We are finally on our 5th Producer in the “Producer Extraordinaire” series after a very long break. This time we are focusing on Bob Ezrin as he has produced some very influential albums and albums that have impacted my life like all the producers in this series have. The other producers have been as follows:
Bob Ezrin hails from Toronto, Canada (and I think 2 of the other producers in this series hail from Canada) and has been producing for over 40 years. He has spanned many genres, but it his rock productions that have become the most famous and most notable. He is a member of the Canadian Music Hall of Fame and has actually never won a Grammy award although he has been nominated once. Let’s discuss his work…
Bob Ezrin has worked with Alice Cooper more times than I can count. He might as well be considered a member of the band. He pretty much did all the big albums in the 70’s and even a couple big ones in the 2000’s. I believe it is a total of at least 13 albums (oh, I guess I can count). Insane. I guess he as much a part of their sound as anyone.
To be a part of such huge albums as “Welcome to My Nightmare”, “School’s Out”, “Billion Dollar Babies” and even Alice’s latest masterpiece, “Paranormal” goes to show the magic that Bob can pull out of an artist. It also makes you wonder would Alice have been Alice without Bob behind the boards…probably, but who knows.
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For My Sunday Song #139, “God of Thunder” by Kiss is our menacing topic. The song is off the band’s 1976 classic ‘Destroyer’. Kiss was flying high at this point and unstoppable. “God of Thunder” became Gene’s theme song and is the point in the live show that saw Gene spit his blood and perform his bass solo. It was always awesome.
The song was written by Paul Stanley and he had all intentions of singing it. Producer, Bob Ezrin thought differently. He recommended slowing the song down and letting Gene sing the song. The slow, almost nightmarish beat of the song fit Gene’s personae perfectly.
The song kicks off with a couple children saying…”Okay, ya’ll can start singing”. Those kids were heard throughout the song screaming and making all kinds of noises during the song. Those kids were David and Josh Ezrin, the producer’s kids. There were so many sound effects added to it to give that eerie feeling. Even Ace’s guitar work was done in a way to add more of a darkness feel to the song.
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For My Sunday Song #76, I bring you the Kiss classic, “Detroit Rock City”. The song was the opening track to the album ‘Destoyer’ and it was also the third single in support of the album. However, the song never charted due to the little B-Side on the back called “Beth” (which is a story for another time).
A fan favorite and still played at shows today, “Detroit Rock City has become one of the band’s most recognizable songs behind “Rock & Roll All Nite”. The song was so popular, there was even a movie made called “Detroit Rock City” that Kiss actually appeared in.
The song does mention Detroit, but is really about a young fan that is killed why he was on his way to a Kiss concert. The story is based of an actual event that occurred outside a Kiss concert in Charlotte where a fan was hit by a car and killed outside the arena. Knowing it is based a real life event adds a little extra to the impact of the song.
The song opens with a radio broadcast (the broadcaster is played by Gene Simmons) of the death of a driver killed in a car crash then seques in to the young man getting into his car and heading to the concert playing Kiss’s “Rock & Roll All Nite” on the radio. During the song, you go back and forth between the song and hearing the car drive down the road getting closer to the show. The song ends with the car crashing and immediately goes into the next song on the album “King of the Night Time World”.
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Another 45″ Single in my box of vinyl was a single from the Kiss album ‘Destroyer’. The album ‘Destroyer’ is my favorite Kiss album (click the link to see the others). The song was “Flaming Youth” and it was only a promotional single and not intended for resale. How we ended up with it or where we got it, I am not sure.
The B-Side of the single is also “Flaming Youth” which I find interesting because the true B-Side of the Single released for the album was “God of Thunder”. Both sides of the disc say Side A. Maybe I have a nice collectors piece…if so, I wish it was in better shape.
There were some interesting facts on Wikipedia such as the following:
“Flaming Youth“…was the first Kiss single to feature a picture sleeve. The single reached number 72 in the U.S. and 73 in Canada.
And it was also interesting to read how the song was brought together…
Continue reading “Kiss – “Flaming Youth” – The 45 Single (1976)”