Category: Albums of 1980

Randy Hansen ‘Randy Hansen’

  Today’s Cool Album of the Day (#908 in the series) is the self-titled debut from Randy Hansen. 1980 was a bit of a hazy year for me. Turning twenty-one will do that! Looking back, there are definitely many question marks. However, Randy Hansen’s debut that year was an exclamation point in my life for several reasons. I previously had heard of Hansen as yet another in an endless line of Jimi Hendrix impersonators. No offense, but… yawn. On a lark, I bought his debut, and continue to play it, 34 years later. Side note- you probably have already heard him- his guitar histrionics are on the Apocalypse Now soundtrack. Side one opens with the energetic “Champagne And Cocaine,”...

Warren Zevon ‘Bad Luck Streak in Dancing School’

Posted 08 Dec 2013 in Albums of 1980, Albums of the 80s

  Today’s Cool Album of the Day (#895 in the Series) is Warren Zevon, Bad Luck Streak in Dancing School In what can be considered a what came first, the chicken or the egg, sort of symbiotic of relationship, we will never know if Earnest Hemingway could have written The Old Man and the Sea if he was clean and sober, and wasn’t wrestling with more demons than Anton LeVay. Fortunately, in the case of Warren Zevon, we have the exact answer. You can go home again, and second chances to make a great first impression are sometimes given, which is exactly what happened with the release of Bad Luck Streak in Dancing School in 1980. Following the somewhat...

Dire Straits ‘Making Movies’

Song Of The Day by Eric Berman – “Skateaway” by Dire Straits Today’s Song Of The Day comes from Dire Straits’ third album Making Movies. The album was co-produced by Jimmy Iovine whom Mark Knopfler contacted because he liked the production sound he gave to Patti Smith’s single “Because The Night,” and Iovine brought a similar New Wave sheen to Making Movies. David Knopfler left the group during the making of this album, and Iovine brought Roy Bittan (of The E Street Band) into the fold on keyboards to help fill the void. It was the first time that Dire Straits had ever worked with a keyboard player, and Bittan expanded the band’s musical palate especially on the songs...

Jerry Garcia Band ‘GarciaLive Volume One’

  Song Of The Day by Eric Berman – “Catfish John” by Jerry Garcia Band It was a tale of two Jerries. By 1980 Jerry Garcia had his day job with the Grateful Dead. During that year, the band released the somewhat weak studio album, Go To Heaven, and took to the road to promote it. While the 1979-1980 shows generally found the band in excellent form, in order to keep things interesting for the fans and themselves, they performed some very special shows. They kicked off their 15th anniversary celebration (1965-1980) with residencies at Radio City Music Hall in New York City and at The Warfield Theater in San Francisco. The shows revived the format of an acoustic...

Robert Fripp ‘God Save the Queen/Under Heavy Manners’

  Song Of The Day by Eric Berman – “Under Heavy Manners” by Robert Fripp with David Byrne After the demise of King Crimson in 1974, Robert Fripp spent several years laying low before entering a period of high activity from 1977-1980, resulting in some of his most interesting collaborations. Starting in 1977, Fripp joined Brian Eno in Germany to add guitar parts to David Bowie’s “Heroes.”  This was followed by Fripp’s production of albums for Daryl Hall (Sacred Songs), Peter Gabriel (his second album with the “Scratch” cover) and the eponymously titled album by The Roches, plus sessions with an amalgam of like-minded artists including Peter Hammill (of Van Der Graaf Generator), Brian Eno, Blondie (on Parallel Lines),...

Yes ‘Drama’

  Today’s Cool Album of the Day (#806 in the Series) is Yes, Drama I feel it necessary to give a disclaimer at the beginning of this review. Yes always has been and always will be my favourite band. Further, I believe Jon Anderson is not only the greatest singer of all time, but also my favourite songwriter and musician. I didn’t say he is the best, though I can’t think of a better harp player, but I’ve long felt that Steve Howe is the best guitarist. But if you listen to his body of work and include his solo releases, starting with Olias of Sunhillow, there are few artists that can fly so close to the sun. The...

Daryl Hall ‘Sacred Songs’

  Today’s Cool Album of the Day  (#792 in the Series) is Daryl Hall, Sacred Songs. This is one of the main reasons that I’ve decided to create this site. That is to point out ditties like this. I have a feeling that many people did not know this gem existed. It’s the first solo release by Daryl Hall of “Hall and Oates” fame. I don’t know if DH is the best rock vocalist of all time, but he’s in the team picture. This was recorded in 1977 but not released until 1980. The wonderful RCA records held the album because is was ‘not commercial enough.’ I guess ‘very good’ just isn’t a good enough reason for a label to...

John Lennon and Yoko Ono “Double Fantasy”

    Today’s Cool Album of the Day (#791 in the Series) is John Lennon and Yoko Ono, Double Fantasy I remember the day when Double Fantasy was released. It was full of hope and promise for the future.  That hope would soon turn into the deepest of sadness as John would be killed just three short three weeks later. This was the first piece of music that John had given us in well over a half a decade. We did have a compilation (Shaved Fish) and an album of old covers (Rock and Roll) so we were starved to hear what John had to say. Double Fantasy didn’t knock out the critics’ right out of the box, but...

The (English) Beat “I Just Can’t Stop It”

Today’s Cool Album of the Day (#754 in the Series) is The (English) Beat, I Just Can’t Stop It. OK, why, for the first time have we used parenthesis in one of our headlines? Well, because The (English) Beat has two names.  I don’t think I’m breaking news here. It has been well documented that this band’s real name is The Beat.  American musician Paul Collins already had a successful band here called The Beat. So that’s why we know them Stateside as The English Beat.  Oh, and If you were wondering, Paul Collins band is known as The Paul Collins Beat overseas.  That is, if they’re still known at all. The names, however were not the only difference...

Roger Powell “Air Pocket”

  Today’s Cool Album of the Day (#738 in the Series) is Roger Powell, Air Pocket One of my favourites Sunday morning pastimes is the ¨catch-an-obscure-and-great lp¨ from the sales bin… Buenos Aires is fascinating in this respect: a big city, music lovers everywhere, lots of people with a great insight in local and foreign artists… Sometimes, something beautiful emerges from those dusty used lp´s bins And this one is a real gem… From the sleeve´s art (some distorted and pixelated video image), to the assorted keyboard juggernaut, the album screams 1980. Not 1979, not 1983. 1980. Why?  Well… in my subconscious, the period 1980/1981-82 was the epitome of the purest eighties zeitgeist: modernity without mannerism… and a lot...

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