Friday, November 27, 1970

George Harrison released All Things Must Pass: November 27, 1970

First posted 11/27/2011; updated 12/29/2019.

All Things Must Pass

George Harrison


Buy Here:


Released: November 27, 1970


Charted: December 19, 1970


Peak: 17 US, 18 UK, 19 CN, 18 AU


Sales (in millions): 6.0 US, 0.1 UK, 10.0 world (includes US and UK)


Genre: rock


Tracks: (Click for codes to singles charts.)

  1. I’d Have You Anytime (Harrison, Bob Dylan) [2:56]
  2. My Sweet Lord [4:38] (11/28/70, 14 US, 14 CB, 13 HR, 10 AC, 16 UK, 14 CN, 18 AU
  3. Wah-Wah [5:35]
  4. Isn’t It a Pity (Version One) [7:10] (11/28/70, 46 CB, 15 CN)
  5. What Is Life [4:22] (2/20/71, 10 US, 7 CB, 10 HR, 31 AC, 3 CN)
  6. If Not for You (Dylan) [3:29]
  7. Behind That Locked Door [3:05]
  8. Let It Down [4:57]
  9. Run of the Mill [2:49]
  10. Beware of Darkness [3:48]
  11. Apple Scruffs [3:04]
  12. Ballad of Sir Frankie Crisp (Let It Roll) [3:48]
  13. Awaiting on You All [2:45]
  14. All Things Must Pass [3:44]
  15. I Dig Love [4:55]
  16. Art of Dying [3:37]
  17. Isn’t It a Pity (Version Two) [4:45]
  18. Hear Me Lord [5:46]
  19. Out of the Blue (Harrison, Al Aronowitz, Clapton, Gordon, Bobby Keys, Jim Price, Radle, Whitlock, Gary Wright) [11:14]
  20. It’s Johnny’s Birthday (Harrison, Bill Martin, Phil Coulter, Mal Evans, Eddie Klein) [0:49]
  21. Plug Me In (Harrison, Eric Clapton, Jim Gordon, Dave Mason, Carl Radle, Bobby Whitlock) [3:18]
  22. I Remember Jeep (Harrison, Ginger Baker, Billy Preston, Klauss Voormann) [8:07]
  23. Thanks for the Pepperoni [5:31]

All songs written by George Harrison unless noted otherwise.


Total Running Time: 105:59


The Players:

  • George Harrison (vocals, guitar, other instruments)
  • Eric Clapton, Pete Ham, Tom Evans, Joey Molland, Peter Frampton, Dave Mason (guitar)
  • Gary Wright, Billy Preston, Bobby Whitlock, Tony Ashton, Gary Brooker (piano, organ)
  • Jim Gordon, Ringo Starr, Alan White, Mike Gibbins, Mal Evans, Ginger Baker (drums, percussion)
  • Carl Radle, Klaus Voorman (bass)
  • Jim Price, Bobby Keys (horns/sax)
  • Pete Drake (pedal steel guitar)
  • John Barham (orchestral arrangements, choral arrangement, harmonium, vibraphone)
  • Eddie Klein (backing vocals)

Rating:

4.521 out of 5.0 (average of 16 ratings)


Quotable: “Without a doubt, Harrison’s…best.” – Richie Unterberger, All Music Guide


Awards:

About the Album:

With his first solo outing, George Harrison “changed the terms of what an album could be.” PF As the first triple album issued by a solo artist, WK All Things Must Pass “reinforced that the album could be an epic novel for a different sort of age.” PF The album shredded Harrison’s reputation as “the quiet Beatle,” proving that he had plenty to say. As he said on the Dick Cavett Show in 1971, “I had such a lot of songs mounting up that I really wanted to do, but I only got my quota of one or two tunes per album.” PF Pitchfork called it “the heaviest and most consequential Beatles solo album.” PF

Enhanced by Phil Spector’s lush orchestral production, and Harrison’s own superb slide guitar, nearly every song is excellent.” RU This is “a very moving work” RU that is, “without a doubt, Harrison’s…best.” RU Amazon’s Jerry McCulley described it as “Harrison’s unequaled masterpiece.” AZ Peter Doggett, managing editor of Record Collector said that at the start of 1971, Harrison was “arguably the most successful rock star on the planet.” WK His music of the time reflected the spiritual mysticism of Eastern philosophy “without sacrificing his gifts for melody and grand, sweeping arrangements.” RU

