Archive for Linda Ronstadt

Great Rock Albums of 1984: Randy Newman- Trouble in Paradise

Posted in 1980s, films, Humour, Music, Rock, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on April 11, 2017 by 80smetalman

Forget Toy Story, forget his controversial 1977 hit, “Short People,” my favourite Randy Newman song has always been “I Love LA,” which is the opening track on his album “Trouble in Paradise.” Released in 1983, this album didn’t come to my attention til the following year, courtesy of MTV, which is why I’m posting it here.

Alert, “Trouble in Paradise” is not an album for hardcore metalheads. Randy has always been a piano player and a very good one to say the least. His chops can be heard all throughout the album. However, there is one guitar solo on it. It appears on the track, “The Blues,” and is played by Steve Lukather of Toto fame. An additional bonus to this song is that he duets with Paul Simon on it and both do a fine job.

Many of Randy Newman’s songs have an air of humour about them. With this album, “Same Girl” and “My Life is Good” are good, funny tracks and I have always been tickled by some of the lyrics in “Miami.” “Miami, Blue day, best dope in the world and it’s free.” However, he has a serious side. To my knowledge, the track “Christmas in Capetown” was the first song to talk about the Apartheid in South Africa. He deserves full kudos for that. “Real Emotional Girl” is more of a serious ballad as well.

Many guest artists appear on “Trouble in Paradise” including the two who appear on the track, “The Blues.” Of all the tracks, I do love the backing  vocals from Jennifer Warnes, Wendy Waldman and Linda Ronstadt on “I’m Different.” For me, while Randy is his normal self on the song, it’s the backing vocals from these three ladies who really make this song shine for me. Definitely the second best track on the album.

Track Listing:

  1. I Love LA
  2. Christmas in Capetown
  3. The Blues
  4. Same Girl
  5. Mikey’s
  6. My Life is Good
  7. Miami
  8. Real Emotional Girl
  9. Take Me Back
  10. There’s a Party at My House
  11. I’m Different
  12. Song for the Dead

Randy Newman

Randy Newman- vocals, piano

Steve Lukather- guitar

Jennifer Warnes- vocals

Don Henley- vocals

Larry Williams- horns

Steve Madalo- horns

Jon Smith- horns

Ralph Grierson- piano

Neil Larson- piano

David Paich- keyboards

Michael Boddicker- keyboards

Nathan East- bass

Jeff Porcaro- drums

Larry Castro- percussion

Paulinho Da Costa- percussion

Christine McVie- backing vocals

Wendy Waldman- backing vocals

Lindsey Buckingham- backing vocals

Bob Seger- backing vocals

Linda Rondstadt- backing vocals

Rickie Lee Jones- backing vocals

Paul Simon- vocals on “The Blues”

Waddy Watchell- guitar

I won’t say that “Trouble in Paradise” is a great album to mellow out to but it does have its moments there. While Randy Newman is not as zany as Weird Al Yankovic, there is a good deal of humour if you listen for it. It’s a good album just to sit back and enjoy.

Next post; The Cars- Heartbeat City

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Great Rock Albums of 1980: Linda Ronstadt- Mad Love

Posted in 1980s, Music, Rock, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , on May 12, 2013 by 80smetalman


Throughout the entire decade of the 1970s, Linda Ronstadt produced a string of hits, most of which I liked. Her countryfied sound had a rock feel to it made her well known to many listeners, me included. I really enjoyed her sound and as a teenage male, liked the look of her as well and unlike some of my peers, I didn’t give a shit to the fact that she never wrote any of her songs. I still listen to great singles such as “You’re No Good,” “When Will I Be Loved,” “It’s So Easy” and “Poor Poor Pitiful Me.” These were the songs that mad her a household name in the seventies.

I wasn’t surprised that when she brought out “Mad Love” in 1980, she, like Billy Joel with “Glass Houses,” decided to go for a more harder rock sound. The first song to reach my attention was “How Do I Make You” which let everyone know that Linda Ronstadt wanted to rock. She really propels herself into the vocals with this song backed up by a pretty decent guitar solo. I’m going to go out on a limb here and say that if you took out the piano and added a harder guitar, a thrash band could easily do a cover of this song and it would sound pretty good. If one song wasn’t enough to convince people of her willingness to rock, the track “I Can’t Let Go” goes further to back up the statement. I love the guitars mixed in with her repeating backing vocals. The rest of the album is also full of some hard rocking, at least for her, tunes and even the more progressive sounding “Girls Talk” and the ballad “Hurt So Bad” does nothing to lessen the album’s sound.

Track Listing:

1. Mad Love

2. Party Girls

3. How Do I Make You

4. I Can’t Let Go

5. Hurt So Bad

6. Look Out For My Love

7. Cost of Love

8. Justine

9. Girls Talk

10. Talking in the Dark

Linda Ronstadt

Linda Ronstadt

Linda Ronstadt- vocals

Doug Dugmore- electric guitars

Waddy Watchel- guitar, backing vocals

Mark Goldenberg- electric guitars, backing vocals

Bob Glaub- bass

Russell Kunkel- drums

Bill Payne- keyboards

Danny Kortchmar- electric guitars

Mike Auldridge- dobro

Peter Bernstein- accoustic guitars

Peter Asher, Steve Foreman- percussion

Michael Boddicker- synthesiser

Rosemary Butler, Kenny Evans, Nicolette Larson, Andrew Gold- backing vocals

 It has been said that in the early 80s, rock ruled the world. I don’t know if I agree with this but there was a move by some artists in 1980 to a more harder rock sound. I always believed that Linda Ronstadt always had the ability to do this and the album “Mad Love” is offered in evidence to the fact.

Next post: Grace Slick- Dreams

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