1001 Albums Book: 1971

Prepare yourself for the one of the longest blog posts I’ve ever done on this Wednesday. Thanks for Elaine blogger for suggesting the year, did I tell you? My Nanna had the same name but she is no longer with us. Anyway I’ve got this year done pretty quick really because it’s something like 35 or 36 albums, I think I lost count at some point? A lot of albums to say the least but it’s the seventies so what else was going to be happening? Maybe it might have been a mistakes doing this by years but oh well, too late. I’ll keep this intro short today because below it almost seems never going to end!

 Aqualung by Jethro Tull: This crazy flute playing lead singer with a the hippie band was one of my old mans faves so who know how much I’ve heard it? My very own fave track here would be the second last song Locomotive Breath, I would say it’s the most pumping track after a nice piano intro.

If Could Only Remember My Name by David Crosby: So it seems not all the hippies drop dead in the sixties. Talking about dad above, he when and saw Crosby, Stills & Nash without Young a couple of years ago and was saying after the set it was a hour long jam but that’s what this whole album sounds like to me, stoned hippie jam album.

There’s A Riot Goin’ On by Sly & The Family Stone: That’s more like it, I’m digging the whole album this time. My old folks did have a best of/greatest hits type on vinyl so it’s not totally new to me but it’s been a while since listening to them and the first I will be pulling on my highly reco list today.

What’s Going On by Marvin Gaye: If you look this album is in almost every greatest top ten albums of all-time. This is were Motown record got serious and Marvin became one of the best singer-songwriters too. It’s just amazing listening even today and going to be the second on now on my highly reco list.

The Yes Album by Yes: This sounds like total shit after the last two albums but I did listen to the whole 40 mins. to say now it’s really not my thing and I will never listen again. It might as well just be called one very long silly guitar solo album.

Trafalgar by The Bee Gees: Oh I love these guys, I know it’s not very cool or whatever or are they now remember as a great band somehow? This album is the first of two in this book that totally agree with and makes it the third already on my reco list today. Ex-pat Aussies that grew-up in Queensland but pretty much moving oversea to make a career in music because you couldn’t in Australia at that time. The very first Aussie band to make it into the book too but they were born in England and immigrating here when they were kids so I don’t know if they really count. It’s sad to think that it’s now Barry Gibb as only one still around of the three brothers that made up the main members of The Bee Gees.

Who’s Next by The Who: I could never get into The Who as easily as The Beatles or The Rolling Stones but they’re a few albums in this book to try again. This is the first I’ve come across but maybe not the best one to start again with because I’m not impressed and just going to dismiss them again, sorry guys.

Tapestry by Carole King: Right, there is something about this album really don’t like but it’s not the songs, she’s a good songwriter. It’s the production that’s destroy these tracks for me, too much going after the mainstream 70’s radio listeners and DJs so making very dated and I can’t recommend it.

Shaft (soundtrack) by Issac Hayes: Now the book dismiss all soundtrack in the foreword but changed it’s mind for a couple like this album. Myself I think some of the greatest albums are soundtracks so this is a silly move by the book but I’m very happy they did included this one soundtrack. Is now number four on my reco list.

Live At Fillmore East by The Allman Brothers Band: I can’t say I’ve never been a fan at all of this band, starting with a some what over bloated live album is not going help. I did like the opening song just for the fact it’s a Blind Willie McTell cover Statesboro Blues before things got even more guitar noodle-ly.

   

Sticky Fingers by The Rolling Stones: My fave Stones album is not in this book, you know? Maybe have to written about it anyway sometime. So they’re a few albums by them here in the book off course but say early 70’s albums it’s the one I like/love the best so it’s fifth on the reco list for me with some my most fave and killer tracks of Brown Sugar, Wild Horses, Bitch, Dead Flower on it and their own version of Sister Morphine too.

Imagine by John Lennon: The title track has go to one greatest moments in songwriting and history of music, you don’t need this book or me to tell that to but what about the rest of the album? I Don’t Wanna Be A Soldier and Oh Yoko! is the other two great tracks or well, the other tracks on it that I really enjoy but I would really just call it an OK album, that could just be me.

