Larry Norman – Barking At The Ants – 1981

This rather odd release from Larry Norman features 4 tracks of his own work on side 1 including a cover of Bob Dylan’s “Just Like a Woman”.

Side 2 is a sampler of British acts signed to Solid Rock records. This album was not licensed so it received no airplay and I’m mystified about the legalities of covering a Bob Dylan song.

If you only have time for one song I would suggest Alwyn Wall’s “Doctor Doctor”.

Track Listing:
1 – Larry Norman – The Tune (Almost)
2 – Larry Norman – Why Can’t You Be Good
3 – Larry Norman – Just Like A Woman
4 – Larry Norman – Deep Blue
5 – Various – The British Invasion (Medley With Cliff Richard, Lyrix, Sheila Walsh, Bryn Haworth, Steve Scott, Alwyn Wall, Barratt Band)
6 – Lyrix – Don’t Turn Your Back On Jesus
7 – Alwyn Wall – Doctor Doctor
8 – Sheila Walsh – Love In My Life

Ever Call Ready – (self titled) – 1985

Ever Call Ready were a one album Gospel Bluegrass band.

The band was better known as the Flying Burrito Brothers and it appears they used this new name to put out a entirely gospel album. The album consists of several gospel covers as well as some original material.

All in all this is an excellent bluegrass album but doesn’t really leave us with a lasting reason to remember it. Trivia point for this album is that the lead singer of the band, Chris Hillman, is actually one of the original members of The Byrds.

Track Listing:
1 – River Of Jordan
2 – I’ll Be No Stranger There
3 – Don’t Let Them Take The Bible Out Of Our School Rooms
4 – God Loves His Children
5 – It’s Beginning To Rain
6 – Livin’ In The Name Of Love
7 – Boat Of Love
8 – Men Are So Busy
9 – I’m Using My Bible For A Road Map
10 – Panhandle Rag

Credits:
Bass – Jerry Scheff
Fiddle, Electric Guitar – David Mansfield
Lead Vocals, Mandolin – Chris Hillman
Resonator, Guitar, Tenor Vocals – Al Perkins
Tenor Vocals, Acoustic Guitar – Bernie Leadon
Art Direction – Alex MacDougall
Design – Cluny Rakestraw
Executive Producer – Mary Neely
Illustration – Dave Swaney
Photography – Kent Lacin
Producer – Al Perkins
Recorded By – Daryl Zachman, Joe Bellamy

Larry Norman with Q-Stone – Live at Flevo – 1989

This album was recorded live during the Flevo Festival in the Netherlands in August 1989.

If you find Larry’s music to be a little too 70’s, here’s a much much more Rock & Roll sound.

The backup band is Q-Stone who are/were a Finnish blues rock band and surprisingly their sound goes well with Larry’s songs. Point of trivia on this album is that Larry’s brother, Charles provided guitar licks.

Track Listing:
1 – My Feet Are On The Rock – 4:10
2 – Nightmare #49 (Part One) – 3:00
3 – He Really Loves You – 4:33
4 – Letters To The Church – 4:00
5 – Medley (Everybody Work/Twist And Shout/Shout) – 6:30
6 – Twelve Good Men – 4:34
7 – Be Careful What You Sign – 4:58
8 – Why Should The Devil – 3:18
9 – Medley (Soon I Will Be Home/It’s Only Today That Counts/I Am A Servant) – 11:00
10 – The Outlaw – 3:50
11 – Why Don’t You Look Into Jesus – 3:58
12 – Rock That Doesn’t Roll – 5:24
13 – Medley (I Wish We’d All Be Ready/UFO) – 7:00
14 – Messiah – 5:25

Credits:
Backing Vocals – Elisabeth Ødegård, Maria van der Pol, Marian Lisland
Guitar – Charles Norman
Keyboards – Dan Cutrona
Saxophone – Dan Michaels
Vocals, Producer, Arranged By – Larry Norman

Daniel Amos – Dopplegänger – 1983

Alarma Chronicles volume 2. Vox Humana completed the trilogy, but Doppleganger was a better match and more of a completion of the punk/new wave vision of Alarma.

Between volume 1 and 2 of this trilogy they switched record labels and got a new bass player. Terry Taylor’s guidance clearly held things together though. This release is peak 80s culture. It fit the model of what was happening in music at the time, even if nothing of the sort was happening in CCM outside of DA.

This visionary album was on par with everything else in the scene at the time, but limited by being marketed to the CCM audience.

