Sunday, September 30, 2012

Bruce Springsteen - Nebraska (30th anniversary)

Today (September 30th) marks the thirtieth anniversary of Nebraska, the sixth studio album from New Jersey rocker Bruce Springsteen.

Anyone who gives this album a listen instantly realizes how much of risk the Boss was taking at the time. This record, basically a folk album, sounds completely different than everything else that was gracing the charts in 1982. Where everyone was embracing new sounds, he went old school with one-man, one-guitar. It was an experiment that paid off as critics loved it as did most fans.

Me? Not so much. For my full review of the album, click here.

Saturday, September 29, 2012

Gerry Rafferty - Sleepwalking

This month marks the thirtieth anniversary of Sleepwalking, the fifth studio album by the late singer-songwriter Gerry Rafferty. The album did marginal in sales, reaching only number 39 on the UK charts. After this release, Rafferty took a six year break from recording.

Rafferty co-produced the album with Christopher Neil, who also did much of the synthesizer and drum machines for the disk.

Friday, September 28, 2012

Dionne Warwick - Heartbreaker

Today (September 28th) marks the thirtieth anniversary of Heartbreaker, the twenty-third studio album from Dionne Warwick and her fourth on the Arista label. The producers were Barry Gibb, Karl Richardson and Albhy Galuten, the hit making trio who worked together in 1980 on Barbra Streisand‘s Guilty album. Gibb co-wrote nine of the ten songs, three with Galuten and the other six with his brothers Robin and Maurice.

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Depeche Mode - A Broken Frame

Today (September 27th) marks the thirtieth anniversary of A Broken Frame, the second studio album by Depeche Mode. Now a trio (Vince Clarke left the group), the band continued to build on the momentum of their debut album Speak & Spell (click here for my review of it) with this 1982 sophomore release.

Survivor: Philippines (episode 2)

The new season kicked off last week with some famous faces and returning players.

This week, the three tribes face the heavy tropical rains which effect the moods. And some things transpire that lead to someone uttering this week's title "Don't Be Blinded By the Headlights".

Let's get to the recap.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Olivia Newton-John - Physical

Today (September 26th) marks the sixty-fourth birthday of actress and Grammy award-winning singer Olivia Newton-John. Although she spent a good portion of the early part of her career, during the 1970’s, on the country charts, she crossed over into the pop arena by the end of the decade and continued that route in the early 80’s.

Working again with long-time producer John Farrar, Newton-John released Physical in October of 1981. It would go on to become her biggest selling album to date. The multi-Platinum selling record went to number 11 in the UK, number 8 in New Zealand, number 5 in Japan, and number 3 in Canada. In the US, it went to number 32 on the Billboard R&B charts and number 6 in the Billboard Hot 200. It also generated a trio of chart-breaking singles.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

The Psychedelic Furs - Forever Now

Following on the heels of their 1980 self-titled debut and the sophomore release Talk Talk Talk (click here and here respectively for my reviews of each of those) the Psychedelic Furs put out their third studio album Forever Now in 1982. Today (September 25th) celebrates the thirtieth anniversary of the release of that record.

Monday, September 24, 2012

Sheena Easton - Madness, Money & Music

This month marks the thirtieth anniversary of Madness, Money & Music, the third studio album from Scottish singer Sheena Easton. The 1982 release went to number 94 in Australia, number 85 on the US Billboard Hot 200, number 73 in Canada, number 47 in the Netherlands, number 44 in the UK, number 19 in Sweden and number 5 in Norway. As with her earlier records, the UK and the US track listings on this one differed slightly in order and content. For my review, I will be reviewing the tracks in the US order.

Book Review: The Pursuit of Cool

For those of us who spent four plus years transitioning from our teens to our early twenties in college, it was indeed a time for discovery and growth. For those of us who did so during the 80’s, reading Robb Skidmore’s first novel The Pursuit of Cool can very much be like strolling down memory lane.

