Archive for Breakfast in America

Great Rock Albums of 1983: Supertramp- Famous Last Words

Posted in 1980s, Music, Rock, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , on January 21, 2016 by 80smetalman


Released at the end of 1982, “Famous Last Words” by Supertramp came to my attention in the first few weeks of 1983. I happened to see the video for the biggest single off the album, “It’s Raining Again,” while at a disco in Tokyo. When I say saw the video, I mean literally. While the video was played on the club’s television screen, the music being played definitely wasn’t Supertramp. It would be a month later when I returned to Okinawa, I would finally get to hear the song matched up to the video.

As I reflect back to those early months of 1983 and some of the albums I have posted about so far, I am beginning to think that this year wasn’t a very good one for some of the established superstars of rock. It seemed that like David Bowie and Todd Rundgren, Supertramp also decided to go for a more commercial sound. In their case, “Famous Last Words” was an attempt to build on the success of their previous studio album, “Breakfast in America.” However, I don’t think this album measures up to their previous classic.


Let’s not be too negative about “Famous Last Words,” there are some bright spots on it. First, take the big single for instance. Sure, it reeks of commercialdom but there is enough of Supertramp’s presence on it to know that it is theirs. Still, there are better songs on it, like the very jazz sounding “My Kind of Lady.” The sax solo on that song does blow me away. “Crazy” and “Put On Your Brown Shoes” are also decent tunes. I do like the honky tonk piano in the latter and Ann and Nancy Wilson from Heart perform backing vocals on it but my personal favourite on this album has to be “Bonnie.” To me that song is Supertramp from their glory days back in the 1970s. I’m talking stuff like my favourite Supertramp album, “Crime of the Century.”


Track Listing:

  1. Crazy
  2. Put On Your Brown Shoes
  3. It’s Raining Again
  4. Bonnie
  5. Know Who You Are
  6. My Kind of Lady
  7. C’est Le Bon
  8. Waiting So Long
  9. Don’t Leave Me Now


Rick Davies- keyboards, lead and backing vocals, harmonica, melodica solo on “Its Raining Again”

John Helliwell- saxophone, keyboards

Roger Hodgeson- guitar, lead and backing vocals

Bob Seibenberg- drums

Dougie Thompson- bass

“Famous Last Words” may not be as good as some of Supertramp’s more classic albums but it is enjoyable nonetheless. Maybe like so many artists back then, they were trying too hard for commercial success. It could also be why Roger Hodgeson would go solo after this album.

Next post: Billy Idol- White Wedding

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Great Rock Albums of 1979: Supertramp- Breakfast in America

Posted in 1979, Music, Rock, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , on January 1, 2013 by 80smetalman

First of all, I would like to wish everybody a Happy 2013 and hope you will keep reading my posts and those of you whose posts I follow, I’ll keep reading yours. I never would have guessed that 80smetalman’s blog would have grown so much over 2012 and attracted so many followers. To that I can only humbly thank all of you for tuning in.


Supertramp’s “Crime of the Century” album was another of those classic albums that I missed way back when I was featuring the Great Rock Albums of the 70s, pre-1978. Therefore, I thought I would include it here because it is a very good progressive rock album. It features two of their most noted songs, “Bloody Well Right” and “Dreamer” although I also really like the theatrics behind the track, “If the Audience Were Listening.” It is a very good album indeed.


So without further ramblings, on with the first album of 2013, Supertramp’s brilliant 1979 album “Breakfast in America.” This album came out in the very tail end of that pivotal year in my life and I can say that it ushered out the 70s for me. The biggest song from the album, “Take the Long Way Home” spoke to me directly. I’m sounding a bit hippy here aren’t I? Even if it hadn’t I still would have thought it was an excellent song and still would have bought the 45, some of you might remember those. In fact, I think I still have it somewhere up in the attic.

The rest of the album is also very good and told me at the time that there was still room in 1979 for some good hands on progressive rock. Hits like “The Logical Song” and others make this album the classic that it is. Supertramp use their trademark musicianship and show that keyboard centred rock can work. Unfortunately and I’ll be ranting more about this when I eventually get to the mid 80s, many bands would completely take the use of synthesisers out of proportion. Still, that is why I enjoy the album so much because it doesn’t, it’s just a good listening album.

Track Listing:

1. Gone Hollywood

2. The Logical Song

3. Goodbye Stranger

4. Breakfast in America

5. Oh Darling

6. Take the Long Way Home

7. Lord Is It Mine

8. Just Another Wreck

9. Casual Conversations

10. Child of Visions



Rick Davies- keyboards, vocals, harmonica

John Helliwell- saxophone, vocals, woodwinds

Roger Hogeson- guitars, keyboards, vocals

Bob Siebenberg- drums

Dougie Thompson- bass

So for the new year, why not enjoy an album that for many like me, closed out a decade. Listening to “Breakfast in America” will make you feel good and perhaps get over the over doings of New Year’s Eve. Now that I have been looking at the famous album cover, I kind of fancy some pancakes.

 Next post: To buy Rock And Roll Children, go to

Also available on Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Froogle and on sale at Foyles Book Shop in London