurry of jazz changes. His penchant for the ballad is explored on “You Can Have Me Any Time” and “Isn’t It Time,” while his seldom-seen rockier side comes up for air on the bluesy “Breakdown Dead Ahead” and “You Got Some Imagination,” both featuring stinging guitar from Steve Lukather.


Side one
1.  Jojo  (5:51)
2.  Breakdown Dead Ahead  (4:33)
3.  Simone  (5:05)
4.  You Can Have Me Anytime  (4:56)

Side two
1.  Middle Man  (4:51)
2.  Do Like You Do in New York  (3:44)
3.  Angel You  (3:38)
4.  Isn’t It Time  (4:53)
5.  You Got Some Imagination  (3:56)

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The Power Station - The Power Station (1985)














Artist:  The Power Station
Title:  The Power Station
Release:  1985
Format:  LP
Label:  Parlophone Records
Catalog#  2402971

The Power Station was a supergroup formed by Robert Palmer, Tony Thompson (of Chic) and Andy and John Taylor from Duran Duran. They came together in 1984 to record a one-off album, as a respite from the relentless global touring and promotion of Duran Duran.
The original plan for this one-album project was for the three musicians (Taylor, Taylor and Thompson) to provide musical continuity to an album full of material, with a different singer performing on each track. Those who were approached included Mick Jagger, Billy Idol, Mars Williams (who eventually contributed brass to the album) and Richard Butler (of The Psychedelic Furs), and Mick Ronson.
The group then invited eclectic soul singer Robert Palmer to record vocals for the track “Communication”. When he heard that they had recorded demos for “Get It On (Bang a Gong)”, he asked to try out vocals on that one as well, and by the end of the day, the group knew that they had found that elusive chemistry which distinguishes successful bands. Before long, they had decided to record the entire album with Palmer.
However, the union was not to hold. By the time the band decided to take the 8-track set on the road, Palmer had left to record his solo album Riptide (which, likely because of the involvement of The Power Station participants Edwards, Thompson, and Andy Taylor, is very similar in sound to The Power Station album). He was replaced by Michael Des Barres (famed for co-writing Animotion’s “Obsession”).
During the promotion cycle for the album, EMI released three singles, including the cover of T-Rex’s “Get It On”, “Communication” and “Some Like It Hot”.


Side one
1.  Some Like It Hot  (5:05)
2.  Murderess  (4:17)
3.  Lonely Tonight  (4:00)
4.  Communication  (3:38)

Side two
1.  Get It On (Bang A Gong)  (5:29)
2.  Go To Zero  (4:58)
3.  Harvest For The World  (3:37)
4.  Still In Your Heart  (3:07)

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Dana - Love Songs & Fairytales (1976)














Artist:  Dana
Title:  Love Songs & Fairytales
Release:  1976
Format:  LP
Label:  GTO Records
Catalog#  2321116

Dana Rosemary Scallon (born Rosemary Brown on 30 August 1951), known in her singing career as Dana, is an Irish singer and former Member of the European Parliament (MEP).
 She won the Eurovision Song Contest 1970 with “All Kinds of Everything”, a worldwide million-seller. She subsequently released over 30 singles and 30 albums as a songwriter and performer of Christian music.
 In 1976 she released the album “Love Songs & Fairytales” with songs as: “I Love How You Love Me”, Fairytale”, Never Gonna Fall In Love Again” (cover from Eric Carmen), “All My Lovin´” (cover from The Beatles), “I´m Not In Love” (cover from 10CC), “If” (cover from David Gates) and “Rose Garden” (cover from Lynn Anderson).


Side one
1.  I Love How You Love Me
2.  I’m Not In Love
3.  There’s A Kind Of Hush
4.  All My Loving
5.  Never Gonna Fall In Love Again

Side two
1.  Fairytale
2.  Rose Garden
3.  If
4.  I Get A Little Sentimental Over You
5.  Over The Rainbow

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Mezzoforte - Surprise Surprise (1983)














Artist:  Mezzoforte
Title:  Surprise Surprise
Release:  1983
Format:  LP
Label:  Jump Shout Records
Catalog#  JS 3301

Mezzoforte is an instrumental jazz-funk fusion band from Iceland, formed in 1977.
They signed a record deal with Icelandic label Steinar. Their biggest hit single was “Garden Party” (1983), taken from their second album “Surprise Surprise”. The famous solo that takes place two minutes into “Garden Party”, was created and played on the flugelhorn by English trumpeter, Stephen Dawson. “Garden Party” was later covered by Herb Alpert, at a slower speed than the original, apparently as he had learned the track from the single played at the wrong speed. The band was named after the traditional musical term mezzo forte, an instruction to play literally “moderately loud”.


Side one
1.  Surprise  (1:25)
2.  Garden Party  (6:00)
3.  Gazing At The Clouds  (6:30)
4.  Early Autumn  (6:17)
5.  Action Man  (4:58)

Side two
1.  Funk Suite No.1  (5:49)
2.  Easy Jack  (4:45)
3.  Fusion Blues  (5:40)
4.  The Old Neighborhood  (5:32)
5.  Surprise, Reprise  (0:50)

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Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young - Déjà Vu (1970)














Artist:  Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young
Title:  Déjà Vu
Release:  1970
Format:  LP
Label:  Atlantic Records
Catalog#  ATL 50001

Déjà Vu is the second album by Crosby, Stills & Nash, and their first in the quartet configuration of Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young. Déjà Vu was greatly anticipated after the popularity of the first CSN album and given the addition of Young to the group, who at the time remained largely unknown to the general public. Stills estimates that the album took around 800 hours of studio time to record; this figure may be exaggerated, even though the individual tracks display meticulous attention to detail. The songs, except for “Woodstock”, were recorded as individual sessions by each member, with each contributing whatever was needed that could be agreed upon. Young does not appear on all of the tracks, and drummer Dallas Taylor and bassist Greg Reeves are credited on the cover with their names in slightly smaller typeface. Jerry Garcia plays pedal steel on “Teach Your Children” and John Sebastian plays harmonica on the title track. Four singles were released from the album, “Teach Your Children, “Woodstock”, “Our House” and “Carry On,” which all charting on the Billboard Hot 100.
In 2003, the album was placed on Rolling Stone magazine’s list of the 500 greatest albums of all time.


Side one
1.  Carry On  (4:26)
2.  Teach Your Children  (2:53)
3.  Almost Cut My Hair  (4:31)
4.  Helpless  (3:33)
5.  Woodstock  (3:54)

Side two
1.  Déjà Vu  (4:12)
2.  Our House  (2:59)
3.  4 + 20  (2:04)
4.  Country Girl  (5:11)
     (a) Whiskey Boot Hill
     (b) Down, Down, Down
     (c) Country Girl (I Think You’re Pretty)
5.  Everybody I Love You  (2:21)

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