Chuck Girard – The Name Above All Names – 1983

This album marked Chuck’s departure from Good News Records and instead he created his own label for this album. That said I am guessing the experiment didn’t go well as he joined Asaph Records for his next album. Now I’m going to criticize this album but hear me out as it’s not that bad. Chuck brought in Bob Rose to help produce this album. Bob had only produced one album before this one which was Chucks The Stand album. Chuck and his wife Karen took co-producing credits and executive production credits. Quite frankly the album shows the lack of proper production. A few songs have fade ins which is generally avoided by most producers as it not generally well received. That said an occasional fade in song is good for artistic license but not so many. Further the album just doesn’t have that finished feel. Many of the song names are too long and it just doesn’t feel finished. Now that said, the songs are good and the album probably has some of his best lyrics ever. The mix is good if not polished and I noticed that Derald Dougherty gets an engineering credit on the album. So to sum up it’s a good album and my criticism should probably be initially ignored and you should listen to the album and judge it for yourself.

Tracklist
1 – The Name Above All Names – 4:34
2 – Kingdom Come – 4:44
3 – We Are The Righteousness Of God – 3:36
4 – Blessed Be The Name Of My Rock – 3:30
5 – Soldiers Of The Lion – 4:51
6 – Don’t Shoot The Wounded – 4:07
7 – And The Rain Came Down – 4:00
8 – Wall Of Love – 3:37
9 – Walk As I Walk – 4:05
10 – The Power And The Glory – 3:44

Credits
Arranged By, Producer – Bob Rose
Arranged By, Producer [Produced By] – Chuck Girard (tracks: B1)
Art Direction – Liza McDonald
Backing Vocals – Bili Thedford, Chuck Girard, Denny Correll, Terry Clark, Tommy Funderburk
Co-producer, Executive-Producer – Chuck Girard
Engineer – Bill Cobb
Engineer [Additional Engineering] – Derald Dougherty, Jonathan Brown
Executive-Producer – Karen Girard
Mastered By – Carol Hibbs
Mixed By [Mixdown Engineer] – Nick Van Maarth
Percussion – Burleigh Drummond
Photography By – Harry Langdon
Synthesizer – Rob Watson

Companies, etc.
Phonographic Copyright (p) – Seven Thunders Records
Copyright (c) – Seven Thunders Records
Distributed By – Word Records (2)
Mastered At – K Disc Mastering
Recorded At – Poiema Studios
Recorded At – Baby’O Recorders
Recorded At – Whitefield Studios

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Mike Warnke – Growing Up – 1983

The humour continues as Mike is joined by his wife, at the time, for his 7th album.

It should be noted that Warnke was revealed as a liar and fraudster in 1991 by Cornerstone magazine. This recording is offered as a historic record of what was being listened to in the Christian community in the late 70’s and early 80’s.

Credits
Art Direction – Jim Osborn
Engineer – Malcolm Harper
Mastered By – Hank Williams (2)
Photography By – Mark Tucker (7)
Producer, Edited By, Remix – Neal Joseph

Companies, etc.
Phonographic Copyright (p) – Word, Inc.
Copyright (c) – Word, Inc.
Published By – Warnke Publishing Co.
Published By – Prime Time Music (2)
Recorded At – Will Rogers Auditorium
Recorded By – Reelsound
Edited At – Bullet Recording
Remixed At – Bullet Recording
Mastered At – Mastermix

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The Call – Modern Romans – 1983

This was the second album from The Call and is probably the one that introduced most people to the band. Their first album was not very well received but I guess was well enough received that Mercury Records went ahead with a second album. The single “The Walls Came Down” was a rather odd single. It only reached #74 on the Billboard Top 100 Chart though did make it to #17 on the mainstream rock chart. What was odd is that it was hugely popular on MTV. The video was very well received which I find odd because it is the just the band playing the song in what looks like a warehouse. Remember that often first singles followed this style on the thought we would learn who the band was. A strategy I always thought was stupid as these videos were notoriously boring. But as boring as it was (and it is) it was on heavy rotation. The song is actually referring to the cold war between the U.S. and Russia but there is the obvious suggestion of the biblical story of Battle of Jericho. Now I will toss in a personal opinion. I actually preferred their initial self titled album, but this album did solidify me as a permanent fan.

