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The B-side of the 7-inch single is a live rendition of "Love Twist", a track from their first album. It was recorded in December An additional live track, "Melting Pot" a cover of the song by the group Blue Mink , from the same show was available on the inch single. The music video features the band playing around on a circular board with various Monopoly spaces placed around the edges.
Interspersed with these are clips from previous Culture Club music videos. Who's Zoomin' Who? Looking for a male singer to work with Franklin on another duet, "Push," Walden "put out signals, but a lot of people were frightened to death to sing with her. Geils Band vocalist Peter Wolf, however, jumped at the chance.
Despite Franklin's awesome reputation as a singer, Walden found her easy to work with. She's so vast and brings so much to her takes that it's more a question of keeping up with her. And when it stops, it stops. So you've got to be on your toes. Before any session with her, I'd jog four or five miles just to be mentally alert.
You have to be — she's the queen. The album was inspired, in part, by visits Browne made to Central America in and , though he had already begun writing "For America" and the title track prior to his trips. Discussing the song at the time of the video's release, Browne said, "I imply that the truth is kept from us on a regular basis. I flat out say the government lies. Well, these things are no longer heresy. Other songs examine related aspects of the album's political theme.
And, intriguingly, amid all the hard-hitting sociopolitical commentary stands "In the Shape of a Heart," one of Browne's finest love songs.
Lives in the Balance never achieved the commercial success of some of Browne's earlier records. That hardly mattered to him.
And whether or not an album succeeds wildly or not, that's intact. That get-together was the make-or-break point for the Rolling Stones ' reunion — a reunion that had been imperiled by Jagger's and Richards's solo records and by a year of public backbiting between the two. Their attitudes in approaching the Barbados session say a great deal about the differences between them.
Jagger, however, admits to having no such doubts about his ability to work with Richards. Keith is very supersensitive about all that sort of thing and worries that maybe it can't happen. I said, 'Well, we'll just try. If we don't do it, we don't do it. Each man brought material to the session. And Richards says there was something of a rapprochement. Charlie Watts's arrival on the scene also bolstered Richards's sense of possibility for Steel Wheels.
This year's made. Musically, Jagger was concerned that the songs on Steel Wheels not repeat the sort of problems that had made him feel constrained in the Stones. Steel Wheels also seems to have provided Jagger with an opportunity to respond to Richards's public criticism of him.
On the album's first single, "Mixed Emotions," Jagger sings, "Button your lip, baby," and declares, "You're not the only one with mixed emotions. Jagger moans when told of Richards's remark. His records were FM-radio staples. He sold out coliseums. His live shows were legendary. But by , Bruce Springsteen had not yet placed a single in the Top Twenty, and he hadn't really made an album that fully captured the bracing live sound of the E Street Band.
The River changed all that. The album is the work of a top-notch rock band playing live in the studio. Over the course of two discs, Springsteen displays a little bit of everything that drew people to him. And if the sheer giddiness of "Crush on You" and "I'm a Rocker" make The River sound like Springsteen's party record, sobering character sketches like the title track and "Stolen Car" argue otherwise.
The album didn't come easily to Springsteen. With The River, man, forget it. It took many months. Years, you know? In the spring of , Springsteen and the band began cutting songs like "The Ties That Bind" and "Roulette" a savage rocker that would remain unreleased for eight years. Instead, he was looking for something richer and more expansive — something that would take close to another year to finish.
I guess I didn't know where I was going, you know? On The River, Springsteen accepts the fact that contradictions and paradoxes can be part of his music because they're part of everyday experience, and the decision to make a two-record set gave him the space to let his characters go just about everywhere.
The trip encompasses a hard-rocking visit to "Cadillac Ranch" and the disquieting vision at the heart of the stark finale, "Wreck on the Highway. Something that was just me, where there was no persona, no image, no distinctive character like the Bluenotes guy or the guy in Everybody's Rockin'. It's the first time I've felt like doing an album like this in years. The album is bookended by contrasting versions of the bitter, ironic "Rockin' in the Free World.
Young used a similar device on Rust Never Sleeps. When I listen to it, it's almost like listening to the radio — it keeps changing and going from one thing to another. He'd originally planned to release a purely electric rock album — "Nothing but abrasiveness from beginning to end," he says — that he'd recorded in New York.