This fictional work is the story of Lance Rally, a student who finds that the college experience can be filled with pressures and often-confusing situations. His family has high expectations for his success. However, a lot of the time, distractions and aspirations get in the way of his academic pursuits. And even in the arena of relationships, an area which he had very little success during high school, he is often stumbling along.

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Billy Joel - The Nylon Curtain

Today (September 23rd) marks the thirtieth anniversary of the release of The Nylon Curtain, the eighth studio album from singer-songwriter Billy Joel. The album hit number 34 in Germany, number 27 in the UK, number 12 in Canada, number 10 in New Zealand, number 9 in Norway, number 4 in Australia, number 2 in Japan and number 1 in the Netherlands. Here in the US, it peaked at number 7 on the Billboard Hot 200. Nominated for a Grammy Award for Album of the Year, it generated a trio of chart-climbing singles.

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Luther Vandross - Forever, For Always, For Love

Just shy of a year after the release of his debut album Never Too Much (click here for my review of that one), R&B singer-songwriter-producer Luther Vandross released his second studio album Forever, For Always, For Love. This week (September 21st) marks the thirtieth anniversary of that record.

Friday, September 21, 2012

Janet Jackson - Janet Jackson

Today (September 21st) marks the thirtieth anniversary of the self-titled debut album from Janet Jackson. Though her older brothers had been recording starts since the late 1960's, the Jackson sister had spent the later part of the 70's and early 80's as a television actress (on Good Times and later Diff'rent Strokes). When it came time to get into the music business, she did not want her family members involved with making the album; she wanted it to be her own project to be judged on its own merits.

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Survivor: Philippines (episode 1)

Welcome to season 25 of Survivor! It has been a long summer but Jeff Probst and the crew are back to the Philippines with fifteen all-new contestants and three formerly-injured returning players.

Things are a bit different this time, including starting with three tribes: Kalabaw, Matsing, and Tandang. Let's get right into this one which is entitled "Survivor Smacked Me In The Chops".

Dire Straits - Love Over Gold

Today (September 20th) marks the thirtieth anniversary of Love Over Gold, the fourth studio album from the British rock band Dire Straits.

This Platinum seller went to number 1 in the Australia, Austria, Italy, Norway, New Zealand and the UK. In the US, it went to number 19 on the Billboard Hot 200. Singer and guitarist Mark Knopfler wrote all of the songs.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Linda Ronstadt - Get Closer

This month marks the thirtieth anniversary of Get Closer, the eleventh studio album from singer-songwriter Linda Ronstadt. This September of 1982 release went to number 48 in Canada, number 29 in Japan and number 26 in Australia. In the US, the album hit number 31 on the Billboard Hot 200 and number 19 on the Billboard Country charts, achieving a Gold sales certification.

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Twisted Sister - Under the Blade

Today (September 18th) marks the thirtieth anniversary of the release of Under the Blade, the debut album from Twisted Sister. At the time the Long Island, NY, band consisted of front man Dee Snider on lead vocals, Eddie “Fingers” Ojeda on lead guitar, Jay Jay French on rhythm guitars, Mark “The Animal” Mendoza on bass and A.J. Pero on drums.

Monday, September 17, 2012

100,000 Views and Counting!

This morning, around 4:30am EST, my blog counter crossed over the 100,000 mark. I just wanted to take this moment to thank everyone who comes and visits each day. I really appreciate it.

Neil Diamond - Heartlight

Today (September 17th) marks the thirtieth anniversary of Heartlight, the fifteenth studio album from Neil Diamond. It was a successful follow up to his 1981 release On The Way To The Sky (click here for my review of that one) and also went Platinum in the US. It reached number 43 in the UK, number 37 in New Zealand, number 8 in Australia, and number 9 on the US Billboard Hot 200.

On most of the tracks, Diamond co-wrote them with others including Burt Bacharach, Carole Bayer-Sager and David Foster.

Sunday, September 16, 2012

George Thorogood and the Destroyers - Bad to the Bone

This year marks the thirtieth anniversary of Bad to the Bone, the fifth studio album from Delaware born rocker George Thorogood and his band the Destroyers.

