George Starostin's Reviews



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Lyolya Svidrigajlova <> (07.11.2000)

I think that it was a nice band at the very beginning but then... oh... well, when I've heard them for the very first time, I just hated them. Although several songs are not bad at all! Self-assured (sometimes, maybe, TOO self-assured), aggressive and noisy. Well, maybe, "nothing new" but these guys are still young and very energetic. And - a bit (very) silly, which is not the bad point cause almost everybody around at that time were wize and made complicated music. So, we sometimes need something simple, ah? Lol'ka Svidrigajlova

Brian Adkins <> (27.11.2000)

How can you give CCR a four??? You dont really mention anything telling why they deserve a four. I dont think theres anyway, no matter how you look at music that CCR gets the same rating as say Hendrix and even better than Zeppelin. Come on man, I love listening to CCR's music but there certainly no better than a 3. Heck the only cd of theirs that you need is that one greatest hits cd with 20 tracks. You talk about their cds not having much filler but then in the album reviews you talk about almost every one of the cds having some filler. You even give an album a 2, how can a band with a rating of 4 possibly put out an album with a total rating of 6. I think your rating is so high only because you like the band so well. I think the Beatles, Stones, and the Doors as well deserve a five although the Doors didnt but thats beside the point. I just think you have CCR a little out of their league. Other than the fact that their music is fun and really some good ole clean rock and roll they didnt do enough or last long enough to even experiement with different genres than rock and roll therefore they deserve a two and three is pushin it.

Lyolya Svidrigajlova <> (24.12.2000)

And, to "finish" with Creedence as well, some funny trivia (I don't know whether you will consider it "informative" or not, but still):

1. "Get down woman" is not a cover song, it was written by J.C.F. while lyrics of "Walk on the water" were written by Tom Fogerty.

2. John refused to play guitar and keyboard parts as well as to sing on Stu or Doug's tracks off Mardi Gras. All the guitar and keyboard parts on those tracks were done by Stu Cook.

3. Bar Mardi Gras, John did almost all the keyboard parts (except for "Get down woman" where Tom played piano and maybe some other occasions), harp and brass.

4. This may seem not important but the lead singer and songwriter in the group which lately took the name "CCR" was Tom. And Stu Cook "caught cockroach by the tail" (copyright Andy Lloyd) when he said that CCR was as well, if not more, Tom's vision. It is not so evident since few people know Tom's solo work.

5. The demise of the band was already predictable in 1968. At least, it was obvious to John.

Morten Felgenhauer <> (10.01.2001)

I'm not going to be one of those fans who defend every band member to death, but I will give some more credit to the "lesser" members of the group. Both Doug and Stu are minimalists and strongly believe that less is more. I agree. Listen to the drumming in "Proud Mary" - he hardly touches the hi-hat and only bashes the cymbals once in a while. Could it have been done better? I don't think so. And while Tom "only" played rhythm guitar he was vital to their sound. Listen to the two last albums where his contributions are rarely heard and agree that they don't sound like they used to. In short they were a very tight band who played TOGETHER rather than to show off instrumental abilities. This is not surprising, since they had been playing together for almost ten years when the became successful in 1968. Their early singles are collected on the not very impressing The Golliwogs - Pre-Creedence (pop songs in 50s and beat group tradition).

Jack Redelfs <> (29.02.2001)

I'm with you on this one, George, all the way. CCR isthe essence of a great rock band. It's true that weren't all that original, but let's face it; how many of those legendary rock were truly groundbreaking? That's not to say they were hacks. Their talent lied in finding the best new 'fads' and using them as a pallette of colors for new works of art. I think this goes for the the Stones, the Who, and even the Beatles. Yes, they were great. Yes, they all did some things that were original and new -- but really, how innovative were they, compared to say, early Pink Floyd or early King Crimson? And even they had their influences. (Even the more wacked out, expirimental proggresive (hardly)rock(at all) like Soft Machine and Magma took a cue from decade old jazz experiments.)

Some might say, "Yes, but Tommy is ten times the record that Piper is." Well, I'd agree (maybe just five times). My point is that originality isn't everything; everyone has influences, and there's nothing new under the sun, after all. If you obviously retread or reprocess someone else's work, I'm hate it; if you put a new or interesting twist on it, I'm happy.