Five songs from those sessions were released on an import EP called Eldorado. For the album that was eventually released, he mixed in material from some subsequent acoustic sessions, looking to strike a balance. The result is Young's most personal and unguarded set of songs in many years. But I was at a point in my life where I really closed off my emotions about a lot of things I didn't understand. I just shut down the whole program and did things that were more on the surface level, because it was safer.
Now I feel time has healed whatever was bothering me so much. I feel more open, and I can write songs that are more directly involved with what I'm thinking. Besides the sensual implications, the lyrics could also describe the British performer's make-over from teen idol to mature pop talent with his solo debut. After their split in , Michael became intent on finding a fresh start as a solo artist. Shying away from his persona as a preening dandy who sang drivel like "Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go," Michael cultivated a new approach that was seriously sexy.
With torn jeans, perfectly coifed hair and stubble that would make Don Johnson envious, he became the leading progenitor of a style that all but redefined late-Eighties fashion. But the real change was in the lyrics, not the look. Beyond the beat-crazy dance rhythms, most of the songs on Faith revolve around important issues.
Michael spent almost two years writing and recording Faith, influenced, he says, by "a lot of American radio, which kind of seeped into my consciousness. Nevertheless, spurred by an outrageously erotic video clip and all the surrounding controversy, Michael's sassy come-on sold more than 1 million copies in the United States. After "I Want Your Sex" scored, the catchy single "Faith" was released in October; the entire album was released a month later. Supercharged by four more hit singles — "Father Figure," "One More Try," "Monkey" and "Kissing a Fool" — the album went on to sell 14 million copies worldwide, and Faith became one of the few albums to top the pop and black charts simultaneously.
As further evidence of its broad-based appeal, Faith subsequently captured a Grammy for album of the year and topped Rolling Stone 's annual readers' poll.
The progression had to be natural, but I also knew there had to be a progression. A warmer, more open Bowie was evident at every turn on Let's Dance, whose bright, upbeat exterior and approachable lyrics celebrate "modern love" and sensual romance beneath "serious moonlight. Coming off of four hermitic, experimental and disillusioned albums — from Low to Scary Monsters — Bowie pulled an about-face. His newly found extroversion, complete with a haystack-yellow British-schoolboy haircut, netted him three Top Twenty singles — "Modern Love," "China Girl" and the chart-topping title track.
Let's Dance was a determined move to recapture the spotlight by a musician who five years earlier had told Melody Maker, "I feel incredibly divorced from rock, and it's a genuine striving to be that way. Excluding Texas blues guitarist Stevie Ray Vaughan, who was Bowie's suggestion, the musicians were drawn from Rodgers's circle. Yet the collaboration was nothing like what he had had in mind. Its swift popularity caught the normally unflappable Bowie off guard. I'd be lying in bed, and the phone would ring: 'Hello, Nile?
This is David. Look what's happening, did you see Billboard this week? Wow, unbelievable! Joined by keyboardist and singer Paul Carrack in his one-album cameo as a Squeeze member, the group filled the album with smart, uptempo pop tunes whose lyrics scanned, in Difford's words, like "suburban short stories. Difford and Tilbrook credit Elvis Costello, who coproduced most of the album with Roger Bechirian, for providing inspiration and encouraging the band to move into different areas.
He hadn't intended to play it for Costello, who nonetheless liked it right away. When Tilbrook protested that it didn't sound like Squeeze, Costello said, "Let's do it anyway. East Side Story 's best-known song is "Tempted," sung in a husky, soulful voice by Paul Carrack, with Costello and Tilbrook chiming in here and there.
Difford wrote the lyrics on the way to the airport, and "all the things in there are pretty much all the things that were in my mind on that trip," he says. Though "Tempted" became an FM-radio favorite, it didn't crack the U. Top Forty. Musical touches both playful and artful, ranging from the surreal, wavering keyboards on "Heaven" to the full orchestra on "Vanity Fair," adorn East Side Story. Yet Squeeze maintains that the record was an uncomplicated one to make.
The production really involved arrangements, and then just a straightforward recording of the songs. As a side note, the name Lennon cropped up in an unexpected way midway through the sessions. The foursome had been selling out arenas for more than a decade on the basis of Eddie's virtuosic, fleet-fingered guitar playing, singer David Lee Roth's blunt, raunchy lyrics and the brute force of Michael Anthony's bass and Alex Van Halen's drums. But , abetted by tunes that swirled elements of synth pop into metal — most evidently on the hit single "Jump" — and by a string of campy, low-budget videos that found favor on MTV, carried Van Halen to a new plateau of popularity.
