Progressing away from sensitivity, Joel casts his eye towards broader horizons. For him, that meant moving from the West Coast back to his native New York and embracing the city’s doo-wop, Broadway, and R&B heritage. Joel’s diversity comes through in a spectacle of memorable tunes, including the infectious “All You Wanna Do Is Dance,” acerbic “Angry Young Man,” and gorgeous “I’ve Loved These Days.”
Still, no song better illustrates the allure – and breadth – of Turnstiles more than “Say Goodbye to Hollywood,” bathed in the sort of fabulous Phil Spector sound, huge drum echoes, and Brill Building orchestral sweep that Joel grew up on. Similarly, the sprawling ballad “New York State of Mind” clearly states the singer’s vision and mood. On the definitive track, Joel luxuriates in full string accompaniment and soulful saxophone playing that gives the pop standard its foundation. Not for nothing did Joel insist on keeping his touring band for the album, a decision that resulted in the firing of the record’s original producer.
Supported by talents such as arranger Kenny Ascher, guitarist James Herb Smith, and percussionist Mingo Lewis, Joel succeeds in wrapping his head around a rich swath of American pop music, stopping by way of New Orleans, Kansas City, Memphis, Chicago, and other cities on his way from California back to the Garden State. While lacking the fame of the subsequent The Stranger and 52nd Street, Turnstiles is in every way their equal.
Finally, the delicate nuances of Joel’s phrasing, pregnant pauses, and introspective emotion can be experienced in three-dimensional fidelity. In addition, the spectrum of the orchestra’s power and finesse, ravishing poignancy of the lyrics, and bittersweet qualities of the melodies bloom with unforced immediacy. The previous veiled sonic character and stultifying dryness have been corrected, presenting Joel and his crack band with illuminating precision and feeling.
- Say Goodbye to Hollywood
- Summer, Highland Falls
- All You Wanna Do Is Dance
- New York State of Mind
- Prelude/Angry Young Man
- I’ve Loved These Days
- Miami 2017 (Seen the Lights Go Out on Broadway)
Music Vinyl LP's
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- Midler’s Grammy-Winning 1972 Debut Announces the Birth of a Superstar
- Numbered Limited Edition
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#338 on Rolling Stone's 500 Greatest Albums of All Time: Big Brother and Joplin Convey Fearlessness, Toughness, and Synergy on Every NoteIn many facets, Big Brother and the Holding Company's Cheap Thrills is the quintessential album to spring from the outcome of the Summer of Love. Best known as Janis Joplin's major-label debut, the 1968 set arrived when the countercultural movement was in full swing and before co-optation, drugs, and violence signaled the fall of the era. Ranked #338 on Rolling Stone's 500 Greatest Albums of All Time, it puts a female singer in the prominent position traditionally given to a male and showcases a band pouring a potent cocktail of fiery psychedelic, blues, and folk sounds that informed the unfettered creativity of the San Francisco scene. Produced by John Simon, Cheap Thrills also features one of the most iconic and elaborate album covers in history.
Diverse Set Encompasses Ballads, Waltzes, Hard-Swinging BopBill Evans catapulted to the top of the jazz world in June 1961 after reeling off three straight masterpiece sessions at New York’s Village Vanguard with his trio. Yet the emotional highs came to a screeching halt shortly thereafter when bassist Scott LaFaro died in a car accident. Devastated, Evans refrained from playing for nearly a year. If not for an inspirational collaboration of tremendous creative outpouring, one wonders what fate may have befallen Evans. Undercurrent, the outcome of two studio sessions with guitarist Jim Hall, is that project.
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