Most notable in balancing the spiritual and the commercial is the chart-topping My Sweet Lord. Years later the song would gain notoriety when Harrison was sued for “unconscious plagiarism” because of the song’s similarity to the Chiffons’ “He’s So Fine.” Harrison started writing the song in late 1969, inspired by the top-five gospel single “Oh Happy Day” by the Edwin Hawkins’ Singers. CR At the time he was touring with Delaney & Bonnie. Their backing groug included Eric Clapton, Carl Radle, Boby Whitlock, and Jim Gordon – players who went on to form Derek & the Dominos and play on All Things.

They were just part of the rich assembly of talent featured on the album. Ringo Starr, Billy Preston, Dave Mason, Peter Frampton, future Yes drummer Alan White, members of Badfinger, and even a young Phil Collins appear on the album. Harrison’s willingness to share the spotlight reflected how he had “been elbowed out of a room too many times before [and] it seemed, he was staunchly unwilling to do the same to others.” PF Peter Frampton said Harrison “was sort of ego-less,” explaining that “everyone was there because they were great players…no one was treated as a session musician.” CR

Harrison had faced enough rejection as a Beatle, being confined to one or two songs per album. Here, he finally gets to introduce some of those songs. Isn’t It a Pity dated back to the Beatles’ 1966 Revolver album. PF During the Beatles’ 1969 Get Back sessions that eventually become 1970’s final Beatles’ album, Let It Be, Harrison introduced early versions of the Let It Down, Window, Window, and the title track, WK which “now seems like a very prescient admission that the game was almost up.” CR

Some of the songs were also a result of Harrison’s friendship with Bob Dylan. He and Dylan co-wrote I’d Have You Anytime in 1968 when Harrison visited Dylan and the Band in Woodstock, New York. Harrison also tackles a Dylan cover, If Not for You, a result of Harrison’s participation in Dylan’s starting sessions for the 1970 album New Morning. WK There’s also Behind That Locked Door, which Harrison wrote about his friend’s shyness. CR

While there were “dark, tortured undertones” CR to some of the music, there were also “creations that brimmed with real joy: the euphoric What Is Life, I Dig Love, and Awaiting on You All.” CR The latter, with lines like “You don’t need no love-in” and “You don’t need no bed pan” were “a pretty obvious dig at John Lennon and Yoko Ono, and the two infamous weeks they spent in bed, so as to somehow further the cause of peace.” CR

Harrison enlisted famed producer Phil Spector, who worked on the Beatles’ Let It Be, to give the album “a heavy and reverb-oriented sound.” WK Harrison later regretted the decision, saying in the press kit for the album’s 30th anniversary reissue that it resulted in “too much echo” WK and apologizing for the “big production.” AZ As an example of Spector’s production, the “biting Wah-Wah,” PF which Harrison wrote during his temporary departure from the Beatles WK about his “vexed relationship with [Paul] McCartney,” CR is “layered with so many different guitar tracks it feels like three guitar rock songs fighting each other.” PF

Originally the album was packed as two LPs for the vinyl release and then a third album, called Apple Jam, collected informal instrumental jams which Harrison led with accompaniment by some of his famous musician friends. This latter material makes for the albums only “significant flaw: the jams… are entirely dispensable, and have probably only been played once or twice by most of the listeners that own this record.” RU They were “the deluxe cuts and alternate takes of their day.” PF


Notes:

The original vinyl release was a triple album. The CD reissue is comprised of two discs. A 30th anniversary reissue added bonus tracks.

Review Sources:

Saturday, November 21, 1970

Elton John charted with “Your Song”

Your Song

Elton John

Writer(s): Elton John, Bernie Taupin (see lyrics here)


Released: October 26, 1970


First Charted: November 21, 1970


Peak: 8 US, 8 CB, 6 HR, 9 AC, 1 CL, 7 UK, 3 CN, 11 AU (Click for codes to singles charts.)