No longer viewed as threatening to those with a chronic fear of metal, the band somehow became amusing and even endearing to middle America. And all the while Van Halen continued to rock like crazy. According to Templeman, who produced all six Van Halen albums prior to and including , having time to experiment in the studio made a difference. They got into all kinds of different things, because they were bored doing the same old stuff.
At the time, Eddie was in the process of building his own studio with Don Landee, the band's longtime engineer and now its producer. While boards and tape machines were being installed, the guitarist began fiddling around on synthesizers to pass the time. One night Eddie and Alex laid down an instrumental demo of what would become "Jump," excitedly ringing up their slumbering producer when they finished.
It's like three in the morning, but we really came up with something great. Roth added the lyrics, which he wrote while being chauffeured in his red Mercury convertible, and "Jump" went on to top the charts — heralding the arrival of hard rock and heavy metal in the theretofore impervious Top Forty. The album turned out to be the last recorded by Van Halen in its original configuration, as Roth left — not entirely amicably — to go solo and was soon replaced by Sammy Hagar.
Producer Templeman swears he didn't see it coming: "There were no indicators to signal a breakup at all. Matter of fact, they were really united on that sucker. Balls to the wall, they were going after the world, man! It wasn't until the release of her second album that Suzanne Vega achieved fame, scoring an unlikely Top Forty hit with "Luka," a song about child abuse. But the singer's debut album, Suzanne Vega, had already awakened listeners to a fresh new voice, reviving the folk-music genre after nearly two decades of dormancy.
For Vega, who was then twenty-five years old, the album was cause for uncertainty and isolation as much as triumph. Vega was certainly an anomaly during the mid-Eighties, softly strumming an acoustic guitar and singing introspective ballads while the rest of the music world was caught up in bigger-is-better events like Live Aid and Bruce Springsteen's Born in the U.
In retrospect, however, Vega's intimate first album proved to be a significant milestone in this decade, ushering in a flock of female folk singers, including Tracy Chapman, Melissa Etheridge, Michelle Shocked, Tanita Tikaram and the Indigo Girls. Having taught herself guitar at the age of eleven, Vega began writing her own songs when she entered her teens. After graduating from Barnard College in , she began playing small coffeehouses in Greenwich Village — the same area of New York City where nearly every Sixties folkie first tuned up his Gibson.
But Vega, a child of the Eighties, hardly fit the protest-singer mold. Even though she carried an acoustic guitar, her hero wasn't folk icon Bob Dylan but punk godfather Lou Reed. There were other differences as well. After years on the Northeastern club circuit, she had developed a direct, emotionally tempered style that she has said was inspired as much by novelist Carson McCullers and painter Edward Hopper as by romantic balladeers Leonard Cohen and Laura Nyro.
Weaving these diverse influences into a deeply moving album were producers Lenny Kaye formerly Patti Smith's guitarist and Steve Addabbo Vega's manager , who brought modern touches to Vega's straight-ahead style, enhancing the singer's sparse sound with subtle electric guitars, graceful violins and even New Age synthesizers, all of which added gentle textures to her haunting material.
Vega's prowess with simile and metaphor dominates the entire album, perhaps most effectively on songs like "Undertow," "Freeze Tag" and "Straight Lines. At the time, I felt like a small blue thing. I never expected that people would think that it stood for something. Some people even asked if it's a fetus. It's not that at all — it's a mood. The result was Guitar Town, an album that straddled country and rock to create something startlingly new. In the words of a fellow artist, John Hiatt, it was "pretty much a darn near flawless record.
Great writing, fantastic album. It is a form of literature, but one you can consume while you're driving your car. Guitar Town boasts everything from a rich, orchestral twelve-string to some deep, twangy solos on the Danelectro six-string bass. It was recorded at an all-digital studio in Nashville. By embracing the latest technology, Earle hoped his hometown would receive its due as an up-to-date music metropolis.