Surf’s Up by The Beach Boys: I was never any kind of fan of this band and this album this time hasn’t made me anymore, it’s sounds really dated, dorky and way too hippie or something for me.

L.A. Woman by The Doors: Most likely to be named as my most fave Doors album of all-time and maybe I should write more about this one at a later date because as you can tell I’m the biggest hippie music fan so finding something I real dig I should say a little more about it but in the meantime it’s number six album in my little list today of faves.

Tago Mago by Can: I’ve listened to bit and pierces of this band before and I think at some point I’ve heard this album before, it’s the most well known one as far as I can tell. John Lydon of Public Image Ltd./Sex Pistols once dare a BBC DJ to play the full length 18 mins and 30 secs. version of Halleluwah on prime time radio, stuff like that made it a little more known to the mainstream. This is one of two albums in this book and it makes it into my reco as the seventh now. The singer Damo Suzuki is Japanese and rest of the members of the band are listed as German and Polish and the very first listed in the book for 1971 that are not English or American.

Fragile by Yes: Fuck no, not more Yes! I did already say it’s really not my thing and both albums sound almost like the same to me so it’s just total overkill and pointless having two here and only few albums apart is pretty silly too.

Madman Across The Water by Elton John: I think the very last time I listened to this was when the singer-songwriter Aimee Mann name drop it as her fave album of all-time somewhere. Off course, the song Tony Danza opens the album but who’s not heard that song by now? So how about the rest? Got to say, not my thing at all but for some reason the track at almost the end All The Nasties really jump out at me.

Coat Of Mary Colors by Dolly Parton: This makes it the only two Dolly albums in the book in a row for my 1001 book posts. I think the 70’s were nicer to C&W music but it seem only two album made the cut in 71. I would say Parton is a totally under rated songwriter too so I’m included this one in my reco list as number eight today, try and forget she has some of the biggest knockers in music and just listen to her songs. The ten great songs in just under half an hour is pretty perfect country and by far the best I’ve come across in this book, so far.

American Pie by Don McLean: I can’t stand that title track, it’s everything I hate about 70’s mainstream pop rock radio top forty songs and I don’t think anyone needs to listen to it ever again if they don’t want too. I even had to skipped it after five mins. of eight mins plus song because it was drive me mad but I did listen almost all of it this time which is better than normal. The rest of it is total over produced radio friendly 70’s rubbish too. So could I just say in the nicest possible way FUCK OFF, Don!

Tarkus by Emerson Lake & Parker: WTF! Are they joking? It seem I don’t like prog rock much at all and because for some mad reason these guys made two albums in one year so this bloody book tells me I need to listen to both of them. Why, I’ve got to ask? The opening 20 mins. song was too much for me but six more songs follow that, naming it the second worst album of the year but guess what is worst than this?

IV by Led Zeppelin: Does anyone need to listen to Stairway To Heaven again? Because every guitar player I’ve known think they’re Jimmy Page but are NOT but yet still want to play that bloody song again and again and again etc. So because of that and almost every other Zep’s albums is in this book too I’m trowing this one right out the window right now and dismiss it as over rated wank.

Histoire de Melody Nelson by Serge Gainsbourg: Do you know the total lack of French pop in this book? I totally love French pop, could be my fave style of pop ever. But I guess it’s not for everyone but it’s not fair Gainsbourg only gets this one album in the whole book. He’s a total songwriting genius and he’s so under rated because… I don’t know why but he’s my number nine on my reco list. BTW that’s Jane Birkin on the album cover too.

Every Picture Tells A Story by Rod Stewart: Somewhere in the 2000’s one of my fave Aussie bands who’s not in this book, the Dirty Three covered Maggie May live for an encore and I’ve loved the song ever since then and would love to find a recording of that version but never have. So I’ve listened to Rod’s one since then and someone gave me an old cassette tape of the album just last week because they know I’m listening to a lot of tapes lately, it was in with a pile of old tapes/albums with other good stuff. I do kind-of like the album there’s a Bob Dylan cover but the whole don’t make the cut, I’m highlighting Maggie May off course.

Songs Of Love And Hate by Leonard Cohen: Off course it makes the cut and I have wrote a whole blog post last year about this album already for my own classic albums tag. So it’s now double figures because it’s number ten album on the reco list now and if you wanna read more want I’ve got to say about it go to that link, OK?

