- STEVE FORBERT: ALIVE ON ARRIVAL: 1978: 4 STARS OUT OF 5 STARS: I always seem to play this and Ian Hunter’s album together- or at least think of them together- because one issue of Rolling Stone back in 1978 had those albums as the two albums they gave the main review for in that issue- Forbert the rookie and Hunter the experienced veteran. Of course I went out and bought both and loved both albums. Forbert is still around and while I can’t claim to have heard every album he has produced this his debut album is still his most highly praised album. Favorite songs on the album- Goin’ Down To Laurel, Steve Forbert’s Midsummer Night’s Toast, Thinkin’, What Kinda Guy? and Grand Central Station March 18, 1977.
- IAN HUNTER: YOU’RE NEVER ALONE WITH A SCHIZOPHRENIC: 5 STARS OUT OF 5 STARS: In the double review in Rolling Stone- Hunter was the old veteran to Forbert’s being the young rookie- Hunter was thirty-nine at the time- forty years later Ian Hunter is still going strong. I love both albums but I give the nod to Hunter’s album as being the better of the two due to overall stronger material. Favorites- while I like all nine songs on here- to narrow it down a bit-Just Another Night, Wild East, Cleveland Rocks, When The Daylight Comes and Bastard are my favorites. Who would have thought that Barry Manilow would cover an Ian Hunter song and have a hit with it? He did with “Ships.”
- THE BAND: ACROSS THE GREAT DIVIDE: 3 DISC BOX SET: 1994: 4 STARS OUT OF 5 STARS: 4 stars not because of the content as much as what isn’t here. For fans of The Band there wasn’t enough unreleased material. The much better box set The Band: A Musical History a 5 disc 1 DVD box set came out in 2005 and is a delight. I will listen to it again in the very near future. On Across The Great Divide- the first two discs are material every fan of The Band has- a career retrospective. Disc 3 has unreleased and live material. Disc 1 is mostly songs from Music From Big Pink and The Band- they should have just put everything from both albums on the box set- everything is essential from those albums. The thing is- Band fans already had the first two discs. Anyhow it was all corrected a decade later with A Musical History.
- THE CIVIL WAR SOUNDTRACK: 1990: 4 1/2 STARS OUT OF 5 STARS: The soundtrack from Ken Burns excellent The Civil War. We are going to Gettysburg this upcoming weekend for a few days and thought I’d give this another listen just to get myself in the mood- not that I am not already excited about going. This would have been worth the $ if it only contained Askokan Farewell and the reading of Sullivan Ballou’s letter.