Stills (Stephen Stills album)

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Stills
Stillsss.jpg
Studio album by
ReleasedJune 23, 1975
Recorded1971, 1973-1975
StudioCriteria Studios, Miami, The Record Plant, Los Angeles, The Record Plant, Sausalito, Island Studios, London
GenreRock
Length38:19
LabelColumbia
ProducerStephen Stills with Bill Halverson and The Albert Brothers
Stephen Stills chronology
Down the Road
(1973)
Stills
(1975)
Stephen Stills Live
(1975)
Singles from Stills
  1. "Turn Back The Pages" / "Shuffle Just As Bad"
    Released: August 8, 1975

Stills is a 1975 studio album by American musician Stephen Stills. It is his third solo album and his first release on Columbia Records. The album was a commercial success on release charting at number 19 on the US album charts, but was released to mixed critical reaction.

Background[edit]

Stills began recording a solo album in 1973 under the tentative title As I Come of Age, and it was "almost completed" by February 1974.[1] He may have recorded more in early 1974, but from May to December Stills was busy with a reunited Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young.[2] Stills signed with Columbia early in 1975 and turned in this album, "a collection of tracks Stephen had been working on over the preceding several years" including "much of the material recorded for As I Come of Age".[3] He recorded an early unissued version of "Guardian Angel" on January 23, 1975, at The Record Plant; the next day Crosby and Nash joined him.[4]

Content[edit]

The piano and drum tracks by Stills and Ringo Starr for "As I Come of Age" date back to 1971,[5] while "Turn Back the Pages" was recorded in 1975.[6] Although "My Angel" is credited to Stills and Dallas Taylor, and Stills calls it a "jam on a set of Dallas' changes",[5] Stills recorded a demo of the song in March 1967.[7] "First Things First" written by Stills and the bass player for Three Dog Night Joe Schermie and was played quite frequently along with the 'Myth of Sisyphus' and 'My Angel' on the CSNY 1974 tour.

The cover photo was shot at Neil Young's Broken Arrow Ranch during rehearsals for the CSNY 1974 tour.[8] The back cover features Donnie Dacus and Stills playing acoustic guitars together.

As per the sleeve notes:[5]

"Turn Back The Pages". 1975, Cut late in sessions, at Criteria, with Ron and Howie.

"My Favourite Changes". 1974, The track was cut in Sausalito with Stephen and Don Dacus playing guitars in the control booth and Leland Skar and Lala playing gin the studio. Danny Hutton put some vocals on it. Later in Colorado vocals were completed by Stephen, Kenny and Peggy Clinger.

"My Angel". 1974, Jam on a set of Dallas' changes edited into a song. Dallas played drums, Lala percussion. Stephen played bass, piano, clavinet and organ. Thanks to Sylvester.

"In The Way". 1974, Track cut live in studio in Sausalito and then Kenny recut the bass. Vocals, recorded by Jeff Geurico at Caribou, are Stephen, Don, and Kenny.

"Love Story". 1973, Back track is Russ on drums, Leland bass, Stephen piano. Organ and electric piano overdubs are also Stephen. Vocals, are Stephen, Rick, and Kenny and Don. Tried strings but to no avail. The vocals took twenty hours. The track took two hours. The song sat for four years before it was recorded.

"To Mama From Christopher and the Old Man". 1975.. Christopher was written after a long session where 7am caught Papa coming in the door just after Christopher was getting up and we hung out for a while. Cut the song that night and ended up with me and a drummer. Cut the basic, bass and second rhythm, then Tubby overdubbed the drums, with Stills hanging over his shoulder with a tambourine. We got smokin' and did it in eight hours, including mix down.

"First Things First". 1973. Dallas Taylor played drums, Joe Lala on percussion. Vocals are by Stephen, Kenny Passarelli, David Crosby and Graham Nash. A touch of Patoi.

"New Mama", 1973. Neil says this one his own way. The basic for this version was Leland on bass, Russ drums, Lala percussion and Stephen playing guitar and electric guitar simultaneously. Only instrument overdub is additional guitar by Don. Vocals are Stephen, Rick and Don.

"As I Come Of Age", 1973. Track cut on London in 1971 with Stephen on piano and Ringo on drums. Stephen overdubbed organ and bass. Lead guitar is Don and vocals are by Crosby, Stills and Nash.

"Shuffle Just As Bad", 1974. Russ played drums, Jerry piano and organ. Stephen played bass on the basic and overdubbed guitar and electric piano. Vocals are by Stephen and Kenny.