Blue by Joni Mitchell: Everyone on earth calls this one as Joni’s best and greatest album for one reason or other and I don’t disagree with it. I did point out the last time when Mitchell popped up in this book post that I couldn’t never totally get into her stuff but listening to this album it’s just got to be on my little reco list now, making it as 11th album today.

Picture At An Exhibition by Emerson Lake & Parker: On the album cover the pictures at this exhibition are totally blank white space in wooden frames. The music is a bloody live album by these blokes playing silly shitty prog rock which I’ve made clear I don’t like but it might be your thing. I’m naming it as the worst album of 1971 because this live album is worst than the studio album.

Maggot Brain by Funkadelic: “Play your guitar like mother has just died” is what band leader George Clinton told guitarist Eddie Hazel to do in creating the epic opening and title track which just has to be one of the greatest guitar solo, guitar playing in any song in the all history of music or at least in my opinion. The rest of the album is totally wicked too plus the second Clinton’s albums I’ve come across in this book and I’ve been checking out some that aren’t even in the book lately too and reporting here and now, they’re some really great albums not in this even in this book which I’ve got to write/blog about soon or later. The Maggot Brain album just has got to be 12nd on my reco list.

Pearl by Janis Joplin: Lucky or unlucky 13th album to be add to my little list of recos. She could sing like a motherfucker but off course is one of few hippies singers that didn’t live to tell the stories herself. If you didn’t know this is her final album recorded but wasn’t released until after her death because she was recording this album when she passed away in a hotel room of drug OD before finishing a song or two.

Live! by Fela Kuti with Ginger Baker: Drum solos was a big thing in the 70’s and amazing this one is the only one in this book for this year. It’s only the second album in the whole book for Fela I’ve listen too and his last one. Plus looking at the drummer Ginger appears twice too after playing in a band called Cream in the sixties. Cool as fuck album so number 14 in my recos.

A Nod Is As Good As A Wink To A Blind Horse by Faces: It’s really just Rod Stewart’s second album of the year. The Dirty Three never covered any of these songs but it could be a little better than that Rod’s solo album, it’s more rock but still don’t make my cut.

Teenage Head by Flamin’ Groovies: It’s just another kind-of OK rock album, nothing really jumps out at me but maybe too much slide guitar for my taste.

White Light by Gene Clark: Yet another folk rock hippie type music I don’t get my rocks off on, maybe you would but I’m pasting this one too.

Self-titled by John Prine: Right, he’s got some funny lyrics but it’s music is all to hillbilly country & western and a bit over the top for me most of the time.

Nilsson Schmilsson by Harry Nilsson: Off course, my fave is Coconut because it was in Reservoir Dogs movie. QT came out just the other day saying Tom Waits audition and wanted to be in the film but I’ve never heard that one before. Don’t really dig anything else on the album.

Electric Warrior by T.Rex: I could never, ever get into this guy, this is his full-on rock album too but even that don’t help because I’m pasting on this one too.

Hunky Dory by David Bowie: He’s the solo artist who got the most albums in the book and the latest update copy I’ve got he’s even on the book’s cover too. I’ve already come across some of his albums in the few years I’ve listen too and this is a pretty great way to finish this very, very, very long year. This album is so full of some of his greatest tracks so it’s totally impossible not to name it in my little reco list as number 15. If you really wanna know? My most fave track out of all of these songs is second last one Queen Bitch. 

So that’s all the albums in the context of 1971 and a little bit I’ve got to say about these ones, do you what to add something yourself? Feel free to do so below! I’ve wrote about the 71’s albums by Karen Dalton’s In My Own Time and Nina Simone’s Emergency Ward plus the Lenny Cohen one above in my classic albums posts/tag too.

So out of something like 30+ albums here in this book I’ve digged 15 albums which is not bad odds, my own taste in music but some of it is OK in my opinion and got some songs lifted from them but everyone has their own taste and opinion! So I’ve got to ask you personal each and everyone who’s reading this post what is your own fave album/s of the year 1971 too?

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So I’m naming Serge’s masterpiece as my fave album from this book’s 1971

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13 thoughts on “1001 Albums Book: 1971

  1. An excellent post, William,

    As someone who was in Year 9 in 1971, most of these are familiar, and many are still favourites.