Tracklist
1 – The Walls Came Down – 3:35
2 – Turn A Blind Eye – 3:48
3 – Time Of Your Life – 3:27
4 – Modern Romans – 3:24
5 – Back From The Front – 4:02
6 – Destination – 4:32
7 – Violent Times – 4:28
8 – Face To Face – 4:05
9 – All About You – 4:20

Credits
Bass – Greg Freeman
Drums, Percussion, Vocals – Scott Musick
Engineer – Richard Kaplan
Engineer [Assistant] – Chuck Johnson, David Spritz
Guitar, Vocals – Tom Ferrier
Guitar, Vocals [Lead] – Michael Been
Producer – Michael Been, The Call
Synthesizer, Cornet – Steve Huddleston
Synthesizer, Saxophone – Garth Hudson
Written-By – Michael Been

Companies, etc.
Published By – Neeb Music
Published By – Tarka Music
Phonographic Copyright (p) – PolyGram Records, Inc.
Manufactured By – PolyGram Records, Inc.
Marketed By – PolyGram Records, Inc.
Pressed By – PRC Recording Company, Compton, CA
Recorded At – Indigo Ranch Studios

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T-Bone Burnett – Proof Through The Night – 1983

T-Bone Burnett may appear more often than any artist outside of Terry Scott Taylor if one includes solo projects, band projects and musician and production duties. From Bob Dylan and Tonio K to Leslie Phillips and Mark Heard T-Bone Burnett never had his own albums released into the CCM market, yet his presence is undeniable and, for the listener and fan, greatly appreciated. While working at Maranatha Village I was doing an in-store appearance with Leslie Phillips for her CCM swan song, The Turning, and she entered the store with a very tall and lanky gentleman in tow. Now, realize I had met Amy Grant, Bob Dylan, Bono and Michael Been by this time in my life, but I can tell you that I have never been so in awe or so utterly tongue tied as when I met T-Bone Burnett for the first time. Proof Through the Night is a haunting, dark and impressive album. Guests include Pete Townsend and Ry Cooder along with Burnett’s normal group of stellar friends and bandmates like David Mansfield and David Miner. The album sort of lulls you into experiencing what it has to offer. Burnett’s acoustically driven stark production is so compelling it is no surprise he continues to be one of the most sought after producers, and here it shines in its simplicity and authenticity. There are several wonderful songs to highlight on this album. “Stunned” is the most accessible and should have been a single if Burnett could ever really have a “single.” The chorus is memorable and stays with the listener. The same for “Fatally Beautiful.” ”Pressure” is true highlight with a great guitar driven 1-3 beat and incredible hook. Burnett also has a long standing trademark of talking through songs. There are a few examples on this album that make for compelling listening. “The Sixties” is hysterical, especially its comments regarding the use of the word “freak.” “Hefner and Disney” also employs the storytelling motif and creates and troubling mood musically which compliments the content as he reverses the roles of the two famous gentlemen. A great album worth tracking down that a few years ago was finally released on CD.

Contributor David Lowman – https://ccms500bestalbums.wordpress.com/

Tracklist
1 – The Murder Weapon – 4:29
2 – Fatally Beautiful – 4:21
3 – After All These Years – 3:11
4 – Baby Fall Down – 3:00
5 – The Sixties – 5:30
6 – Stunned – 3:50
7 – Pressure – 3:30
8 – Hula Hoop – 3:13
9 – When The Night Falls – 3:54
10 – Hefner And Disney – 3:47
11 – Shut It Tight – 3:56

Credits
Art Direction – Jeri McManus
Composed By – John Fleming (tracks: B3), Roscoe West (tracks: B3), T-Bone Burnett
Engineer [Assistant] – Jules Bowen, Tony Chiappa
Management [Direction] – Al Schlesinger, Nancy Clarke
Mastered By [Originally] – Bernie Grundman
Mixed By – Mark Ettel
Musician – David Mansfield, David Miner, Jerry Marotta, Masakazu Yoshizawa, Mick Ronson, Pete Townshend, Richard Thompson, Ry Cooder, Stan Lynch, T-Bone Burnett
Photography By – Frank Gargani
Producer – Jeff Eyrich
Producer [Associate] – The Chelew Bros. (tracks: B6)
Recorded By – Dennis Kirk
Vocals – T-Bone Burnett, The Williams Brothers

