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.
Continue reading “Bob Ezrin – Producer Extraordinaire #5”
‘Last Concert in Japan’ only saw a release due to the death of guitarist Tommy Bolin who died in December of 1976. The album was released shortly after in March of 1977 in Japan. The record company was in a rush to capitalize on his death is all I can think why this was released. The band was done, all parties had moved on and the record company thought it would be an easy cash grab. Now I have no proof, this is pure speculation but it is what record companies do.
This album captures the Mark IV line-ups last show in Japan as the title says at the Budokan Hall which I believe they set a record for attendance at that time. The release is not a full show and it was streamlined down to fit on only one LP.
There are a lot of problems with this album. First off, the mix. It is pretty crappy as the release was done in such a hurry that the master tracking really suffered and let me tell you it shows. And if that wasn’t enough, let me just say the guitar playing is less then stellar and I believe Jon Lord was used a lot more in places that there should have been more guitar. The reason being is Tommy Bolin had been doing drugs quite heavily the night before and according to Glenn Hughes, he feel asleep on his arm for 8 hours and couldn’t play. And based on what I hear, I believe he might be telling the truth.
Continue reading “Deep Purple – ‘Last Concert in Japan’ – Album Review (The David Coverdale Series)”
The Deep Purple tour for the album, ‘Come Taste the Band’ ended in March of 1976. After that tour, we saw the end of Deep Purple as the band called it quits (at least until the early 80’s). David Coverdale was now without a band, but music was still in his blood and new music was ready to come out. In August of that year, David entered the studio and recorded his debut solo album called ‘White Snake’.
Hmmm…that name rings a bell. Where have we heard that before? Oh yeah, the album name would become the inspiration for his band name which would come a couple years later. For now, we will focus on the album, ‘Whitesnake’.
The album was released on February 9, 1977 and the album cover featured David on the cover with a “white” snake curled up behind him ready to strike. The album I have is actually a 1988 release consisting of a 2LP set with both ‘Whitesnake’ and David’s follow-up solo album ‘Northwinds’ which we will discuss later. The package was a gatefold and consisted of commentary by Mark Rutherford.
The album was produced by ex-Deep Purple bassist Roger Glover which is a cool Purple connection. But as we know with David, he likes to attract great guitarists and use them to help him write the songs. On this album, that guitarists was Micky Moody formerly of the band Juicy Lucy. Moody and Coverdale wrote 4 of the 9 songs together and this pattern of finding great guitarists would continue on until today (2019).
Continue reading “David Coverdale – ‘Whitesnake’ – Album Review (The David Coverdale Series)”
One way to tell how good a band really is is to see them live. If you can’t do that, then it is to listen to one of their live albums. If they can capture what they have done in the studio and bring it to the stage or even take it up a notch, then you have a solid band. Growing up, I was never in to live albums. It was all studio albums for me. One day, that changed and live albums became the thing.
Now, I tend to be gravitating to the live albums and trying the get them on vinyl or even CD if that is all I can get. I figured we would go through what Live albums I have in my collection, then with the ones I am trying to get, my Top 5 Favorites and lastly let you weigh in on which ones I have to get my hands on as I am sure there are some I am not aware are great and I should go grab.
We will kick it off with the Hottest Band in the Land…KISS!! It was the Kiss Alive albums that did it for me. These things are great. I have 4 of them…Kiss Alive!, Kiss Alive II, Kiss Alive III and Kiss Unplugged. They did get original with their names as you can tell.
But that is not all, I also have a ton of Kiss Bootlegs as you have seen through my Kiss Bootleg Series…
Continue reading “Turntables & Vinyl #22 – The Live Albums”
Now that Deep Purple was defunct, the record company needed to release something I am sure so why not a live album. In October 1975, ‘Made in Europe’ was released. The recording from April 3rd – April 7th on some of the final dates that Ritchie Blackmore would play as he left the band shortly after. So, with that being said, the line is the Mark III lineup of the band consisting of Ritchie, David Coverdale, Glenn Hughes, Jon Lord and Ian Paice.
The show was recorded from 3 different shows that took place on April 3rd, 1975 in Graz, Austria, April 5th in Saarbrücken, Germany and finally on April 7th at the Palais des Sports in Paris, France. According to the album jacket, the album was recorded using the “Rolling Stones” mobile truck. And it has also been discussed that there were some heavy overdubbing and cleaning up of the set including the audience with the crowd noise and applause…but this is the 70’s what live album wasn’t retouched (ahem…Kiss).
The album is only a single LP and only includes 5 songs with a total run time of 45:47 which means the average song length over 9 minutes so the band plays the heck out of these songs which is really what a Deep Purple live album is all about. The band had huge success with the prior live album ‘Made in Japan’ and although this is a good release, it isn’t as good as the Japan release.
Continue reading “Deep Purple – ‘Made in Europe’ – Album Review (The David Coverdale Series)”
Ritchie Blackmore left the band after the last album, ‘Stormbringer’, due to creative differences with David Coverdale and Glenn Hughes. I find this funny considering Ritchie brought them in to help take the band in a new direction and Ritchie ended up not liking that direction. So Deep Purple was done…or were they?
David talked Jon Lord and Ian Paice to continue and they did. Now before they could continue, they needed a new guitar player and in comes Tommy Bolin, a bloody American. This upset quite a few diehard UK Purple fans. And probably part of the reason the album didn’t do that well.