    At the time (and it was the era of pre-punk and folk-rock with CSNY, James Taylor and Joni Mitchell) my favourite 71 albums which I bought or copied onto cassette tape were:

    Aqualung – Jethro Tull (and yes Locomotive Breathe is the standout), though it’s not my favourite Tull album
    American Pie – Don Maclean
    Teaser and the Firecat – Cat Stevens
    Led Zeppelin IV
    CSNY – 4 Way Street (live) – some great endless guitar duets with Neil Young and Steven Stills;
    Madman Across the Water – Elton John (never his best album)
    Tapestry – Carole King
    Hunky Dory – Bowie
    Rod Stewart – Every Picture and the Faces album
    John Lennon – Imagine – some classics
    Yes – the Yes Album

    Of these only Led Zep IV is still on my regular playlist, and my pick of the 1971 albums is:

    LA Woman – the Doors best album!
    Leonard Cohen – Songs of Love and Hate – every song is great
    The Allman Bros at the Filmore East – Unlike you, I like endless guitar solos
    Led Zep IV – for all the non-stairway songs
    Joni Mitchell Blue – one of her best
    Janis Joplin – Pearl
    David Crosby – If only I could Remember My Name – just for the song ‘Laughing’;
    Carole King – Tapestry for all the lovesick memories I have attached to it.

    I did briefly listen to some prog rock – a friend was crazy for Emerson, Lake and Palmer, and I liked Yes – but that’s something best forgotten.

    Cheers

    Liked by 1 person

    • Oh my, what a comment! Yes, it must be so much different for you than me!
      Thank you and double thank you for sharing your then and now playlists too because I really do find things like that interesting!
      Cheers again, have a great day 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Thank you William! I was getting seriously worried that Hunky Dory wasn’t going to be there – probably my favourite album of all time. It’s always on in my car. Or I should say, it used to be. When Bowie died I cried 24 hours straight and nearly crashed the car when I played it. So I had to stop crying/driving. Other than the usual favourites I would have to say Quicksand is the one song I like that’s not on most people’s minds. So many of the albums here are just classics Sticky Fingers is certainly a great Stones record – I prefer it to Exile on Main Street. The Doors! The Doors! I love them! I’m sorry you don’t like Who’s Next. Behind Blue Eyes is a heartbreaker and Baba O’Riley is amazing.The Beach Boys are one of my all-time fave bands and Brian Wilson (kind of, his participation was limited) and his angelic-voiced brother Carl made a baroque beautiful piece of work here. The title track and Til I Die are achingly wonderful. I was a late convert to Joni Mitchell and in fact have been listening to Blue quite a lot lately. Gainsbourg was a genius and Melody Nelson is probably his most complete work. I have to check out the Bee Gees album and the Elton John one is not on my radar at all. I’m afraid Jethro Tull are too much associated in my childhood memories with those images of that crazy man for me to ever engage but I may do so now! Led Zeppelin, well, who doesn’t love this?!There’s a band I’d love to have seen play. I was flying out of Birmingham East Midlands 20 years ago and was buying magazines to kill some time. I found myself standing in line behind a man with big blonde hair – just like my own at the time. The line was moving slowly so I got to thinking, Who’s famous who’s got hair like mine?! And of course I thought, Robert Plant. And the guy paid for his books and turned around and it was ,,, Robert Plant. I almost fell over in shock. I guess he gets that a lot. Anyhow, there’s a huge argument here for this being the greatest year in pop-rock. Thank you for the post! Goodnight!

    Liked by 2 people

    • WOW! What a comment and thank you too!
      They’re way more Led Zep and The Who in this book before I finish so I might find something I dig? Both my old folks like both of them but I forget to say that above so I have listen a lot to them, maybe tooooo much! I do really think they’re a bit over rated and wanted to highlight some other albums plus since starting this blog I’ve notices I seem to always go for the underdogs!
      It’s cool you met Robert Plant, I’ve met some musos types but no one as big as that!
      Oh yeah, it seems pretty great year for music but I wouldn’t know if it’s the greatest ever?
      Cheers again!

      Like

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