Energy Crisis '74
The record is a satire of the 1973 energy crisis in the United States, and was moderately successful; it peaked at #33 on the Billboard Hot 100 and became the first Top 40 hit for Goodman as a solo artist (Goodman's other records throughout the 1960s had mostly fallen just short of the top 40 and his 1950s works were all collaborations). The record is structured as a series of interviews with various public and political figures of the day with regard to the energy crisis. Questions were asked by an interviewer (Goodman), and their responses were lines and snippits of various hit records of the day. The record ends with Goodman "run[ning] out of energy" as his speech slows to a halt.
The B-Side "The Mistake" was a false start from the A-side of the record, about 36–38 seconds into the record. Only the first second or two has anything on it and the rest of the 2:00 is silent. Later pressings feature "Ruthie's Theme" as the B-side.
Portions of Goodman's dialogue would later be used on his son Jon Goodman's recording "Economy Crisis" in 2008.
The songs that were sampled are:
- Leave Me Alone (Ruby Red Dress) by Helen Reddy
- Smokin' In the Boys Room by Brownsville Station
- Living for the City by Stevie Wonder
- Helen Wheels by Paul McCartney and Wings
- Mind Games by John Lennon
- The Joker by Steve Miller Band
- Goodbye Yellow Brick Road by Elton John
- Hello It's Me by Todd Rundgren
- You're Sixteen by Ringo Starr
- The Most Beautiful Girl by Charlie Rich
- Top of the World by The Carpenters
An edited version of "Energy Crisis '74" from the 1997 "Greatest Fables" compilation features fake re-recorded snippets of all but two of the above tracks, the exceptions being "Smokin' In The Boys Room" and "Living For The City". Also, the segments for "Goodbye Yellow Brick Road" and "Top Of The World" were completely removed.