Kenny G – Duotones (1986)

FrontCover1Duotones is the fourth studio album by American saxophonist Kenny G, released on September 29, 1986 by Arista Records. It features one of Kenny G’s best-known songs, “Songbird”, which reached number four on the US Billboard Hot 100.
The album peaked at number one on the Contemporary Jazz Albums chart, number five on the Jazz Albums chart, number six on the Billboard 200 and number eight on the R&B/Hip-Hop Albums chart.[ The album was later certified 5× Platinum by the RIAA. (by wikipedia)

Kenny G’s breakthrough effort featured the hit “Songbird,” which is the definitive example of the saxophonist’s smooth, lyrical playing; the rest of the album is nearly as good, highlighting his melodic, jazzy pop. (by Stephen Thomas Erlewine)
Great Night Car-Riding Music:
I heard the tune “Midnight Motions” on a jazz radio station, and I had to call to find out who was the artist. I bought it immediately. Midnight motions is like night car-riding music. It’s cool. It soothes me, as if I were walking through an empty Manhattan on a damp night after the rain, with a cool breeze. Or like cruising your car through the damp streets late at nite,hearing your tires on the wet pavement. Just feeling good and sailing. Midnight motions is soothing to the mind. I’m rather new to Kenny G’s music, but after this album, I plan to get to know his music better. (by Diamond M. Dominguezon)

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Personnel:
Walter Afanasieff (synthesized bass, keyboards, synthesizer)
Tony Gable (percussion)
Kenny G. (saxophone, background vocals, synthesized bass, keyboards, synthesizer)
Alan Glass (guitar, keyboards, synthesizer)
Greg “Gigi” Gonaway (drums,percussion)
Randy Jackson (bass, synthesized bass)
Cory Lerios (synthesized bass)
Kenny McDougald (drums)
Joe Plass (bass)
John Raymond (guitar)’
Corrado Rustici (guitar)
Roger Sause (keyboards, synthesizer)
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Sal Gallina (strings, violin, french horn on 03.)
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background vocals:
Kitty Beethoven – Gina Glass – Preston Glass – Yolanda Glass – Claytoven Richardson -Lenny Williams

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Tracklist:
01. Songbird” (Instrumental) (Kenny G.) 5.06
02. Midnight Motion  (Kenny G.) 4.10
03. Don’t Make Me Wait For Love (Afanasieff/Glass/Walden) 4.08
04. Sade (Kenny G.) 4.23
05. Champagne (Kenny G./McDougald) 4.48
06. What Does It Take (To Win Your Love) (Bristol/Bullock/Fugua) 4.09
07. Slip Of The Tongue (Glass/Walden/Pianka) 4.55
08. Three Of A Kind (Kenny G./Glass/Walden/Pianka) 4.48
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09.  Esther (Afanasieff/Kenny G./Glass/Walden)

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Elton John – Live In Australia With The Melbourne Symphony Orchestra (1987)

FrontCover1Live in Australia with the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra, released in 1987, is the twenty-sixth official album release for Elton John. It is a live album recorded at the Sydney Entertainment Centre on 14 December 1986 with the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra.

The concert, recorded on 14 December 1986, was the last of a series of concerts done throughout the last two months of 1986. The concerts consisted of two sets: the first was limited to John and his 14-piece band, including backing vocalists and the Onward International horn section, and his flamboyant stage dress, featuring Mohawk and Tina Turner wigs and some outlandish eye wear; the second featured John, the band and the 88-piece Melbourne Symphony Orchestra, with him dressed as Mozart.

John’s band was essentially the lineup used on Leather Jackets, which he was touring behind at the time, including Jody Linscott and special guest Ray Cooper, both of whom played percussion.

James Newton Howard, who was at the time an up-and-coming film composer in Hollywood, joined John to conduct and write larger, augmented charts of not only his own previous work on “Tonight,” but also Paul Buckmaster’s original arrangements, since the music was to be played by 88 musicians, instead of the smaller studio orchestra for which the compositions were originally designed. He also wrote brand new full orchestra parts for songs such as “Don’t Let the Sun Go Down on Me”, which previously only had horn arrangements.

