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Discussion in 'The Beat of The Brass: Herb Alpert/Tijuana Brass' started by abstract_fan, Jun 17, 2017.

  1. abstract_fan

    abstract_fan Member Thread Starter

    On HA's Music tab of the official website, many of his album reviews are from AllMusic. I get that a review is a person's opinion. But upon reading the review of "Summertime," after favorably highlighting: Jerusalem, Strike Up The Band, Summertime, and The Nicest Things Happen, the reviewer writes:

    "Otherwise, most of the tracks on this LP lack energy, and even vigorous arrangements like that of the Beach Boys‘ “Darlin'” drift off distractedly into the ozone. Clearly, Alpert wasn’t quite ready to re-emerge full-blown into the performing world."

    Was Herb distracted so that his trumpet went into the ozone on Darlin'? Does anyone feel that any of the other tracks lack energy?

    Spoiler alert: I don't.
     
    Bobberman likes this.
  2. Bobberman

    Bobberman Well-Known Member

    I don't agree with a lot of All Music Guides reviews of music I like I think their reviewers kind of have an axe to grind for the most part I first read their reviews BETWEEN 2004 AND 2009 And after reading and rereading them I finally got tired of them and stopped going to the site it was too frustrating to see much of Herb's music as well as The BMB and many others getting slammed by snooty reviewers to put it very mildly
     
  3. abstract_fan

    abstract_fan Member Thread Starter

    Good point Bobberman. BTW: This review is NOT listed on the AllMusic site; many of the others are. But what' s strange is it is on Herb's Official Website.
     
    Bobberman likes this.
  4. RichardWarner

    RichardWarner Member Contributor

    I don't think he was "distracted," although many of the tunes on Summertime have a kind of "eh" quality about them to me. The clue that he was still in transition is that his tone was like being filtered through cotton. Compare it to now, when it's sharp and energetic.
     
    Steven J. Gross likes this.
  5. abstract_fan

    abstract_fan Member Thread Starter

    I have enjoyed this album since Jerusalem, as a single, received airplay when it was released. I'll admit my bias.

    So to recap: the reviewer favorably mentions: Jerusalem, Strike Up The Band, Summertime, and The Nicest Things Happen, and

    “Darlin'” drift(s) off distractedly into the ozone.

    That leaves:
    Hurt So Bad
    Martha My Dear
    If You Could Read My Mind
    Montezuma's Revenge
    Catch A Falling Star

    I enjoy those fine arrangements, and his unique trumpet playing.

    But I don't discount your comment Richard.

    Unfortunately, unlike the Signature Series CD releases where Herb provided his thoughts, HA Presents releases don't. I wonder what Herb thinks about Summertime.
     
  6. abstract_fan

    abstract_fan Member Thread Starter

    Bobberman likes this.
  7. Not to pick on Herb, but one song on repeat all day long? Yes, one song. That's a picture of the "Summertime" single picture sleeve (AM 1261). Well, if they really can't stand it anymore, they could flip over the 45 - then it might not "Hurt So Bad." :)
     
    Last edited: Jun 20, 2017
    Bobberman and AM Matt like this.
  8. abstract_fan

    abstract_fan Member Thread Starter

    Yes I know Harry... ha-ha, I was reaching... But as I said above, I remember HA being honest with his work in the Signature Series CDs; example: I forget which CD it was, but in the insert, when he spoke about the two TJB albums, he called them "two unsuccessful albums." When I saw the Twitter feed, I said, hey maybe he was sending a subliminal message that Summertime was as wonderful an album I think it is.
     
  9. Didn't mean to disparage SUMMERTIME - album or single - at all. I was just joking around with the fact that they talked about it being on repeat all day long and then showed a picture of the single, rather than the album.

    Oh well, if you have to explain 'em, then they weren't funny in the first place...
     
    Bobberman likes this.
  10. abstract_fan

    abstract_fan Member Thread Starter

    No, it was funny Harry.

    But, why he held back Summertime from digital release for so long is still a mystery to me. I remember Jerusalem as a single got air play e.g., on WNEW am radio in New York (the late Ted Brown radio announcer) when it came out. I loved listening to the crescendo passage on my mom's radio above the refrigerator. I think the Summertime single got some air play also (don't remember for sure). For that matter, he also played Promenade from Just You and Me, but I digress! So, it may remain one of my life's mysteries. I'll be OK.
     
  11. Mike Blakesley

    Mike Blakesley Well-Known Member Moderator

    Well a few thoughts come to mind.

    1. Herb is very likely not posting his Facebook or Twitter (or whatever) comments himself. A secretary is probably doing that, probably at the direction of Randy. I have a feeling that they "meant" to put the Summertime album on repeat and whoever did the post didn't catch the distinction between the album and single sleeves.

