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Would Be Album from 1978/79

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Rick-An Ordinary Fool

Honolulu City Lights
I'm confident that Karen's album sold better than Richard's solo outings, as well as 'As Time Goes By'. But I'm glad we have all of them anyway. Each brings something special to the table. And let's not forget Karen's solo stuff is readily available on I-Tunes.
I agree...
We are all passionate about the music of Karen and Richard it is evident in our words and thoughts we share together. We may not always agree with each other but in the end isn't it about our love of their music that prevails? It's the music that rises to the top.

I will forever standby my decision that her solo album should have been released in 80, Karen was an established artist at that point she made a record the way she wanted to make it. All the money she put into the project...she had a right to know if it was to succeed or flop. She never knew how the fans were going to react and feel towards the album, I can't imagine how that must have felt knowing you did your best. I feel that it did more hurt to her emotionally in not being released.

The passion surrounding this will survive forever as will the love that certain fans have towards her solo album. We finally have it so it's all good for me.
 

aaflyer98

Well-Known Member
Like you, Chris, I think the album should have been released and let the chips fall where they may, Great Success or flop. Karen was devastated by the reaction of A&M and Richard after all her hard work. That's why so many of us are so angry that it didn't get released. Like it or not, it should have had its rightful day in the sun, in 1980.
 

A&M Retro

Well-Known Member
I couldn't agree more. Karen's solo album is far better than 'Made In America' and, especially, 'A Kind Of Hush'. 'Karen Carpenter' is a consistently good listen, and even the songs that are more of a stretch for Karen ('Still In Love With You') are interesting and unique. They hold the listener's interest so much more than 80% of 'A Kind Of Hush'. I'm glad we HAVE both albums, but Karen's solo wins hands down. Unfortunately, she got the shaft in every way on this project, which is something that will forever piss me off.
 

Chris Mills

Well-Known Member
That is such a comparison to make, and I totally agree. Wish Karen had put her foot down and demanded the solo album be released, she invested so much more than money in that project, she must have been so angry at that rejection.
 

Chris Mills

Well-Known Member
No, unfortunately Karen could not have demanded the release of her album, there were too many negative thinkers in that room during the solo album play back
 

Jeff

Well-Known Member
Then there's a real gray area as Richard said at Karen's "behest" the album wouldn't see release. As if beaten into submission. What a cryin' shame. Now I'm foraging resentments again or still...I'm really not certain. Here in 2013 it's all kind of a blur. Sure wish I had the magic wand for a little creative sorcery. Just enough so I could provide the great reveal. Well, maybe a little extra zap or 2 to heal a girls broken heart. It appears to be an ongoing pursuit understanding the woman and her voice and how it relates to me. Isn't fascinating that at 30 years past we still can't quite wrap our minds around the ultimate recording career and ensuing trauma? Someday I'm gonna poke around and see if Capitol Records has a Judy Garland site. There must be one somewhere. I'm curious if the twists and turns of Judy's career are still fodder for fans past and present. My guess is that here at the forum we're not so very different from Cobain's, Morrison's, Joplin's groupies.
 

Rick-An Ordinary Fool

Honolulu City Lights
It appears to be an ongoing pursuit understanding the woman and her voice and how it relates to me.
I love your posts....and this sentence just popped out when I read it....for me this is so very true!!!!!!

When I enjoy the music of Carpenters and Karen's solo tracks...I am always thinking in my head what she looked like, what she was doing at this time in her life and how she looked in the studio under that mic of which I am hearing the final recording. It's something I always do....I can hear Karen singing and I'm into the song deeply but I'm also thinking how she was recording it in the studio. It's an ongoing pursuit in how her voice relates to me.
 

Dave60640

Active Member
Um..I forgot what we were talking about but if we're still weighing in our opinions on the 78/79 album that never was , I think it would've been full of potential and (based on these tracks) quite possibly one of my favorites in the catalog.
 

mr J.

Active Member
I'm confident that Karen's album sold better than Richard's solo outings, as well as 'As Time Goes By'. But I'm glad we have all of them anyway. Each brings something special to the table. And let's not forget Karen's solo stuff is readily available on I-Tunes.
Karen's album did sell significantly better than Richard's "Time"-and that might be a consolation for all those that love Karen's album.But,it didn't outsell "As Time Goes By".And,by the way,Karen's album has been out-of-print for eight years now.
Then there's a real gray area as Richard said at Karen's "behest" the album wouldn't see release. As if beaten into submission. What a cryin' shame. Now I'm foraging resentments again or still...I'm really not certain. Here in 2013 it's all kind of a blur. Sure wish I had the magic wand for a little creative sorcery. Just enough so I could provide the great reveal. Well, maybe a little extra zap or 2 to heal a girls broken heart. It appears to be an ongoing pursuit understanding the woman and her voice and how it relates to me. Isn't fascinating that at 30 years past we still can't quite wrap our minds around the ultimate recording career and ensuing trauma? Someday I'm gonna poke around and see if Capitol Records has a Judy Garland site. There must be one somewhere. I'm curious if the twists and turns of Judy's career are still fodder for fans past and present. My guess is that here at the forum we're not so very different from Cobain's, Morrison's, Joplin's groupies.
There is no "grey area" or "blur" regarding Karen's album-the facts have been well-chronicled over the years.