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The album features most of the songs recorded in the second half of the show, excluding “Saturday Night’s Alright for Fighting”, “Carla/Etude”, “Cold as Christmas (In the Middle of the Year)” and “Slow Rivers”, which was sung by John alone (John dueted “Slow Rivers” with Cliff Richard on Leather Jackets).

John’s live sound engineer, Clive Franks, handled the recording of the band (assisted by Keith Walker and Dennis Fox), while album producer Gus Dudgeon supervised recording of the orchestra by Leon Minervini and Nic Jeremy. Dudgeon took the tapes back to Wisseloord Studios in the Netherlands for mixing with engineer Graham Dickson, who had also worked on Leather Jackets.

This concert was the last to feature Elton’s legendary stage costumes, which he had featured in his shows since the early 1970s. It was also his last show before undergoing throat surgery in January 1987. Despite being completely successful, the surgery prevented Elton from singing at all for several months and from touring for 18 months. The surgery also permanently reduced his range from tenor to baritone. (by wikipedia)

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The late ’80s were wrought with equal measures of tremendous professional popularity and personal crisis for Elton John. As he would reveal later, this inspired double-LP live collection released in 1987 captures the artist at one of the best and worst times of his life. In fact, John cites the emotionally charged “Don’t Let the Sun Go Down on Me” and “Sorry Seems to Be the Hardest Word” as triggering what would become a “severe mental breakdown,” the results of nearly a decade of substance-fueled decadence. On top of it all and perhaps most tellingly is John’s tattered voice. So dire was the situation that literally within weeks of the concert he would undergo a surgical procedure that could have easily ended his career had it failed.

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Perhaps the ultimate irony is that at this precise moment John was launching his re-association with MCA Records via this live career retrospective, which was simultaneously broadcast throughout the entire globe. Keeping all of that in mind, Elton John once again proved himself as a consummate showman, performing at the peak of his abilities. John’s comparatively small combo is augmented on these tracks by the 88-piece Melbourne Symphony Orchestra under the direction of onetime bandmate James Newton Howard. There are a few surprisingly strong readings of early sides such as “60 Years On,” “I Need You to Turn To,” “The Greatest Discovery,” and an edgy and soulful version of “The King Must Die.” Other unexpected detours into John’s catalog include the intimate desperation of “Tonight” from Blue Moves (1976) and “Have Mercy on the Criminal” from Don’t Shoot Me I’m Only the Piano Player (1973). There are also the hits and enthusiast favorites “Tiny Dancer,” “Your Song,” “Candle in the Wind” (which was issued as a single and topped pop music charts worldwide), the previously mentioned “Sorry Seems to Be the Hardest Word,” and “Don’t Let the Sun Go Down on Me.” The companion home video includes a few additional performances, such as the thoroughly inspiring “One Horse Town.” While not entirely essential, Live in Australia is at its core an adeptly executed concert package. (by Lindsay Planer)

Dot expect anything from the booklet … one of the simplest booklets I ever saw from a rock star like Elton John.

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Personnel:
Ray Cooper (percussion)
Elton John (piano, vocals)
Jody Linscott (percussion)
Davey Johnstone – guitars
David Paton – bass guitar
Charlie Morgan – drums
Fred Mandel – keyboards, synthesizers
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background vocals:
Alan Carvell – Gordon Neville – Shirley Lewis
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Melbourne Symphony Orchestra conducted James Newton Howard

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Tracklist:
01. Sixty Years On 5.41
02. I Need You To Turn To 3.14
03. The Greatest Discovery 4.09
04. Tonight 5.58
05. Sorry Seems To Be The Hardest Word 3.58
06. The King Must Die 5.21
07. Take Me To The Pilot 4.22
08. Tiny Dancer 7.46
09. Have Mercy On The Criminal 5.50
10. Madman Across The Water 6.38
11. Candle In The Wind 4.10
12. Burn Down The Mission 5.49
13. Your Song 4.04
14. Don’t Let The Sun Go Down On Me 6.06

All songs written by Elton John and Bernie Taupin

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Rosie Vela – Zazu (1986)

FrontCover1Zazu (1986) is the debut (and, to date, only) album released by American model and singer-songwriter Rosie Vela. The album was produced by Gary Katz, best known for his work in that capacity with Steely Dan, and many of the songs feature Steely Dan’s Donald Fagen on keyboards and Walter Becker on guitar. Also noteworthy is that Tony Levin plays Chapman stick on the songs “Tonto” and “Zazu”.

