Stevie & The Saints – Metalblue – 1987

This album was presented to me as a metal album but quite frankly after listening to it about 3 ties I just don’t get a metal feeling from it. Instead what I’m hearing is a great southern Rock album. There are some ZZ Top feelings and quite frankly some Rez feelings. Bottom line what we have here is a fantastic bluesy hard Rock album that deserved a much larger audience. My only complaint is that the production is not the best. I read the album was produced on a tight budget and you can tell. The talent of the band is very high so it still balances out that this is a great album and a must have in your CCM collection.

Tracklist
1 – We Are The Saints – 3:03
2 – Saint’s Boogie – 3:53
3 – Code Name: Jesus – 3:23
4 – One In One-Hundred – 6:06
5 – Don’t Knock The Rock – 4:01
6 – Talkin’ bout Love – 5:26
7 – Jehovah Jirah – 3:26
8 – Prisoner Of Love – 2:59

Credits
Backing Vocals – Kathy Jameson, Maureen Kelly
Bass Guitar – Ken Kane
Cover – Ken Roberts
Drums – John Tinker
Engineer – James Saad
Keyboards – Ralph Clayton
Lead Guitar – Steve Olsen
Photography By – Glenn Emery Brim
Producer – Ken Roberts
Vocals – Steve Olsen

Companies, etc.
Copyright © – Slick Songs

Michael W. Smith – The Live Set – 1987

Recorded at The Civic Theatre, Des Moines, Iowa and The Civic Center Theatre, Atlanta, Georgia here’s probably Micheal W. Smiths best album. That said I always love live albums and Michael definitely turned it up a notch when appearing live. I don’t really care for his albums as they are a little too mellow for me but this album I have been listening to.

Tracklist
1 – Nothin’ But The Blood – 3:38
2 – Lamu – 8:27
3 – You’re Alright – 4:39
4 – Could He Be The Messiah – 5:02
5 – Rocketown – 6:13
6 – Emily – 3:45
7 – I Know – 4:23
8 – Friends – 3:59
9 – Old Enough To Know – 5:57
10 – Pursuit Of The Dream – 6:01
11 – Be Strong And Courageous – 4:15
12 – You Need A Savior – 6:24

Credits
Art Direction, Design – Heather Brown
Artwork By [Cover Painting] – Robert Meecham
Bass – Chris Harris
Drums – David Huff
Edited By [Audio Sweetening] – Blaine Stewart
Engineer [Claire House] – Bob Weibel
Engineer [Monitor] – Keith Carroll
Executive Producer – Dan Harrell, Jeff Moseley, Michael Blanton
Guitar – Chris Rodriguez, Wayne Kirkpatrick
Keyboards – Mark Heimermann, Michael W. Smith
Mastered By – Glenn Meadows
Photography – Tim Campbell
Producer – Michael W. Smith
Production Manager, Engineer [House Sound], Engineer – Chris Taylor
Recorded By [Location Audio Reel Sound Recorders], Engineer [Additional Audio Engineered By] – Malcolm Harper

Companies, etc.
Manufactured By – BMG Music
Distributed By – BMG Music

Paul Smith – No Frills – 1987

Paul’s first solo album after leaving the Imperials was a big hit so Dayspring Records went for round 2 with this one. They must a thrown a lot of money at this album as the credit list is huge. Alas from what I have read this album did not do as well as his previous one. I’m kind of disappointed with that as I think this album is easily just as good but I wouldn’t say it’s better. This is solid pop album and while his last release was a little more AOR oriented I think this one should have done better with a more youthful audience. While there are a few too many ballads for my taste they are well done and are solid tracks.

Tracklist
1 – Faithful – 4:02
2 – Dancing Too Close – 4:20
3 – Walls – 5:07
4 – The Right Thing – 4:00
5 – I Will Be There For You – 4:51
6 – Something Better – 4:39
7 – Cantabile – 4:24
8 – Celebration (I Wanna Be There) – 5:20
9 – When Love Comes Home – 4:44

