City of Angels (album)

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City of Angels
Studio album by The Miracles
Released September 17, 1975
Recorded 1975
Genre Soul, Disco
Length 51:47
Label Tamla
Producer Freddie Perren, Pete Moore
The Miracles chronology
Don't Cha Love It
(1975)
City of Angels
(1975)
The Power Of Music
(1976)

City of Angels is an album by the Motown soul group The Miracles, released on Motown Records' Tamla label in September 1975. The group's fourth album recorded after replacing lead singer Smokey Robinson with Billy Griffin in 1972, City of Angels is a concept album, depicting of a man from "Anytown, U.S.A." who follows his estranged girlfriend Charlotte to Los Angeles, where she has gone in hopes of becoming a star. All of the tracks on the album were written by Billy Griffin and Miracles bass singer Pete Moore. Freddie Perren and Moore served as the album's producers.

The album's first single, "Love Machine", peaked at number-one on the Billboard Hot 100 on March 6, 1976, and was a multi-million-selling Platinum single,[1] becoming the most successful single of The Miracles' career. Its success conicided with the rise of the disco craze of the late 1970s. Another song on City of Angels, "Ain't Nobody Straight in L.A.", caused controversy due to addressing the subject of homosexuality: "Ain't nobody straight in L.A./It seems that everybody there is gay"[2]

Life imitates art[edit]

The album's cover depicted The Miracles' "star" on the Hollywood Walk Of Fame, although the group did not have such a star back in 1976. However, life eventually did imitate art, as The Miracles were honored with just such a star in Hollywood on March 20, 2009.[3][4]

City of Angels reached 33 on the Billboard 200 albums chart in the United States, and peaked at number 29 on the Billboard Black Albums chart.[5] The Miracles' City Of Angels was also a Platinum album with over one million records sold.[1]

The song "Overture" from that album, co-written by Moore and Billy Griffin, was used as the official theme on Radio Monte Carlo in France from 1978 to 1979.[6] While not available on CD in the U.S. until more recently, City of Angels was available in its entirety on the Motown import release, The Miracles - The Essential Collection.[7]

In 2010, Motown released City Of Angels album on CD in the U.S. for the first time - on Hip-O Select's "Motown Select" website, with the extended 12 inch version of "Love Machine" as a bonus track. Along with a never-before released essay by writer David Nathan it included commentary by Pete Moore and Billy Griffin, the album's composers.[8]

Legacy[edit]

Rapper/producer Danny! reinterpreted the plot of "Poor Charlotte" for his 2006 album Charm.[9]

Reception[edit]

Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 4/5 stars[10]

Track listing[edit]

All songs written by William Griffin and Warren Moore.

  1. "Overture" - 3:10
  2. "City Of Angels" - 4:50
  3. "Free Press" - 3:15
  4. "Ain't Nobody Straight In L.A." - 3:48
  5. "Night Life" - 4:27
  6. "Love Machine" - 6:52
  7. "My Name is Michael" - 3:00
  8. "Poor Charlotte" - 6:05
  9. "Waldo Roderick DeHammersmith" - 3:06
  10. "Smog" - 5:16

Personnel[edit]

The Miracles[edit]

Other credits[edit]

Charts[edit]

Year Album Chart positions[11]
US US
R&B
1975 City Of Angels 33 (1976) 29

Singles[edit]

Year Single Chart positions[12]
US US
R&B
US
Dance
1976 "Love Machine" 1 5 1 (1975)

||1976 "Night Life" ||1976 "Waldo Roderick DeHammersmith"

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "WBMM Pete Moore Awards". Gbelv.com. Retrieved 2012-02-09. 
  2. ^ Erlewine, Stephen. "City of Angels- The Miracles". Billboard. Retrieved 15 June 2012. 
  3. ^ "LIFE". LIFE. Retrieved 2012-02-09. 
  4. ^ "The Miracles Hollywood Star". Varley. Retrieved June 15, 2012. 
  5. ^ Erlewine, Stephen. "City of Angels- The Miracles". All Music. Retrieved 15 June 2012. 
  6. ^ "WBMM Warren "Pete" Moore". Gbelv.com. Retrieved 2012-02-09. 
  7. ^ "The Miracles, The Essential Collection: The Miracles: Music". Amazon.com. Retrieved 2012-02-09. 
  8. ^ "HIPO". Hip-oselect.com. 2010-01-29. Retrieved 2012-02-09. 
  9. ^ Richardson, Mark. "Danny!: Biography". Artistdirect. Retrieved 30 June 2012. 
  10. ^ Erlewine, Stephen. "City of Angels- The Miracles". All Music. Retrieved 15 June 2012. 
  11. ^ "The Miracles US albums chart history". allmusic.com. Retrieved 2011-06-21. 
  12. ^ "The Miracles US singles chart history". allmusic.com. Retrieved 2011-06-21. 

External links[edit]