Jesus Christ Superstar (album)

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Jesus Christ Superstar

Original UK cover
Studio album by Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice
Released 1970 September
Genre Passion music, Progressive Rock
Length 86:56
Label Decca/MCA/Decca Broadway
Producer Tim Rice, Andrew Lloyd Webber
Alternative cover
US Edition Cover, May 1971
Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 4.5/5 stars[1]

Jesus Christ Superstar is a 1970 rock opera by Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice. The album musical is a musical dramatisation of the last week of the life of Jesus Christ, beginning with his entry into Jerusalem and ending with the Crucifixion. It was originally banned by the BBC on grounds of being "sacrilegious."[2] [3]

The album's story is based in large part on the Synoptic Gospels and Fulton J. Sheen's Life of Christ, which compares and calibrates all four Gospels. However, greater emphasis is placed on the interpersonal relationships of the major characters, in particular, Jesus, Judas and Mary Magdalene, relationships that are not described in depth in the Gospels.

The album topped the U.S. Billboard Pop Albums in 1971[4] and served as a launching pad for numerous stage productions on Broadway and in the West End. The original 1970 boxed-set issue of this 2-record set was packaged in the U.S. with a special thin brown cardboard outer box which contained the 2 vinyl records and a 28-page libretto. The album was listed as the top-selling LP on the U.S. Billboard Pop chart of 1971.[5] It is also the sixth most successful album of all time in Norway, peaking at No. 3 and staying on the charts for 87 weeks.[6]

Track listing[edit]

All compositions written by Tim Rice (lyrics and book) and Andrew Lloyd Webber (music). Herod's Song (Try It and See) is reworked from an older song, Try It and See, by the same authors.

Side one
No. Title Length
1. "Overture"   2:07
2. "Heaven on Their Minds"   4:23
3. "What's the Buzz/Strange Thing Mystifying"   4:13
4. "Everything's Alright"   4:36
5. "This Jesus Must Die"   5:11
Side two
No. Title Length
1. "Hosanna"   1:30
2. "Simon Zealotes/Poor Jerusalem"   4:49
3. "Pilate's Dream"   1:28
4. "The Temple"   4:43
5. "Everything's Alright (reprise)"   0:34
6. "I Don't Know How to Love Him"   3:41
7. "Damned for All Time/Blood Money"   4:36
Side three
No. Title Length
1. "The Last Supper"   7:10
2. "Gethsemane (I Only Want to Say)"   5:33
3. "The Arrest"   3:24
4. "Peter's Denial"   1:27
5. "Pilate and Christ/Hosanna (reprise)"   2:46
6. "Herod's Song (Try It and See)"   3:02
Side four
No. Title Length
1. "Judas' Death"   4:17
2. "Trial Before Pilate (Including the 39 Lashes)"   5:13
3. "Superstar"   4:16
4. "The Crucifixion"   4:04
5. "John Nineteen: Forty-One[7]"   2:10

Credits[edit]

Main Players[edit]

Supporting Players[edit]

  • Annette Brox – Maid by the Fire
  • Paul Raven – Priest
  • Pat Arnold – Background vocals
  • Tony Ashton – Background vocals
  • Tim Rice – Background vocals
  • Peter Barnfeather – Background vocals
  • Madeline Bell – Background vocals
  • Brian Bennett – Background vocals
  • Lesley Duncan – Background vocals
  • Kay Garner – Background vocals
  • Barbara Kay – Background vocals
  • Neil Lancaster – Background vocals
  • Alan M. O'Duffy – Background vocals
  • Terry Saunders – Background vocals
  • Choir conducted by Geoffrey Mitchell
  • Children's choir conducted by Alan Doggett on "Overture"
  • The Trinidad Singers, under the leadership of Horace James, on "Superstar"

Musicians[edit]

Other musicians[edit]