Despite receiving positive reviews and the single “Magic Smile” reaching #29 on the Billboard Adult Contemporary chart, Zazu was a commercial failure in Vela’s native United States. However it was more successful in Europe, notably in the United Kingdom where it reached #20 on the national albums chart and earned a Silver disc. The single “Magic Smile” was also a UK Top 30 hit. The CD album has been out of print in North America and Europe since the early 1990s but was rereleased in the UK by Cherry Red Records in 2011.

In addition to “Magic Smile”, two other tracks (“Interlude” and “Fool’s Paradise”) were also released as singles.

Vela recorded a second album entitled Sun Across the Altar, but the album remains unreleased. (by wikipedia)

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When fashion model Rosie Vela branched out into singing and songwriting with her debut album Zazu, skeptics suspected that she was just another pretty face who was trying to get by on her looks. But truth be told, Zazu is a solid pop/rock effort that could be described as an interesting combination of Joni Mitchell and Steely Dan. Vela doesn’t have a great voice — her voice is small and thin, but like jazz great Chet Baker, she demonstrates that you don’t have to have a fantastic vocal range to be expressive and deliver a meaningful album.

Favoring a relaxed, cool-toned style of singing, Vela also demonstrates that she’s a talented songwriter — in fact, she wrote most of the songs herself. Mitchell and Steely Dan are obviously major influences, and the strong Steely Dan influence isn’t surprising when you consider that Zazu was produced by Gary Katz (who is best known for his work with that group) and that former Dan members Donald Fagen (keyboards) and Walter Becker (guitar) play on many of the songs. Vela showed a lot of promise on this album, which wasn’t the big seller it should have been. (by Alex Henderson)

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Personnel:
Walter Becker (guitar, synthesizer)
Michael Been (guitar)
Jimmy Bralower (drums, percussion)
Rick Derringer (guitar)
Donald Fagen (synthesizer)
Larry Fast (synthesizer)
Jerry Haslip (bass)
Yogi Horton (drums)
Jim Keltner (drums)
Tony Levin (chapman stick)
Neil Stubenhaus (bass)
Chat Vela (drums)
Rosie Vela (vocals, synthesizer)
Aaron Zigman (synthesizer)
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background vocals:
Joy Askew – Jenny Peters – Rosie Vela

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Tracklist:
01. Fool’s Paradise (Vela) 3.55
02. Magic Smile (Vela) 4.22
03. Interlude (Vela) 4.00
04. Tonto (Vela) 5.33
05. Sunday (Vela) 4.25
06. Taxi (Vela) 3.25
07. 2nd Emotion (Vela/Doddy/Jeb Guthrie/Jock Guthrie) 4.42
08. Boxs (Vela) 3.51
09. Zazu (Vela) 4.41

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This is another item of the great greygoose collection !

Passport – Heavy Nights (1986)

