Don McLean – Believers (1981)

FrontCover1.jpgBelievers is a studio album by American singer-songwriter Don McLean, released on October 29, 1981.

The album leads off with a re-recording of “Castles in the Air”, a song which originally appeared on McLean’s 1970 debut album Tapestry. Released as a single, it reached #7 on the Billboard Adult Contemporary chart and #36 on the Hot 100 chart. (by wikipedia)

Who would have expected that Believers — part of the second phase of Don McLean’s career — would not only be one of his strongest albums of his whole career, but a solidly competitive singer/songwriter effort, even as late as 1981? Or that it holds up on CD in the 21st century? It would be easy to say that Believers is worth picking up just for McLean’s re-recording of “Castles in the Air” — ten years after he first wrote and recorded it, McLean gave the song more warmth and feeling than the earlier rendition and, in doing so, proved just how special the song was to him. But the remainder of the album is every bit as strong, if not as familiar as “Castles in the Air” (which became a worldwide hit in this version): the slightly bluesy “Isn’t It Strange,” an irony-laced lament about love that is wryly clever in its bittersweet exploration of men’s and women’s foibles; “Left for Dead on the Road of Love,” a punchy roots rock-style number that recalls John Fogerty; and the very bluesy “Believers,” with what sounds like a National Steel guitar, mixing ’30s and ’80s sounds in a very neat, tight, and catchy package, which pretty well sums up this album. Believers did fairly well at the time of its release, owing to the presence of “Castles in the Air,” and this album is about as essential listening as any of his best United Artists albums. (by Bruce Eder)

Listen to “Sea Man !!!! One of the finest Songs Don McLean ever composed !


David Briggs (piano)
James Capps (guitar)
Jerry Carrigan (drums)
Steve Chapman (guitar)
Gene Chrisman (drums)
Ray Edenton (guitar)
Don McLean (vocals, guitar)
Bob Moore (bass)
Leon Rhodes (bass)
Billy Sanford (guitar)
Dennis Solee (saxophone)
Hargus “Pig” Robbins (piano)
Jerry Shook, (guitar)
Ronald Vaughn (percussion)
The Sheldon Kurland Strings
The Jordanaires (background vocals)


01. Castles In The Air (McLean) 3.43
02. Isn’t It Strange (McLean) 4.18
03. Left For Dead On The Road Of Love (McLean) 2.57
04. Believers (McLean) 6.15
05. Sea Man (McLean) 4.11
06 I Tune The World Out (McLean) 3.33
07 Love Hurts (Bryant) 3.08
08 Jerusalem (McLean) 4.44
09 Love Letters (Heyman/Young) 3.59
10 Crazy Eyes (McLean) 2.58
11 Sea Cruise (Smith) 3.03
12 Dream Lover (Darin) 3.47







Suicide – Ghost Riders (1986)

FrontCover1.jpgSuicide was an American musical duo intermittently active between 1970 and 2016, composed of vocalist Alan Vega (June 23, 1938 – July 16, 2016) and instrumentalist Martin Rev. The group’s music made pioneering use of minimalist electronic instrumentation, including synthesizers and primitive drum machines, and their early performances were confrontational and often ended in violence. They were among the first acts to use the phrase “punk music” in an advertisement for a concert in 1970.

Though never widely popular among the general public, Suicide have been recognized as among the most influential acts of their era. Their debut album Suicide (1977) was described by Entertainment Weekly as “a landmark of electronic music,” while AllMusic stated that it “provided the blueprints for post-punk, synth pop, and industrial rock.” Rolling Stone called them “an unmeasurable influence on the industrial dance, noise, techno, ambient, and electronic scenes of the 1980s and 1990s.”