"Cold Cold World", 1975. Another Donnie and Stephen collaboration, with Stephen doing lead vocal, Donnie and Betty Wright going backups. Stills on lead and rhythm guitars as well as bass. Old friend Conrad Isidore on drums, Joe's conga and percussion, Jerry on piano and organ, Donnie on rhythm guitar. Another Criteria track with Ron and Howie.

"Myth Of Sisyphus", 1974. Jimmy Fox played drums and Stephen played piano and just sang the song. Cut in Miami by the Albert Bros., first take. Don and Claudia Lanier later got background vocals together with Halverson in Los Angeles.

Release[edit]

The album was released 23 June 1975, and reached No 19 on the Billboard album charts during a chart run of 17 weeks,[9] number 11 on the Record World charts and number 12 on the Cash Box charts. The lead single from the album was "Turn Back The Pages" and charted at a disappointing No 84 on the Billboard charts.[9] In late 1975, CBS records were quoted saying it was close to reaching Gold in the US, with sales of 400,000-450,000.[10] A quadraphonic version was also released in 1975.

Stills, supported the album with his longest tour as a solo artist, playing arenas throughout North America.

In retrospect Stills has commented on his mid-70's solo period saying he "short-circuited for a while, things were moving to fast. I got a little crazed. Too much drinking, too many drugs. What can I say."[11]

Critical reception[edit]

Retrospective professional reviews
Review scores
SourceRating
Allmusic2/5 stars[12]
Christgau's Record GuideC[13]
Encyclopedia of Popular Music4/5 stars[15]
The Rolling Stone Album Guide1/5 stars[14]

Critical reception to Stills was mixed to positive. Reviewing in 1975 for Rolling Stone, Bud Scopa called it a "concerted attempt at candid expression" but one resulting in "mixed, middling results".[16] Record World said "Stills was back with that patented mellow sound" and cited "My Angel", "First Things First", and "Shuffle Just As Bad" as highlights.[17] Cash Box said Stills "takes his best lyrical and instrumental chops to form a springboard from which he moves easily amid different musical shades", and pointed to "As I Come of Age" as a highlight.[18] Village Voice critic Robert Christgau was largely unenthusiastic, describing the album as the one "in which Stills recycles his 'favorite set of changes/Already good for a couple of songs.' His admirers might find that endearing, I know. They might even dig him copping a lick from Alice Cooper later on in the lyric. But me, I find it pathetic."[13] Chris Charlesworth wrote in Melody Maker 1975, saying 'CBS came up with the cash and Stills has come up with a good album, but which in the main doesn't rank with his classics, two or three tracks excepted. It's a laid-back record, to use a hackneyed term, and deliberately underproduced to the extent where the music oozes rather than bounces from the speakers."[11] Record Mirror, called the album on par with his debut album, or a very close second. "Full of those earlier highlights - slow build ups, full of multi tracked vocals, familiar percussion breaks". Finishing the review by saying "maybe there's no new direction, but I always thought he found it somewhere years back and got lost in between."[19] Music Week, called it a quality effort, saying "nobody plays the laid-back West Coast music better than Stills and the instrumentation throughout is joyously and smoothly integrated", and praised 'Love Story", 'First Things First', and 'New Mama", in particular.[20]

Track listing[edit]

All tracks are written by Stephen Stills; except where indicated.

Side one
No.TitleWriter(s)Length
1."Turn Back the Pages"Donnie Dacus, Stills4:04
2."My Favorite Changes" 2:50
3."My Angel"Stills, Dallas Taylor2:25
4."In the Way" 3:35
5."Love Story" 4:11
6."To Mama from Christopher and the Old Man" 2:15
Side two
No.TitleWriter(s)Length
7."First Things First"Joe Schermie, Jon Smith, Stills2:10
8."New Mama"Neil Young2:21
9."As I Come of Age" 2:33
10."Shuffle Just as Bad" 2:39
11."Cold Cold World"Dacus, Stills4:38
12."Myth of Sisyphus"Kenny Passarelli, Stills4:28
Total length:38:19

Personnel[edit]

