Category: Albums of 1976

Shadowfax “Watercourse Way”

Today’s Cool Album of the Day (#955 in the Series) is Shadowfax, Watercourse Way When you look at a listing of the best bands Chicagoland has produced it better have Shadowfax included, if it doesn’t find a new list. Are you familiar with Shadowfax? If not, let me go back a ways. The origins of this eventual Grammy-winning band begin in the early 70s in south-suburban Crete, Illinois. That’s where the band lived in a farmhouse popularly known as “The Triple B Ranch.” It was there that these five young men crafted a sound that really could not be pigeonholed. It was jazz, it was rock, it was spacey. It was acoustic, it was plugged in. It was good....

Led Zeppelin ‘Presence’

  Today’s Cool Album of the Day (#937 in the Series) is Led Zeppelin, Presence.  If you’ve been with us for a while you’ll notice some common themes that I referred to on a regular basis. One of the more popular ones is my tendency to be a big fan of a band’s album from a tour that I happened to see. I don’t know why this is true, because often those aren’t anywhere near the band’s best piece of work, but for some reason those albums consistently have always stuck with me longer. One of my early great live rock ‘n roll experiences was seeing Led Zeppelin at the Chicago Stadium on the Presence tour. Back then I...

The Outlaws ‘Lady in Waiting’

  Today’s Cool Album of the Day (#921 in the Series) is The Outlaws, Lady In Waiting. Back to my country-rock roots once more.  I was a big fan of the early Outlaws.  I loved the first three albums and then the live release.  Then I fell away.  I remember seeing them on this tour at the Chicago Stadium.  It was Bad Company, The Outlaws and Rockpile. I can’t remember who played first between the Outlaws and Rockpile. I do remember watching an undercover cop bust a guy for selling him something in a little packet in the bathroom.  The things you remember when you’re a teen! This album didn’t have any of their huge hits on it.  But I...

KISS ‘Destroyer’

Posted 09 Mar 2014 in Albums of 1976, Albums of the 70s

Today’s Cool Album of the Day (#912 in the Series) is KISS, Destroyer It is difficult to pinpoint the exact point in time that KISS ceased being a band and morphed into the soul sucking, cross marketing, American Idol appearing, corporate sell-outs that they are today. After all, this is the band that released Alive!, a self proclaimed live album that was cleaned up in post-production with actual guitar licks layered in, and more after-the fact enhancements than an air brushed Playboy centerfold. These were the guys who kicked Ace Frehley out of the band for partying too hard (who among us doesn’t pine for those Vinnie Vincent, Mark St. John years), and deceptively tried to disguise Tommy Thayer...

The Rolling Stones ‘Black and Blue’

Song Of The Day by Eric Berman – “Hot Stuff” by The Rolling Stones Today’s Song Of The Day comes from the Rolling Stones’ 1976 album Black And Blue. Next to Goats Head Soup, the album stands as one of the most maligned Rolling Stones releases of the 1970s. That assessment is totally unfair since the album actually is one of the most varied and forward looking records in their catalog, featuring two superb ballads, two terse rockers and several songs that add reggae, soul, funk and disco into the mix. Many of the record’s songs stemmed from studio jams that were recorded while trying out new guitarists to replace Mick Taylor, and guitarists Wayne Perkins and Harvey Mandel...

Todd Rundgren’s Utopia ‘Disco Jets’

  Song Of The Day by Eric Berman – “Cosmic Convoy” by Todd Rundgren & Utopia If it had come out when it was recorded, it would have been met with shrugs, or even worse, total disdain. Instead, except for those lucky few who could afford an expensive Japanese import box set, we’ve had to wait 36 years for it to finally get a legal release, and then only in the U.K.  However, if you’re a fan of Todd Rundgren and Utopia, then it was totally worth the wait. Disco Jets was recorded in 1976, directly after sessions for the album Faithful. The album found Todd Rundgren with his head firmly in the past, giving half the tune stack...

Al Stewart ‘The Year of the Cat’

  Song Of The Day by Eric Berman – “Year Of The Cat” by Al Stewart So, 2013 is not the year of the cat…it’s the year of the snake, but that’s just the hook that led me to choose this fine tune as the first Song Of The Day of a new year. While most people are familiar with Al Stewart for a clutch of breezy easy listening tunes from the late 1970s like “Time Passages,” “On The Border” and this top-ten smash, by the time of this 1976 hit he had already recorded singles with members of The Yardbirds, appeared at the very first Glastonbury Festival in England (1970), and was already well known throughout Europe for...

Thin Lizzy “Jailbreak”

Posted 27 Jul 2012 in Albums of 1976, Albums of the 70s, Rock + Roll

  Today’s Cool Album of the Day (#742 in the Series) is Thin Lizzy, Jailbreak We’ve been leaning quite heavily on new releases along with obscure oldies lately here on Cool Album of the Day but I think we shouldn’t forget about some of our favorite oldies but goodies either. It’s time to get back to a classic. I was a very big fan of Thin Lizzy’s Fighting album of 1975.  I played it constantly be it on vinyl in the parents basement or on 8-track in my ’65 Pontiac Catalina. I knew it by heart from front to back.  To me, most of the allure was due to the fact that they were “our band.” Our referring to...

Bob Dylan “Hard Rain”

  Today’s Cool Album of the Day (#705 in the Series) is Bob Dylan, Hard Rain I was more than a little late in becoming a Bob Dylan fan.  I don’t know why, maybe I was a little too young to understand the meaning and the impact of a good protest song.  That and I remember having to sing “Turn, Turn, Turn” at Church once. That wasn’t really a turn on for a this kid. I still remember the first time that he made an impact on me. PBS was running a special on producer John Hammond Sr.  On this show (which included a very young Bruce Springsteen if I remember correctly) Bob introduced his new song “Hurricane.” No,...

Stanley Clarke "School Days"

Today’s Cool Album of The Day (#655 of the Series) is Stanley Clarke, School Days We have a large number of musicians in our group. I KNOW they know this one!! Stanley Clarke was on a roll in 1976 when this was released. Playing bass for Chick Corea’s Return to Forever will do that for you. He had just released three albums. Children of Forever, Stanley Clarke and Journey to Love had both faired quite well. But School Days was a monster for him. The title track has been hailed as one of the most influential songs by a lead bassist in jazz fusion. “The Dancer” also got some play.  It’s really too bad that rock radio doesn’t play albums...

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