David had heard Tommy’s playing on Jazz fusion drummer Billy Cobham’s solo album called ‘Spectrum’ and thought he would be perfect. And we all know now that David has an ear for great guitarists (can you say John Sykes and Steve Vai to name a couple). Tommy was a great guitar player and it is too bad his heroin addiction would take a life way too soon a little over a year after the album’s release.
Deep Purple would continue and this would end up being the first Deep Purple album to not feature either Ritchie Blackmore or even Ian Gillan. As a result, a lot of people don’t really consider this a Deep Purple album. Now that is crazy because if they consider ‘Burn’ to be a Deep Purple album, then this one is as well as the sound and feel is so similar to that album and quite possibly could be better. I know I might be in the minority, but I really like this album.
Continue reading “Deep Purple – ‘Come Taste the Band’ – Album Review (The David Coverdale Series)”
After ‘Burn’, Deep Purple went right back in the studio and recorded their second album together with the Mark III line-up. The album was released in November 1974 just nine months after ‘Burn’. ‘Stormbringer’ is the bands 9th album and actually ended marking the end of an era for the band which will discuss shortly.
The album cover is a great picture of a tornado with a pegasus riding in with the storm. The cover is based on a photo by Lucille Handberg which was taken back on July 8th of the year 1927 in the town of Jasper, Minnesota. The picture stretches out to the back cover to show the immense size of the storm. The intenseness of the album cover; doesn’t necessarily translate to the music.
The sound of the album is a continuation of ‘Burn’, but not near the intensity. There seem to push the Blues and Funk and lot more on this one much to the dismay of its leader Ritchie Blackmore. Ritchie was so displeased with the direction of the band that after this album, Ritchie left ending the era of the Mark III phase of Coverdale, Hughes, Lord, Paice and Blackmore. I find this funny considering David Coverdale and Glenn Hughes were both brought in by Ritchie to explore a new sound and direction for the band. I guess sometimes be careful what you wish for.
Continue reading “Deep Purple – ‘Stormbringer’ – Album Review (The David Coverdale Series)”
Welcome to the new series covering the career of the great David Coverdale. We will start off with Deep Purple and then cover his solo work, his work with Jimmy Page and of course, Whitesnake. We have a long journey ahead as we have around 33 albums that we will cover. Sit back and I hope you enjoy the ride…Let’s get started!
Deep Purple – ‘Burn’ (1974):
In 1973, Deep Purple went through yet another line-up change. This one saw the band lose the lead singer, Ian Gillan, and bass player, Roger Glover. And for this time around, Ritchie Blackmore wanted to take the band in a new direction and it was the start of Mark III.
First up he brought in bass player Glenn Hughes and damn the man can sing as well so not a bad pick. Glenn had come from the band Trapeze where he had made a name for himself. But Ritchie wasn’t done.
Ritchie found a pretty unknown singer whose voice he really loved as it had a blues tone to it that spoke to him. That gentleman was none other than David Coverdale. We would all grow to love him from Whitesnake, but every story has a beginning and this is his. With the powerful vocals of Hughes and Coverdale, Deep Purple were set up to do great things. Not only those two great singers, Ritchie still had the amazing Jon Lord on keyboards and Ian Paice on Drums. It is a pretty impressive line-up!
Continue reading “Deep Purple – ‘Burn’ – Album Review (The David Coverdale Series)”
For My Sunday Song #90, I am going with “Burn” by the band Deep Purple. The song was the first single off the album of the same name and the first with new lead singer David Coverdale and Glenn Hughes. The song wasn’t a big chart buster on its release in 1974, but it did chart at #45 on the UK Charts in 1978, but that was four years after its release. Not sure why the time difference.
The song at 6:40 in length features a blistering guitar solo by Richie Blackmore and a finger licking good organ solo by Jon Lord. The song has everything. The vocals are shared between David Coverdale and Glenn Hughes. A pretty awesome duo to have in your band. In fact, the whole band for this song & album were pretty amazing.
- David Coverdale – vocals
- Glenn Hughes – bass, vocals
- Richie Blackmore – guitar
- Jon Lord – Hammond Organ
- Ian Paice – drums
It doesn’t get much better than that. After this version of Deep Purple broke up (the Mark III version), Coverdale would go on to form Whitesnake and at one time or another, Ian and Jon both played in the band with David.
Continue reading “My Sunday Song – “Burn” by Deep Purple”
Not a huge cover albums fan, I was very apprehensive on this release. I do like cover songs, you know, maybe throwing one on an album, but not a whole album. Cover albums can be very hit or miss. The band either interrupts the songs in to their own sound or they copy it exactly adding nothing special and that is always my fear.
The Poodles decided to do a covers album for their 7th studio album and all though I am a huge fan of the band, this worried me greatly. But being a fan, a did give it a spin. The good news is the band took an approach of picking songs from artist that are not in their specific genre of glam metal and they definitely achieved that goal. The album title ‘Prisma’, I can only assume was picked to signify the songs would be looked at from different angles or viewpoints and they would add their own color to them. And was that achieved? Well, let’s discuss that and find out.
The opening track of the album sounds like pure, classic Poodle. The song is “Crazy Horses” by the Osmond Brothers from 1972. Yes, I said that right…the Osmond Brothers. Now that is definitely going outside your genre. The song is cranked up much heavier and would fit perfectly on any Poodles’ album. What helps is that I am not real familiar with this song so I have no preconceived notions of what this song should sound like. Their first choice is making me think this might be a great covers album.
Continue reading “The Poodles – ‘Prisma’ – Album Review”