A&M would not release the album as it was originally presented-and asked Karen to go back into the studio & cut new tracks.Karen thought this over-along with Richard-and decided not to spend any more time on the album.

If Karen did go back into the studio with Phil & formulate a different approach(and better material)-there's every possibility a good album could've been made & released in late 1980.

But,at the end of the day,all of this is water under the bridge.Karen's album has been out for seventeen years now-what was once a source of mystery & intrigue is now a faded memory.
Um..I forgot what we were talking about but if we're still weighing in our opinions on the 78/79 album that never was , I think it would've been full of potential and (based on these tracks) quite possibly one of my favorites in the catalog.
I agree.
 

Rick-An Ordinary Fool

Honolulu City Lights
But,at the end of the day,all of this is water under the bridge.Karen's album has been out for seventeen years now-what was once a source of mystery & intrigue is now a faded memory.
This statement might be true to the "general public."
To the fans, collectors and followers of their music this statement would not apply. Karen's album will always be shrouded in mystery & intrigue and the memory will never fade for those who love Karen's voice. For me, there are still grey area's but since we have the album it's all that matters. Richard could have left it on the shelf, ignored the requests (not so hard to do from his viewpoint)...yet something ignited the appeal. The intrigue of her solo album for me is still as strong today as when I first listened to this CD.
 

A&M Retro

Well-Known Member
Yes, it's been out of print for 8 years, as has the BULK of recorded music released on CD. Go try to find a myriad of albums released in the 1960's thru 2000's and you'll understand what I'm talking about. Karen's album is no different from the average album that sold moderately during this time period. If you walk into Best Buy, you'll see less and less of CDs each time you visit the store. That being said, Karen's solo IS available on I-Tunes. That's the only point I was trying to make.
 

Rumbahbah

Well-Known Member
There is no "grey area" or "blur" regarding Karen's album-the facts have been well-chronicled over the years.

A&M would not release the album as it was originally presented-and asked Karen to go back into the studio & cut new tracks.Karen thought this over-along with Richard-and decided not to spend any more time on the album.

If Karen did go back into the studio with Phil & formulate a different approach(and better material)-there's every possibility a good album could've been made & released in late 1980.
With respect, I have to disagree quite strongly with this. The full story behind Karen's solo album was almost the dictionary definition of a 'grey area' until Randy Schmidt's book filled in many of the blanks a few years ago (although I suspect there is still more to the story that we don't yet know!). In the early 1990s, Richard's account of the solo album story was pretty light on details but emphasised that it was shelved 'at Karen's behest'. While this may have been technically true, it made no reference to the reasons why she made (or was bounced into making) that decision, which is obviously the key to the whole story. Likewise, when interviewed for a BBC documentary about the Carpenters in 1994, Herb Alpert was similarly evasive on the topic. When asked why the album wasn't released, he claimed not to be able to recall the reason, but thought that it was because 'she wasn't real happy with it'. This clearly wasn't true. The narrative was then finally expanded upon in Ray Coleman's book, in which a hatchet job is done on the solo album and it is presented as an all-round artistic and commercial disaster that was killed off to the benefit of all.

In one of his talks at a signing for his book that was posted online, Randy Schmidt intimated that the decision to reject the solo album may have been agreed in advance of the West Coast playback by Richard, Herb and Jerry Moss so as not to threaten the continued existence of the Carpenters as an entity. I'm sure they did tell Karen that the project could go ahead if she and Phil went back and cut new tracks, but I think the Coleman book says that Karen actually agreed to this and asked them to find some suitable songs for her - but no explanation is given as to why this didn't happen.

This is speculation, but reading between the lines, the offer by A&M to continue the project doesn't sound at all sincere to me. By 1980 Richard was recovered from his addiction and wanted to record again. Herb and Jerry may have been happy to let Karen record solo while Richard was out of action, but with him back on the scene and as one of their biggest acts, it's plausible that they went with the safe option of not rocking the boat and killing off the side project. If Karen had gone back into the studio with Phil to essentially redo the solo album, Richard would have been left hanging for quite a while. Moreover, even the Coleman book makes clear that right from the outset, Richard was never really in favour of the solo album as an idea. I don't think it's too conspiracy theorist to suggest that it's possible that he and A&M came to an agreement to suppress the solo album so as to allow 'Carpenters' to continue.
 

A&M Retro

Well-Known Member
You've hit the nail on the head, Rumbahbah. My feelings exactly. The solo album was shelved out of deference to Richard. It's not a perfect album, but it's damned good, and they knew it. And it scared the crap out of them.
 

Mark-T

Well-Known Member
You've hit the nail on the head, Rumbahbah. My feelings exactly. The solo album was shelved out of deference to Richard. It's not a perfect album, but it's damned good, and they knew it. And it scared the crap out of them.
I think you are right- it must have scared them, especially Richard.
 
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