Glenn Wiener <> (05.07.2001)

I tell you its just a darn shame that the life span of this band was so short. So many of their hit singles were so catchy that they would be a hit probably in any era. 'Proud Mary', 'Green River', 'Who’ll Stop The Rain', 'Up Around The Bend'.…all of them classics with captivating vocals, a solid song structure, energetic guitars, and a driving rhythm section. Simple yet effective. But not too diverse. A little bit of country, a few ballads, and some soul flavored hooks. But the majority of CCR’s music was Good Old American Rock N Roll. The band had seven original releases and let me tell you all of them are good, especially Cosmos Factory and yes even the much maligned Mardi Gras. Its just a shame that the band members really did not get along as noted in Hank Bordowitz’s Unauthorized History of Creedence Clearwater Revival entitled Bad Moon Rising. Therefore, with many bands reuniting to take one last stab at greatness in the world of rock n roll, it is safe to say that there will be no Revival for Creedence. At least we can count on a solo release from John Fogerty every now and then as he definitely was the main talent in Creedence.

Oleg Sobolev <> (18.04.2002)

Well, CCR... Hm... Really, I can't say anything about them yet, just because I have onl heard two albums gathered together on one single CD - Willy And The Poorboys and Cosmo's Factory. And it's very pity that I can't say anything else - can't find any their albums apart of these two in our town (but I can find some shit like IQ very easily instead), and it's even more pity if you know i like this pair very much. I find that John is just amazing melody-maker and good (though not brilliant) lyricswriter, the band played very tightly (when they started to jamming they worked just one big machine - always knowing what to do). The only thing that band seriously needed to have is someone who will listen to their session tapes and other material befor the album's release - there is filler on both of albums I have and, moreover, it is very serious, unforgiveable filler. Anyway, I enjoyed their music as much as I can and hope that everyone who has ears can enjoy them too.

Steve Potocin <> (04.12.2002)

This as most everyone knows was a great band. No amazing players just amazing chemistry.The thing I have always wondered about, since I was 13, was this: How in the hell did a guy who never went to Louisianna write, sing, and play like he had been eating alligator gumbo his whole life? I'll never forget on the 85 MTV music awards, one of the guys from Ratt or Poison said right out of the blue "Well we get laid more than John Forgerty! I don't know why, but that was one of the funniest things I'd ever heard

Matt(the great)Byrd <> (24.07.2005)

CCR get a few of their songs played on the radio quite a bit, but then isn't it weird that they remain so underrated? When listing great bands few people mention CCR or mention the fact that John Fogerty was one of the greatest American pop songwriters ever. I do only have a compilation (I know, maybe I should just die, I feel like I should). Still, I know that CCR has created 20 of the greatest, most well-crafted pop songs in history, even if that's all they did, and they didn't make one album I still think they should be given more credit then they get.

Jur Snijder <> (05.06.2006)

This is where we part company, George. Seriously, how can you give these guys a 'B' rating? That is simply an insult to a great many 'C' artists out there. To your credit, you point out yourself that perhaps this is a bit too generous, and driven by your personal 'good memories'. Well, if good memories are the yardstick, I would give The Eagles an 'A' because of the time when I was playing a record of theirs, and me and this girl... oh well, enough about that, I am sure you see my point. Moreover, if good memories of CCR boost your rating by one point, they should boost mine by two. After all, I was a spotted teenager chained to the radio during the years when these guys produced the one hit after the other, and believe me, I have lots of good memories of being a spotted teenager (well, not exactly about the spots, but you get my drift). Should I give them an 'A' then?

So, let's take a look at these guys in the cold light of day. What are their strong points, apart from obviously appealing to a large percentage of the radio listening and record buying public? Well, for one, John Fogerty is a pretty darn good singer, no doubt about that. He delivers his material with the kind of outspoken clarity and drive that this stuff needs. Tom plays a neat guitar, not brilliant, but more than adequate to provide some sparkle and life to the songs. Then, they have some pretty good riffs and exercise tight control over the makeup of their songs. You won't find any sloppiness or misfiring improvisation here anywhere. But then, isn't that the expected result of one of their weaknesses too? I allude of course to the basic simplicity of these guys' music. And not only about the underlying basis of their songs, which is unadulterated country and very simple rock 'n roll - no, the musicianship of CCR, and particularly their rythm section, is pretty basic to say the least. In fact, their rythm section is about as impressive as your average amateur wedding party band.