Companies, etc.
Record Company – Warner Communications
Phonographic Copyright (p) – Warner Bros. Records Inc.
Copyright (c) – Warner Bros. Records Inc.
Pressed By – Allied Record Company – B-18376
Pressed By – Allied Record Company – B-18377
Published By – Arthur Buster Stahr Music
Published By – Black Tent Music
Published By – Bug
Recorded At – Eel Pie Studios
Recorded At – The Sound Factory
Recorded At – Ocean Way Recording
Mixed At – Ocean Way Recording
Mastered At – Sheffield Lab Matrix

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Walt Harrah – On The Rock – 1983

This Walt Harrah album is subtitled on the cover with “A Musical Odyssey on Kingdom Living Based on the Sermon on the Mount”. This album was also available as a Chorus book with a cassette or Reel to Reel with the vocals removed. I’m not really too sure what that makes this project but I don’t know anyone who had the album or any of the other items so I don’t know how popular it was. Strangely in all the biographies I read on Walt this album is never even mentioned. The album itself is an easy listening synth oriented album and if you’re in the right mood this is an excellent album. That said it does have a very distinct sound so it may take a bit for it to grow on you. It did grow on me and I quite like it now.

Tracklist
1 – In The Kingdom – 3:22
2 – Kingdom Living – 3:07
3 – Poor In Spirit – 4:37
4 – Love Your Enemies Too – 2:22
5 – The Hypocrite – 3:00
6 – The Lord’s Prayer – 4:04
7 – What? Me Worry? – 2:20
8 – God, The Lilies N’ Me – 2:24
9 – All You’ve Gotta Do – 3:16
10 – On The Rock – 4:02
11 – Your Will Be Done – 5:15
12 – He Will Reign – 3:46

Credits
Drums – Dave Spurr
Keyboards, Programmed By – John Schreiner
Lead Vocals – Amick Byram
Synthesizer – Leon Gaer
Trumpet – Darrel Gardner
Vocals – Cozette Byrd
Vocals, Lead Vocals – Sandi Patty, Steve Green
Vocals, Lead Vocals, Producer, Arranged By – Walt Harrah

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Solid Rock – Interdesign – 1983

This is the second independent release from Solid Rock. Their first album was well received and even got airplay on Christian Radio. This album was even better received and also received play on Christian Radio. This was no small feat for an independent release. The band were from Weatherford, Oklahoma and attended Trinity Baptist Church. As I said this was the second of three albums and they were all Indy releases. I am a little amazed that a band from Oklahoma with an independent release gained such a large following. I would normal describe this situation as having a cult following but in this case the band was very well known. I really like this album but honestly it’s a little confusing at ties. Sometimes I’m hearing 70’s Pink Floyd and on other tracks 80’s synth. But this really isn’t a criticism as the album flows well and I love their version of Rock & Roll. If you missed this one in the 80’s give it a listen.

Tracklist
1 – Intro – 1:30
2 – Carry On – 4:19
3 – Two-Thirds Of A Man – 3:51
4 – Make A Change – 3:29
5 – Just This Side Of Darkness – 4:17
6 – Sidekick – 3:05
7 – Wisdom Of Men – 4:40
8 – Live Your Life Alone – 3:56
9 – Fly Away – 5:14

Credits
Drums, Vocals – Larry Percy
Guitar, Synthesizer – Stan Mathis
Bass, Vocals – Kevin Bartel
Keyboards, Lead Vocals, Album Design – Jerry Johnson
Engineer – Gary Duggan
Producer – Larry Benson
Concert Sound Enginer – Kurt Abercrombie

Companies
Studio – Benson Sound
Mastered – Kendun Recorders

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DeGarmo & Key – Mission Of Mercy – 1983

