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Do You Remember 1970?: Albums Celebrating Their 40th Anniversary, Part Two

List Of The Day

Part Two is mostly things that didn't make Part One. I'm actually saving some real cool ones for Part Three. By all this, it's clearly provable that 1970 was a great year for album rock. If 1965-66 was the beginning of the thing, then 1970 is right when bands start hitting their stride their stride with the LP format. Besides, rock music is highly dependent on the drugs that were around at the time. LSD was losing its shine and barbiturates were taking over. So, pardon me, if the music is a little slower. Karen Ann Quinlan would kill this movement and punks would suddenly speed things up. But for awhile, you could overdose and die in relative peace. What more can you ask for?

25) The Partridge Family--The Partridge Family Album: Yes, I'm sure every hipster on earth--or at least in Brooklyn--likes this album because it's so gosh-darned essential. And, sure, I was four years old and rocking out to "Can't You Feel My Heart Beat," "Umbrella Man" and "I Woke Up In Love This Morning" but I'm way too past this to wonder if any of those songs are on here. If I hear them on the radio, I'll listen, but I'm not going to look for it. What do you think I am? Some kind of sicko?

24) George Harrison--All Things Must Pass: And so shall this album. But it takes a long time. Especially if you're sick enough to put on the third record where they celebrate Johnny's Birthday. "The Art of Dying" is pretty good, but "My Sweet Lord" was better when it was "He's So Fine." I had the songbook and learned how to play these songs without hearing them. My versions were much louder. Had I been in Pussy Galore, you would've heard about it.

23) Deep Purple--In Rock: Had this one on 8-track, still the greatest format for rock n' roll. For all the talk about the single, the 8-track was superior because it didn't allow you to choose. Instead, you hung out in the back of the van and put up with whatever was on. Other people did drugs and had sex and you hoped that it wouldn't smell too much (the drugs or the sex?) for when you got home and your parents wanted to know how the ballgame was. "Mom? I gotta throw up. I ate too many "hot dogs:""

22) CSN&Y--Déjà Vu: The Y is what saves things. Neil Young saved everything he touched back in 1970. How he got hooked up with these laid-back casualties must rest with his manager, Eliot Roberts, who wanted Neil to make enough money to retire one day. You'd think he had enough of Stills the first time around.

21) Nico--Desertshore: Nico was one of the all-time greats. I even love her dance record with the Faction. So, of course, I'm going to love this one. She had sex with Lou Reed and Jackson Browne, so she wasn't picky.

20) Derek And The Dominoes--Layla And Other Assorted Love Songs: I guess "Bellbottom Blues" is ok. I like the harmonies. But, honest to Allah, I've never gotten through this whole thing. Never liked Eric Clapton. Even with Cream. I know that's harsh, but that's the way it is. Duane Allman died too soon for me to get a serious opinion going. For guys who died really young, he was good. But how he would've been at 35 interests me.

19) Cat Stevens--Tea For The Tillerman, Mona Bone Jakon: I like the fact that Cat dumped the whole scene to turn to Islam, which is really unpopular these days. Which makes these albums infinitely better than when they first came out. Because, anything that upsets people without knowing why is a good thing. A little secret for you: most of the people who don't want a Ground Zero mosque would never know it was there if the news didn't tell them. And they wouldn't be mad about it unless the media told them to be. Me? I'm going down there to shoot hoops!

18) Traffic--John Barleycorn Must Die: Stevie Winwood was pretty amazing with the Spencer Davis Group. Traffic was much better than the punks let on. After all these years, can we admit that we like all kinds of music? Or do I have to subscribe to someone else's idea of what's cool? In that case, you can revoke my membership to whatever club I'm supposed to be a member because I've got some Real Housewives to watch.

17) Captain Beefheart--Lick My Decals Off, Baby: The Captain eventually left music to paint. What more needs to be said?