So, why did these guys ever get to be as big as they were? Here is my take: they simply made music for the great unwashed masses. Their quality was the quantity of their fan base. Consider your average American blue-collar worker in the late 1960's. No drugs for these people, definitely not. No weird flower-power, no anti-war protests, no burning guitars. No, what they wanted was catchy but basic, inoffensive, almost traditional American music with an small added dose of 'rock' to stay with the times. And that is exactly what they got from CCR, and that is why they bought their records and propelled them into the stratosphere. No innovation, no daring search for the boundaries, and most of all no dodgy artsiness. No, their appeal was in catchy but basically inoffensive songs that could be hummed by every good ole' guy riding his Combined Harvester, by every truck driver chewing his Big Mac whilst driving his big Mack. American redneck music at its simplest. Try this for an experiment: imagine a fiddle added to almost any of their songs - would fit perfectly, wouldn't it? I rest my case.

No wonder CCR disappeared so early. They had shot their load and there was nothing else left to do. And don't misunderstand me, I am quite fond of many of their songs. Proud Mary, I Put a Spell on You, Suzy Q and I Heard it through the Grapevine are all dear to me and bring back many a happy memory - but happy memories not objective ratings make. A thin 'C', but more honestly a straight 'D'.


Glenn Wiener <> (01.09.99)

A very raw sounding recording. The song-writing isn't quite as polished on this debut but man what guitar playing by BOTH Fogerty brothers. You are on the money as the first half of the disc is clearly superior to the second. Alot of emotion on the vocals as well. A good start with better things to come.

Lyolya Svidrigajlova <> (07.11.2000)

Well, and that one is a good example of how the first one can be the best one. Well, what do we see? a bit psychedelic rhythm'n'blues boys' band - that's... another kind of boys' band, not "handsome young guys" but something a bit strange... Their kicks are: greasy and rough sound, just like a garage band, neurastenic guitar solos married with this hysterical voice... sorry, there were TWO voices at that time... the second was a very calm one. Well, there are also some good originals - "Walk on the water", "Gloomy" and, OF COURSE, "Porterville" - that's their best song! And I still can't guess what is the leading instrument there... maybe somebody will give me a hint? Enjoyed, Lyolya Svidrigajlova.

Morten Felgenhauer <> (10.01.2001)

7/10 - This is the album where CCR sounds a bit like their fellow San Francisco bands, although traces of their uniqueness can be found. Highlights are the covers "I Put A Spell On You" (check out the insane 50s original by Screamin' Jay Hawkins!) and "Suzie Q". Wait with this album until you have their 69-70 output.


Glenn Wiener <> (01.09.99)

Here the guys step it up a notch in the song-writing department. 'Born On The Bayou' is my favorite CCR song on most days with the haunting intro, spirited vocals, and an awesome Doug "Cosmo" Clifford backbeat. The fact that the CD has only seven tracks is a little bit of a problem. Truthfully, this record would have been better with two shorter songs in place of the over-long and repetitive 'Graveyard Train'. Otherwise, it makes the grade.

Lyolya Svidrigajlova <> (07.11.2000)

My ideas are that it's their third best, after CCR and Pendulum. Well, it's still this dirty boys' band but a bit harder... I adore "Bootleg" and "Graveyard train" (yes, that's not a joke!) - the first for its rhythm-guitar solo, the second for its harmonica solo. The vocals are "so-so", I mean, there's only one singer and that's a big drawback. Oh... and don't forget... that sound a bit "punk"... just look at it, four songs out of seven are one-chord songs... humm... The only thing that I really HATE here is - this pop-up silly "Proud Mary". Well, maybe it would be more appropriate with Tom's voice... at least, more natural... mmm... A little bit confused, Lyolya Svidrigajlova.

Morten Felgenhauer <> (10.01.2001)

8/10 - John had vastly improved on his songwriting skills at this point and the lyrical references to the South are emphasized by the music. Did these guys really grow up in a San Francisco suburb? "Proud Mary" and "Born On THe Bayou" are the classics, both all the other tracks are good as well. I can, however, understand that the long ones can be hard to swallow for non-lovers of rough, bluesy improvisations. I don't think that CCR released too much material in 1969, since none of it is bad.