Ghost Riders is a live performance album by Suicide, recorded in 1981 and released in 1986 by ROIR. (by wikipedia)

FrontCover2.jpgOriginally a cassette-only release, this live recording at Walker Arts Center in Minneapolis marked Rev and Vega’s tenth anniversary. And while not as deliberately offensive as some of their earlier live gigs (the impossible-to-locate 23 Minutes Over Brussels), this is a compelling, interesting document of their ever-evolving stage show. Not as transcendent as their debut album, but well worth the effort. [Ghost Riders was reissued on CD by the French Danceteria label in 1990 and ROIR in 1991.] (by John Dougan)

Whether or not you really like Suicide or not shouldn’t play a factor in listening to this record. It is a collection of two live concerts recorded in 1981.

I read a book one time and it had this interview with Alan Vega. He said that when started out they would have people throw bottles at them and try to fight them during performances. Listening to this record, I sort of understand. I don’t really want to “fight” because I have developed a respect for the band, but I want to do something.


Before “sweet white lady” the first song on side 2, alan vega gives a radically chilling warning about heroin. Best part of the record. His scream, it will make you want to stay away and hide. But I really think it’s an unorthodox invitation to actually experience a band. (thugsupermarket.blogspot)

Recorded live 9/19/81 at the Tenth Anniversary Suicide Concert
at the Walker Art Center, Minneapolis, Minnesota.


Martin Rev (keyboards, drum programming)
Alan Vega (vocals)


01. Rocket USA 4.54
02. Rock N’ Roll (Is Killing My Life) 5.14
03. Ghost Rider 7.07
04. Dream Baby Dream 6.20
Sweet White Lady 8.42
06. Harlem 9.55
07. 96 Tears (Martinez) 4.38




Alternate frontcovers


The Ventures – Live At The Country Club (1981)

FrontCover1For those who enjoy ’60s guitar pop, there could be no finer instrumental group than The Ventures though there seemed to be some friendly rivalry among fans, especially those who preferred The Shadows.

The Ventures may have got a head start with Walk Don’t Run in 1960 but it was probably the hits-filled The Ventures Play Telstar And The Lonely Bull (1963) that made them famous in Asia. And if no one had heard of The Ventures, their 1969 cover of the Hawaii 5-O theme song of the hit TV show would have changed all that. [If memory serves, the song was also used as the theme song for Coke’s Cool And Swinging Show on Malaysian radio in the ’60s.

Good Ventures soundboards might be hard to come by and this mono soundboard, even if it was from the ’80s, is certainly a nice collection for any fan. A bonus is the group doing a vocal version of Runaway. Thanks to mvernon54 for taping and sharing the tracks on Dime.

mvernon54 noted: “My girlfriend Barbette worked at this club in the San Fernando valley for a while. If I remember right the master deck was a Nakamichi Dragon… This is a tape I have always been afraid would end up with the dreaded bootlegers. Kept it out of circulation (with a few exceptions) for all of these years. It is no good keeping it hidden forever so here you are.”

The Ventures02.jpg

Nokie Edwards, whose guitar playing in the Ventures helped define surf rock and earned the group a place in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, died on March 12, 2018. He was 82 years old. “Nokie Edwards passed away today after several months battling an infection after hip surgery this past December,” says a statement on the band’s website. “The Ventures family feels this loss very deeply: Nokie has been part of the Ventures’ history for almost six decades and helped to shape the early Ventures’ sound and the success of their career.” The Ventures hit Number Two in 1960 with the propulsive classic, “Walk Don’t Run.” Even though the single was an instrumental, it was so successful that the band recorded a new version in 1964 that also became a top 10 hit. The band scored another major hit four years later when their brassy theme for the police procedural Hawaii Five-O reached Number Four. The Ventures released three gold-certified albums – The Ventures Play Telstar and the Lonely Bull, Golden Greats and Hawaii Five-O – and, at one point, they had five albums in the top 100 simultaneously. (by Billboard)

Recorded live at the Country Club, Reseda, CA; May 29, 1981
Very good mono soundboard

Nokie Edwards.jpg

Bob Bogle (bass)
Nokie Edwards (lead guitar)
Mel Taylor (drums)
Don Wilson (rhythm guitar)