Sales (in millions): 2.0 US, 0.6 UK, 2.72 world (includes US + UK)


Airplay/Streaming (in millions): 7.0 radio, 138.9 video, 422.89 streaming

Awards: (Click on award for more details).

About the Song:

Elton John established himself as one of the legendary singers in the history of rock ‘n’ roll, fed by a steady diet of lyrics supplied by Bernie Taupin in one of the great musical partnerships. The two met by chance when both responded to a talent ad placed by Liberty Records in New Musical Express. TB The label wasn’t overly impressed with either of them individually, but saw potential in pairing them. They hit it off immediately “and one of pop’s most enduring collaborations was born.” BBC

As is common with successful artists, the pair’s first hit was the one that become their most beloved. BBC Taupin was all of seventeen when he crafted the words over a breakfast of scrambled eggs at Elton’s mother’s house. TB Still, it took four years before the song became a hit. BBC In the meantime, Elton released three albums and five singles. TB “Your Song,” released in conjunction with John’s second U.S. visit, TB finally gave them their breakthrough and “put Elton John on the map.” TC

The song is built around “Elton’s uncomplicated music” BBC and “Taupin’s unpretentious lyrics,” BBC which, in this case, were “unusually direct.” TC The “hugely romantic, everyman love song” MC is “playfully self referential, deliberately awkward, mock inarticulate.” MC No one but an awkward teenager, who as Taupin said, “had never got laid in his life,” BBC could have captured the striking innocence behind the song. BBC While Taupin insisted that the song wasn’t directed at anyone particularly, Elton has maintained that one of Bernie’s old girlfriends was the inspiration. RS500

Producer Gus Dudgeon and string arranger Paul Buckmeister also deserve some credit for the song. They were able to give the song “a lush soundscape that was neither saccharine middle-of-the-road nor too avant-garde.” TC


Resources and Related Links:

Last updated 4/24/2021.

Nov. 21, 1970: Jesus Christ Superstar studio album released

First posted October 10, 2011. Last updated September 4, 2018.

Jesus Christ Superstar (studio/cast/soundtrack)

Andrew Lloyd Webber/Tim Rice (composers)

Studio Album Released: Nov. 21, 1970

First Stage Production: October 12, 1971

Cast Album Released: January 8, 1972

Soundtrack Released: June 30, 1973


Sales (in millions):
US: 0.5 sr, 6.0 c, 1.0 s
UK: --
IFPI: --
World (estimated): 7.5 sr+c+s


Peak:
US: 1 3-sr, 31 c, 21 s
UK: 23 s
Canada: 1 3-sr
Australia: 1 10-a

sr Studio Recording
c Cast Album
s Soundtrack
a 1992 Australian cast

Quotable: --


Genre: show tunes


Album Tracks:

  1. Overture
  2. Heaven on Their Minds
  3. What’s the Buzz/Strange Thing Mystifying
  4. Then We Are Decided s
  5. Everything’s Alright
  6. This Jesus Must Die
  7. Hosanna
  8. Simon Zealotes/Poor Jerusalem
  9. Pilate’s Dream
  10. The Temple
  11. Everything’s Alright sr
  12. I Don’t Know How to Love Him
  13. Damned for All Time/Blood Money
  14. The Last Supper
  15. Gethsemane (I Only Want to Say)
  16. The Arrest
  17. Peter’s Denial
  18. Pilate and Christ
  19. King Herod’s Song (Try It and See)
  20. Could We Start Again, Please? s
  21. Judas’ Death
  22. Trial Before Pilate (Including the 39 Lashes)
  23. Superstar
  24. Crucifixion
  25. John Nineteen: Forty-One

Songs followed by sr, c, or s indicate that the song was unique to that version of the album.


Singles/Hit Songs:

  • Superstar (MURRAY HEAD) (1/31/70) #14 US
  • Superstar (ASSEMBLED MULTITUDE) (2/6/71) #95 US
  • I Don’t Know How to Love Him (HELEN REDDY) (2/20/71) #13 US
  • I Don’t Know How to Love Him/Everything’s Alright (THE KIMBERLYS) (3/20/71) #99 US
  • I Don’t Know How to Love Him (YVONNE ELLIMAN) (4/24/71) #28 US
  • Everything’s Alright (YVONNE ELLIMAN) (9/25/71) #92 US

Click here for the chart codes for singles/hit songs.

