Album of The Week 22

Whats Going On Marvin Gaye 1971

What’s Going On is the eleventh studio album by American soul singer, songwriter, and producer Marvin Gaye. It was released on May 21, 1971.

Gaye recorded the album between 1970 and 1971 in sessions at Hitsville U.S.A., Golden World, and United Sound Studios in Detroit, and at The Sound Factory in West Hollywood, California. It was his first album to credit him as a producer and to credit Motown’s in-house studio band, the session musicians known as the Funk Brothers.

What’s Going On is a concept album with most of its songs segueing into the next and has been categorized as a song cycle; the album ends with a reprise of the album’s opening theme. The narrative established by the songs is told from the point of view of a Vietnam veteran returning to his home country to witness hatred, suffering, and injustice. Gaye’s introspective lyrics explore themes of drug abuse, poverty, and the Vietnam War.

The album was an immediate commercial and critical success, eventually being regarded as a classic of 1970s soul.

Album of the Week Special

The New release from the man they call “THE BOSS

Cannot believe this man is 71 years old and I truely believe its possibly his best ever album, yep he really has earned the label “THE BOSS”

This Album “Letter to You” is the 20th Studio album and he is back with the E Street Band, featuring Nils Lofgren on Guitar. Apparantly he got the band together in November 2019 at his studio and according to reports recorded live no over dubs ? in 5 days ?

Its well worth a listen in full its gone to top of my purchase list…

Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band

  • Roy Bittan – piano, vocals
  • Jake Clemons – saxophone
  • Charles Giordano – organ, vocals
  • Nils Lofgren – guitar, vocals
  • Patti Scialfa – vocals
  • Bruce Springsteen – guitar, vocals, harmonica, production
  • Garry Tallent – bass guitar, vocals
  • Steven Van Zandt – guitar, vocals
  • Max Weinberg – drums, vocals
  • Technical personnel
  • Ron Aniello – production
  • Bob Clearmountain – mixing
  • Danny Clinch – photography
  • Bob Ludwig – mastering

Album of the Week 21

Rattle & Hum – U2 1988

Rattle and Hum is a hybrid live/studio album by Irish rock band U2, and a companion rockumentary film directed by Phil Joanou. The album was produced by Jimmy Iovine and was released on 10 October 1988, while the film was distributed by Paramount Pictures and was released on 27 October 1988. Following the breakthrough success of the band’s previous studio album, The Joshua Tree, the Rattle and Hum project captures their continued experiences with American roots music on the Joshua Tree Tour, further incorporating elements of blues rock, folk rock, and gospel music into their sound. A collection of new studio tracks, live performances, and cover songs, the project includes recordings at Sun Studios in Memphis and collaborations with Bob Dylan, B.B. King, and Harlem’s New Voices of Freedom gospel choir.

Although Rattle and Hum was intended to represent the band paying tribute to rock legends, some critics accused U2 of trying to place themselves amongst the ranks of these artists. Critical reception to both the album and the film was mixed one Rolling Stone editor spoke of the album’s “excitement”, another described it as “misguided and bombastic”.

What a difference from a Youtube clip 10 years previously !!

Album of the Week 20

First Water – Sharks 1973

Sharks are a British rock band, formed in September 1972, by the ex-Free bass player, Andy Fraser, upon his departure from Free.They were signed to Island Records and were highly rated by critics, especially for Chris Spedding’s tasteful guitar work.The initial line-up consisted of Fraser (bass, piano), Snips (real name, Steve Parsons) (vocals), Spedding (guitar) and a Canadian, Marty Simon (drums).

This debut by the band Sharks resembles, lead vocalist Snips sounding like he gargled with Kim Carnes and Paul Rodgers’ mouthwash, that gravel voice Rod Stewart made the most of accompanied here by guitar great Chris Spedding, drummer Marty Simon, and bassist Andy Fraser.

Andy Fraser had originally contacted Chris Spedding, in July 1971, to discuss playing in his first post-Free band, Toby. When Fraser formed Sharks a year later, he contacted Spedding again and, this time, they agreed to work together. Fraser had already recruited his friend, Marty Simon, so auditions were held for a singer, to complete the line-up. Robert Palmer and Leo Sayer were turned down in favour of an unknown 21-year-old from Yorkshire, Steve Parsons, also known as Snips, originally spotted by Island A&R man, Muff Winwood. Snips had previously fronted a Hull-based band called Nothingeverhappens. Parsons “played one song of his, “Snakes and Swallowtails” and he was in”, Spedding later told Melody Maker.

Sharks First Water