  • Stephen Stills - Lead Vocals (1-12), Lead Guitar (1,11), Rhythm Guitar (1,6,11), Guitar (2,10), Bass (1,3,6,9,10,11), Piano (1,3,5,9,12), Clavinet (3), Organ (3,5,9), Electric Piano (5,10), Tambourine (6)
  • Donnie Dacus - Rhythm Guitar (1,11), Guitar (2,8), Lead Guitar (9), Vocals (1,4,5,8,11,12)
  • Tubby (Ron) Ziegler - Drums (1,6)
  • Joe Lala - Percussion (1,2,3,7,8,11), Conga (11)
  • Jerry Aeillo - Organ (1,10,11), Piano (10,11)
  • Marcy Levy - Vocals (1)
  • Leland Sklar - Bass (2,5,8)
  • Danny Hutton - Vocals (2)
  • Kenny Passarelli - Bass (4), Vocals (2,4,5,7,10)
  • Peggy Clinger - Vocals (2)
  • Dallas Taylor - Drums (3,7) Cowrote 'First Things First' under the pseudonym Jon Smith
  • Russ Kunkel - Drums (5,8,10)
  • Rick Roberts - Vocals (5,8), Guitar (?)
  • David Crosby - Vocals (7,9)
  • Graham Nash - Vocals (7,9)
  • Ringo Starr - Drums (9)
  • Betty Wright - Vocals (11)
  • Conrad Isidore - Drums (11)
  • Jimmy Fox - Drums (12)
  • Claudia Lennear - Vocals (12)
  • George Terry - Guitar, Vocals (named on the sleeve but not credited under any song)
  • Robert Margouleff - Mastering

Technical Personnel

  • Produced and arranged by Stephen Stills with Bill Halverson and Ron and Howie Albert.
  • Engineers - Bill Halverson, The Albert Brothers, Jeff Guerico, Don Gehman, Stephen Stills
  • Mix down Engineers - Stephen Stills, The Albert Brothers
  • Mastering Engineer - Alex Sadkin
  • Mastering - Robert Margouleff
  • Management - Michael John Bowen
  • Front cover photography - Joel Bernstein
  • Back cover photography - Bill Ray
  • Design - John Berg, Andy Engel

Charts[edit]

Tour[edit]

Stephen Stills 1975 Tour
Tour by Stephen Stills
Start dateJune 20, 1975
End dateDecember 10, 1975
Legs2
Stephen Stills concert chronology

The Stephen Stills 1975 Tour was a concert tour by American musician Stephen Stills, in support of his 1975 album, Stills. This was Stills biggest tour as a solo artist playing across North America. It was in support of his successful 1975 album, Stills, which he had just left Atlantic records and signed with Columbia Records with. During the tour he played to around 10,000 seater arenas. Reviews of the shows well mixed.[31][32][33] The 8th December 1975 date at the Paramount Theatre, Seattle was professionally recorded. A version of Know You Got To Run, recorded then, was used on Stills' Carry On boxset.

1975 Summer Tour[34]
Date City Country Venue Gross/Notes
20 June 1975 Clarkston United States Pine Knob Music Theatre Sold Out[35]
21 June 1975
23 June 1975 Rochester Dome Arena
24 June 1975 Kutztown Schaeffer Auditorium
28 June 1975 Tanglewood Tanglewood Theatre 8,500
29 June 1975 New York Saratoga Performing Arts Festival 10,000
1 July 1975 Edwardsville Mississippi River Festival 7,300
2 July 1975 Fort Wayne Fort Wayne Coliseum
3 July 1975 Chicago Arie Crown Theatre
4 July 1975 Green Bay Brown County Arena
5 July 1975 Schereville Omni 41
6 July 1975 Milwaukee Milwaukee Auditorium
9 July 1975 Omaha Civic Arena
10 July 1975 Minneapolis Minneapolis Auditorium 3,600
12 July 1975 Kansas City Memorial Hall
13 July 1975 Oklahoma City State Fair Arena
15 July 1975 Fort Worth Tarrant County Convention Centre 6,000
17 July 1975 Denver Red Rocks Amphitheatre 9,000/9,000[36]
18 July 1975 Albuquerque
19 July 1975 Tucson Tucson Arena
22 July 1975 San Diego San Diego Sports Arena Sold Out[37]
23 July 1975 Toronto Canada Royal York Hotel CBS Records Showcase[37]
25 July 1975 Los Angeles United States Hollywood Bowl
26 July 1975 Berkeley Greek Theatre 5,600[38] Neil Young Guests
27 July 1975 Sacramento Sacramento Convention Center
29 July 1975 Fresno Selland Arena
30 July 1975 Bakersfield Bakersfield Civic Auditorium
3 August 1975 Honolulu Hawaii HIC
4 August 1975
9 August 1975 Portland United States
12 August 11975 Seattle Paramount Theatre
1975 Winter Tour
25 October 1975 Pittsburgh United States Syria Mosque
26 October 1975 Scranton John Long Center
27 October 1975 New York City Brooklyn College
29 October 1975 Passaic Capitol Theatre
30 October 1975 Boston Music Hall
1 November 1975 Annapolis Naval Academy Field House
2 November 1975 Hempstead Hofstra Playhouse
4 November 1975 Albany Palace Theatre
6 November 1975 Villanova Villanova Field House
7 November 1975 Blacksburg Cassell Coliseum
8 November 1975 Charlottesville University Hall
9 November 1975 Washington
12 November 1975 Chapel Hill Carmichael Theatre
14 November 1975 Miami Doak S. Campbell Stadium
15 November 1975 Nashville Memorial Gymnasium
20 November 1975 California Cal Poly Gym
21 November 1975 Sacramento University of Davis Freeborn Hall 2 Shows
22 November 1975 Palo Alto Maples Pavilion Neil Young Guests
23 November 1975 Los Angeles Pauley Pavilion 9,500/10,000[39] Neil Young Guests
25 November 1975 Reno University Of Nevada
2 December 1975 Salt Lake City Special Events Theatre
5 December 1975 Idaho Idaho State University Minidome
6 December 1975 Missoula Harry Adams Field House
8 December 1975 Seattle Paramount Theatre
9 December 1975 Portland Paramount Theatre
10 December 1975 Oregon Gill Coliseum

