Fire and Water (Free album)

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Fire and Water
Studio album by Free
Released 26 June 1970
Recorded January – June 1970 at Trident Studios and Island Studios, London
Genre Rock
Length 35:01
Label Island, A&M, Polydor
Producer Free, John Kelly
Co-producer: Roy Thomas Baker
Free chronology
Free
(1969)
Fire and Water
(1970)
Highway
(1970)

Fire and Water is the third studio album released by English rock group Free. The album became the band's breakthrough hit, reaching #2 in the UK charts and #17 in the US, making it the most successful Free album[citation needed]. The album contained the hit single "All Right Now" which they later played to a crowd of over 600,000 people at the 1970 Isle of Wight Festival, generating great popularity[citation needed]. To date, it is the only Free album to have seen a CD reissue in America.

Reception[edit]

Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 4.5/5 stars link

Track listing[edit]

All tracks written by Andy Fraser and Paul Rodgers unless otherwise stated.

Side one
  1. "Fire and Water" – 4:02 (UK album) 3:41 (US album)
  2. "Oh I Wept" (Rodgers, Kossoff) – 4:26
  3. "Remember" – 4:20 (A reworking of an unused song "Woman by the Sea" from the Tons of Sobs recording sessions in 1968)
  4. "Heavy Load" – 5:19
Side two
  1. "Mr. Big" (Fraser, Rodgers, Kirke, Kossoff) – 5:55 (Performed by Free on a televised session that can be seen on the Let It Rock – Vol. 2 DVD, released in the UK in 2003.)
  2. "Don't Say You Love Me" – 6:01
  3. "All Right Now" – 5:32 (The version on the album is longer than the single release: the second verse is repeated and the guitar solo is longer.)
Reissue Bonus Tracks
  1. "Oh I Wept" - Alternate Vocal
  2. "Fire And Water" - Stereo Mix
  3. "Fire And Water" - BBC Session
  4. "All Right Now" - BBC Session
  5. "All Right Now" - Single Version
  6. "All Right Now" - Early Version

Personnel[edit]

Reissues[edit]

In 2001 the album was reissued with extra tracks, consisting only of alternate versions of songs already on the album. They include an alternate vocal take of "Oh I Wept" and a remix of "Fire and Water" to correct many of the production deficiencies that the original contains[citation needed]. This version of the song does not fade out; instead Simon Kirke's final drum solo is performed to the end resulting in this version being twenty-one seconds longer than the album version. A BBC Session of this song is also included.

The extra tracks also include three different versions of "All Right Now": one is a BBC session; one is the edited version that was released as a single. It runs at 4:18, one minute and fourteen seconds less than the album version: the final verse is gone and the guitar solo is heavily cut down, a fact that Kossoff disliked[citation needed]. The final version of the song is an early take that was never used.

In 2008 the album was issued again as a 2CD Deluxe Edition with twenty-three extra tracks. Most of these bonus tracks had previously appeared on the Songs of Yesterday box set, but five previously unreleased alternate versions were also included.

References[edit]

  • Clayton, David and Smith, Todd K. Heavy Load: The Story of Free. Moonshine Publishing 2002
  • Strong, Martin C. The Great Rock Discography, 6th edition. Edinburgh: Canongate Books 1994, 2002. pp. 392–3.
  • Sutcliffe, Phil. Notes to Fire and Water by Free. Universal Island Records Ltd. 1970, 2001.

Cover versions[edit]

Wilson Pickett recorded a cover of "Fire and Water" in 1971 that reached #2 on the Billboard R&B charts.

Far Corporation covered "Fire and Water" on the first album Division One in 1985.

XYZ covered the title song on their second album "Hungry" from 1991.

Mr. Big, who got their name from the Free song, covered it on their 1993 album Bump Ahead.

Govt Mule covered Mr.Big on their Debut Album "Govt Mule" released in 1995.

The Answer recorded a cover of the song "Fire and Water" on their 2011 release "Revival".

External links[edit]