Since September 2010, this blog has recorded the journey of this middle-aged man as I attempt to listen to all the music in my CD collection. CDs revisited in their entirety from start to finish - no skipping tracks, no shuffle. CDs only - no vinyl, no tapes, no downloads. And just as CD technology (and the album format itself) becomes obsolete. I'm no music critic, just a music junkie with too much time on my hands.

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Bonnie Raitt - Green Light (1982)

A great bluesy rock album that sadly didn't quite fit in with the emerging synthpop genre that was charting in the summer of 1982 (Human League, Soft Cell, etc.).  Roots rock had a small but solid following so the fan base was there, but for some reason this collection of good, well-performed tunes didn't even sell enough copies for Raitt to keep her recording contract.  It's baffling.  I can just imagine the marketing conversations at Warner Bros:
I mean, the singer/guitarist is in her 30s!  Where are the synths?  Where's the quirky fashion?  How are going to promote that?  It's easier not to promote it, let's take that road.
But I digress.  Back to Raitt.  In the interest of full disclosure, I didn't discover this album when it was released, but that I'm thinking that had more to do with exposure than personal preference.  This stuff would have fit in nicely next to my Paul Carrack/NickLowe/Dave Edmunds records of the time. Raitt can sing and play with the best of them and she finally found success once she signed with Capitol Records.  She's talented and I'm glad she finally got her due.  I would love to see her live.  This album was released in January 1982, but IMHO it sounds best when it's played on your car stereo on a hot summer night.

There wasn't Metacritic back in 1982, but I figure this album would have rated a respectable metascore of 82.
  • Robert Christgau: A-
  • Rolling Stone: 3 stars
  • Entertaiment Weekly: B-
  • Allmusic: 4.5 stars
Musician, May 1982, p. 81

Peak on the US Billboard Top 200 chart: #38
Peak on Cash Box album chart: #34

Tracks: Top tracks are Keep This Heart In Mind, River Of Tears, Willya Wontcha, Talk To Me, the title track, and her infectious covers of NRBQ's Me And The Boys & The Equals' Baby come Back.  The only filler I can find is Can't Get Enough.

Personal Memory Associated with this CD:  In 1982, my family didn't subscribe to HBO (hell, we didn't even have cable), but I had some friends that did.  I remember a Bonnie Raitt video appearing on Video Jukebox one day and I'm sure that was the first I'd heard of her.  I have no idea what song it was, but it seems that she was driving around in car, much like on the album cover. I'm guessing it was for Keep This Heart In Mind, which was the only charting song from the album (Mainstream Rock #39). 

1 comment:

  1. My Green Light recollection, such as it is, can be found in the comment to this post.