Personnel

1975 Summer Tour[31]

  • Stephen Stills - Vocals, Guitar, Piano
  • Donnie Dacus - Guitar
  • Joe Lala - Percussion
  • Jerry Aeillo - Organ
  • George Perry - Bass
  • Ronald "Tubby" Zeigler - Drums
  • Rick Roberts - Guitar

1975 Winter Tour[31]

  • Stephen Stills - Vocals, Guitar
  • Donnie Dacus - Vocals, Guitar
  • Joe Lala - Percussion
  • George Perry - Bass
  • Ronald "Tubby" Zeigler - Drums
  • Jerry Aeillo - Keyboards

Setlist

1975 Summer Tour

All songs written by Stephen Stills, except where noted.

  1. Love The One You're With
  2. Johnny's Garden
  3. Closer To You
  4. Wooden Ships (Stills, David Crosby, Paul Kantner)
  5. Change Partners
  6. Know You Got To Run (Stills, John Hopkins)
  7. Treetop Flyer
  8. Myth Of Sisyphus
  9. Everybody's Talkin' (Freddie Neil)
  10. Crossroads/ You Can't Catch Me (Robert Johnson, Chuck Berry)
  11. 4+20
  12. Do For The Others
  13. Word Game
  14. Buyin' Time
  15. Going To The Country
  16. Colorado
  17. In The Way
  18. Black Queen
  19. The Loner (Neil Young)
  20. Turn Back The Pages (Stills, Donnie Dacus)
  21. New Mama
  22. The Treasure
  23. Suite: Judy Blue Eyes
  24. Find The Cost Of Freedom

1975 Winter Tour

All songs written by Stephen Stills, except where noted.

  1. Love The One You're With
  2. Johnny's Garden
  3. Closer To You (Stills, Dacus)
  4. In The Way
  5. Wooden Ships (Stills, David Crosby, Paul Kantner)
  6. Change Partners
  7. Know You Got To Run (Stills, John Hopkins)
  8. Treetop Flyer
  9. Myth Of Sisyphus
  10. Everybody's Talkin' (Freddie Neil)
  11. Crossroads/ You Can't Catch Me (Robert Johnson, Chuck Berry)
  12. 4+20
  13. Do For The Others
  14. Word Game
  15. Instrumental/Band Intros/Jam
  16. Buyin' Time
  17. Going To The Country
  18. Black Queen
  19. The Loner (Neil Young)
  20. Turn Back The Pages (Stills, Donnie Dacus)
  21. The Treasure
  22. Suite: Judy Blue Eyes
  23. Find The Cost Of Freedom

References[edit]

