Glenn Frey – Soul Searchin’ (1988)

FrontCover1Soul Searchin’ is the third solo studio album by Glenn Frey, the guitarist and co-lead vocalist for the Eagles. The album was released in mid 1988 on MCA in the United States and the United Kingdom, four years after Frey’s successful album, The Allnighter and eight years after the demise of the Eagles. The album features eight original songs co-written by Frey with Jack Tempchin and the song “Two Hearts” contributed by Frey’s friend, Hawk Wolinski. The album also features contributions from fellow Eagles member Timothy B. Schmit, Max Carl, Robbie Buchanan, Michael Landau, and Bruce Gaitsch.

The album was received negatively by the majority of music critics, while other reviewers noted good points to the album. It was also not as successful as Frey’s previous albums (although one of his favorites), peaking at #36 on the Billboard 200, which marked the beginning of a downturn in Frey’s fortunes on the album charts. The album’s first and leading single, “True Love”, unlike the album, was a commercial success, peaking at #2 on the Adult Contemporary chart, and so was the second single, the title track (“Soul Searchin'”), which peaked at #5 also on the Adult Contemporary.

MCFrontCover1Frey began work on the album in the midst of a string of hits in the 1980s, as well as animosity between him and other members of the Eagles. The album’s title refers to his efforts to find his own identity

When Frey was asked about his musical direction, he said “In a sense I’m working my way back home, Though I left Detroit and went to California to cut my teeth on country-rock, I’ve remained obsessed with the music of my adolescence, the great soul hits of the 60’s and early 70’s. It’s a style that most black musicians have abandoned for dance music and rap. There are a whole lot of people who miss the sound of Sam & Dave, and Wilson Pickett. It’s left a gap that is being filled by people like Steve Winwood.”

Reviewing for AllMusic, critic William Ruhlmann wrote of the album “the songs here were so interchangeable with those on his first two albums he apologized for it in his note about “True Love,” which became the album’s sole Top 40 hit. The music was pleasant, but inconsequential, and suggested that Frey, living off his Eagles royalties, had come to think of his solo career as a hobby.” In a review for The Rolling Stone Album Guide (1992), Mark Coleman gave the album one and a half out of five stars and wrote that “Frey sounded like he wasn’t even trying anymore; his pump-your-body TV gym commercials at the time displayed more sweat and effort”.

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Personnel:
Barry Beckett (synthesizer, piano, keyboards)
Bill Bergman (saxophone)
Robbie Buchanan (Keyboards)
Duncan Cameron (guitar, background vocals)
Dave Chamberlain (bass)
Steve Forman (Percussion)
Glenn Frey (vocals, synthesizer, bass, guitar, percussion, piano, drums, keyboards)
Bruce Gaitsch (guitar)
Al Garth (saxophone)
Roger Hawkins (drums)
Heart Attack Horns (horns)
David Hood (bass)
Paul Jackson Jr. (guitar)
Russ Kunkel (drums)
Michael Landau (guitar)
Ralph MacDonald (percussion)
Chris Mostert (saxophone)
Steve Nathan (keyboards)
Prairie Prince (drums)
John “J.R.” Robinson (drums)
Ron Skies (keyboards)
Neil Stubenhaus (bass)
Steve Thomas (keyboards)
David “Hawk” Wolinski (synthesizer, keyboards)
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background vocals:
Max Carl – Roy Galloway – Institutional Radio Choir – Timothy B. Schmit – Julia Waters – Maxine Waters – Oren Waters

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Tracklist:
01. Livin’ Right (Frey/Tempchin) 5.07
02. Some Kind Of Blue (Frey/Tempchin) 4.40
03. True Love (Frey/Tempchin) 4.40
04. Can’t Put Out This Fire (Frey/Tempchin) 5.04
05. I Did It for Your Love (Frey/Tempchin) 4.00
06. Let’s Pretend We’re Still in Love (Frey/Tempchin) 4.51
07. Working Man (Frey/Tempchin) 3.25
08. Soul Searchin’ (Frey/Tempchin/Cameron) 5.38
09. Two Hearts (Wolinski/Newton-Howard) 4.01
10. It’s Your Life (Frey/Thoma) 4.58
11. It’s Cold In Here (Frey/Cameron) 3.48

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GlennFrey
Glenn Lewis Frey (November 6, 1948 – January 18, 2016)

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