Glenn Wiener <> (01.09.99)

This is where Fogerty became the hit writing machine. 'Lodi', 'Bad Moon Rising', and 'Commotion' all dented the charts worldwide and deservedly so. 'Wrote A Song For Everyone' is another gem as it pays tribute to the hard working people who are kept down by bureaucratic governments. The only song that is even mildly annoying is the closing cover tune. Truthfully, John Fogerty should have written some additional lyrics to the three sentences Lou Herman wrote. Another winning recording for these guys who sound like Bayouoolagans.

Lyolya Svidrigajlova <> (07.11.2000)

And now they make their first step to pop-music. Not that this one is bad, I don't say that, there are even some kicks here. I like this speaking harmonica in "Commotion", and... humm... what else? Well, you can see now that it is a "one-man-band" (this guy with a guitar standing in front on the cover?) Well, I like "Wrote a song for everyone" which would be a great album closer - an "accoustic" ballad. But vocals here are just awful, and it would sound better with harmonica solo instead of electric guitar (but, of course, who needs the "ideal" song?). Very confused, Lyolya Svidrigajlova.

Morten Felgenhauer <> (10.01.2001)

9/10 - How is it possible to come up with that many classics in such a short period of time? Not that EVERY song on this album belong in that category, and the closing track certainly leaves something to be desired, but this is an amazingly good album - released only a few months after the previous one. Buy now.

David Perkins <> (02.07.2004)

Re: Creedence Clearwater Revival's 'Bad Moon Rising' on the album Green River.

I have always contended that Fogarty often sang, "There's a bad moon on the RIGHT" rather than the printed lyrics, "There's a bad moon on the rise".

Can anyone confirm or dispel my contention?

Thanks in advance

Jesse F. Carroll <> (18.09.2006)

Lodi, CA Lodi, MI Lodi, WI

I have no idea which Lodi would be worse to get stuck in, each state can have GREAT places, and each have towns you don't want to be in any longer than possible.

Good review's , from a foreign perspective.

I was born and raised in what once was rural Florida, near Thonotsassa, Fl just 10 miles east of (1950's) Tampa and spent a lot of my childhood in Ybor City, Tampa's "Latin" quarter, which had a certain ambiance not unlike the French quarter had in New Orleans. My father was born there, Irish, Scots grandmother had Italians, Jews, Cubans , Spanish and Eastern Europeans living in the same neighborhood. My father's back door neighbor and lifelong friend, Nick Nuccio, was County Commisioner and them Mayor of Tampa for several terms.

My father, John A. Carroll Sr. had a used furniture business, which kept him in pianos and accordians, the love of his life. He knew people from New York, cartoonists and musicians and was a friend of Guy Lombardo, whose digs are now the winter home of The Ringling Bros. Circus and Museum.

Florida had a band "The Tropics" which became "Blues Image" for a short while....they could do Kingston Trio, Beach Boys or Led Zepplin, depending on the persona or the audiance (-8…

Half of our acre of land was in oak and pine trees, so I know about pickin' Moss! Dried moss was once used to fill expensive car seats,over stuffed furniture before foam rubber was invented.

We had a swamp with alligators, a quarter mile west of us on US-92...headwaters for the Hillsborough River, which fed our Budweiser brewery and Busch Gardens. They put the I-75 bypass thru the swamp and killed it....also a bypass canal, so rich folk in Temple Terrace wouldn't get flooded out every 20 years...this sent the water table down so natural springs (Eureka Springs) in the area quit flowing.

Maybe you can guess why I ended up in Rogers Park, Chicago....though the local Gov't up here is just as corrupt as back home....

BTW I LIKE "Fortunate Son" and "It Came Out of the Sky"!1 I was/am a anti-War protester, even though I'm what THEy call a WW II "buff"....hate THAT term!! I'm also an Amature Astronomer and Telescope Maker....never seen anything like a UFO, but hope for CETI to succeed, one day.



Glenn Wiener <> (01.09.99)

Whereas I like this record somewhat more than you, I can understand your points about the records weaknesses. Whereas 'Poorboy Shuffle' is an interesting mood piece and falls nicely into 'Feelin' Blue', there seems to be much missing from both in regards to song structure. However, the high points are in deed very high and yes 'Midnight Special' is my favorite of this bunch as well.

Eric Kline <> (03.02.2000)

i own and enjoy all of this band's material that john fogerty contributed to.

you really need to go back and listen to willie and the poorboys again. your assessment of it misses the mark completely.

