Wednesday, May 31, 1989

The Rainmakers released The Good News and the Bad News this month

The Good News and the Bad News

The Rainmakers

Released: May 1989

Peak: --

Sales (in millions): --

Genre: roots rock


Song Title (Writers) [time] (date of single release, chart peaks)

  1. Reckoning Day [3:10]
  2. Hoo Dee Hoo [4:28]
  3. Spend It on Love [2:54]
  4. Battle of the Roses [4:08]
  5. Wild Oats [3:17]
  6. We Walk the Levee [4:14]
  7. Thirty Days [4:08]
  8. Knock on Wood (Phillips) [3:18]
  9. Dry Dry Land [3:31]
  10. Shiny Shiny [2:52]
  11. Johnny Reb [2:32]
  12. Horn O Plenty [2:12]

Songs written by Bob Walkenhorst unless noted otherwise.

Total Running Time: 40:44

The Players:

  • Bob Walkenhorst (vocals, guitar, keyboards)
  • Rich Ruth (bass, vocals)
  • Steve Phillips (guitar, vocals on “Knock on Wood”)
  • Pat Tomek (drums)


3.824 out of 5.00 (average of 10 ratings)

Awards: (Click on award to learn more).

About the Album:

“The good news is that once again this Kansas City quartet marries hard-rocking blues to literate references, mentioning Abraham Lincoln, John F. Kennedy, and John Wilkes Booth in the opening track alone.” AMG The bad news is the “murky production by [Bob] Walkenhorst and engineer Jeff Glixman.” AMG

Also, the “enthusiastic whoop of songwriter and frontman Bob Walkenhorst will put off some listeners. Their loss.” AMG Not only does he bring energy and charisma, but he has a unique voice that casts him as the Midwestern version of Creedence Clearwater Revival’s John Fogerty.

With this being the Rainmakers’ third album, it was apparent they weren’t going to take off and get the audience they deserved. Their first album produced gems like “Let My People Go-Go,” “Downstream,” and “Big Fat Blonde.” The second album wasn’t quite as strong, but “Snake Dance,” “The Wages of Sin,” and “Small Circles” made for more deserved radio hits.

This time around, Walkenhorst and Co. serve up more songs which feel like they should have clicked with album-rock listeners, if not a wider pop audience. Spend It on Love is sentimental, Thirty Days is clever, and Wild Oats is a party rocker. All three demonstrate an ear for commercial music that has something to say.

The band took a four-year hiatus after this release, but released a live album in 1990 and a best-of collection in 1993. Reckoning Day, Hoo Dee Hoo, and Shiny Shiny were all featured on both albums.

Notes: The 2010 reissue of the CD added acoustic versions of “Frustration Train,” “Renaissance Man,” “Prove Me Wrong,” “Downstream,” Johnny Reb,” “Spend It on Love,” and “Shenandoah.”

Resources and Related Links:

First posted 2/27/2006; updated 6/2/2021.

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