frontcover1Heavy Nights finds Passport founder and veteran sax man Klaus Doldinger in rare form. On this offering from 1986, the veteran sax player delves into the world of pop-jazz. Although, given his vast palette and the different settings here, it would be a mistake to simply call Heavy Nights a pop-jazz record. Doldinger’s tastes have always been eclectic and he brings his own unique jazz contributions to the table. Furthermore, he possesses that rare ability to produce jazz that is accessible without having to sacrifice substance in the process. Whatever you chose to call it, Heavy Nights is just great music. The songs here range from the playful “Bahia Praia” to the upbeat, big-band feel of “It’s Magic.” On board for this incarnation of Passport are Kevin Mulligan (guitar), Dieter Petereit (bass), Curt Cress (drums), Herman Weindorf (keyboards), and Victoria Miles (vocals). The performances of this lineup are certainly noteworthy throughout, but Heavy Nights is really a one-man show. Doldinger takes charge here performing, producing, arranging, and, composing all of the tracks. As expected, he excels in all of these areas, but it’s his ability to speak in cohesive melodic sentences that are both lyrically and emotionally satisfying, and which makes this disc so enjoyable. The melodies aren’t just good, they’re memorable. The beautiful “Forever,” as romantic a piece as you will find, is not just memorable, it actually borders on unforgettable. In addition, Doldinger’s distinct phrasing punctuates each of the tracks adding the dramatic pauses that help to distinguish Heavy Nights.
The arrangements, for the most part, are straightforward with a few twists thrown in. Doldinger makes wonderful use of the sparseness constructing interesting passages that enhance the mood of each piece. On almost all of the tracks, Doldinger handles the lion’s share of the soloing chores. Not surprisingly, his focus and restraint speak volumes. When he steps forward he delivers, and when appropriate he steps back, allowing his bandmembers and session people to add the right touches. Benny Bailey’s flügelhorn solo on the title track, for instance, is the perfect contrast to Doldinger’s tenor sax, and is one of the records highlights. Some of the other stand-out tracks include the atmospheric “Here Today,” and the jazzy “Easy Come, Easy Go.” As he has been known to do, Doldinger continually experimented and found new directions for Passport. The rock guitar-based Running in Real Time and the spacy Earthborn, also from this era, are both noteworthy. Heavy Nights, though, is arguably the high-water mark for Doldinger thus far. (by Jeri Montesano)
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Personnel:
Curt Cress (drums)
Biboul Darouiche (percussion)
Klaus Doldinger (saxophone, keyboards on 04., lyricon on 07.)
Dieter Petereit (bass)
Kevin Mulligan (guitar)
Hermann Weindorf (keyboards)
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Benny Baily (flugelhorn on 05. + 06.)
Andreas Haderer (trumpet on 08.)
Nadeen Holloway (background vocals on 08.)
Franz Weyerer (vocals on 08.)
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Tracklist:

01. Bahia Praia  5.13
02. Playing Games 4.13
03. Here Today 5.57
04. Forever 4.50
05. Heavy Nights 6.03
06. Easy Come, Easy Go 4.24
07. Remembrance 5.36
08. It’s Magic 4.14
Music: Klaus Doldinger
Lyrics: Victoria Miles (08.)
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Glenn Zottola – Christmas In Jazztime (1986)

frontcover1Glenn Paul Zottola, 28 April 1947, Port Chester, New York, USA. Zottola first played trumpet at the age of three, his early start explained by the fact that his father not only played trumpet but was also a manufacturer of trumpet mouthpieces (his brother, Bob Zottola, played with the bands of Charlie Barnet, Maynard Ferguson and Billy May). At the age of nine Glenn was playing in public, and within three years was performing regularly on television and had made an appearance at the Atlantic City Jazz Festival. In the early 60s he played a leading role in a documentary film, Come Back. In 1967 he joined the Glenn Miller Orchestra, then under the direction of Buddy De Franco. In 1970, Zottola was briefly with Lionel Hampton and then began a fruitful decade that saw him backing a wide range of artists, including Bob Hope, Al Martino, Patti Page, Tony Martin, Robert Merrill and Mel Tormé. Towards the end of the 70s Zottola played lead trumpet in the orchestra accompanying the touring version of Chicago. In 1979 he joined Tex Beneke and that same year became a member of the Benny Goodman Sextet for a national tour.

Zottola began the 80s in fine style, playing, singing and acting in Swing, a musical presented at the Kennedy Center in Washington, DC, before playing in the pit bands of several Broadway shows including Evita, Annie and Barnum, and also for the Stratford, glennzottola02Connecticut revival of Anything Goes, which starred Ginger Rogers. In the early 80s he joined Bob Wilber’s Bechet Legacy band, playing on record sessions and international tours. Zottola has also recorded with Butch Miles, George Masso, Keith Ingham and Maxine Sullivan. In the mid-80s, in addition to his regular appearances with Wilber, Zottola led his own big band at the Rainbow Room in New York City and then joined forces with Bobby Rosengarden to co-lead a big band at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in Greenwich, Connecticut. He toured overseas, playing jazz festivals in Ireland, Holland and Finland, while his US festival appearances have included St. Louis, Sacramento and the Kool Jazz Festival in New York. In 1988 he was featured soloist in Wilber’s recreation of Benny Goodman’s 1938 Carnegie Hall concert. In 1990 Zottola was headlining at the Clearwater Jazz Festival in Florida and late in 1991 toured the UK and Europe with a band led by Peanuts Hucko.