16) Sir Lord Baltimore--Kingdom Come: For all the ink spilled on Black Sabbath, Sir Lord Baltimore deserve a serious percentage. But high school burnouts are only able to focus on one thing at a time. All that THC prevents multi-tasking. If they don't find Jesus, they hopefully find Sir Lord Baltimore. He's got a cooler retirement plan.

15) Vashti Bunyan--Just Another Diamond Day: Sure, Devendra Banhart had nice things to say about Vashti. Everyone digs an obscure icon no one else has heard of. But you should at least buy the album to hear what all the hoopla is about. It's actually as good as some people say.

14) Emitt Rhodes--Emitt Rhodes: Is this Paul McCartney? Uh, no! But we can pretend if it makes you feel better.

13) Wishbone Ash--Wishbone Ash: A friend of mine had the 8-Track and I never got to hear it. I assume it was lousy, but lousy in that way that makes it much better than anything released in recent time. Because I have grown old and bitter and I hate everyone in my family for being a bunch of jerks!

12) Jesse Winchester--Jesse Winchester: Jesse Winchester is one of the few musicians who recorded in Woodstock back in the day who isn't terrible. Him and the dBs in the mid-80s. Everyone else sucks.

11) The Temptations--Psychedelic Shack: A little late with the Psychedelic stuff, but better late than never. Can you imagine if they were still stuck on "My Girl"? Time waits for no one and these guys figured that out.

10) Joe Cocker--Mad Dogs And Englishmen: Why is Joe Cocker at #10? Because I'm too lazy to move him elsewhere. And his teeth were so British that I love them.

9) Rod Stewart--Gasoline Alley: Everyone says Rod was once really good, but I think he got better when he showed the world the tart he really was. "Hot Legs," "Do Ya Think I'm Sexy?," "Young Turks," all that synth-ed up stuff from the 1980s is the real man in action. More than those Sam Cooke covers. OK,.The Faces were better. They never should've let him go solo.

8) MC 5--Back In The USA: I'm under contractual obligation to mention these guys. Kick Out the Jams was really loud and this one is really not as loud. Buy High Time before this one. Please.

7) Peter Green--The End Of The Game: I might still have this album somewhere. Peter Green was a great guitar player and it was really messed up that Fleetwood Mac didn't renew his contract. But once you plead insanity, you don't really have many options.

6) T. Rex--T. Rex: Marc Bolan would die for his ambitions, which apparently included riding in a car. You wonder why I don't leave the house? Let the pizza guy risk his life bringing me food.

5) Led Zeppelin--III: After two albums of disemboweling the blues, Led Zeppelin turn folk, but only after they pillage Norway with "The Immigrant Song." Danny Sage would like to be associated with this album and now he is.

4) Procol Harum--Home: I still have this album. "About to Die" is only trumped by the song where the lyrics go: "I'll blacken your Christmas and piss on your door / you'll call out for mercy but still there'll be more." Kinda punk, doncha think?

3) James Taylor--Sweet Baby James: "Don't the Berkshires seem dreamlike on account of that frosting?" One of the benefits of living so close to Massachusetts is getting to quote that song in real-time.

Try singing "James Taylor's seen fire, James Taylor's seen rain. James Taylor's seen sunny days James Taylor thought would never end. There were times when James Taylor was so lonesome that James Taylor couldn't find a friend. But James Taylor always thought that James Taylor would see you again."

It makes the song better, doncha think?.

2) Jefferson Starship--Blows Against The Empire: I never liked the idea of Jefferson Airplane becoming Jefferson Starship. Somehow, I knew it would lead to just plain Starship. It might come off a little harsh, but I think there needs to be a death penalty among rockers to keep them in line. Doncha think?

1) Grand Funk Railroad--Grand Funk, Closer To Home, Live Album: The greatest band of the 1970s? They were hated enough by critics. You know, if we save up enough money, I think we can buy music critics a sense of humor. Or massages! (for ourselves).

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