Does Earle see himself as more of a country or a rock artist? Such was the trepidation with which the former Band guitarist and songwriter approached making his long-put-off solo album. But he needn't have fretted so much: Robbie Robertson — released in , a full decade after the Band broke up — is ample proof that Robertson's abilities are still very much intact. From the album's ethereal opener, "Fallen Angel," dedicated to Robertson's former band mate, the late Richard Manuel, to "Testimony," its hard-rocking conclusion, Robertson establishes himself as his own man.
I thought that what I was feeling and thinking might be half-baked. Much of the work was done in a studio in Santa Monica that Robertson turned into a kind of workshop-cum-lounge. With guitars and synthesizers at the ready, he spent months and months working on ideas.
Although he began the recording sessions with an album's worth of material, many of the songs that showed up on the finished record — "Sonny Got Caught in the Moonlight," "Testimony," "Sweet Fire of Love" and "Somewhere Down the Crazy River" — were written in the studio.
Robertson wrote passionately about saving the planet "Showdown at Big Sky" , the price of fame "American Roulette" and romance "Broken Arrow". Now I felt like I couldn't help it.
Robertson sees the album as just the start of a new kind of songwriting and record making. Do you know what a skin walker is? It's a thing in Indian mythology. There are certain people born with this gift, and they're able to actually get inside you and mess with your feelings and with your mind. And if a skin walker chooses to get a hold of you, there's not much you can do. I want a song to get inside me, to feel it did the old skin walker on me.
I was kind of discovering that on this album, and now I'm pursuing it. The British band, after all, sported no guitars, and there was no drummer or bassist in the group, either.
Critically acclaimed, both LPs nonetheless possessed largely unfocused attempts at making synth pop an accessible rock style. The band wanted a unique album cover and toyed with ideas such as a sardine can that would require a key not supplied and even what Levene describes as a "sandpaper-type record, which would fuck up all your other records when you put it in your collection.
The tracks weren't listed on the album or the labels, which were at least color coded. Much to the band's displeasure, the album was released in the United States with a cardboard jacket, a different title Second Edition and relatively inferior sound.
With Jah Wobble's reggae-drenched bass way up front and Levene's dissonant guitar forays, the band pumps out droning, fragmented dance music — disco, Samuel Beckett style. Lydon's disembodied monotone vocals sound like they were phoned in long-distance. Virtually all the songs on the album were improvised in the studio. Bassist Wobble would play until the other two heard something they liked, then structure a track around it, using a clutch of session drummers; Levene says the best work on the record began as mistakes that were then refined and repeated.
Many saw in Lydon's lyrics an attempt to bury the Sex Pistols myth significantly, he had changed his name back from Johnny Rotten. On the opening track, "Albatross," he sings about "getting rid of the albatross," perhaps a reference to former Pistols manager Malcolm McLaren.
Second Edition also features three instrumentals, including the beautiful "Radio 4. She's So Unusual was an appropriate title for Cyndi Lauper 's debut record: From her electric-orange hair and colorful flea-market wardrobe to her squeaky, giddy voice, Lauper hardly appeared an odds-on bet to become one of pop's premier vocalists. Nor are many of the songs selected for She's So Unusual conventional. But that's precisely what She's So Unusual became.
The multiplatinum disc and its four Top Five singles made Lauper an instant star. Before embarking on a solo career, Lauper sang with Blue Angel, a group she cofounded in The band's debut album, released in , bombed, and Blue Angel broke up. Lauper signed a record deal with Portrait, and with producer Rick Chertoff at the controls she began work on She's So Unusual.
Chertoff brought in Rob Hyman and Eric Bazilian of the then-unknown Philadelphia band the Hooters to play on the record. Together they opted for a synth-heavy sound that evoked the girl-group era of the early-Sixties and deftly played Lauper's vocals against thick arrangements. Not yet an accomplished songwriter although she co-wrote "She Bop" and the touching ballad "Time After Time" , Lauper looked outside for material.
Electronic Folk International. Jazz Latin New Age. Aggressive Bittersweet Druggy. Energetic Happy Hypnotic. Romantic Sad Sentimental.
Sexy Trippy All Moods. Drinking Hanging Out In Love. Introspection Late Night Partying. Rainy Day Relaxation Road Trip.Hailed as their best album ever, Colour By Numbers certainly made Culture Club stars in the 80's and with 'Karma Chameleon' going to number one in the charts, you can see why they were up there with the best of them. This was the album that got me really appreciating how /5().