Unusually among brass players, Zottola is also an accomplished saxophonist, playing alto with flair. Although rooted in the mainstream of jazz and with a marked kinship for the swing era, his playing shows flashes of a deep awareness of bop and post-bop developments in the music. The exceptional talent he displayed as a child has not been dissipated but has been nurtured into an impressive all-round ability. (by allmusic.com)

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“I loved doing this Christmas Album which was unfortunately never re-issued on CD with all my dear friends and some real jazz legends that are no longer here with us. I went to my friend Rick Petrone who was the program director for the jazz station in Stamford CT WYRS and they helped on funding the project along with Dreamstreet Records as a holiday promotion.  Everyone was extremely busy with various bands like Count Basie and Duke Ellington so i scheduled the session in NYC on a day everyone was in town and even I had to fly in from out of town to do the session.  I sat down with my dear friend George Masso an amazing trombone player and arranger one day on the beach when we were doing the Sarasota Jazz festival together and told him what I had in mind for the album and he certainly delivered.  At the session that day we did the entire album in 7 hours straight no prior rehearsal unheard of !

Funny story there was a set up guy in the studio and after we were done he came up to me in shock.  He said “I have never seen anything like this before and last week we had a rock band in here (Famous name I won’t mention) and they spent 1 full week trying to get a balance on the drums and you just did an entire album in 7 hours”.  That’s what happens when you have total pros and they gave their all for me that day as it is very intense doing a whole album in one day and I very much appreciated it”. (by Glenn Zottola)

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Personnel:
Phil Bodner (saxophone, flutem clarinet)
Milt Hinton (bass)
George Masso (trombone)
Butch Miles (drums)
Derek Smith (piano)
Maxine Sullivan (vocals)
Joe Temperley (saxophone, clarinet)
Glenn Zottola (trumpet, flugelhorn)

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Tracklist:
01. Let It Snow (Cahn/Styne) 3.53
02. Jolly Old St. Nick (Traditional) 4.35
03.Winter Wonderland (Bernard/Smith) 4.04
04. White Christmas (Berlin) 2.42
05. Silent Night (Gruber) 3.29
06. Jingle Bells (Pierpoint) 3.55
07. Christmas Song (Tormé) 4.13
08. Greensleeves (Traditional) 4.37
09. Santa Claus Is Coming To Town (Gillespie/Cootes) 3.50

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The Firm – Royal Darkness (1986)

frontcover1The Firm were a British rock supergroup composed of singer Paul Rodgers, (Free and Bad Company), guitarist Jimmy Page (The Yardbirds and Led Zeppelin,) drummer Chris Slade (Manfred Mann’s Earth Band and Uriah Heep) and bass player Tony Franklin.

Both Page and Rodgers refused to play any material from their former bands and instead opted for a selection of Firm songs plus tracks from both their solo albums. The new songs were heavily infused with a soulful and more commercially accessible sound, courtesy of Franklin’s fretless bass guitar underpinning an understated song structure. Despite refusing to play old material, the last track from The Firm, “Midnight Moonlight”, was originally an unreleased Led Zeppelin song entitled “Swan Song”. This caused some critics to believe that Page had begun to run out of ideas. In subsequent press interviews, Page had indicated that the band was never meant to last more than two albums. After the band split, Page and Rodgers returned to solo work while Chris Slade joined AC/DC and Franklin teamed up with guitarist John Sykes in Blue Murder.(by wikipedia)

This is an excellent bootleg from thier last tour (excellent sound board recording). No Led Zeppelin, Free or Bad Company songs … just The Firm !

