- ELTON JOHN: MADMAN ACROSS THE WATER: 1971: 4 STARS OUT OF 5 STARS: Elton had a busy in the early 70’s- this was his 4th album in a little over two years-surprisingly it only had one Top 40 single-Levon #24, Tiny Dancer didn’t even make the Top 40 peaking at #41 and the title track wasn’t released as a single. I thought they were all hits. Very good album. I had always thought that Madman Across The Water- referred to my friend Milhous Nixon but I guess not.
- GEORGE RUSSELL: ELECTRONIC SONATA: 1969: 4 STARS OUT OF 5 STARS: In my quest to listen to 365 1969 albums this year- I came across this- an avant-garde jazz album. There are two long tracks that make up the album and Russell bends in a number of musical styles and electronic sounds into it. I enjoyed the listen.
- DEVO: THE ESSENTIALS: 2002: 4 STARS OUT OF 5 STARS: I can’t say I am a fan of Devo but I have liked some of their music over the years. A dozen of their best known songs are on this- Whip It, Freedom of Choice, Jocko Homo, and their version of The Stones “Satisfaction”- a good survey.
- DIXIE CHICKS: FLY: 1999: 4 STARS OUT OF 5 STARS: The follow up from the Wide Open Spaces album which broke them big time. A #1 album on both the country charts and the Billboard Top 200 albums- there were eight singles released from the album- over two years after the albums release they were still issuing singles from it. Its easy to forget how big a hit these girls were before they made the comments about George Dubya Bush that sank their career.
- LOVE: FOREVER CHANGES: 1967: 5 STARS OUT OF 5 STARS: One of the iconic albums of the 60’s-who more people need turned on to- the album only went to #154 on the album chart and there was no hit singles. Alone, Again Or was released as a single and only bubbled under the Hot 100 peaking at #123. Over time the reputation of this album has only grown and grown- Rolling Stone place it at #40 on their 500 Greatest Albums list.
- JETHRO TULL: STAND UP: 4 STARS OUT OF 5 STARS: I have always been kind of neutral on Jethro Tull. This their second album is a good listen. On this album the band changes gear from blues oriented to adding folk rock- Ian Anderson at this point had taken over control of the band writing the lyrics and music. Living In The Past is my favorite song by them -as a single it went to #3 in the UK- the album went to #1. In the US the single went to #11- their first hit- they would only have one other-Bungle In The Jungle.
- BUCK OWENS: 21 #1 HITS: THE ULTIMATE COLLECTION: 2006: 5 STARS OUT OF 5 STARS: The essential Buck is the three disc box set but this isn’t a bad one- a collection of his 21 #1 hits- up to and including The Streets Of Bakersfield with Dwight Yoakam. While Bruce Springsteen was the first rock concert I went to- my first ever concert was when I was eight- saw Buck Owens a few times. My first musical heroes were Buck, Hank and Johnny Cash. Not a bad way to start.