  • Harold Beckett – trumpet
  • Anthony Brooke – bassoon
  • James Browne – horns
  • Jim Buck, Sr. – horns
  • Jim Buck, Jr. – horns
  • John Burdon – horns
  • Joseph Castaldini – bassoon
  • Norman Cave – piano
  • Jeff Clyne – bass guitar
  • Ciclone – Saxophone
  • Les Condon – trumpet
  • Keith Christie – trombone
  • Alan Doggett – principal Conductor, Moog synthesizer
  • Ian Hamer – trumpet
  • Ian Herbert – clarinet
  • Clive Hicks – guitar
  • Karl Jenkins – piano
  • Frank Jones – trombone
  • Bill LeSage – drums
  • John Marshall – drums
  • Andrew McGavin – horns
  • Anthony Moore – trombone
  • Douglas Moore – horns
  • Peter Morgan – bass guitar
  • Chris Spedding – guitar
  • Louis Stewart – guitar
  • Chris Taylor – flute
  • Steve Vaughan – guitar
  • Mike Vickers – Moog synthesizer
  • Brian Warren – flute
  • Mick Weaver – piano, organ
  • Andrew Lloyd Webber – piano, organ, Moog synthesizer
  • Alan Weighall – bass guitar
  • Kenny Wheeler – trumpet
  • Strings of the City of London Ensemble

Charts[edit]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Jesus Christ Superstar > Album Overview at AllMusic. Retrieved 28 September 2006.
  2. ^ "... the BBC banned it, they banned this record, because they thought it was sacrilegious." – Ted Neeley, in conversation with Norman Jewison [1]
  3. ^ Autobiography of Norman Jewison
  4. ^ a b "Allmusic: Jesus Christ Superstar : Charts & Awards : Billboard Albums". allmusic.com. Retrieved 1 May 2013. 
  5. ^ a b 1971 Year-end Albums – The Billboard Pop Albums. Retrieved 3 October 2011. 
  6. ^ "BEST OF ALL TIME – ALBUMS". VG-lista. Hung Medien. Retrieved 22 June 2012. 
  7. ^ Now in the place where He was crucified there was a garden. In the garden was a new tomb in which no man had ever yet been laid.
  8. ^ a b Kent, David (1993). Australian Chart Book 1970–1992. St Ives, NSW: Australian Chart Book. ISBN 0-646-11917-6. 
  9. ^ "Musical / Andrew Lloyd Webber – Jesus Christ Superstar: A Rock Opera - austriancharts.at". Retrieved 3 May 2013. 
  10. ^ "Top Albums/CDs - Volume 15, No. 3". RPM. 6 March 1971. Retrieved 5 May 2013. 
  11. ^ "dutchcharts.nl Musical / Andrew Lloyd Webber – Jesus Christ Superstar: A Rock Opera" (ASP). Hung Medien (in Dutch). MegaCharts. Retrieved 1 May 2012. 
  12. ^ a b "Hit Parade Italia – Gli album più venduti del 1971" (in Italian). hitparadeitalia.it. Retrieved 1 May 2012. 
  13. ^ "norwegiancharts.com Musical / Andrew Lloyd Webber – Jesus Christ Superstar: A Rock Opera" (ASP). Retrieved 1 May 2012. 
  14. ^ "Album Search Official Charts". UK Albums Chart. Retrieved 1 May 2013. 
  15. ^ "Album Search: Musical / Andrew Lloyd Webber – Jesus Christ Superstar: A Rock Opera" (ASP) (in German). Media Control. Retrieved 1 May 2013. 
  16. ^ "American album certifications – Soundtrack – Jesus Christ Superstar _Original Cast_". Recording Industry Association of America.  If necessary, click Advanced, then click Format, then select Album, then click SEARCH


External links[edit]

Preceded by
All Things Must Pass by George Harrison
Billboard 200 number-one album
20 – 26 February 1971
Succeeded by
Pearl by Janis Joplin
Preceded by
Pearl by Janis Joplin
Billboard 200 number-one album
1 – 14 May 1971
Succeeded by
4 Way Street by Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young