This copy of Leon Russell’s debut solo release, 1970’s Leon Russell was a generous gift from one of my wife’s aunts, and for reasons unknown, happened to find its way to the top of the spin pile. Sadly, this is my only exposure to this acclaimed and lucrative songwriter, which upon now, my second spin, has perked my interest into the Grammy award winning artist’s six decade career. This artist’s collaborators include, but are certainly not limited to, The Rolling Stones, Jan and Dean, The Beach Boys, Steve Winwood, Joe Cocker, Eric Clapton, George Harrison, and Ringo Starr (the last five who appear on this release.) Heavily driven by Russell’s railroad-like piano, Leon Russell brings with it heartfelt highs (A Song for You), and foot-tappin’, booty-shakin’ lows (I Put a Spell on You). A considerably enjoyable listen, Leon Russell comes highly recommended.
Endless Summer is a compilation album of Beach Boys classics from 62-65, released in 1974. It sold over 3 million copies. I own two. One, a double LP and two, this 8-track cartridge. I don’t use the word cartridge enough. Moving on… the LP version comes with a poster. The 8-track however does not. Endless Summer would spend a crazy 155 weeks on the Billboard album chart, and would become the band’s 2nd chart-topping album. It has an anniversary coming up. June 24th, for whatever that’s worth. But since we here in Los Angeles are suffocating under a blanket of fog (ol’ June Gloom), let’s look to another source of light for our summer entertainment. Even if The Beach Boys aren’t your bag, Endless Summer is certainly a must-have, in any format.