Review:

Jesus Christ Superstar didn’t follow the conventional stage production/cast album/soundtrack format. It started out as a studio album which topped the U.S. charts before being staged in a theatrical context. Composer Andrew Lloyd Webber, 21, and lyricist Tim Rice, 25, conceived it as a stage work, but when they couldn’t get the funding, they opted “to use an album as the vehicle for introducing the piece.” BE

It “seemed to pick up where the Who’s Tommy…and Hair had left off, and audiences from across the age and cultural spectrum responded. Teenagers who didn’t know from Jesus, opera, or oratorios liked the beat, the hard rock sounds, and the singing and bought the album, as did parents who felt that the record offered a chance to understand some aspects of this youth culture around them, and especially its music – and so did some more forward-thinking clergy and theologians, who saw any opportunity to spread the word about Jesus where it wasn’t previously going as intrinsically good.” BE

The subject matter of Jesus Christ viewed from the point of Judas was “as daring as you could get” WR and “perhaps downright sacrilegious.” BE “It succeeds in all ways.” WR The story focuses on Judas and his “political and interpersonal struggles” WK with Jesus. Judas “is depicted as a conflicted, tragic figure” WK alarmed by Jesus’ lack of planning and “relatively recent claims of his divinity.” WK

“Just as remarkable as its subject matter was the fact that its musical language was full-blown rock music.” BE Hair was “really a pop/show-music pastiche, not rock” WR which distinguished Superstar as a “fairly radical rock/theater hybrid” BE in being the first to “successfully put rock music in a theatrical context.” WR It is also technically an operetta since it is completely sung through without spoken dialogue. WR

“The part of Jesus was sung by Ian Gillan, lead singer of Deep Purple, and that of Judas by Murray Head…The title song, Superstar, sung by Judas, and I Don't Know How to Love Him, sung by Mary Magdalene (Yvonne Elliman) about her relationship with Jesus, were both big hits.” WK

The success of the studio album opened the door for a stage production. It debuted on Broadway at the Mark Hellinger Theatre on October 12, 1971. It was met with mixed reviews – even Webber himself criticized it – and closed after 18 months. WK It opened in London in 1972 and ran for eight years, “becoming England's longest-running musical at the time.” WK

In 1973, it was made into a film “directed by Norman Jewison, was shot in Israel and other Middle Eastern locations. Ted Neeley and Carl Anderson were both nominated for 1974 Golden Globe Awards for their portrayals of Jesus and Judas…Though it attracted criticism from some religious groups, the film was generally well received.” WK


Review Sources:

Awards:


Related DMDB Link(s):


Monday, November 9, 1970

Derek and the Dominos released Layla and Other Assorted Love Songs

Layla and Other Assorted Love Songs

Derek and the Dominos


Released: November 9, 1970


Peak: 16 US, 68 UK, 33 AU


Sales (in millions): 0.5 US, 0.4 UK


Genre: classic rock


Tracks:

Song Title (Writers) [time] (date of single release, chart peaks) Click for codes to singles charts.

  1. I Looked Away [3:03]
  2. Bell Bottom Blues (Clapton) [5:01] (2/13/71, 78 US, 95 CB, 91 HR, 5 CL, 100 AU)
  3. Keep on Growing (Clapton/ Whitlock) [6:20]
  4. Nobody Knows You When You’re Down and Out (Cox) [4:56]
  5. I Am Yours (Clapton/ Nizami) [3:34]
  6. Anyday [Clapton/ Whitlock]
  7. Key to the Highway (Broonzy/Segar) [9:37]
  8. Tell the Truth [6:37] (8/70, --)
  9. Why Does Love Got to Be So Sad? [4:41] (22 CL)
  10. Have You Ever Loved a Woman? (Myles) [6:51]
  11. Little Wing (Hendrix) [5:32] (13 CL)
  12. It’s Too Late (Willis) [3:48]
  13. Layla (Clapton/ Gordon) [7:02] (3/20/71, 10 US, 14 CB, 12 HR, 8 AC, 1 CL, 9 AR, 4 UK, 9 CN, 100 AU)
  14. Thorn Tree in the Garden (Whitlock) [2:49]

Songs written by Clapton/Whitlock unless noted otherwise.