Credits
Jeff Balding – Engineer, Mixed
Deanna Cabaniss – Background Vocals
Claire Cloninger – Songwriter
Billy Crockett – Songwriter
Bill Deaton – Engineer
Mark Douthit – Sax
Michael English – Background Vocals
Bob Farrell – Songwriter
Kim Fleming – Background Vocals
Mark Hammond – Drum Programming
Richard Headen – Engineer
Deanna Hemby – Spoken Vocals
Tom Hemby – Producer, Songwriter, Arrangements, Mandolin, Drum Programming, Guitars, Background Vocals
JB Baird – Engineer, Mixed
Neal Joseph – Executive Producer
Wayne Kirkpatrick – Songwriter
Phil Kristianson – Piano, Organ
Gary Lunn – Bass, Drum Programming
Phil Madeira – Additional Synthesizers
David Martin – Songwriter
Donna McElroy – Background Vocals
Phil Naish – Synthesizers
Brett Perry – Songwriter
Kelly Raglin – Spoken Vocals
Chris Rodriguez – Background Vocals
Jimmie Lee Sloas – Background Vocals
Paul Smith – Songwriter, Vocals, Background Vocals
Keith Thomas – Producer, Songwriter, Arrangements, Synthesizers, Drum Programming
Tricia Walker – Songwriter
Marcia Wells – Background Vocals
Bill Whittington – Engineer, Mixed
Hank Williams – Mastered
Kenny Wood – Songwriter

Companies, etc.
Phonographic Copyright ℗ – Word, Inc.
Copyright © – Word, Inc.
Manufactured By – Word, Inc.
Distributed By – Word, Inc.
Made By – Discovery Systems
Recorded At – Gold Mine Studio
Recorded At – OmniSound Studios
Recorded At – Center Stage Studio
Mixed At – OmniSound Studios
Mixed At – Center Stage Studio
Mastered At – Mastermix

Urgent Cry – Demo 041187 – 1987

Urgent Cry were a band out of Vandalia, Ohio. They released 2 demos but were never signed by a label. This is their first demo and it’s pretty good. It has a nice pop rock sound and is musically sound. Unfortunately the vocals are a bit weak. I think the vocal skills were there but Steven just needed a little guidance. This is a good example of the difference a good producer could have made. While the engineering was actually very good I think they needed a producer to pull it all together. One thing I really like that this band did was to release their demo cassette with all 4 tracks on each side. This means the cassette would last twice as long. Given the quality of these bulk cassettes I really liked it when bands did this.

Tracklist
1 – Cry In The Wilderness – 3:57
2 – Unexpected – 3:48
3 – Christ Is The Answer – 3:51
4 – No Pantomime – 4:06

Credits
Darryl Gibson – Drums, acoustic guitar
Kevin Landon – Bass, keyboards
Bill Kuhn – Lead Guitar
Steven Mikel – Lead vocals, flute

Crystal Lewis – Beyond The Charade – 1987

This is Crystal’s first solo album. She had previously appeared on albums with the Lifters/Wild Blue Yonder. She was offered this album deal at only 17 years old. It’s a pretty good album though I think it’s a little heavy on the keyboards on a few tracks. That synth pop sound doesn’t really work with her voice in my opinion. The track “Breakdown” best suits her vocals in my opinion. That said her vocals are so good she overcomes some questionable music to make a pretty darn good album. Crystal was one of CCM’s greatest vocalists but never got the recognition she deserved from the industry.

Tracklist
1 – Frustrated – 3:34
2 – Precious Lord – 3:37
3 – Without You – 4:21
4 – Runnin’ – 4:34
5 – Turn Your Heart Around – 3:33
6 – Breakdown – 3:53
7 – One More Heart – 3:46
8 – Special Love – 3:57
9 – Let Them Know – 4:15
10 – Tonight – 4:06

Credits
Backing Vocals – Brian Tong, Dave Jahnsen, Michael Campion, Mike Mac Lane, Paul Daldwell
Drums – Pete Pfiefer
Engineer [Mixing] – Dave Jahnsen
Guitar – Bob Somm, Terence Elliot
Keyboards – Tim Heintz
Producer, Vocals, Backing Vocals, Engineer – Bill Baumgart
Saxophone – Eric Marienthal
Vocals – Billy Hufsey
Vocals, Backing Vocals – Crystal Lewis

Companies, etc.
Phonographic Copyright ℗ – Frontline Records
Copyright © – Frontline Records
Distributed By – The Benson Company

Compassion All​-​Star Band – Live​ @ ​Cornerstone ’87 – 1987

You may be familiar with the Compassion All Star Band album 1 By 1 Live! released in 1989 but somewhere on the interwebs is this 1987 recording using the same name. To be clear the “Compassion All​-​Star Band” wasn’t a set group. It was the name used when several artists would come together to raise funds for Compassion International. I have no idea where this was released but it was recorded in 1987 at Cornerstone. This album mostly consisted of secular tracks which is what made it very appealing to me. My favourite track is Rick Cua & Randy Stonehill’s version of I Still Believe which features some excellent guitar work by Phil Keaggy. Also cool is the Phil Madeira & Randy Stonehill cover of Dylan’s “Forever Young”.