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Personnel:
Tony Franklin (bass)
Jimmy Page (guitar)
Paul Rodgers (vocals)
Chris Slade (drums)

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Tracklist:
01. Intro 1.33
02. Fortune Hunter (Page/Rodgers) 5.08
03. Found Somebody (Someone To Love) (Page/Rodgers) 4.57
04. Make Up Or Break Up (Page/Rodgers) 5.40
05. Prelude (Page) 1.55
06. Money Can’t Buy (Rodgers) 5.02
07. Satisfaction Guaranted (Page/Rodgers) 4.30
08. Radioactive (Rodgers) 2.49
09. All The Kings Horses (Rodgers) 3.24
10. Cadillac (Page/Rodgers) 5.18
11. You’ve Lost That Lovin’ Feeling ( Mann/Weil/Spector) 4.32
12. Midnight Moonlight (Page/Rodgers) 11.15
13. Tear Down The Walls (Page/Rodgers) 5.11
14. Live In Peace (Rodgers) 5.18

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Europe – The Final Countdown (1986)

FrontCover1The Final Countdown is the third studio album by the Swedish band Europe. Released on 26 May 1986 through Epic Records, the album was a huge commercial success selling over 3 million units in the United States alone and more than 7 million worldwide, peaking at number 8 on the U.S. Billboard 200 chart and reaching high positions in charts worldwide. It was recorded at Powerplay Studios in Zürich, Soundtrade Studios in Stockholm, Mastersound Studios in Atlanta and Fantasy Studios in Berkeley.

Five singles were released from the album: “The Final Countdown,” “Love Chaser,” “Rock the Night,” “Carrie,” and “Cherokee.” The first single was responsible for launching Europe into mainstream popularity.

Eight of the ten tracks on the album were featured in the 2007 comedy film Hot Rod.

The recording of the album began in September 1985 at the Powerplay Studios in Zürich, Switzerland. At the suggestion of their record company, Epic Records, the band decided to work with the American producer Kevin Elson, who had worked with bands like Journey and Lynyrd Skynyrd. Originally the band had approached Scorpions producer Dieter Dierks and Bon Jovi producer Bruce Fairbairn to produce the album, but in the end they decided to go with Elson. Elson would also produce the band’s sixth studio album, Start from the Dark in 2004.

During the recording sessions, vocalist Joey Tempest came down with a bad allergic reaction to bread products, which delayed the recording for a while, and forced Joey to make changes to his diet, so he could complete his work on the album. The vocals for the title track were recorded at the Soundtrade Studios, Stockholm, Sweden, while the rest of the vocals were recorded at the Mastersound Studios, Atlanta and Fantasy Studios, Berkeley.

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The album was mixed in March 1986 at Fantasy Studios, Berkeley. Guitarist John Norum was not pleased with the result, claiming that the keyboards had “buried” the rhythm guitars in the final mix.

“Rock the Night” and “Ninja” were the first songs written for the album, and were premiered on the band’s Wings of Tomorrow tour in 1984. “Rock the Night” was released as a single in Sweden in 1985, peaking at number 4 on the chart, and was also featured on the soundtrack EP for the Swedish film On the Loose the same year, together with the songs “On the Loose” and “Broken Dreams.” “Rock the Night” and “On the Loose” would be re-recorded for inclusion on The Final Countdown along with “Ninja,” all with slightly different lyrics

Due to the national success of On the Loose and “Rock the Night,” Europe went on a new tour around Sweden in 1985, with new songs “Danger on the Track,” “Love Chaser” and the power ballad “Carrie” included in the setlist and ready for the album. “Carrie” was co-written by Joey Tempest and keyboardist Mic Michaeli during a jam session. The early version of the song consisted of only keyboards and vocals, and was performed that way on the 1985 tour, but the album version would feature the whole band.

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The song “The Final Countdown” was based on an old keyboard riff that Tempest had composed as early as 1981–82, on a Korg Polysix keyboard he had borrowed from Michaeli. In 1985 bassist John Levén suggested that Tempest should write a song based on that riff. The lyrics were inspired by David Bowie’s song “Space Oddity.” The sound of the keyboard riff used in the recording was achieved by using a Yamaha TX-816 rack unit and a Roland JX-8P synthesizer. “I made a brassy sound from the JX-8P and used a factory sound from the Yamaha, and just layered them together,” Michaeli said.

“Cherokee” was the last song written for the album, being written only a week before the band went to Switzerland to start recording the album. Tempest said he had been inspired by the history of the Native Americans to write the song.

