Quad LP/Tape Poll Newman, Randy: Sail Away [QR]

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Rate "Sail Away"

  • 6

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • 5 Fairly mediocre everything

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • 4

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • 3

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • 2

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • 1

    Votes: 0 0.0%

  • Total voters
    10

EMB

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One of the rarer quad mixes, from what may be Randy's best album, and the first to attract serious media attention.

1. Sail Away
2. Lonely At The Top
3. He Gives Us All His Love
4. Last Night I Had The Strangest Dream
5. Simon Smith And The Amazing Dancing Bear
6. Old Man
7. Political Science
8. Burn On
9. Memo To My Son
10. Dayton, Ohio--1903
11. You Can Leave Your Hat On
12. God's Song (That's Why I Love Mankind)



ED :)
 

ArmyOfQuad

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I've found a bit of a quirk on this reel, and wanted to see if anyone notices this in all copies out there. It seems that at some point partway into "Old Man", the fronts are mono summed, and at some point in the beginning of "Political Science", before anything comes in in the rears, it goes back to stereo in the front. Doing a out of phase sum of the front channels confirms, the audio goes silent for the period of time where it is mono summed.

Anyone else that has a reel of this, please chime in if you find yours has the same issue, I'm curious if this is an error on some copies, or an error in the mix that is on all copies.
 

Bob Romano

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I enjoy this album and the title track is easily in my top 50 tracks of all time.
 

ArmyOfQuad

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Thanks for reporting on this. I guess some copies of this had a defect, ugh. Well, at least the defect isn't on all copies.
 

privateuniverse

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I was just pulled out my copy of this one which I hadn't listened to in ages. I didn't notice the problem mentioned above on my copy.

This is a fantastic mix and the songs are all amazing. This gets a perfect 10 from me.

So great that this was issued on open reel; wish more labels that did quad had released their titles this way. Much better separation than vinyl and much better fidelity than Q8.
 

quicksrt

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Nice sound and exceptional performances. A 10.

I think I like Good Old Boys even better than this album. We are lucky that they were both issued on reel.
 

quadtrade

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This is such a profound and profoundly simple album, it is pure genius and shows how rock and roll was an invitation to anyone who had IT. One did not need to really rock, but just be different would allow appreciation.
 

hafquark

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Sail Away and 12 Songs are probably Randy Newman's finest albums, and that's saying something considering his many great recordings. There are not enough superlatives to describe the joy of listening to Sail Away. I'd vote higher than 10 if possible.
 

EMB

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I enjoy this album and the title track is easily in my top 50 tracks of all time.
Can you expand upon that, my friend? This is an album of varying moods and attitudes, but the most perfect--and uncompromising--he ever made. The title track has always fascinated me, as Randy had always occasionally played what we now call 'the race card,' but I don't think anyone I've heard (for a white guy) was so subtle on one level, yet on the other, obviously cynical.

Just thought I'd ask.

ED :)
 

Bob Romano

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Can you expand upon that, my friend? This is an album of varying moods and attitudes, but the most perfect--and uncompromising--he ever made. The title track has always fascinated me, as Randy had always occasionally played what we now call 'the race card,' but I don't think anyone I've heard (for a white guy) was so subtle on one level, yet on the other, obviously cynical.

Just thought I'd ask.

ED :)
I will begin by saying that I am sorry I never paid more attention to words in a song. I get all wrapped up in the instrumentation and harmonies. In fact, if someone hadn't ever put in to perspective that "Wouldn't It Be Nice" was big with the guys who at war I probably would not have thought any more about it than what a great pop song it is with masterful arranging and production.

It's funny... I really only ever listen to a song or album as a whole. I can probably sing the lyrics to just about any song I have heard over the years if it's playing but not so much if it is not. So, when I listen to the tracks I love (like this one) I listen to things like the string arrangement, the chords, the feel of the vocal, the background harmonies, etc. 95% of the time, I couldn't tell you (nor would I care) about what a song is actually about. So what struck me about this song in particular was the whole feel of the song. I put it on and it makes me smile - whether it's supposed to do that or not I couldn't tell you. But it sounds pretty!

A perfect example is "Solar Prestige A Gammon" by Elton John from Caribou. The lyrics are complete gibberish but it sure sounds pretty to me with great harmonies and playing. So I can listen to it over and over.
 

EMB

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Actually, "Sail Away" musically is meant to sound beatific, pastoral in that GWTW fashion. But it's a sales pitch: "In America, you'll get food to eat..."...and he paints a rosy picture, and he isn't exactly lying: Jesus, watermelons, buckwheat cake, shoes to wear...and when they "Cross the mighty ocean into Charleston Bay," it's a scenario any innocent rube could buy into, except that, of course, it's not a cruise liner but a slave ship, and it will be a long, long time before true freedom would reach the ancestors of the victims.

The same orchestral approach would be used by Newman on the next album, with "Louisiana 1927": "What has happened down here is the winds have changed" may be his ultimate act of understatement: he's really telling us about a flood that's "trying to wash us away," and yet musically, there is no doom and danger: he might as well be composing the score for KING'S ROW, GWTW, or any film of the type.

My favorite from SAIL AWAY, however, is "Dayton Ohio 1903" if only for its patent fraudulence. It begins with "Sing a song of long ago" and the salesman is there again, only this time, pitching nostalgia. It's a moving song and arrangement, if you don't think about it too much. When you do, you realize that every word COULD apply to the present if we allowed ourselves the kinds of lives and friendships that should be universal; this time, Newman relies on the same sense of nostalgia that GWTW sold decades ago but is no longer applicable (indeed, modern and younger audiences have been heard to jeer and mock the film, a rude if understandable reaction to its absurd notion about plantations and slavery being something anyone would wish to remember with fondness. Well, yeah, if you were rich and white and southern, one must suppose).

Randy's always been good at playing on our inherent likes and our inherent prejudices; the later (and his only big hit) "Short People" was so obvious it was funny rather than offensive. Like Neil Young, though, he can be challenging at times, throwing sliders amidst curves and heaters.

Although you don't have to really listen close to enjoy his music, I think it helps. "Have You Seen My Baby" (from 12 SONGS) at first sounds like only a homage to Fats Domino; listen to the words, though, and it's more than just that, and it ain't very pretty.....

And I won't even go near "God's Song," heh....

ED :)
 
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