Childhood friends Eddie DeGarmo and Dana Key joined forces in their late teens to create music and for three decades were responsible for some of the popular CCM ever recorded. Millions of albums and millions of miles traveled. Even after they had gone their separate way musically their single minded ministry and deep, personal friendship never wavered. I had always hoped for one reunion tour. I, and everyone else, will have to wait for quite some time as earlier this year Dana Key went home to be wioth the Lord. D&K were the first band I ever used my own money to buy. It was their debut album, This Time Thru. I wore out three vinyl copies of their second album, Straight On, Their live album is one of the best live records ever recorded in CCM. And during the Summer after I graduated from High School I was eagerly anticipating their latest release. It was not what I expected. the progressive and blues infused, guitar centered rock and roll had been replaced by a heavy dose of synthesizers and strings. At first I was appalled and saddened that I had lost “my band” and that my childhood CCM heroes hadAs time went on, though, I not only earned to appreciate the album foir what it was, I actually began to love it. For what it is, it is very, very good. Top notch production, great and memorable arrangements and some very finely crafted pop tunes. And though they will never get the credit for it, they really were early pioneers in the world of modern worship music. “Let the Whole World Sing,” the monster number hit from the album is a modern worship chorus that should have been a church standard. Mission of Mercy would be the first in what I have dubbed, “The Techno Years.” Sandwiched between nearly two decades of straight ahead rock were three albums of keyboard driven pop. MoM, Communication and Commander Sozo built a substantially larger fan base for the group and expanded their ministry opportunity. Many years later I came to understand the duo was keeping with the times and would not be defined by any previous release. I learned to live with it. Of those three album the first, Mission of mercy, would be the best even though it featured the least amount of guitar. When it came right down to it, it contained the best songwriting with more than a handful of huge hits. “That the Way God Planned It” would remain a popular live song for the band while Ready or Not and When It’s Over would all top the charts. Oddly enough , for a band noted for their rock style they had always been an amazing ballad band, mainly because of Dana Key’s stunning and compassionate vocals. Of all of the songs on the album the most like their earlier music is the ballad “All the Losers.” This great song ranks up with Addey, Mary and Only the Meek Survive. It’s also the strongest song lyrically. A great record that was a record for its time and must be regarded as such. Also, when taken within that framework it is a wonderful record with wonderful songs by a wonderful and unforgettable band.

God Bless Dana Key. RIP…Rest In Paradise

Contributor David Lowman – https://ccms500bestalbums.wordpress.com/

Tracklist
1 – Ready Or Not – 2:47
2 – Special Kind Of Love – 3:23
3 – When It’s Over – 2:52
4 – All The Losers Win – 3:18
5 – The Gift – 2:24
6 – Fill Me Lord – 3:36
7 – Let The Whole World Sing – 3:38
8 – In His Love – 3:31
9 – Everlasting Love – 3:02
10 – You Can’t Run From Thunder – 4:14
11- That’s The Way God Planned It – 3:24

Credits
Arranged By [Strings], Conductor – Carl Marsh
Art Direction, Design – Susan DeGarmo
Drums – Greg Morrow
Engineer – John Hampton
Executive-Producer – Dan R. Brock
Lead Vocals, Guitar – Dana Key
Management – Brock & Associates
Mastered By – Ken Love
Percussion – Chad Crowell
Photography By – Mark Tucker
Producer – Dana Key, Eddie DeGarmo
Producer [Vocals] – Ron W. Griffin
Recorded By [Strings] – Brent King
Strings – The Nashville String Machine
Vocals, Bass Guitar – Tommy Cathey
Vocals, Guitar – Tony Pilcher
Vocals, Keyboards – Eddie DeGarmo

Companies, etc.
Phonographic Copyright (p) – The ForeFront Communications Group, Inc.
Copyright (c) – The ForeFront Communications Group, Inc.
Recorded At – Ardent Studios
Overdubbed At – Sound Stage Studios
Mastered At – Mastermix
Pressed By – Discovery Systems
Distributed By – The Benson Company, Inc.
Distributed By – Main Roads Music Group
Distributed By – Alpha & Omega Distributors
Distributed By – Word (Uk) Ltd.
Distributed By – Concorde Distributors Ltd

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Dion – I Put Away My Idols – 1983