The album was certified Gold in the US where it peaked at number 43 on the US Billboard Hot 200. It also went to number 31 on the charts in New Zealand.

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Bee Gees - Main Course

Welcome to another edition of Seventies Saturday.

By the time the summer of 1975 rolled around, the Bee Gees had been recording for a decade. Main Course, released in the US in August of 1975, was the thirteenth studio album by the brothers Gibb. It also marked a revitalization of their career as it was the first time one of their albums went Gold in the US since 1967. The album featured an influence of Caribbean-disco rhythms and the use of Barry's falsetto vocal range. Chart-wise, the record went to number 29 in Australia, number 14 on the US Billboard Hot 200, and number 1 in Canada. It also generated a trio of hit singles.

Friday, September 14, 2012

Scandal - Scandal EP

This week marks the thirtieth anniversary of the self-titled debut EP from the New York City native rock band Scandal. In September of 1982, the group was made up of bassist Ivan Elias, drummer Frankie LaRocka, keyboardist Benjy King, singer Patty Smyth, and guitarists Zack Smith, and Keith Mack. Paul Shaffer also provided some of the keyboards on this debut record.

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Kate Bush - The Dreaming

Today (September 13th) marks the thirtieth anniversary of The Dreaming, the fourth studio album from English singer/songwriter Kate Bush. It was also the first album of hers that she produced on her own. While the album only reached number 157 on the US Billboard Hot 200, it did much better around the world. It reached number 45 in Sweden, number 36 in Japan, number 23 in Germany, number 22 in Australia, number 12 in Norway, number 8 in France, number 5 in the Netherlands, and number 3 in the UK. The album generated four singles and earned it a place on the list of 1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Simple Minds - New Gold Dream (81/82/83/84)

Tomorrow (September 13th) marks the thirtieth anniversary of New Gold Dream, the fifth studio album from the Scottish band Simple Minds. In 1982, the group consisted of Jim Kerr on lead vocals, Charlie Burchill on guitars, Michael MacNeil on keyboards, and Derek Forbes on bass. A trio of drummers was used across the nine tracks (Mike Ogletree on tracks 2, 5 and 6; Kenny Hyslop on track 3; Mel Gaynor on the remaining).

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Trio - Trio EP

In the early 80's, there was a German band known as Trio that was very popular in its native country. Stephan Remmler sang and played the occasional keyboards, Gert Krawinkel played guitar and Peter Behrens played drums.

Today (September 11th) marks the thirtieth anniversary of Trio, the self-titled extended-play album released by the group to the English speaking audiences. While it only had six tracks, it still delivered some very interesting and memorable music for the early days of new-wave, alternative 80’s.

Monday, September 10, 2012

Diana Ross - Silk Electric

Today (September 10th) marks the thirtieth anniversary of the release of Silk Electric, the thirteenth solo album from Diana Ross. Following on the heels of two Platinum selling records, this one held its own fairly well on the charts. It went to number 44 in Canada, number 33 in the UK, number 27 on the US Billboard Hot 200 and number 5 on the US Billboard R&B charts.

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Rush - Signals

Today (September 9th) marks the thirtieth anniversary of the release of Signals, the ninth studio album from Canadian rock trio of Rush. Following on the heels of the success of Moving Pictures in 1981, this Platinum selling record in North America went to number 3 in both Canada and the UK. In the US, it went to number 10 on the Billboard Hot 200.

Saturday, September 8, 2012

Peter Gabriel - Peter Gabriel IV

Today (September 8th) marks the thirtieth anniversary of the fourth solo and self-titled album from Peter Gabriel. Sometimes known as Security, Peter Gabriel IV did very well on the charts back in 1982. It hit number 28 on the US Billboard Hot 200, number 18 in New Zealand, number 14 in Norway and the Netherlands, number 10 in Sweden, number 6 in the UK, number 5 in France and number 2 in Canada.