Total Running Time: 76:44


The Players:

  • Eric Clapton (vocals, guitar)
  • Duane Allman (guitar)
  • Jim Gordon (drums, percussion, piano on “Layla”)
  • Carl Radle (bass, percussion)
  • Bobby Whitlock (keyboards, vocals, acoustic guitar on “Thorn Tree in the Garden”)
  • Albhy Galuten (piano on “Nobody Knows You When You’re Down and Out”)

Rating:

4.673 out of 5.00 (average of 27 ratings)


Awards: (Click on award to learn more).

About the Album:

By 1970, Eric Clapton had already become a superstar thanks “some of the most stunning, groundbreaking blues-based guitar work of the rock era” PK in stints with John Mayall’s Bluesbreakers, The Yardbirds, Cream, and Blind Faith. Between that and a solo album, “Clapton’s deification had become such a burden to him…that he felt forced to seek anonymity.” PR Fresh off a tour with Delaney & Bonnie, “a roughshod hippie honky-tonk band,” VH1 he headed back into the studio with their keyboardist Bobby Whitlock, drummer Jim Gordon, and bassist Carl Radle. When Duane Allman signed on as well, the resulting Derek and the Dominos essentially amounted to a supergroup.

Allman’s “spectacular slide guitar pushed Clapton to new heights” AMG and the pair’s “wondrous guitar interplay…backed by a tight (but not showy) backing band” IGN gave Clapton “his greatest album” AMG and made for “one of the all-time classic dual-guitar albums.” VH1 Working with Delaney & Bonnie helped Clapton “reconcile his spiritual connection with the American South that had given birth to Clapton’s beloved blues.” VH1 The Layla & Other Assorted Love Songs album was their only studio recording, but it proved to be “one of the few blues-based classic rock albums which avoids dull predictability or Led Zep-ish testosterone riffs.” PK

Clapton was going through hell during recording, having fallen in love with Patti Boyd, the wife of his best friend, George Harrison. As a result, “pain drips from the grooves of this seminal record that has something for everyone – hard-driving rockers, stormy blues, wailing solos.” ZS Of course, the standout is the title track with its “stunning opening riff,” ZS but the album also “yielded such memorable classics as…Bell Bottom Blues and the band’s cover of the Jami Hendrix staple Little Wing.” IGN

However, a big part of what makes this “such a powerful record is that Clapton, ignoring the traditions that occasionally painted him into a corner, simply tears through these songs with burning, intense emotion. He makes standards like Have You Ever Loved a Woman and Nobody Knows You (When You're Down and Out) into his own, while his collaborations with Bobby Whitlock – including Any Day and Why Does Love Got to Be So Sad? – teem with passion.” AMG


Notes: A 1990 20th anniversary reissue saw a box set comprised of a remastering of the original album along with a disc of alternate masters and a third disc of studio jams.

Resources and Related Links:

  • DMDB Encyclopedia entry for Derek & the Dominos
  • DMDB Encyclopedia entry for Eric Clapton
  • AMG All Music Guide review by Stephen Thomas Erlewine
  • IGN IGN.com Top 25 Classic Rock Albums by Spence D. (3/30/2007)
  • PK Pop Kulcher 50 Greatest Rock & Roll Albums of All Time
  • PR Paul Roland (2001). CD Guide to Pop & Rock. B.T. Batsford LTD: London. Page 76.
  • VH1 VH1 (2003). 100 Greatest Albums. Edited by Jacob Hoye. Pocket Books: New York, NY. Page 196.
  • ZS Zagat Survey (2003). Music Guide: 1,000 Top Albums of All Time. Coordinator: Pat Blashill. Music Editor: Holly George-Warren. Editors: Betsy Andrews and Randi Gollin. Zagat Survey, LLC: New York, NY. Page 86.
  • WK Wikipedia


Other Related DMDB Pages:


First posted 11/21/2012; last updated 10/24/2021.