Longhorns & Londonbridges

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Longhorns & Londonbridges
Studio album by B.J. Thomas
Released 1974
Recorded 1974
Genre Pop Rock, Country Rock, Rhythm and Blues
Label Paramount
Producer Al Gorgoni, Steve Tyrell
B.J. Thomas chronology
Songs
1973
Longhorns & Londonbridges
1974
Reunion
1975

Longhorns & Londonbridges is a 1974 album by B.J. Thomas, released on Paramount Records, during the time when rights to the Paramount Records name were owned by Paramount Pictures. It is commonly misidentified as Longhorn & London Bridges.[1]

History[edit]

Longhorns and Londonbridges was the second and final album that Thomas recorded for Paramount Records, following the end of his six-year relationship with Scepter Records in 1972. The record was released in the same year that Paramount Pictures sold its rights in the Paramount Records label to ABC Records,[2] which in turn was sold to MCA Records in 1979. At this point, ABC Records was dissolved as an independent record label, with only the best-selling ABC recordings being reissued on MCA Records (in a twist of irony, MCA, through subsidiaries Universal Studios and EMKA, Ltd., had already owned the rights to most sound feature films released by Paramount Pictures prior to 1950).[3] The distribution and sales of many records released during this period of significant label transitions (1974-1979) were negatively affected. Thomas' album releases during this period were all on the Paramount, ABC and MCA labels,[4] and so were similarly affected. While Thomas was to continue with degrees of success in the release of singles,[5] no singles were released from Longhorns & Londonbridges and its chart success was marginal.[6] It was not reissued by MCA Records and has not been reissued on CD.[7]

The record is notable as containing some of the last recordings of Professor Alex Bradford, a well-known gospel performer. The record is also notable for the extensive songwriting and performance contributions of Randall Bramblett, as well as for containing one of the five versions of Allen Toussaint's "Play Something Sweet (Brickyard Blues)" released by various artists in 1974. The album also contains one of the earliest cover versions of a Dennis Locorriere song,[8] as well as one of the earliest and comparatively rare songwriting collaborations between Gerry Goffin and Mark James. The album is also notable for the participation of an extensive number of well-known musicians, such as Randy Brecker, Michael Brecker, Don Grolnick, Lou Marini, Hugh McCracken and Elliott Randall, among others.[9]

Track listing[edit]

  1. "Play Something Sweet (Brickyard Blues)" (Allen Toussaint)
  2. "I'm Callin'" (Randall Bramblett)
  3. "Too Many Irons" (Bramblett)
  4. "Sacred Harmony" (Bramblett)
  5. "40 Days and 40 Nights" (Bramblett, Davis Causey, Bob Jones)
  6. "Talkin' Confidentially" (Gerry Goffin, Mark James)
  7. "City Sunday Morning Day" (Richard Supa)
  8. "Conversation" (Buddy Buie, J.R. Cobb)
  9. "I Won't Be Following You" (Dennis Locorriere)
  10. "Superman" (Bramblett)

Personnel[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ See, for example, Longhorn & London Bridges entry at www.allmusic.com.
  2. ^ Mike Callahan and David Edwards, Paramount Album Discography; www.bsnpubs.com.
  3. ^ David Edwards, Patrice Eyries and Mike Callahan, The ABC-Paramount Records Story; www.bsnpubs.com.
  4. ^ B.J. Thomas Discography; www.bjthomasfanclub.com.
  5. ^ For example, in 1975 Thomas had a Number 1 hit with "(Hey Won't You Play) Another Somebody Done Somebody Wrong Song". In 1977, he had a Number 2 hit with his version of the Beach Boys' "Don't Worry Baby", with lyrics altered to eliminate car references and to emphasize the romantic nature of the song.
  6. ^ See Lack of chart information for Longhorns & Londonbridges; www.allmusic.com.
  7. ^ Release history of Longhorns & Londonbridges; www.allmusic.com.
  8. ^ Locorriere, at the time the principal lead singer of Dr. Hook, later developed a career as a solo artist and songwriter. See Partial list of Dennis Locorriere composer credits; www.allmusic.com.
  9. ^ Bramblett used many of the same personnel, plus producer Steve Tyrell, on Bramblett's 1975 album, That Other Mile (Polydor), described by critic Joe Viglione as "Another excellent album (that) didn't find an audience...the mystery here is why this artist doesn't have a deeper catalog? That Other Mile is pleasant and cries out for repeated spins." See Joe Viglione, Review of That Other Mile; www.allmusic.com. Critic Fred DeVan, writing in Audio Magazine, notes the similarity in quality to Longhorns & Londonbridges: "The music and the performance are stark perfection, full of little details and smart production. Many current pop-rock themes are touched with great precision and warmth. The recorded sound is just great, and there are lots of interesting elements vying for attention on this release. ...Producer Steve Tyrell, and most of the rest of the crew, including Randall, did the same number on B.J. Thomas' Longhorns & Londonbridges." Fred DeVan, Review of That Other Mile, Audio Magazine, January, 1976, as reprinted at www.randallbramblett.com.