01. Introduction 0.10
02. Runaway (Shannon/Crook) 2.32
03. Showdown At Newport (Dan) 2.20
04. Walk Don’t Run (Smith) 2.30
05. Goldfinger (Barry) 2.30
06. Let’s Go (L.Duncan/R.Duncan) 2.25
07. (Flight Of The) Bumblebee (Bogle) 2.45
08. Wipeout (Berryhill/Connolly/Fuller/Wilson) 4.42
09. Pipeline (Carman/Spickard) 3.13
10. Hawaii 5-O (Stevens) 2.36
11. Walk Don’t Run ‘64 (Smith) 2.07
12. Bulldog (Tomsco) 2.08
13. Secret Agent Man (Sloan/Barri) 2.15
14. Whittier Blvd. (Wilson/Reisdorff) 3.27
15. Telstar (Meek) 2.59
16. Surfin’ And Spyin’ (Caffey) 2.41
17. Perfidia (Dominguez/Leeds) 2.04

The Ventures01
Long time ago …


Bob Dylan – Between Saved and Shot (1999)

FrontCover1Here´s a nice Bob Fylan bootleg with studio outtakes from his “Saved” and “Shot Of Love” period:

Studio outtakes from March-May 1981. Nice quality. It’s taken from the soundboard, but from a fourth generation analog tape… so the quality isn’t crystal clear. There is a slight white noise throughout. Vocals are rarely up to proper mix level. This is a great collection for fans of the studio process outtake. Gospel era fans will have some interest as well. However, all should keep in mind that these are unfinished songs. Some are little more than ideas. There are no hidden ‘gems’ here that have missed official release, and those seeking the powerful Christian dogma of Saved will be disappointed. Highlights are the bosa nova tune Don’t Ever Take Yourself Away, and the bonus tracks.

The bonus tracks are releasable quality. Much better than the proceeding tunes. Mystery Train is a nice rendition of the classic Sam Phillips tune with the sound and feel of the Shot of Love tunes. The outtakes are slightly more laid back, and less angry sounding than the released versions. There seems to be a better flow of the vocals. All are at least as good as the official versions. (by


Alternate CD

Steve Douglas (saxophone)
Tim Drummond (bass)
Donald “Duck” Dunn (bass)
Bob Dylan (vocals, guitar)
Jim Keltner (drums)
Danny “Kootch” Kortchmar (guitar)
Carl Pickhardt (piano)
Steve Ripley (guitar)
William D. “Smitty” Smith (organ)
Fred Tackett (guitar)
Benmont Tench (keyboards)
Monalisa Young (vocals)
background vocals:
Carolyn Dennis – Clydie King – Regina McCrory – Madelyn Quebec


01. Is It Worth It 4.22
02. High Away 8.15
03. Hallelujah 2.48
04, Magic 4.41
05. You’re Still A Child To Me 2.10
06. Wind Blows On The Water 3.02
07. All The Way Down
08. My Oriental Home
09. We’re (Living) On Borrowed Time
10. I Want You To Know I Love You
11. On A Rockin’ Boat
12. Movin’ (On The Water)
13. Almost
14. Don’t Ever Take Yourself Away
15. Mystery Train
16. Heart Of Mine
17. Watered Down Love
18. Shot Of Love

All songs written by Bob Dylan, except “Mystery Train” which was written by Phillips/Parker)



Maggie Bell & Midnight Flyer – Live Montreux July 1981 (2007)

FrontCover1For Midnight Flyer, 1980 dawned bright. They recorded their superb self-titled debut album and then embarked on a European tour, opening for Bob Seger. Even the departure of keyboardist John Cook after the band left the studio hadn’t slowed Midnight Flyer down. Chris Parren, the perfect replacement, was swiftly enlisted and took to the stage. As 1981 began, Flyer flew back to Europe to support AC/DC, and their album arrived in February while the band bounded back and forth across the Channel, now headlining their own shows. In the autumn, they reunited with the down under bad boys, opening for their U.S. tour. However, the highlight of the busy year came in mid-summer, as Flyer climbed onto the Montreux festival stage and ripped through one of the best shows of their all-too-brief career. Live Montreux July 1981 features the bulk of their show that day, as the band rips through its set, then is joined for two numbers by blues legend Taj Mahal and by the Telecaster master Albert Collins for a further pair. The album kicks off with a rampaging “Hey Boy,” one of five songs from their studio album the band performed, the highlight arguably being their glorious take on “Rough Trade.”


