Modern Times (Jefferson Starship album)

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Modern Times
Studio album by Jefferson Starship
Released April 2, 1981
Recorded 1980-1981 at the Record Plant, Los Angeles and Sausalito
Genre Rock
Length 38:26
Label Grunt/RCA
Producer Ron Nevison
Jefferson Starship chronology
Freedom at Point Zero
(1979)
Modern Times
(1981)
Winds of Change
(1982)
Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 3/5 stars[1]

Modern Times is a 1981 album by Jefferson Starship. Grace Slick appeared on this album after a three-year absence. She returned near the end of the recording sessions, providing background vocals on some tracks as well as lead vocals on the single "Stranger" as a duet with lead singer Mickey Thomas. Although not appearing in the band picture on the gatefold cover, she is listed on the back cover of the LP with the credit "Introducing Grace Slick" and her picture is on the lyric sleeve with the note "Grace Slick courtesy of Grace Slick." She joined the band officially for the 1981 tour. MTV debuted in 1981 and this was the first Jefferson Starship album to have promotional music videos. It was also the first album to feature a charting single on the Mainstream Rock Tracks chart, which had premiered earlier in the year. The single "Find Your Way Back" reached #3 on the Mainstream Rock chart.

The song "Stairway to Cleveland" was inspired by a harsh review that Rolling Stone had given the album Freedom at Point Zero,[2] inspiring Paul to wrap lyrics around a phrase he had heard from Paul Warren: "Fuck you! We do what we want!"

Track listing[edit]

Side one
No. Title Lyrics Music Length
1. "Find Your Way Back"   Craig Chaquico Chaquico, Tom Borsdorf 4:15
2. "Stranger"   Jeannette Sears Pete Sears 4:44
3. "Wild Eyes (Angel)"   Paul Kantner Kantner 4:02
4. "Save Your Love"   J. Sears P. Sears 5:58
Side two
No. Title Lyrics Music Length
1. "Modern Times"   Kantner, Mickey Thomas Kantner 2:36
2. "Mary"   J. Sears, Chaquico Chaquico 3:37
3. "Free"   Thomas, Chaquico Chaquico 4:34
4. "Alien"   J. Sears P. Sears 4:42
5. "Stairway To Cleveland (We Do What We Want)"   Kantner, Paul Warren Kantner 3:58

Personnel[edit]

  • Craig Chaquico – lead guitar, rhythm guitar, synthesizer on "Find Your Way Back", "Mary", and "Free", steel drums on "Mary"
  • Aynsley Dunbar – drums, percussion, marimba on "Mary", synthesizer on "Free"
  • David Freiberg – vocals, bass on "Find Your Way Back", piano on "Stranger", synthesizer on "Stranger" and "Modern Times", organ on "Wild Eyes"
  • Paul Kantner – vocals, rhythm guitar, Oberheim 8-voice synthesizer on "Stairway to Cleveland"
  • Pete Sears – bass on all tracks except "Find Your Way Back", piano on "Find Your Way Back", "Wild Eyes", "Save Your Love", and "Alien" synthesizer on "Stranger", "Save Your Love", and "Alien", Moog on "Alien"
  • Mickey Thomas – lead vocals
  • Grace Slick – duet with Mickey Thomas on "Stranger", vocals on "Wild Eyes", "Alien", "Save Your Love" and "Stairway to Cleveland"

Production[edit]

  • Ron Nevison – producer for Gadget Productions, Inc., engineer
  • Michael Clink – engineer
  • Mike Reese – mastering
  • Pat Ieraci (Maurice) – production coordinator
  • Bill Murphy / Rod Dyer, Inc. – album design, art direction
  • Ryoko Ishioka – cover concept
  • Monica Clemans – cover model and eyes
  • Leon LeCash – photography
  • Bill Thompson – manager
  • Recorded and mixed at The Record Plant, Los Angeles - Sausalito
  • Mastered at The Mastering Lab, Hollywood

Singles / Music Videos[edit]

  • "Find Your Way Back" (1981) #29 US
  • "Stranger" (1981) #48 US
  • "Save Your Love" (1981) #104 US (single only / no music video)
  • "Stairway to Cleveland" (1981) (promo single only)

References[edit]

  1. ^ Allmusic review
  2. ^ Tamarakin, Jeff (2003). Got a Revolution: The Turbulent Flight of Jefferson Airplane. Simon and Schuster. ISBN 0-671-03403-0.