I’m curious how many people even heard of this album much less remember it and even much less, even liked it! It wasn’t won of Graham’s better known albums, far from it. I liked it, and I want to tell you about it, that’s really all that matters I guess.
This was 1985 and 1986. Graham didn’t really have much to do. His constant musical partner David Crosby was…. How can I put it nicely, ‘not available at this time.’ So he decided to record a solo album. He’d done three already. The first was Songs For Beginners in 1971. This album did quite well. It featured the hits single, Chicago, and reached #15 on the Billboard Top 200 Album chart. His second solo album was Wild Tales in 1973 and then came Earth and Sky in 1980.
Innocent Eyes was quite different than all three of those. This was the 80s and Graham decided to do something that would fit right into the era. This was a highly synthesized album that would fit right in with tall the popular techno pop of the era. I don’t think his fans were up for it. I was. Like I said, I liked it. He actually toured for the album and played a darn good show at Grant Park’s Band Shell in Chicago. The show (along with opening act John Hunter) was a free affair that was broadcast live on WLS-AM radio in Chicago. It was a hot 4th of July and I was there.
The track that got the most play here would probably the opening number called ‘See You In Prague.” It plays like a James Bond spy narrative. The title cut “Innocent Eyes” also got some play. It was actually a single and it peaked at #84 on the Billboard Hot 100 Singles chart. Another good one is Tom Fedora’s “Chippin’ Away.” It a nice Caribbean-Rock tune with a high dose of steel drums.
Not surprisingly, Graham had some great guest musicians in tow. David Lindley played some guitar as did Waddy Wachtel. Joey Lala added some percussion and Kenny Loggins and James Taylor sang a little. You can see the full listing below.
I could only find a couple of videos for this album. They’re on the playlist below. It is available for listening on most of the streaming networks such as MOG.com.
— Larry Carta
All tracks composed by Graham Nash; except where indicated
- “See You in Prague” (Davitt Sigerson, Richie Zito) – 3:44
- “Keep Away from Me” – 3:34
- “Innocent Eyes” (Paul Bliss) – 3:10
- “Chippin’ Away” (Tom Fedora) – 3:55
- “Over the Wall” – 3:27
- “Don’t Listen to the Rumours” (John Palermo) – 3:05
- “Sad Eyes” – 3:22
- “Newday” (Craig Doerge, Nash) – 3:19
- “Glass and Steel” – 3:17
- “I Got a Rock” – 3:17
- Graham Nash : vocals, rhythm guitar (2), keyboards (5,7,10), guitars (9)
- Bill Boydston : linn drum programming (1,2,4-8,10), keyboards (1,4,6)
- Mark Williams : drum over-dubs (1,2,5,6,10), drums (3)
- Craig Doerge : keyboards
- Michael Landau : guitars (1,3,5-10)
- Mike Fisher : percussion (1,4,6,7,9,10)
- George Perry : bass (2,4,7,8)
- Tim Drummond : bass (2,7)
- David Lindley : lead guitar (2)
- Paul Bliss : bass (3), drum programming (3), keyboards (3)
- Kenny Loggins : additional vocal (3)
- Ian Wallace : drum over-dubs (4,8)
- Jeff Southworth : guitars (4,6)
- Waddy Wachtel : guitars (5)
- Kate Yester : additional vocal (6)
- Joe Lala : percussion (7)
- James Taylor : additional vocal (7)
- David Plantshon : drums (9)
- Leland Sklar : bass (9)
- Alan Pasqua : keyboards (10)