xoves, 12 de abril de 2012

RICK NELSON - Intakes (Epic, 1977)

"Stay Young"

Rick Nelson and the Stone Canyon Band's last album for MCA, "Windfall", was released in January 1974. A couple singles, "Try (Try to Fall in Love)", and "Rock and Roll Lady", followed in 1975, and then Nelson parted ways with MCA. Epic Records signed him in 1976, and his first album for the label, "Intakes", came out in the fall of '77. Epic suggested Keith Olsen (producer of Fleetwood Mac) to work with Rick on the album, but Nelson ended up producing most the tracks himself. The sound on "Intakes" is more pop/rock and less country rock than "Windfall". Tom Brumley's steel guitar is featured on only half the tracks, and drummer Ty Grimes has been replaced by Steve Duncan. There's also studio help from session men Jai Winding (keyboards) and Roger Bush (slap bass). Jay De Witt White is still on bass, and contributes two songs, "Five Minutes More', a upbeat pop/rocker, and the soul-ish "Change Your Mind". Dennis Larden continues on lead guitar, and has two folky acoustic songs on the album, "Wings" and "One By One" (which should have been a single - Rick's senstive vocals, excellent band harmonies, and Brumley's pedal steel solo make this one a standout). Rick himself wrote two songs on the album, "Something You Can't Buy" (reportedly inspired by his wife's spendthrift ways), and the piano ballad "It's Another Day", about a couple drifting apart. There's also excellent material from outside sources - Baker Knight's straight ahead rocker "I Wanna Move with You" (with one of Larden's best electric guitar solos), the catchy, hook laden "You Can't Dance" (Duncan's drumming shines here), Gallager and Lyle's countryish "Stay Young" (with another excellent Tom Brumley solo), and the old r&b hit "Gimme a Little Sign" (with Rick on lead guitar). Rick is at his best vocally on this album, and the harmonies by the Stone Canyon Band are strong. The album sounds like a strong commercial effort, yet it failed to dent the charts for even a few weeks. How could it have missed? Did Epic just throw it on the market with no promotion? Or was radio just too resistant to a veteran artist making a strong contemporary statement? It's never come out on cd, although seven of the tracks are on "Stay Young: The Epic Recordings". I recommend buying the original album. Get yourself a needle and turntable, and listen to some of Rick Nelson at his best. Ron

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