Parren is on fire throughout the show, one-upping Ant Glynne at every conceivably turn, with the good-natured guitarist tossing flaming licks and riffs straight back at the keyboardist. The pair’s dueling was a show in itself, anchored by Dave Dowle and Tony Stevens’ solid rhythms, but Maggie Bell wasn’t giving up the spotlight without a fight, demanding and getting the audience’s nearly undivided attention with a performance determined to bring down the house — which it did.


By the time the band swung into an electrifying take of “Penicillin Blues,” a song Bell had been covering since her Stone the Crows days, the crowd was on its feet and shouting along. Taj Mahal joins Bell for showstopping versions of “Bring It on Home to Me” and “Chain Gang,” with the album ending with a smoldering “Stormy Monday Blues,” the bandmembers almost awestruck by Collins’ stunning guitar skills, but quickly regaining their composure. It was a phenomenal show, the sound quality exceptional, and the band at its very, very best. Unforgettable. (Jo-Ann Greene)


Maggie Bell (vocals)
Dave Dowle (drums)
Ant Glynne (guitar)
Chris Parren (keyboards)
Tony Stevens (bass)
Albert Collins (guitar, vocals on 12. + 13.)
Taj Mahal (guitar, vocals on 10.)


01. Hey Boy (Stevens) 3.36
02 Danger Money (Dowle) 5.37
03 Love Games (Dowle) 4.42
04. Sweet Lovin’ Woman (Dowle/Glynne) 5.55
05. Poor Little Jimmy (Dowle/Glynne) 3.40
06 Rough Trade (Bell/Cook) 4.10
07 French Kisses (Dowle) 4.28
08 Too Much Love (Dowle/Glynne) 6.05
09 Penicillin Blues (Terry/McGhee) 3.04
10. Bring It On Home To Me (Cooke) 6.10
11. Chain Gang (Cooke) 5.17
12. Blues Jam (Collins/Glynne/Stevens/Dowle/Parren) 11.36
13 Stormy Monday Blues (Walker) 6.10


Pete York´s New York – What´s The Racket (1981)

FrontCover1After four years with the jazz-focused Chris Barber Band, drummer Pete York departed to form his own group, recruiting bassist Steve Richardson, Mel Thorpe on horns and woodwinds, and synth/keyboardist Roger Munns. Signing to the German Teldec label, the band released four Germany-only albums, kicking off with its 1980 debut, Into the Furnace, produced by Thomas Martin.

York’s time with Barber was well spent; it gave the drummer his first opportunity to play in a jazz ensemble, an experience he wasn’t ready to leave behind just yet. Thus, much of Into the Furnace is jazz-inspired, although with ribbons of rock and R&B streaming through, the band creates a hybrid sound far removed from the fusion most groups parleyed when crossing these genres.

Here´s the scond album by Pete York´s New York … and it´s another highlight in the long career of Mr. Superdumming Pete York:

You can hear one of the few Pete York compositions “What´s The Racket” … a hell of of jazz-rock tune …

And his “Chicken Chasing Charlie” is indeed a remake of his “Extension 345” from the third Hardin & York album “For The World” (1972)

“Pamplona” is a very fine acoustic guitar track, somposed and playd by Steve Richardson.

And Mel Thorpe was a monster on his instruments … listen to his saxophone and flute (“Segura Samba”)

Pete York´s New York was one of the best periods in Pete York´s career … a criminally underrated jazz group …

I gues this album was never released on CD … so … listen to one af the rarest Pete York recordings.