    2. A review is just a person's opinion and is pretty subjective, BUT even a tin-eared person can hear a huge difference in Herb's playing style between, say, the Going Places album and Summertime. He even admitted in many interviews that he lost his touch on the trumpet and sought help from a New York teacher when he "hit bottom," so to speak. So, Summertime is one of my favorite albums and I love it, but it's definitely not Herb's strongest effort - partly due to his trumpet troubles, but also partly because it's more of a "scrapbook" album put together from pieces here and there after the band had broken up.

    When you get right down to it, the only way an artist can have every album be his "best," is to only put out one album and then retire. Otherwise, albums are going to be regarded by listeners as best to worst, and one of them has to occupy that bottom slot... for that reviewer, Summertime might have been it. (For me, it'd probably be Second Wind, but that's just because it's not my cup-o-tea and not because of Herb's playing.)
     
    Bobberman likes this.
  12. Rudy

    Rudy ᕦ(ò_óˇ)ᕤ Site Admin

    US
    That's true with most famous persons these days--their posts are made by someone in charge of promotions and social media. Sometimes the person will send along a message to be posted ("I'm performing at Chene Park this coming Wednesday"), but usually it's just a cheap/free form of advertising. The few social media accounts I do follow are made up of those who post their own thoughts (like Bebel Gilberto).
     
  13. @RichardWarner - check your Private Conversations - upper right corner
     
  14. Rudy

    Rudy ᕦ(ò_óˇ)ᕤ Site Admin

    US
    The idea was to release these as a replica of the original release, so no "extras" would be part of the packaging.

    However, having said that, I really have enjoyed what George Duke did on his web site. He wrote up the history and some of his own thoughts about each album he has recorded. This is the way a discography should be done! Here is the page just for his 70s output alone:

    George Duke :: 1970s Discography

    I wish more artists would do this.
     
  15. Bobberman

    Bobberman Well-Known Member

    In any case It's all good and I think we are very fortunate to have a Huge Majority of Herb's discography available all the same time as I remember mentioning previously it's Unprecedented and since I have 13gb or so left on my SD card which has my music mega mix I plan to add Herb's download versions of his remastered albums to complement my Cd collection so I'm pretty content with the current situation the Good times abound Right now!
     
  16. If I were in charge of anyone's website, I'd make sure that the reviews were all somewhat favorable before allowing them to appear. The review of the MAGIC MAN album is downright scathing, to say the least.
     
    Last edited: Jul 17, 2017
    Bobberman likes this.
  17. Rudy

    Rudy ᕦ(ò_óˇ)ᕤ Site Admin

    US
    It depends on the reviewer there. There are some who can say that they don't care for an album, but not be nasty or condescending about it. Others can't seem to handle it.

    I think the worst piece of rot I ever read was the late 70s or early 80s version of the Rolling Stone Record Guide; the authors ran roughshod all over rock music, pretty much insulting and denigrating bands they didn't like (and clearly having fun doing it), while elevating others to such heights that it was no surprised which artists they liked, and which they hated. It has since been totally rewritten, from what I understand.
     
  18. Point taken. But to share a less-than-stellar review of one of Herb's albums on his website just makes no sense to me whatsoever.
     
  19. Mike Blakesley

    Mike Blakesley Well-Known Member Moderator

    Agreed, it's better to just have no review at all for that particular album.

    I suppose whoever created the site read some of the reviews (which are mostly favorable), contacted allmusic.com for permission to repost them, and just didn't bother to read every single one of them. There are a lot of albums, after all!

    There were 3 versions of the RS Record Guide. They were written by the whole staff of RS reviewers, not just one writer; I'm not sure how they went about assigning the writing tasks, because some of those critics had a real hate on for some of the artists. First was the original red-cover edition, which attempted to cover just about anything ever released in the pop music realm, even including cheesy various artist compilations. It had separate sections for jazz, R&B and country, maybe more genres. Then there was the updated blue-cover edition, which got rid of the compilations, and wasn't so long winded on some artists (and left some out altogether, because by that time there was just too much stuff to cover it all.) Then there was the final multi-colored cover edition which I think was similar to the blue one, just updated. They were entertaining reads, as long as you kept a thick skin about your favorites. They were particularly mean to the Alan Parsons Project, one of my favorite artists.
     
    Last edited: Jul 18, 2017
  20. Rudy

    Rudy ᕦ(ò_óˇ)ᕤ Site Admin

    US
    The blue-cover book was the one I owned. Principally the reviews were by Dave Marsh (politeness prevents me from saying what's on my mind right now) and another contributor I can't recall the name of but yes, a lot of the staff covered some of the other artists throughout the book.
     

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