Track Listing:

1 – Hollow Man – Terry Scott Taylor – 2:15
2 – Mall (All Over The World) – Terry Scott Taylor – 3:13
3 – Real Girls – Gerald Parker Chamberlain, Terry Scott Taylor – 2:57
4 – New Car! – Terry Scott Taylor – 2:00
5 – Do Big Boys Cry – Terry Scott Taylor – 2:05
6 – Youth With A Machine – Terry Scott Taylor – 2:42
7 – The Double – Terry Scott Taylor – 3:50
8 – Distance And Direction – Terry Scott Taylor – 2:48
9 – Memory Lane – Terry Scott Taylor – 3:48
10 – Angels Tuck You In – Terry Scott Taylor – 2:38
11 – Little Crosses – Gerald Parker Chamberlain – 2:35
12 – Autographs For The Sick – Gerald Parker Chamberlain, Terry Scott Taylor, Tim Chandler – 1:40
13 – I Didn’t Build It For Me – Gerald Parker Chamberlain, Terry Scott Taylor – 2:48
14 – Here I Am – Terry Scott Taylor – 3:18
15 – Hollow Man (Reprise) – Terry Scott Taylor – 0:43

Credits:

Arranged By [Keyboards] – Jerry Chamberlain, Terry Taylor, Tom Howard
Backing Vocals – Ed McTaggart, Jerry Chamberlain, Terry Taylor, Tim Chandler
Backing Vocals [Occasional] – Derald Daugherty*, Dori “Game Show Girl” Howard*, Emelia Emulator, Janet McTaggart, Mark Cook (2), Randy Stonehill, The Three Women From Istanbul, Tom Howard
Bass Guitar – Marty Dieckmeyer (tracks: 1), Tim Chandler
Bass Guitar [8-string] – Tim Chandler
Bass Guitar [Fretless] – Tim Chandler
Drums [Skins, Tubs, Traps] – Ed McTaggart
Engineer – Thom Roy
Engineer [Second] – Derald Daugherty*
Keyboards – Jeff Lams (tracks: 3,13), Mark Cook (2) (tracks: 8), Marty Dieckmeyer (tracks: 1), Rob Watson (tracks: 2,3,5 to 7,14), Tom Howard (tracks: 4,7,9 to 11,14)
Lead Guitar – Jerry Chamberlain
Lead Vocals – Jerry Chamberlain (tracks: 11), Terry Taylor
Mastered By – Steve Hall
Percussion – Alex MacDougall, Ed McTaggart, Jerry Chamberlain, Terry Taylor, Tim Chandler
Performer [Da Is] – Ed McTaggart, Jerry Chamberlain, Terry Taylor, Tim Chandler
Producer – Jerry Chamberlain, Terry Taylor
Remastered By – Doug Doyle
Rhythm Guitar – Terry Taylor
Saxophone – Bill Colton

Randy Adams – Songs From Seven Years – 1979

Randy Adams is one of the originating members of Dallas Holm and Praise. He did however record this solo album while still with Dallas Holm and Praise.

Randy has gone on to have a very successful career as a sound engineer.

Track Listing:
1 – I Believe
2 – Just Like You
3 – Miracle In Me
4 – Just One Thing
5 – Apology
6 – Broken Man
7 – Count It All Joy
8 – Mary
9 – Psalm 30
10 – The Dream

Credits:
Producers: Randy Adams, Wayne Donowho, Darrell A. Harris
Vocals: Randy Adams
Drums: Ric Norris, Carl Napoli
Percussion: Russell Dunlap
Piano: Tim Sheppard, Teresa Mauney, Rick Meilke, Tim Johnson
Organ: Paul Mills, Dr. Dan Williamson
Keyboards: Paul Mills
Synthesizer: Brian Tankersley
Guitar: John Davis, Randy Adams, Dave Marshall
Steel Guitar: Jimmy Powell
Mandolin: Dave Martini
Cello: Craig Weaver Oboe: Jay Volney
Harnonica: Kemper Crabb
Bass: Randy Adams
Flute & Recorder: Fletch Wiley
Handclaps: Wayne, Russell, Xen
Autoharp: Randy Adams
Background Vocals: The Bowen Sisters
Choral Vocals: Gigi Gresham, Audrey Adams, Kevin Snow, Mark Schulz, Pat Dorflinger, Erick Nelson, Michelle Pillar

U2 – The Unforgettable Fire 12″ Single – 1985

The 12” vinyl format of “The Unforgettable Fire” functions more as an EP rather than as a single promoting the song itself [u2songs.com]. “The Three Sunrises” starts Side 1, with the title track coming second. Side 2 includes “A Sort of Homecoming (Live)”, “Love Comes Tumbling”, and “Bass Trap”, an instrumental from the album sessions. “Bass Trap” was created by looping a few bars of Adam’s bass, with Edge playing guitar and Daniel Lanois playing pedal steel over top.

Trivia 1: The Australian and New Zealand release misspells “Unforgettable’ as “Unforgetable” on both the front and back sleeves; the error was subsequently corrected in the front, but not the back.

Trivia 2: In the Canadian release, “Love Comes Tumbling” has a ‘false start’ at the beginning of the song, which does not appear on the Wide Awake in America EP.

Track Listing:
1 – The Three Sunrises 3:52
2 – The Unforgettable Fire 4:56
3 – A Sort Of Homecoming 4:06
4 – Love Comes Tumbling 4:45
5 – Bass Trap 5:14

Credits:
Composed By – U2
Design – Steve Averill, U2
Design [Realisation] – The Creative Dept. Ltd. Dublin*
Photography By – Declan Quinn
Remix – Kevin Moloney, U2

Crumbächer – Incandescent – 1985

Though often assumed to be a German band Crumbächer was actually a U.S. band whose lead singer’s name was Stephen Crumbächer.

