Michael Penn “March”

Posted 27 Dec 2011 in 80s, Albums of 1989, Albums of the 80s

Today’s Cool Album of the Day (#589 in the Series) is Michael Penn, March.

This was a real pleasant surprise for me.  I knew that actors Sean and Chris Penn had a musician brother, but that was the extent of it.

It was 1989 when an RCA rep walked into my office and tossed a cassette of this album on my desk. I was told to ‘check it out. ‘I listened to it a little at the office and then played it more than once while stuck in traffic on 294 between Elk Grove Village and Oak Lawn.

Did I like it, well….Yeah! In fact, before I got home, I stopped at good ol’ Wind Records on 95th street to buy the CD.  I don’t think I’d ever done that before. Not that quickly.

March is a songwriter’s album. It’s full of great melodies. The song that received the most play was ‘No Myth.’  This and That also was a radio standard. “‘Brave New World” did Ok as well. But as I alluded to earlier, this was a disc that you could play straight through, and more than once.

Michael Penn, March was produced by Tony Berg.  It was engineered by Bob Clearmountain.

Musician here included Kenny Aronoff (drums), Jimmy Haslip (bass), Wendy Melvoin (bass, guitar) Lisa Coleman (keys), Larry Klein (bass).

March peaked at #31 on the Billboard Top 200 Albums Chart

‘No Myth’ peaked at #13 on the Billboard Hop 100 Singles Chart, ‘This and That’ at #53.

Penn is married to musician Aimee Mann.

Track listing

All songs written By Michael Penn, except where noted.

  1. “No Myth” (4:10)
  2. “Half  Harvest” (4:05)
  3. “This and That” (3:31)
  4. “Brave New World” (4:32)
  5. “Innocent One” (3:16)
  6. “Disney’s a Snow Cone/Bedlam Boys” (5:11) (Penn, Patrick Warren)
  7. “Invisible” (3:45)
  8. “Cupid’s Got a Brand New Gun” (3:27)
  9. “Big House” (2:56)
  10. “Battle Room” (3:37)
  11. “Evenfall” (3:54)


  • Michael Penn – vocals, bass, guitar, programming
  • Peter Blegvad – background vocals
  • Jim Keltner – drums
  • Jimmy Haslip – bass
  • Kenny Aronoff – drums
  • Tony Berg – guitar, keyboards
  • Bonnie Boyer – background vocals
  • David Coleman – cello, oud, daff
  • Lisa Coleman – keyboards
  • Larry Klein – bass
  • Wendy Melvoin – bass, guitar, drum programming
  • John Pierce – bass
  • Patrick Warren – percussion, keyboards, drum programming
  • Art Wood – percussion
  • Diane Charlemagne – background vocals
  • Chuckois “Safe” Sexton – guitar
  • Gary Ferguson – drums, percussion


NEW SONG BONUS VIDEO: Here’s a just released track by Michael Penn. It’s called ‘The Count of Pennsylvania.’

BONUS VIDEO: Michael Penn and Aimee Mann’s rendition of ‘Two of Us.’ Recorded for the film, ‘I Am Sam.’

DOUBLE BONUS VIDEO (LOL) Mythbuster’s Kari Byron is introduced on Letterman to the sounds of ‘No Myth.’

Posted by Larry Carta

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