[album] Blood Sweat and Tears

This was my first LP. As a fan of the Beatles I was very proficient at buying their singles for six shillings and threepence, but had not ventured an interest in the long player, until one day in 1968 aged 14, when visiting my friend Charles Razzall (uncle of the BBC Newsnight presenter Katie, and now a Reverend), who had just bought this album. I realised this was something I needed to do to be seen as a Serious Music Fan. Charles was way ahead of me in this respect, having also got himself The Beatles White Album, so I was a bit in awe. BST were the first group to attempt jazz rock, founded by Al Kooper, a keyboard player who had played with Dylan when he went (shock horror) electric. Al, however had better things to do, so this second album (not ones for an interesting album title) does not feature his work. The first track, Trois Gymnopedies by Erik Satie, was ironically what attracted me, considering it was a quasi-classical tune, but rather gorgeous. Actually listening to it today, a lot of it is pretty cheesy, but there are some good tunes, by such great writers as Laura Nyro (And when I die) and Steve Winwood (Smiling Phases), and an excellent version of Billie Holiday’s God Bless the Child. But in the end I think it was a bit of a mishmash, falling between several stools, and was eclipsed in this genre by the early Chicago albums, before they decided to go all AOR because it guaranteed a stack of cash. Best track – probably the Berry Gordy penned, Tamla Motown song You’ve made me so very happy, which was a big hit in the States. Sung jazz has never been my thing, unless it’s by legends such as Ella or Nina Simone – David Clayton-Thomas is not really in that league (witness him murdering another wonderful Winwood song, 40,000 Headmen, on the third album, yes fans, it’s Blood Sweat and Tears 3). Oh, and Spinning Wheel is the worst earworm material ever.

3 thoughts on “[album] Blood Sweat and Tears

  1. So much to say.
    1. I was going to listen to stuff you posted about, especially if I hadn’t heard it, but you’ve not exactly sold this one to me.
    2. I can’t even remember what the first LP (well… CD album) I bought was. Although, actually, restricting it to LP might make that easier. It was probably ‘Lu.
    3. Charles Razzall has a great name.
    4. Well played admitting to a non-esp. cool first LP. Does this mean I have to write about Meat Loaf?

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