The teen heart throb of the 50’s and 60’s becomes a troubadour for the Gospel by the 70’s and 80’s. Dion Dimucci (Dion) was a solo artist and member of Dion and the Belmonts in the early years of rock and roll and remained a chart topper for years. Ironically his two biggest hits, Runaround Sue and The Wanderer, were both about philanderers, one a woman and one a man. But right before the dawn of the 1980’s Dion had a spiritual awakening and began a lengthy career is Christian music. He released several successful albums for Dayspring Record with “I Put Away My Idols” being the most successful and most artistically satisfying. The style is closer to Dion’s 70’s folk rock style with limited 50’s rock and roll except in a novelty form. The content is very evangelical, yet never too trite or contrived. The title track is the closest to a “testimony” song as anything he recorded in CCM. “Trust in the Lord” and “Very Soon” have a very “island” sound (I wouldn’t call it reggae) similar to direction Steven Soles took but more Jimmy Buffet than Bob Marley. Most of the album is very “Scriptural” using direct Biblical references to support the message of the songs.

Contributor David Lowman – https://ccms500bestalbums.wordpress.com/

Tracklist
1 – Here Is My Servant – 3:37
2 – Trust In The Lord – 2:59
3 – Day Of The Lord – 4:02
4 – I Put Away My Idols – 3:08
5 – Daddy – 5:00
6 – Very Soon – 4:08
7 – They Won’t Tell You – 3:38
8 – Healing – 5:14
9 – Give It Up And Surrender – 3:09
10 – My Prayer For You – 2:53

Credits
Acoustic Guitar – Dion DiMucci
Alto Saxophone, Soprano Saxophone – Neal Bousanti
Arranged By – Dion
Arranged By [Strings], Conductor [Strings], Electric Piano [Rhodes], Piano, Organ, Harp – Paul Harris
Backing Vocals – Chuck Kirkpatrick, John Sambataro, Kitty Woodson, Pamela Sessody
Bass – Phil Chen
Congas – Walter Santos
Cover, Layout, Design – Jeffery Fey
Drums, Percussion – Joe Galdo
Engineer – Eric Schilling
Engineer [Assistant] – Jim Sessody
Layout [Inner Sleeve] – Dennis Hill
Lead Guitar, Rhythm Guitar, Acoustic Guitar – George Terry
Management – Zachary Glickman
Mastered By – Bob Ludwig
Photography By – Aaron Rapoport
Producer – Dion DiMucci, Eric Schilling, Paul Harris
Synthesizer – Tim Devine
Written-By – Bob Smith (tracks: A5-B4)

Companies, etc.
Phonographic Copyright (p) – Word, Inc.
Produced For – Salt Productions, Inc.
Copyright (c) – Word, Inc.
Recorded At – Criteria Recording Studios
Mixed At – Criteria Recording Studios
Mastered At – Masterdisk
Pressed By – Monarch Record Mfg. Co.
Designed At – Art Hotel
Published By – County Line Music
Published By – Skinny Zach Music
Published By – Brotherly Love Productions
Published By – Gold Mine Music Inc.
Published By – Word Well Music
Published By – Word Music

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Ron Moore – Dauntless – 1983

Ron Moore is not an artist I was familiar with in the 80’s which is a bit surprising as he has 8 albums in the 70’s to early 90’s time period. Now after listening to the album it is unlikely I would have purchased the album as it was not my style of music but I still should have been aware of him. Even though it’s not my style it’s very well done which is all the more reason I should have heard of him. It is a mix of AOR and Easy Listening and Ron’s guitar work and vocals are excellent. It almost has a folk sound in places and his style could have compared to Cat Stevens (your mileage may vary). One final reason I should have heard of this album/artist is that it was released on blue vinyl. While this was a gimmick in the 80’s, it’s a gimmick that drew me like a moth to a light. All in all it’s a great album from a great artist and I look forward to listening to some of his other work. By the way if you’re interested in getting a copy of his music most of it is available for purchase on Bandcamp.