https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLPcTOx34g9XS828kImW2qkh5G7LVzb0dE

Tracklist
1 – October (Glen Kaiser) – 1:14
2 – Eminence Front (Phil Madeira) – 7:14
3 – We Can Work It Out (Phil Keaggy/Randy Stonehill) – 2:51
4 – Presence Of The Lord (Glen Kaiser) – 4:46
5 – Rick Cua Rap – 2:14
6 – I Still Believe (Rick Cua/Randy Stonehill) – 6:07
7 – Randy Stonehill Rap – 10:25
8 – Who Will Save The Children (Randy Stonehill/Phil Keaggy) – 6:45
9 – Help (Randy Stonehill/Phil Keaggy) – 2:20
10 – Phil Madeira Rap – 2:19
11 – Forever Young (Phil Madeira/Randy Stonehill) – 6:03
12 – Darrell Mansfield Intro – 1:31
13 – Walkin’ Chicago Blues (Darrell Mansfield) – 9:43

Credits
Phil Keaggy- Guitar, Vocals
Randy Stonehill- Guitar, Vocals
Glen Kaiser- Guitar, Vocals
Joe English- Drums, Vocals
Rick Cua- Bass, Vocals
Phil Madeira- Keys, Vocals
Darrell Mansfield- harmonica, Vocals

First Degree – Youth – 1987

While some will probably say this is a Metal album I respectfully disagree. In my opinion it’s a straight up Rock & Roll album. This is one that I just recently discovered and wow do I like it. No one I know even knew these guys existed so this is probably going to be one of those oddball albums no one ever heard of but I could be mistaken. I can’t find anything about the band or any f the members. So this is one of those mystery albums but this one is a little different as it is really really good. Right from the opening riff (which is great) you know you are in for a good Rock & Roll album and the rest of it doesn’t let you down. I think my favourite track is Jenni, Jenni which personally I think could have easily played on secular radio. Anyway I’ll say it again, if you missed this one in 1987 be sure to give it a listen now.

Tracklist
1 – Youth – 3:43
2 – Last Forever – 4:27
3 – Every Time – 3:50
4 – Turning Point – 4:31
5 – Don’t You Know – 4:31
6 – Don’t Be Afraid – 3:28
7 – Jenni, Jenni – 4:11
8 – True Love – 4:11
9 – Don’t Do It – 4:24

Credits
Kent Bradley – Guitar, Keyboards
Howard Conder – Producer, Engineer
Dan Kilbourne – Drums
Lance Rowland – Bass, Vocals
Paul Sisemore – Guitars, Vocals

Dennis Welch – Man Of Steel – 1987

Dennis Welch is a lesser known singer songwriter who lives in Austin, Texas who deserves to be much better known. This album was originally self released in 1984 but in 1987 micro label Dark Records picked up the album and had Dennis add 3 tracks to make it a full length album. It was apparently distributed to radio stations and I have read 2 different ex DJs say it was one of their favourite albums. It deserves the attention it gained in the industry. I had never heard of Dennis before I stumbled across this album and that’s a real pity because I would have loved it in the day. Well actually I love it today and I can honestly say there are a few tracks, in particular the title track, that are going into my regular rotation.

Tracklist
1 – Antinomian Nights – 3:51
2 – Carry Me Away – 6:12
3 – Alien Shoes – 3:34
4 – Change Of Heart – 4:16
5 – Man Of Steel – 3:35
6 – Ordering My Private World – 5:34
7 – Don’t Touch My Genes (Algeny) – 3:52
8 – Deep In The Night – 3:48
9 – Crystal Sea – 2:11

Steven Curtis Chapman – First Hand – 1987

This was Steven’s debut album. He was under contract to Sparrow records as a songwriter and was very successful so I guess Sparrow thought they would give him a studio band and see how he did. The album was very successful with the single track “Weak Days” which peaked at #2 on the CCM charts. I was actually a little surprised at this album as I had dismissed Steven Curtis Chapman as a worship album artist but this is actually a pretty good pop album. The sound would have been better suited as an early 80’s album but it wasn’t that outdated in 1987. This is one I ignored in the 80’s but I’m glad I tool the time to listen to it now.