Pete York – Steve Richardson – Roger Munns


Roger Munns (keyboards, synthesizer)
Steve Richardson (bass, guitar)
Mel Thorpe (saxophone, flute, clarinet)
Pete York (drums, percussion)

01. What’s The Racket (York) 3.52
02. Segura Samba (Thorpe/Munns) + Pamplona (Richardson) 7.43
03. Seguidillas Gitanas (Thorpe/Munns) 3.38
04. Hobgoblin (Thorpe/Munns) 2.51
05. Happy (Richardson) 3.21
06. Lucky For Some (Thorpe/Munns) 4.20
07. Chicken Chasing Charlie (York) 10.21



Greg Lake (feat. Gary Moore) – In Concert (1995)

FrontCover1King Biscuit Flower Hour Presents Greg Lake in Concert is a live album recorded by Greg Lake live in concert on November 5, 1981. It was recorded at the Hammersmith Odeon in London, England and aired on the King Biscuit Flower Hour radio broadcast. It was first released on CD in 1995. Recording mastered at PolyGram Studios. The CD was mastered at Dolphin Studios.[2]King Biscuit Flower Hour Presents Greg Lake in Concert is a live album recorded by Greg Lake live in concert on November 5, 1981. It was recorded at the Hammersmith Odeon in London, England and aired on the King Biscuit Flower Hour radio broadcast. It was first released on CD in 1995. (by wikipedia)

The show captured on King Biscuit Flower Hour (In Concert) (1996) was recorded circa Greg Lake’s 1981 self-titled debut, and features Lake (guitar/bass/vocals) leading an impressive backing combo with Gary Moore (guitar), Ted McKenna (drums), Tommy Eyre (keyboards), and Tristian Margetts (bass). The set originated as a King Biscuit Flower Hour broadcast from the Hammersmith Odeon in London on November 5, 1981. During this time, Lake was on an extended hiatus from Emerson, Lake and Palmer (ELP), and issued a pair of solo efforts.


Alternate FrontCover

As such, the play list is heavy on Greg Lake(1981) material from the first of these. Standouts among the lot are the slightly synth sounding “Retribution Drive,” and the edgy-’80s power rockers “The Lie” and “Nuclear Attack.” Also worth mentioning is the upbeat and agile “Love You Too Much,” which Lake actually co-wrote with Bob Dylan. Likewise, there are classics dating back to the King Crimson sides — “21st Century Schizoid Man” and “In The Court Of The Crimson King” — from Lake’s brief tenure in the band. The unit heard here is not as lean as the ELP version, and both “Fanfare For The Common Man” and “Karn Evil 9” prove just that, as the arrangements lumber along in places. However, in terms of sheer musicality, the acoustic side, “Lucky Man,” is arguably the highlight in its simplicity. For enthusiasts looking for a passable anthology, From the Beginning: Retrospective (1997) is a good place to start. From the Underground: The Official Bootleg (1998) is a perfect companion, as it features essential stops in Lake’s live legacy. (by Lindsay Planer)


Tommy Eyre (keyboards, vocals)
Greg Lake (vocals, guitar)
Tristram Margetts (bass)
Ted McKenna (drums)
Gary Moore (guitar, vocals)


01. Fanfare For The Common Man – Karn Evil 9 (Copland/Emerson/Lake/Sinfield 6.10
02. Nuclear Attack (Moore) 5.46
03. The Lie (Benyon/Eyre/Lake) 4.34
04. Retribution Drive (Benyon/Eyre/Lake) 5.41
05. Lucky Man (Lake) 4.50
06. Parisienne Walkways (Lynott/Moore) 6.03
07. You’ve Really Got A Hold On Me (Robinson) 5.25
08. Love You Too Much (Dylan/Lake/Springs) 5.03
09. 21st Century Schizoid Man (Fripp/McDonald/Lake/Giles/Sinfield) 9.07
10. The Court Of The Crimson King (McDonald/Sinfield) 5.40