(1975) Acquired used, The Atlantic Group inner sleeve, reissue. This album is a great example of why I started this blog. As a record collector for close to 50 years, there are LPs I have acquired that I rarely, if ever, listen to. This album is one of them. I don’t recall how I acquired it; maybe in a box of records purchased by or given to my husband Illinois? (Illinois is also a collector and owns three times what I own). Maybe it once belonged to a long forgotten family member? I don’t remember owning it when it was released. I surely do remember listening to it at a friend’s house or at parties.
This is one of those records everyone should own. But you should own it to enjoy the deeper tracks as well as the hits. Deal With The Preacher is a solid rock song and had some airplay back in the day, but you rarely hear it on Classic Rock radio today.
Released on the Swan Song label. Album tracks include:
Understand this about appreciating albums: when you buy an LP you listen to the ENTIRE ALBUM. Back in the day, if you wanted only one song, you bought the 45. When you bought the LP, you set aside THE TIME that it would take to listen to it from beginning to end. You read the liner notes, memorized lyrics, studied band photos to try to identify who was who. If you were really into it you would also pay attention to who produced it, who designed the artwork, and who was specially thanked for their contributions. The point here is that EVERY track became a “hit” for you.
Another feature to keep in mind; the design of the LP requires a steady hand to lift the tonearm on and off the record to pick and choose tracks to listen to (this was also very hard to do with cassette tapes). So letting it play all the way through was what you did. Less chance of the dreaded scratch and less stress on the needle.
With the advent of CDs, digital downloads, and whatever other new technology that comes along listeners now quickly download their favorite tracks and many times will not download an entire album. I get it: you have only so much space available on your portable device so you are compelled to pick and choose tracks. BUT the entire album is what the artist had in mind to release. The concept, the song order, all part of the package given to you the listener.
The painting isn’t just Mona Lisa’s eyes. Listen to the entire album– study it–let the deeper tracks become just as familiar. I haven’t listened to Straight Shooter all the way through for years; but every track was familiar and it was nice to listen to them again.