  1. ^ Dave Zimmer, Crosby, Stills and Nash, 2000, p.170.
  2. ^ Zimmer, p.170-178.
  3. ^ Zimmer, p.181.
  4. ^ "Atlantic Records Discography: 1975". www.jazzdisco.org. Retrieved 2020-03-18.
  5. ^ a b c Stills LP sleeve notes.
  6. ^ CSN box set booklet, 1991.
  7. ^ The demo is in the Buffalo Springfield box set, 2001, and so dated in the booklet.
  8. ^ Roberts, David (2018). Stephen Stills: Change Partners.
  9. ^ a b "Stephen Stills Stills Chart History". Billboard. Retrieved 2019-09-15.
  10. ^ "Stephen Stills" (PDF).
  11. ^ a b Uncut (2018). Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young: Ultimate Music Guide. pp. 36–37.
  12. ^ Chrispell, James (2011). "Stills - Stephen Stills | AllMusic". allmusic.com. Retrieved 26 July 2011.
  13. ^ a b Christgau, Robert (1981). "Consumer Guide '70s: S". Christgau's Record Guide: Rock Albums of the Seventies. Ticknor & Fields. ISBN 089919026X. Retrieved March 13, 2019 – via robertchristgau.com.
  14. ^ DeCurtis, Anthony; Henke, James; George-Warren, Holly, eds. (1992). The Rolling Stone Album Guide (3rd ed.). Random House. p. 675. ISBN 0679737294.
  15. ^ Larkin, Colin (2007). Encyclopedia of Popular Music (4th ed.). Oxford University Press. ISBN 978-0195313734.
  16. ^ "Stephen Stills: Stills : Music Reviews : Rolling Stone". 2009-03-29. Archived from the original on 2009-03-29. Retrieved 2019-09-15.
  17. ^ "Record World" (PDF).
  18. ^ "Cashbox" (PDF).
  19. ^ "Record Mirror 12 June 1975" (PDF).
  20. ^ "Music Week 19 July 1975" (PDF).
  21. ^ Kent, David (1993). Australian Chart Book 1970–1992 (illustrated ed.). St Ives, N.S.W.: Australian Chart Book. p. 295. ISBN 0-646-11917-6.
  22. ^ a b "Stephen Stills". Billboard. Retrieved 2020-07-05.
  23. ^ "STEPHEN STILLS | full Official Chart History | Official Charts Company". www.officialcharts.com. Retrieved 2020-07-05.
  24. ^ Canada, Library and Archives (2013-04-16). "The RPM story". www.bac-lac.gc.ca. Retrieved 2020-07-05.
  25. ^ "norwegiancharts.com - Stephen Stills - Stephen Stills". norwegiancharts.com. Retrieved 2020-07-05.
  26. ^ "InfoDisc : Les Albums (Interprètes, Classements, Ventes, Certifications, Les Tops, Les N° 1...)". www.infodisc.fr. Retrieved 2020-09-02.
  27. ^ "CASH BOX MAGAZINE: Music and coin machine magazine 1942 to 1996". worldradiohistory.com. Retrieved 2020-07-05.
  28. ^ "RECORD WORLD MAGAZINE: 1942 to 1982". worldradiohistory.com. Retrieved 2020-07-05.
  29. ^ "RECORD WORLD MAGAZINE: 1942 to 1982". worldradiohistory.com. Retrieved 2020-07-05.
  30. ^ "CASH BOX MAGAZINE: Music and coin machine magazine 1942 to 1996". worldradiohistory.com. Retrieved 2020-07-05.
  31. ^ a b c Roberts, David (2016). Stephen Stills: Change Partners.
  32. ^ Zimmer, Dave (2000). Crosby Stills and Nash: The Biography. Da Capo Press. ISBN 978-0306809743.
  33. ^ Doggett, Peter (2019). Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young: The Biography.
  34. ^ www.americanradiohistory.com (PDF) https://www.americanradiohistory.com/hd2/IDX-Business/Music/Archive-Record-World-IDX/IDX/70s/75/RW-1975-07-05-OCR-Page-0041.pdf. Retrieved 2018-12-16. Missing or empty |title= (help)
  35. ^ www.americanradiohistory.com (PDF) https://www.americanradiohistory.com/hd2/IDX-Business/Music/Archive-Record-World-IDX/IDX/70s/75/RW-1975-07-05-OCR-Page-0041.pdf. Retrieved 2018-12-16. Missing or empty |title= (help)
  36. ^ www.americanradiohistory.com (PDF) https://www.americanradiohistory.com/hd2/IDX-Business/Music/Archive-Billboard-IDX/IDX/70s/1975/Billboard%201975-09-13-OCR-Page-0049.pdf. Retrieved 2018-12-17. Missing or empty |title= (help)
  37. ^ a b "Stephen Stills" (PDF).
  38. ^ "Sugar Mountain". www.sugarmtn.org. Retrieved 2019-09-10.
  39. ^ www.americanradiohistory.com (PDF) https://www.americanradiohistory.com/hd2/IDX-Business/Music/Archive-Cash-Box-IDX/70s/1975/CB-1975-12-13-OCR-Page-0023.pdf. Retrieved 2018-12-16. Missing or empty |title= (help)