Tracklist
1 – Sarasota – 4:18
2 – Master Plan – 2:23
3 – Deep Magic – 2:34
4 – Givers And Takers – 3:57
5 – Forgiving – 2:22
6 – The Road Forever – 3:53
7 – Waiting – 4:04
8 – Faith In Action – 2:23
9 – Stand Your Ground – 2:57
10 – Star Chasers All – 4:51
11 – Don’t Take Long – 2:34
12 – Champion – 3:27

Credits
Vocals – Ron Moore
Acoustic Guitar – Ron Moore
Electric Guitar – Ron Moore, Jim Thomas, Charlie Swanogon
Bass – Ron Moore
Synthesizer – Ron Moore, Kerry Moore, John Lawry, Dennis Ikler, Howard Eddy
Percussion – Ron Moore, Michael Addison
Drums – Walter Martin, Dennis Holt
Background Vocals – Albrecht, Roley & Moore, Ron & Kerry Moore, Scott Roley, Pat Quinn, Michael and Audrey Henderson, Sandy Wynn, Jim Thomas, Kerri Evans
Graphics – Kerry Moore
Back cover photo – Kerry Moore
Cover concept – Ron Moore, Dennis Preston, Kerry Moore
Cover illustration – Dennis Preston
Mastered by – George Graves
Producer – Ron Moore
Engineer – Bill Deaton, Bob Dennis, Ron Moore
Horse Rider – Pauly Hubbard

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Steve Archer – Through His Eyes – 1983/1994

There are a handful of families who could possibly lay claim to being the “First Family of CCM” including the Wards, Rambos, Winans, Cruze’s and the Archers. There was a time from the late 1970’s until the mid-80’s that the Archers were the biggest thing in CCM. Not too many CCM artists can claim to be invited to the Grammy Awards during that time, let along being asked to perform on the program…twice! The siblings of Steve, older brother Gary and little sister Janice recorded several albums, hit the top of the charts regularly, toured extensively and were the face of CCM for many years. One of their albums will also appear later on this last. In the early 80’s Steve was wanting to broach a solo career while maintaining a schedule with the family’s music plans. His first release “Solo” was warmly received and caused enough reaction to call for a follow-up. That follow-up was “Through His Eyes,” an album that, for the time, would be considered a “mega-hit” record with strong sales, topping the CCM sales chart and unbelievable radio support. It also featured what many people consider the first legitimate music video in CCM. Most albums start with an upbeat tune to grab the listener’s attention. Archer went against the norm and started with the title track, one of the few songs in CCM to deserve the “classic” title. The ballad was huge…I mean HUGE! Despite its sugary string arrangement (I want to blame Chris Christian) the song actually has an emotional center where concern for the lost and hurting around us is authentic. The song is call for those disenfranchised to see themselves as Christ sees them. This was not the normal “Jesus makes me happy” lyric that dominated (still?) Christian radio. Archer’s “blue-eyed soul (is that term overused enough?) is reminiscent to Hall and Oates (I’ll Do My Best) or a softer Bryan Duncan (Believe It). The album is filled primarily upbeat pop numbers and strong, radio friendly ballads. Archer bridge a generational gap and was a safe artists within Church circles, which allowed him to benefit from programs like “Hour of Power” and other national programs. This only increased his fan base. This fan base carried him for several more years both as a solo artist and with his family. I understand that music critic elitist simply do not understand the world of pop music and shutter when certain genres receive recognition. But within every genre are artists who are clearly superior in their craft. In the world of family and Church safe CCM no artists in his generation matched what Archer was able to accomplish.

Contributor David Lowman – https://ccms500bestalbums.wordpress.com/

Tracklist
1 – Through His Eyes Of Love – 4:20
2 – Safe – 4:08
3 – I’ll Do My Best – 3:48
4 – Holy, Holy – 4:11
5 – Believe It – 3:52
6 – Renew Me Lord – 3:30
7 – Teach Me To Be Like You – 4:19
8 – New Heart – 4:10
9 – Must Be You – 4:47
10 – Unless God Builds Your House – 3:21
11 – Eye Of The Storm – 4:01
12 – Blood Of Jesus – 3:26

Credits
Bass – Nathan East
Drums – John Robinson
Executive-Producer, Producer – Chris Christian
Guitar – Dann Huff, Michael Landau
Keyboards – Robbie Buchanan

Companies, etc.
Phonographic Copyright (p) – Home Sweet Home Records, Inc.
Copyright (c) – Home Sweet Home Records, Inc.
Manufactured By – LCS Music Group, Inc.
Distributed By – LCS Music Group, Inc.

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