- ALICE COOPER: SCHOOL’S OUT: 1972: 4 STARS OUT OF 5 STARS: The title track is classic- my favorite Alice Cooper song – an anthem- I loved the song when I was a student and then as a teacher.They were still a band back then and not an individual. It is easy to forget how Alice Cooper was so shocking back in the early 70’s- Marilyn Manson was just an updated version and a pathetic one at that.
- STEELY DAN: CAN’T BUY A THRILL: 1972: 5 STARS OUT OF 5 STARS: The debut album of Steely Dan- one of the more interesting rock bands of the 1970’s- they were successful with a much different sound- rock with a jazz influence. They would release seven albums from 1972-80. Not long after the Citizen Steely Dan box came out covering those first seven albums- my brother and I were driving home from a cross country trip and when I think of Steely Dan I think of our listening to the entire box from start to finish as we drove. I believe it got us from Arkansas and Tennessee and into Kentucky. The debut is a dandy- with some of their best known songs- Do It Again, Dirty Work and Reelin’ In The Years. On the 1001 albums to hear list.
- PETER GABRIEL: PETER GABRIEL I [CAR} 1977: Peter Gabriel’s first album after leaving Genesis. His first three albums were all self-titled but are known by the album covers- this one is Car- the second album is Scratch and the third Melt. I like the Peter Gabriel sol albums a lot- I have never been that big of a fan of Genesis either Gabriel or post- Gabriel years though. Gabriel’s best song- Solsbury Hill highlights this album- his declaration of independence. The album has no theme- a collection of songs. On the 1001 albums to hear list.
- THE BYRDS: MR. TAMBOURINE MAN: 1965: The Byrds debut. The title track a cover of the famous Dylan song- electrified went to #1. Another Dylan cover All I Really Want To Do #40.. This album which went to #6 on the album charts would be their highest peaking album. The Byrds are certainly not a forgotten band- but I wonder if they had a stable line up during their run- [11 different members in their ten years with Roger McGwinn being the only one who lasted the entire run–if their legacy would be stronger? I think of them as underrated. The changing membership in the band is the best reason I can come up with.The Byrds were the first real American challenge to The Beatles and the British Invasion. On the 1001 albums to hear list. Along with The Band- The Byrds the best-most consistent covers of Dylan songs. Four Dylan songs on this album.
- THE BYRDS: TURN! TURN! TURN! 1965: 4 1/2 STARS OUT OF 5 STARS: The title track was their second and final #1 hit single. The words taken from The Bible- from the Book of Ecclesiastes. More folk rock and Roger McGwinn’s Rickenbacher guitar- which would be highly influential on a lot of rock bands- and a couple Dylan covers. A strong follow up-released just six months after the sparkling debut.