When it was time to choose the first single from the album, Tempest suggested “The Final Countdown.” Originally the band had never planned to release the song as a single, and some members wanted “Rock the Night” to be the first single. “The Final Countdown” was written to be an opening song for concerts, and they never thought it would be a hit.[2] But when their record company Epic Records suggested that it should be the first single, the band decided to release it. It became a worldwide success, peaking at number 1 in 25 countries, including the United Kingdom, France, West Germany, and Italy. In the USA it peaked at number 8 on the Billboard Hot 100 and number 18 on the Mainstream Rock Tracks chart. The song has been a regular in Europe concerts ever since its live debut on the premiere of the band’s Final Countdown Tour on 29 April 1986 in Gävle, Sweden. One of the most memorable performances of the song took place in Stockholm, Sweden on 31 December 1999, as part of the Millennium celebrations.

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Singles from the album “The Final Countdown”

“Love Chaser” was released as a single in Japan only, and was on the soundtrack for the movie Pride One. “Rock the Night” was released as the worldwide follow-up single to “The Final Countdown.” It became a Top 10 hit in France, Ireland, Italy and Switzerland, and peaked at number 30 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart[1] and number 12 on the UK Singles Chart. The next single, “Carrie,” peaked at number 3 on the Billboard Hot 100, their highest single on the chart to date. “Cherokee” was released as the last single from the album, peaking at number 72 on the Billboard Hot 100.

The Final Countdown was the band’s breakout album. Upon its release in May 1986, The Final Countdown peaked at #8 on the Billboard 200 album chart. The album granted Europe international recognition. The Final Countdown achieved triple Platinum status in the United States, double platinum status in Canada and Germany, and Gold status in the Netherlands and the United Kingdom.

Allmusic gave The Final Countdown four and a half out of five stars. Reviewer Doug Stone said, “This is the story; this is the legend told by Teutonic guitars and predictable keyboards ringing pure and hurtling through each and every convention perfectly. The quintet’s big-boy Epic inaugural, The Final Countdown deftly combines the Valhalla victory of Europe’s heroic debut with the American poodle pomposity that devoured the band. You could live without The Final Countdown, but why?”

Rolling Stone writer J. D. Considine said, “The words to “The Final Countdown” make almost no sense whatsoever on paper, but there’s genuine drama to the way Tempest’s keening vocals surge through the mock-orchestral morass of synths and guitar. Maybe it’s trite, maybe it’s derivative, but it’s also undeniably effective. From the stirring stadium schlock of “Rock the Night” to the self-indulgent melodrama of “Love Chaser,” the best moments here are insidiously catchy, leaving you humming along against your better judgment”.

The Final Countdown included the hit singles “The Final Countdown,” “Rock the Night,” “Carrie” and “Cherokee,” all of which had accompanying music videos. All four placed on the Billboard Hot 100. A fifth single, “Love Chaser,” was released in Japan only. “The Final Countdown” was the most successful song from The Final Countdown on the rock charts, reaching number 18 on the Mainstream Rock Charts and number 8 on the Billboard Hot 100. “The Final Countdown” arguably became the band’s most recognizable and popular song. Its music video received heavy airplay on music television. (by wikipedia)

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Personnel:
Ian Haugland (drums, background vocals)
John Levén (bass)
Mic Michaeli (keyboards, background vocals)
John Norum – guitar, background vocals)
Joey Tempest (vocals)

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Tracklist:
01. The Final Countdown (Tempest) 5.10
02. Rock The Night (Tempest) 4.03
03. Carrie (Tempest/Michaeli) 4.30
04. Danger On The Track (Tempest) 3.45
05. Ninja (Tempest) 3.46
06. Cherokee (Tempest) 4.20
07. Time Has Come (Tempest) 4.01
08. Heart Of Stone (Tempest) 3.46
09. On The Loose (Tempest) 3.08
10. Love Chaser (Tempest) 3.27
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11. The Final Countdown (live) (Tempest) 5.12
12. Danger On The Track (live) (Tempest) 4.00
13. Carrie (live) (Tempest/Michaeli) 4.40

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