Incandescent was their first album. I was supposed to be an EP, but upon the record company hearing it, they requested the band cut a few more songs to make it a full length album.

Crumbächer were probably the first synthpop band in the CCM genre. There’s really not much to say about this album, it had a German synthpop sound and was actually quite good for this style of music.

Point of trivia is that the album was produced by Ojo Taylor from the band Undercover.

Track Listing:
1 – Understudy – 3:25
2 – Infrared/X-Ray Eyes – 4:16
3 – Glowing In The Dark – 5:12
4 – So Strange – 5:41
5 – It Don’t Matter – 4:45
6 – Jamie – 4:46
7 – Sweet By And By – 3:29
8 – Track You Down – 5:16

Credits:
Backing Vocals – Dawn Wisner-Johnson, Jimmy Wisner
Drums – Jimmy Wisner
Guitar – Dan Hohulin
Keyboards – Dawn Wisner-Johnson, Stephen Crumbächer
Producer – O-Joe Taylor
Vocals – Stephen Crumbächer

Phil Keaggy with Glass Harp – A Song In The Air – 1977

This 1977 release from Phil Keaggy and Glass Harp is actually a compilation album of Keaggy’s work with Glass Harp in the early 70’s.

Glass Harp was one of the early bands Keaggy was a member of. The album is very easy listening but does highlight Keaggy’s excellent guitar work.

Track Listing
1 – Song In The Air – 2:35
2 – Can You See Me – 6:25
3 – One Day At A Time – 3:40
4 – Song Of Hope – 4:21
5 – The Answer – 2:38
6 – David & Goliath – 2:50
7 – I’m Going Home – 2:40
8 – Do Lord – 4:22
9 – Let’s Live Together – 3:50

Credits
Design, Artwork – George Werth
Lacquer Cut By – KP
Mastered By – Ken Perry
Performer – Dan Pecchio*, John Sferra, Phil Keaggy
Producer [Associate], Engineer – Bill Culhane, Dick Shapiro, Gordon Shaad, Ralph Moss, Tom Lubin
Producer [Original Recordings] – Lewis Merenstein

Larry Norman – The Tune – 1983

This record was released in 1983. The etching on the lead-out of the vinyl says “The Tune 1977 (c) 1971”. Larry seems to have had his most creative times in the 60s and 70s and struggled for decades after to get the releases out.

If you read various articles written by Larry (including all the liner notes) this matches up with his story. He talks about post-concussion syndrome, although it wasn’t named yet at the time. He got hit with a bag from the overhead compartment on an airplane apparently. After that he couldn’t remember the lyrics to his own songs most of the time, and he says that he forgot stuff that he had written before getting it down.

The story of “The Tune” is like that. He spontaneously started playing a few notes on the piano, then lost the flow and said, “Well, once there was a tune.” He riffed on that for over 20 minutes, live. It was never recorded. He did his best to re-create it in the studio and recorded The Tune.

The Tune is also “Something New Under the Son Part 1.” S.N.U.T.S. part 2 is the one that was well known and although it was recorded in 1977 we finally got to hear it mid-80s. Let That Tape keep Rollin’ and a lot of good blues came from that one.

Side 2 of The Tune has some good tracks that seem to have been lying around the studio. On the back of the album jacket it references the albums they are from. these include Rough Mix, Twenty Five Years, Rehearsal For Reality, Behind the Curtain. These albums never existed, but Larry must have planned to put them together. There are others that I heard or read the names of (from Larry’s own sources) but they never existed. I heard about Rough Mix(1), Rough Mix(2), Ose Enco, Brothers at Last. I tried ordering these from the Phydeaux store and Joe wrote back saying these albums didn’t exist.

I’m grateful for every release we eventually got from Larry’s archives. We heard all of them at least 10 years after they were written and recorded. When I finally realized that, it only added to his genius in my mind. In another Land sounded “old” in the 80s. But it was released in 1976. When was it conceived and written? Who knows.

I noticed today that in the notes for In Another Land, there is a quote from The Tune. At that point The Tune was unreleased. Few if any had heard the material outside of its original ad-hoc performance. Larry clearly had a vision of releasing many things that we will never hear.

FYI the other etchings in the lead-out, aside from the identifier “ARF-99” are “Larry Finch and Charly” “The Solid Rock Street Choir” and “89 is really 99”

Tracklist
1 – The Tune
2 – Country Church, Country People
3 – Swing Low Sweet Chariot
4 – Soul On Fire
5 – If I Got My Ticket

Credits
Drums – Alex McDougall*
Engineer, Mixed By, Bass – Tim Jaquette
Guitar – Jon Linn
Producer, Arranged By, Voice, Guitar, Piano, Synthesizer – Larry Norman

Steve Taylor – Meldown Dance Remix – 1984

Extended dance remixes were popular in 1984, often released on 12″ 45 RPM vinyl.

Steve Taylor was keeping up with the likes of Simple Minds, Tears for Fears, Depeche Mode and other new wave artists with this release.

The Meltdown album came out, this 12″ EP, and videos produced for some of the songs on the album. It was a busy year, coming very quickly after 1983’s I Want To Be A Clone.