Flying in a Blue Dream

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Flying in a Blue Dream
Joe Satriani Flying in a Blue Dream.jpg
Studio album by
ReleasedOctober 30, 1989 (1989-10-30)[1]
RecordedFantasy Studios in Berkeley, California; Hyde Street Studios, Different Fur Studios, Coast Recorders, Alpha & Omega Recording in San Francisco
GenreInstrumental rock, hard rock
ProducerJoe Satriani, John Cuniberti
Joe Satriani chronology
Dreaming #11
Flying in a Blue Dream
The Extremist
Singles from Flying in a Blue Dream
  1. "I Believe"
    Released: 1989
  2. "Big Bad Moon" / "Day at the Beach (New Rays from an Ancient Sun)"
    Released: 1989
  3. "Flying in a Blue Dream" / "The Phone Call"
    Released: 1989

Flying in a Blue Dream is the third studio album by guitarist Joe Satriani, released on October 30, 1989 through Relativity Records.[1] It is one of Satriani's most popular albums and his second highest-charting release to date, reaching No. 23 on the U.S. Billboard 200[3] and remaining on that chart for 39 weeks,[4] as well as reaching the top 40 in three other countries.[5]

Four singles reached Billboard's Mainstream Rock chart: "I Believe" and "Back to Shalla-Bal" both at No. 17, "Big Bad Moon" at No. 31, and "One Big Rush" at No. 36.[3] Flying in a Blue Dream was certified Gold on January 25, 1990[1] and received a nomination for Best Rock Instrumental Performance at the 1991 Grammy Awards;[6] this being Satriani's third such nomination.


In a 2014 interview with MusicRadar, Satriani described the writing and recording process for Flying in a Blue Dream as "A very stressful time" and that "It was just so difficult and insane, but there was also this enormous amount of creativity. I was so excited that I had fans! [Laughs]."[7] Comprising a varied and eclectic range of styles, the album contains more tracks (18) than any of his other albums; Time Machine (1993) has 28 tracks as a double album.

The title track has endured as one of Satriani's best-known songs and is a mainstay at his concerts, as well as "The Mystical Potato Head Groove Thing".[8] "Can't Slow Down", "Strange", "I Believe", "Big Bad Moon", "The Phone Call" and "Ride" feature him singing for the first time; the most on any of his albums to date. It also marks the first time he plays the Deering six-string banjo-style guitar—"The Feeling" is performed entirely using that instrument—and harmonica, the latter of which features prominently on "Headless", "Big Bad Moon" and "Ride".

"Headless" is a remake of "The Headless Horseman" from Not of This Earth (1986), but with added distorted vocals and harmonica along with a 'squawky' guitar tone making chicken-like sounds. "Day at the Beach (New Rays from an Ancient Sun)" and "The Forgotten (Part One)" are performed using a two-handed tapping technique.

"The Bells of Lal (Part One)" was featured in the 1996 film Sling Blade, during the scene where Karl Childers (Billy Bob Thornton) is sharpening a lawnmower blade to kill the menacing Doyle Hargraves (Dwight Yoakam).

Music videos for the ballad "I Believe" and hard rocker[9] "Big Bad Moon" were included on The Satch Tapes, which was first released on VHS cassette in 1993 and reissued on DVD on November 18, 2003;[10] it also includes excerpts from an MTV performance of "The Feeling". "One Big Rush" was featured in the 1989 film Say Anything...

"Back to Shalla-Bal" refers to Shalla-Bal from the Marvel Comics universe; it is the second reference Satriani has made to the Silver Surfer character, who was first featured on the cover art of Surfing with the Alien (1987). The track was later used as the menu music to the 1996 Sony PlayStation video game Formula 1, which also featured "Summer Song" from The Extremist (1992).