Friday, September 7, 2012

Kool & the Gang - As One

Today (September 7th) marks the thirtieth anniversary of As One, the sixteenth studio album from American R&B group Kool & the Gang. After a trio of Platinum selling albums from the late 70's to the start of the decade, this one slid a bit down in sales; it only achieved Gold in the US. Chart-wise, it went to number 49 in the UK, number 41 in New Zealand, and number 25 in Germany. In the US, it topped out at number 29 on the Billboard Hot 200 and number 5 on the Billboard R&B chart.

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Frida - Something's Going On

Today (September 6th) marks the thirtieth anniversary of Something's Going On, the third solo studio album by Frida Lyngstad and her first in English. This 1982 release was in development as ABBA was finishing their final year as a working band. The album went Gold in Sweden after spending time at the number 1 spot on their charts. Around the rest of the world, it went to number 18 in the UK, number 12 in Germany, number 10 in Austria, number 3 in Finland and Switzerland, and number 2 in Belgium and Norway. In the US, it peaked at number 41 on the Billboard Hot 200.

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Kenny Loggins - High Adventure

This month marks the thirtieth anniversary of High Adventure, the fourth solo studio album from Kenny Loggins. The 1982 release came out three years after his previous album; despite a long time away from the charts it still managed to climb all the way to number 13 on the US Billboard Hot 200. The sales in the US earned him a Gold certification for the disk.

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

The Who - It's Hard (30th anniversary)

Today (September 4th) marks the thirtieth anniversary of It's Hard, the tenth studio album by the British rock giants - the Who.

For my full review of this album, click here.

While it wasn't in 1982, I did have the pleasure to see the Who perform live on one of their many farewell tours in the late 80's. This was for their 1989 tour to celebrate the 25th anniversary of The Kids Are Alright; I bought my older brother a ticket to the Raleigh show for his birthday that year. No denying that they put on an awesome live show.

Monday, September 3, 2012

Book Review: The Duchess of the Shallows

The life of an orphaned bread girl named Duchess changes when a mysterious mark comes into her possession and along with it a chance to be initiated into a secret society within the fog-shrouded city of Rodaas.

The Duchess of the Shallows is a fantasy novel written by Neil McGarry and Daniel Ravipinto. It includes the cover and interior illustrations by Amy Houser.

Captain Sensible - Women and Captains First

Today (September 3rd) marks the thirtieth anniversary of the release of Women and Captains First, the solo debut album of Captain Sensible. Prior to this 1982 release, the English singer-songwriter, keyboardist and guitarist was part of the punk band the Damned.

The album sparked interest in the UK, going to number 64 on the charts there. Here in the US, the album mostly got play on college radio and other stations that featured early alternative artists.

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Culture Club - Kissing To Be Clever

In 1981, British new-wave soul singer Culture Club was formed. The group consisted of lead singer Boy George, bassist Mikey Craig, drummer Jon Moss and guitarist/keyboardist Roy Hay. After a few singles early in 1982 that failed to generate any chart success, the band released Kissing To Be Clever in September of 1982. This debut album went on to be a Platinum seller. It went to number 5 in their native UK, number 8 in Germany, number 12 in Australia, number 2 in New Zealand and France, and number 3 in Sweden and Norway. In the US, the album climbed all the way to number 14 on the Billboard Hot 200 and number 24 on the Billboard R&B charts.

The track listing varied between the UK vinyl and the US one. Since I first discovered the album with the later, I will be reviewing the tracks in that order today to celebrate the thirtieth anniversary.

Saturday, September 1, 2012

André Cymone - Livin’ In the New Wave

Growing up in Minneapolis, Minnesota, André Simon Anderson was the son of a musician and a social worker, the youngest of six children. The Anderson home also had another member, a young Prince Rogers Nelson who had moved out of his own home due to family conflict. The two teens shared a common love of music.

With the stage name of André Cymone, the young bass guitarist and Prince first worked together in a band call Grand Central. André’s sister Linda and another friend, Morris Day, were part of the group when it was later named Champagne.