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.

Monday, March 31, 2014

Various Artists - Super Hits of the '70s: Have a Nice Day, Vol. 4 (1990)


Disc 4 of 25.  This disc contains singles that peaked on the charts between August 1970 - September 1971.  I wasn't listening to much radio back then, so I either learned of the songs later or I was introduced to them through this disc.  Lots of country and folk influences on this one.  This isn't one of my favorite volumes of this series, but I'm awarding bonus points for the photo of 8-track tapes on the cover.  With my middle-aged eyes, I can make out tapes from Seals & Croft, Jethro Tull, Bread, and Dueling Banjos.

Tracks:
  • Yellow River - Christie: Peaked at #23 in November 1970. Not as big in the US as it was worldwide, this is easy pop, but I can take it or leave it.
  • Rose Garden - Lynn Anderson: Peaked at #3 in February 1971.  A #1 country hit, it could easily have been a '60s girl group hit.  One of those great songs where the meaning of the lyrics are masked by the bouncy pop accompaniment.
  • For The Good Times - Ray Price: Peaked at #11 in January 1971.  Another #1 country hit, this ballad was written by Kris Kristofferson.  The bland verse is saved by the strings/vibes accompaniment and a catchy chorus.  I prefer the Al Green version, but that's just me.
  • Help Me Make It Through The Night - Sammi Smith: Peaked at #8 in March 1971. Yet another #1 country hit and another Kristofferson composition.  I never cared much for this one, but that's probably because I never slow danced with a pretty lady while it played.  To my ear, this song bears more than passing resemblance to Stand By Your Man.
  • Mr. Bojangles - The Nitty Gritty Birt Band: Peaked at #9 in February 1971.  A familiar, catchy waltz that makes for a great sing-along.  Written by country artist Jerry Jeff Walker.  Without this accordion-laden song as a precedent, there probably wouldn't have been a Piano Man.
  • Sweet Mary - Wadsworth Mansion: Peaked at #7 in February 1971.  Who put a rock song on this disc?  And who is Wadsworth Mansion?  Needless to say, this one was new to me.  I was indifferent to the song until they get a little funky at the 1:20 mark, and that completely changed my opinion of it.  I'm digging the cowbell part, but then again I dig most cowbell parts.
  • One Toke Over The Line - Brewer & Shipley: Peaked at #10 in April 1971.  A hippie anthem about smoking pot, this is another one that doesn't do much for me, probably because the Brewer & Shipley attempt isn't the definitive version, this is:


    (2:19 in, Welk calls the song a "modern spiritual" proving how hip he was.)
  • Put Your Hand In The Hand - Ocean: Peaked at #2 in May 1971.  Faithful readers of this blog know that I'm a preacher's kid. As you can probably guess, we sung this song ad nauseam at church in the '70s.  It's not a bad folk song, I just can't take any more of it.
  • Stay Awhile - The Bells: Peaked at #7 in May 1971.  This duet soft-rock ballad is almost too precious, so of course I like it, especially the mournful harmonica solo and the wispy, close-miked vocals of Jacki Ralph.
  • Woodstock - Matthews' Southern Comfort: Peaked at #23 in May 1971. Not a fan.  Written by Joni Mitchell about the legendary 1969 rock festival, this song was a bigger hit for CSN&Y, who hit #11 the previous year (I don't care much for their version, either).
  • Silver Bird - Mark Lindsay: Peaked at #25 in August 1970.  Lindsay is best known as the lead singer for Paul Revere & the Raiders.  I like this song because of its over-the-top arrangement/production sounds ready made for a TV variety show (which it very well could have been).
  • I Ain't Got Time Anymore - The Glass Bottle: Peaked at #36 in September 1971.  A less-than-average pop song, which seems like a fitting way to close out this CD.
Personal Memory Associated with this CD: Other than wearing bell-bottoms and singing Put Your Hand In The Hand with other church kids, nothing comes to mind.  Keep on truckin'.

Previously revisited for the blog:

1 comment:

  1. This was one of the first volumes of this series I bought, if I'm recalling correctly. I'd bought "Sweet Mary" as a 45 in 1971, and it interests me now to note that all of the versions of it appearing on compilations today fade out, but my 45 has a cold ending. Makes me wonder if the master got damaged sometime between 1971 and the late 90s reissues. As for "Silver Bird," I believe that some airline adopted it for use in commercials, or maybe it started that way.

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