Tuesday, May 8, 2012

40 Year Itch : Two From The Q


Al Anderson has already joined NRBQ when he recorded this delightful album to fulfill a five year contract with Vanguard Records. Some of the NRBQ boys helped out on the album including Tom Staley on drums, Terry Adams on piano and his brother Donn Adams on trombone. Most of the songs are happy foot-tappin' ditties that will remind you of the Q ("Be My Woman Tonight", We'll Make Love", "Don't Hold The Line"). In the few that don't really work for me , Al's just trying too hard ("Ain't No Woman Finer Lookin'","I Haven't Got The Strength To Carry On"). Apparent effortlessness was always part of NRBQ's charm.

In 1972, NRBQ released Scraps, their first album with guitarist Al Anderson. In fact Al had only been in the band for two weeks when they recorded the album and he contributed no songs. ( Possibly due to his Vanguard contract). Among the highlights are Terry's "Howard Johnson's Got His Ho-Jo Working", the Adams/ Joey Spampinato tune "Magnet", and Joey's "Only You" with its toy piano solo. This is the last album featuring vocalist Frank Gadler. There are still legions of NRBQ fans who believe this is the band's high point but I'm stinking with Yankee Stadium.

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