Tracklist
1 – First Hand – 3:35
2 – Weak Days – 4:18
3 – Hiding Place – 4:58
4 – Run Away – 3:53
5 – Do They Know – 4:00
6 – Tell Me – 4:19
7 – Who Cares – 5:06
8 – Dying To Live – 3:35
9 – Said And Done – 5:08
10 – My Redeemer Is Faithful And True – 3:47

Credits
Arranged By [Background Vocals] – Chris Rodriguez, Phil Naish, Steven Curtis Chapman
Arranged By [Rhythm] – Phil Naish, Steven Curtis Chapman
Art Direction – Barbara Catanzaro-Hearn
Backing Vocals – Chris Rodriguez, Herbert Chapman, Steven Curtis Chapman, Wayne Kirkpatrick
Bass – Mike Brignardello
Coordinator – Cindy Wilt
Design – Buddy Jackson
Drums – Mark Hammond
Engineer – Jeff Balding
Engineer [Assistant] – Bill Whittington, Mike Clute
Executive-Producer – Greg Nelson
Guitar – Jon Goin, Steven Curtis Chapman
Illustration – Beth Middleworth
Keyboards – Phil Naish
Mastered By – Denny Purcell
Orchestrated By [Strings] – Alan Moore
Photography By – Mark Tucker
Producer – Phil Naish
Strings – Carl Gorodetzky, The Nashville String Machine

Companies, etc.
Phonographic Copyright ℗ – The Sparrow Corporation
Copyright © – The Sparrow Corporation
Pressed By – Capitol Jax
Designed At – Jackson Design
Engineered At – The Bennett House
Engineered At – OmniSound Studios
Engineered At – Hummingbird Studio, Nashville, TN
Engineered At – Gold Mine Studio
Engineered At – Center Stage Studio
Engineered At – Downstage Studio
Mastered At – Georgetown Masters

Terry Scott Taylor – A Briefing For The Ascent – 1987

If you like footsteps you’ll love this album. I ride Terry pretty hard for his conceptual album ideas because a lot of the time it just comes off as silly to me but in this case it really worked on this album. I feel he thought through his idea and didn’t silly it up and because of it this is probably my favourite solo album from Terry. One of the odder tracks on the album is “Long, Long, Long” which is actually a cover of a Beatles song. I didn’t like the original so I kind of struggle with this track but I will say for the record that I believe Terry’s version is much better than the original. That said the song fits where it is on this album. At one time artists and producers really thought about the order of tracks on their albums and this album is an example of a perfectly structured album.

Tracklist
1 – A Briefing For The Ascent – 4:34
2 – Somewhere To Elsewhere – 2:02
3 – Beyond The Wall Of Sleep – 3:13
4 – The Wood Between The Worlds – 3:49
5 – Changeless – 4:02
6 – My Love, My Love – 4:18
7 – Wars Of The Heart – 0:45
8 – Capture Me – 4:08
9 – Where Dreams Come True – 2:59
10 – Long, Long, Long – 3:38
11 – Prelude – 1:26
12 – Going Home – 2:08

Credits
Art Direction – Ed McTaggart
Backing Vocals – Crystal Lewis, Jerry Chamberlain, Montebello First Baptist Church Choir, Rob Watson, Terry Taylor, Tom Howard
Bass – Tim Chandler
Concept By [Conceived By], Directed By – Terry Taylor
Design Concept [Album Cover Concept] – Ed McTaggart, Terry Taylor
Drum Programming – Ed McTaggart, Ed McTaggart, Terry Taylor
Drums – Ed McTaggart, Steve Hindalong
Engineer – Dave Hackbarth
Graphics [Photographics] – Ken Baley
Guitar – Greg Flesch, Terry Taylor
Keyboards, Synthesizer – Greg Flesch, Terry Taylor
Mastered By [Digitally Remastered] – Doug Doyle
Mastered By [Originally Mastered] – John Matousek
Mixed By – Doug Doyle, Terry Taylor
Mixed By [With] – Greg Flesch
Orchestrated By [Orchestrations Constructed By], Arranged By [Orchestrations Arranged By] – Greg Flesch, Terry Taylor
Percussion – Alex MacDougall, Greg Flesch
Photography By – Bob Rowe
Producer [Produced By] – Greg Flesch, Terry Taylor
Synth [Treatments] – Greg Flesch, Terry Taylor
Vocals – Terry Taylor

Companies, etc.
Phonographic Copyright ℗ – Frontline Records
Copyright © – Frontline Records
Record Company – Frontline Music Group
Distributed By – FMG Distribution
Recorded At – 3-D Studios, Costa Mesa CA.
Mastered At – Hitsville
Remastered At – Digital Brothers
Glass Mastered at – Nimbus, Virginia
Published By – Broken Songs