Flying in a Blue Dream has been reissued several times. The first was on May 27, 1997 through Epic Records[citation needed] and again on June 16, 2008 as part of the Original Album Classics box set.[11] The most recent reissue was part of The Complete Studio Recordings, released on April 22, 2014 through Legacy Recordings; this is a box set compilation containing remastered editions of every Satriani studio album from 1986 to 2013.[7]

Critical reception[edit]

Professional ratings
Review scores
AllMusic4.5/5 stars[9]

Phil Carter at AllMusic gave Flying in a Blue Dream 4.5 stars out of five, calling it "An hour-long disc filled with musical explorations and compositions that defy belief" and "unquestionably Joe Satriani at his absolute best." Satriani's first attempts at singing were highlighted and described as "[not] extraordinary, but it fits extremely well with the music he creates". Carter concluded by saying that the album is "Soaring, powerful, and triumphant" and "deserves a place in everyone's collection."[9]

Track listing[edit]

All tracks are written by Joe Satriani.

1."Flying in a Blue Dream"5:23
2."The Mystical Potato Head Groove Thing"5:09
3."Can't Slow Down"4:49
6."I Believe"5:54
7."One Big Rush"3:25
8."Big Bad Moon"5:15
9."The Feeling"0:50
10."The Phone Call"3:01
11."Day at the Beach (New Rays from an Ancient Sun)"2:03
12."Back to Shalla-Bal"3:14
14."The Forgotten (Part One)"1:12
15."The Forgotten (Part Two)"5:08
16."The Bells of Lal (Part One)"1:19
17."The Bells of Lal (Part Two)"4:07
18."Into the Light"2:30
Total length:64:47


Charts and certifications[edit]


Year Title Chart Peak
1989 "Big Bad Moon"[3] Billboard Album Rock Tracks 31
"One Big Rush"[3] 36
1990 "Back to Shalla-Bal"[3] 17
"I Believe"[3] 17


Event Title Award Result
1991 Grammys Flying in a Blue Dream Best Rock Instrumental Performance Nominated[6]


  1. ^ a b c "Gold & Platinum Searchable Database" Archived 2015-09-24 at the Wayback Machine. RIAA. Retrieved 2015-03-12.
  2. ^ Flying in a Blue Dream (CD edition "Rel 465995 2").
  3. ^ a b c d e f "Flying in a Blue Dream - Joe Satriani | Awards". AllMusic. All Media Network. Retrieved 2014-03-21.
  4. ^ "Joe Satriani - Chart history". Billboard. Retrieved 2014-03-21.
  5. ^ "Joe Satriani - Flying In A Blue Fream (album)". Hung Medien. Retrieved 2014-03-21.
  6. ^ a b "33rd Grammy Awards - 1991". Rock On The Net. Retrieved 2014-03-21.
  7. ^ a b Bosso, Joe (2014-04-08). "Joe Satriani talks The Complete Studio Recordings album by album | Flying In A Blue Dream (1989)". MusicRadar. Future Publishing. Retrieved 2014-04-08.
  8. ^ "The Mystical Potato Head Groove Thing by Joe Satriani". Retrieved 2014-04-08.
  9. ^ a b c Carter, Phil. "Flying in a Blue Dream - Joe Satriani". AllMusic. All Media Network. Retrieved 2014-03-21.
  10. ^ "The Satch Tapes". Retrieved 2014-03-21.
  11. ^ "Original Album Classics - Joe Satriani". AllMusic. All Media Network. Retrieved 2014-03-21.
  12. ^ " – Joe Satriani – Flying in a Blue Dream". Hung Medien. Retrieved 13 June 2015.
  13. ^ "Top Albums/CDs – Volume 51, No. 14, February 17 1990". RPM. Retrieved 13 June 2015.
  14. ^ " – Joe Satriani – Flying in a Blue Dream" (in Dutch). Hung Medien. Retrieved 13 June 2015.
  15. ^ " – Joe Satriani – Flying in a Blue Dream". Hung Medien. Retrieved 13 June 2015.
  16. ^ " – Joe Satriani – Flying in a Blue Dream". Hung Medien. Retrieved 13 June 2015.
  17. ^ "Joe Satriani Chart History (Billboard 200)". Billboard.
  18. ^ "British album certifications – Joe Satriani – Flying in a Blue Dream". British Phonographic Industry. Select albums in the Format field. Select Silver in the Certification field. Type Flying in a Blue Dream in the "Search BPI Awards" field and then press Enter.
  19. ^ "American album certifications – Joe Satriani – Flying in a Blue Dream". Recording Industry Association of America. If necessary, click Advanced, then click Format, then select Album, then click SEARCH. 

External links[edit]