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Truth (Jeff Beck album)

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Studio album by
Released29 July 1968 (1968-07-29)[1]
Recorded16–17 May 1966; 14–26 May 1968
StudioAbbey Road, Olympic and De Lane Lea, London
LabelEMI Columbia (UK), Epic (US)
ProducerMickie Most
Jeff Beck chronology

Truth is the debut studio album by English guitarist Jeff Beck, released on 29 July 1968 in the United States on Epic Records and on 4 October 1968 in the United Kingdom[1] on Columbia Records. It introduced the talents of his backing band the Jeff Beck Group, specifically Rod Stewart and Ronnie Wood, to a larger audience, and peaked at number 15 on the Billboard Top LPs chart.[2]

Content and background[edit]

After leaving the Yardbirds in late 1966, Jeff Beck had released three commercial singles, two in 1967 featuring himself on lead vocals, and one without vocals in 1968. All had been hits on the British singles chart,[3] and all were characterized by songs aimed at the pop chart on the A-side at the behest of producer Mickie Most.[4] Harder rock and blues-based numbers were featured on the B-sides, and for music on the album, Beck opted to pursue the latter course.

Recording sessions for the album took place over four days, 14–15 May and 25–26 May 1968.[5] Nine eclectic tracks were taken from these sessions, including covers of "Ol' Man River" by Jerome Kern, the Tudor period melody "Greensleeves", and Bonnie Dobson's "Morning Dew", a 1966 hit single for Tim Rose. Beck acknowledged two giants of Chicago blues in songs by Willie DixonMuddy Waters' "You Shook Me" and Howlin' Wolf's "I Ain't Superstitious".

The album starts with "Shapes of Things", a song from Beck's old band. Three originals were credited to "Jeffrey Rod", a pseudonym for Beck and Stewart, all reworkings of existing blues songs: "Let Me Love You" by Buddy Guy; "Rock My Plimsoul" and "Blues Deluxe" which respectively derive from "Rock Me Baby" and "Gambler's Blues" by B.B. King. For "Blues Deluxe", Beck overdubbed audience reactions from a sound effects record to create a live atmosphere, a choice he later regretted.[6]

"Plimsoul" had already been recorded for the B-side to the 1967 single "Tallyman", and the tenth track, an instrumental featuring Jimmy Page, John Paul Jones, Keith Moon, and future Beck group pianist Nicky Hopkins, "Beck's Bolero", had been edited and remixed for stereo from the earlier B-side to "Hi Ho Silver Lining". Due to contractual conflicts, Moon had been credited on the original album as "You Know Who".

The cover art is a double exposure photograph of model Celia Hammond, who was dating Beck at the time, by photographer Stephen Goldblatt.[7]

Reception and legacy[edit]

Retrospective professional reviews
Review scores
Encyclopedia of Popular Music[9]
The Great Rock Discography6/10[10]
Music Story[citation needed]
MusicHound Rock4.5/5[11]
The Rolling Stone Album Guide[12]

Reviewing for Rolling Stone in 1968, Al Kooper called Truth a "classic" and a contemporary version of the 1966 Blues Breakers with Eric Clapton LP, saying the Beck group "swing like mad on this record."[13]

Truth has since been regarded as a seminal work of heavy metal because of its use of blues toward a hard rock approach.[14] According to Pete Prown and HP Newquist, "although some have claimed that this disc was the first metal album, the sound actually leaned more towards a heavy brand of blues rock."[15] Classic Rock magazine ranked Truth eighth on its list of the 30 greatest British blues rock albums; an accompanying blurb read, "it was an album that not only helped establish the British blues rock sound, but featured many of its best exponents."[16] Tom Scholz of Boston has listed it as his favorite album on Gibson's online magazine, stating, "I knew Jeff Beck's Truth album inside out..."[17] Reviewing its historical significance, Sean Egan commented that the Truth line-up, if it had remained intact, could have produced "a string of classic albums", but its tracklist of covers showed "a lack of songwriting base".[18]

Blues guitarist Joe Bonamassa recorded a studio version of "Blues Deluxe" on his 2003 album Blues Deluxe and recorded live versions on Live at Rockpalast (2005), and Live from the Royal Albert Hall (2009). Bonamassa also played "Beck's Bolero", "Let Me Love You Baby" (and "Spanish Boots" and "Plynth (Water Down the Drain)" from the Beck-Ola album) in his Salute to the British Blues Explosion tour featuring the music of Beck, Clapton and Page in July 2016.

On 10 October 2006, Legacy Recordings remastered and reissued the album for compact disc with eight bonus tracks. Included were two earlier takes of "You Shook Me" and "Blues Deluxe", the latter without the overdubbed applause, and the six tracks making up the three singles by Beck. The B-side to the 1968 single "Love Is Blue", "I've Been Drinking", was another "Jeffrey Rod" special, this time reconfiguring the Johnny Mercer song "Drinking Again".

Track listing[edit]

Side two
2."Rock My Plimsoul"Jeff Beck, Rod Stewart4:13
3."Beck's Bolero"Jimmy Page2:54
4."Blues De Luxe"Jeff Beck, Rod Stewart7:33
5."I Ain't Superstitious"Willie Dixon4:53
Total length:21:31
2006 CD bonus tracks
11."I've Been Drinking" (stereo mix)Jeff Beck, Rod Stewart3:25
12."You Shook Me" (take 1)Willie Dixon, J. B. Lenoir2:31
13."Rock My Plimsoul" (stereo mix of single version)Jeff Beck, Rod Stewart3:42
14."Beck's Bolero" (mono single mix)Jimmy Page3:11
15."Blues De Luxe" (take 1)Jeff Beck, Rod Stewart7:31
16."Tallyman"Graham Gouldman2:46
17."Love Is Blue"André Popp, Pierre Cour, Brian Blackburn2:57
18."Hi Ho Silver Lining" (stereo mix)Scott English, Laurence Weiss3:46


  • Jeff Beck – electric guitars, acoustic guitar on "Greensleeves"; pedal steel guitar on "Shapes of Things"; bass guitar on "Ol' Man River"; lead vocals on "Tallyman" and "Hi Ho Silver Lining", co-lead vocals on "Let Me Love You"
  • Rod Stewart – lead vocals, backing vocals on "Hi Ho Silver Lining", possible backing vocal on "Tallyman"[citation needed]
  • Ronnie Wood – bass guitar
  • Micky Waller – drums

Additional credited personnel

  • John Paul Jones – bass guitar on "Hi Ho Silver Lining" and "Beck's Bolero"; Hammond organ on "Ol' Man River" and "You Shook Me"; arrangements on "Hi Ho Silver Lining"
  • Nicky Hopkins – piano on "Morning Dew", "You Shook Me", "Beck's Bolero" and "Blues Deluxe"
  • Keith Moon (credited as "You Know Who") – drums on "Beck's Bolero"; timpani on "Ol' Man River"

Additional uncredited personnel

Production personnel


  1. ^ a b Rosen, Steve (12 January 2023). "How the Jeff Beck Group made rock's Holy Grail, Truth". Classic Rock. Louder. Retrieved 13 January 2023.
  2. ^ "Jeff Beck Chart History". Billboard. Retrieved 14 June 2019.
  3. ^ "Artists". Officialcharts.com. Retrieved 19 May 2021.
  4. ^ Charles Shaar Murray. Truth, 2006 reissue, Legacy Recordings 82876 77352 2, liner notes.
  5. ^ Murray, Truth reissue liner notes.
  6. ^ Leviton, Mark. "The ‘Truth’ According to Jeff Beck: A Genre-Busting Masterpiece", Best Classic Bands. March 20, 2020.
  7. ^ "Celia Hammond Composite, Jeff Beck Truth Album Cover, 1968". San Francisco Art Exchange. Retrieved 12 January 2023.
  8. ^ Eder, Bruce. "Truth - Jeff Beck". AllMusic.
  9. ^ Larkin, Colin, ed. (2007). The Encyclopedia of Popular Music (5th concise ed.). Omnibus. p. 137. OL 11913831M.
  10. ^ Strong, Martin C. (2004). The Great Rock Discography (7th ed.). New York: Canongate. p. 117. OL 18807297M.
  11. ^ Graff, Gary, ed. (1996). MusicHound Rock: The Essential Album Guide. Detroit: Visible Ink. p. 54. OL 8145585M.
  12. ^ "Jeff Beck: Album Guide". Rolling Stone. Archived from the original on 3 September 2013.
  13. ^ Kooper, Al (28 September 1968). "Truth". Rolling Stone. Archived from the original on 27 November 2011. Retrieved 17 April 2014.
  14. ^ Nick Logan and Bob Woffinden, editors. The Illustrated Encyclopedia of Rock. New York: Harmony Books, 1977, p. 137.
  15. ^ Prown, Pete; Newquist, Harvey P. (1997). Legends of Rock Guitar: The Essential Reference of Rock's Greatest Guitarists. Hal Leonard Corporation. p. 62. ISBN 0793540429.
  16. ^ "The Top 30 British Blues Rock Albums of All Time". Classic Rock. Future plc. 23 March 2007. Retrieved 1 September 2018.
  17. ^ "Tom Scholz Top 10 Favorite Albums retrieved 04/02/11". Archived from the original on 31 January 2013. Retrieved 16 February 2013.
  18. ^ Egan, Sean, ed. (2006). 100 Albums That Changed Music. London: Constable & Robinson. ISBN 978-1-84529-495-3.

External links[edit]