It is creedence's best album.

Lyolya Svidrigajlova <> (07.11.2000)

Oops that's what I was talking about. 100% - pop-music. Well, actually, not 100%, but 90%, still. I hate this one, really. But it's only my view. The only song I like here is the closer - "Effigy". This sounds a bit fresh and alive, after all this too sweet stuff. First, I thought that most of the songs were written by Tom who seems to be such a calm dreamer, but no... this is his little brother. It doesn't sound natural for you, Johnny... you shouldn't have ate so much sweets! But... "money root the root" (copyright Tom Fogerty)... what a pity! Disgusted, Lyolya Svidrigajlova

Morten Felgenhauer <> (10.01.2001)

Don't listen to George. 9/10 - He just keeps on pouring them out (classics that is): "Down On The Corner", "It Came Out Of The Sky", "Fortunate Son" and "Don't Look Now". There's also two covers that NOBODY can improve on: "Cotton Fields" and "The Midnight Special". I don't think of this as a concept album, just because they play like Willy & the Poor Boys (mentioned in "Down On The Corner") on "Poor Boy Shuffle" and some of the lyrics share common themes. "Feelin' Blue" and "Side O' The Road" are good tracks that fits in well with the overall atmosphere on the album. By the way, "Fortunate Son" is not a "great American anthem" - it's a scorning critique of the American society and the people in powerful positions letting others do the dirty work. "Effigy" is also political and maybe my favourite on the album. None of the instruments are out of tune - it's just that he hits that low guitar string so hard that it sounds disturbing. Because the lyrics concerns disturbing matters.

Sergey Zhilkin <> (11.03.2001)

Here I can't agree with you, George, and with all other commentators. As I know, George even put this album in the list of most overrated albums ever (and I can't agree with it, too). Lyoyla Svidrigaylova says that it's one of their weak albums, due to it's pop-orientation (and are 'Midnight special' or 'Feelin' blue' pop songs, I would like to ask her?!), Morten Felgenhauer consider this to be CCR's best album and etc. Well, I stand in between. Before talking about actual songs I have to admit that all the years I was in touch with foreign music I considered CCR to be heavy-metal or punk band (actually, it was all because of their photos where they looked like Led Zep). So Willy and the poorboys was a nice surprise for me. It's funny but two of these songs I've already heard. One ('Down on the corner') was much loved by 'kids' in pioneer camps after the lyrics were changed (new version told us a story about drunken hedgehog that climbed on a stake with electric wire) and the other ('Effigy') was played on a hotel radio in Bulgaria. I mean that they left only the instrumental part with these heavy guitars and put it on repeat mode (and know how I am able to listen 'Effigy' again).

From the rest I adore 'It came out of the sky' and 'The midnight special' (BTW, this song was covered by McCartney on CHOBA B CCCP (much worse, though)). 'Poorboy shuffle' and 'Feelin' blue' are enjoyable, too. As for others... well, nice background music.

I agree, Willy is nothing groundbreaking/asskicking/breathtaking but giving it 10/15 is a crime. Twelve sounds much nicer.

Oleg Sobolev <> (18.04.2002)

Oh, the album's first side is the best CCR I have heard so far - guys had great fun in both "Down On The Corner" and "It Came Out Of the Sky" and that's probably why I have a fun too, while listening those songs. "Cotton Fields" is the best song out of here - great melody in verse and chours plus the song isn't long enough to be boring. Haven't heard The Beach Boys' version (but probably will soon - Russian pirates will soon release 7 CD's full of Beach Boys' music in mp3! Yahoooooo!), but CCR version works perfectly for me. Finally, "Feelin' Blue" is just amazing - band plays like a one big machine and the song isn't boring at all! Only one "song" I hate is "Poorboy Shuffle". I said "song" just because it is the song for 4o or so seconds - other time seems to be just the same repeating stuff for me. Oh, and the second side is CRAP! Apart from great "The Midnight Special", other songs are just uncatchy country-rock numbers with "Side O' The Road" - even more boring instrumental than "Poorboy Shuffle" and "Effigy"... This is the real confusion - who on Earth needs this crap? Not me, certainly. And when John tries to sing that line "who's burning' (the line could be different - I don't remember what it is), it is real disaster for my ears. I give it a six, too - second side kills this one for me.

Brian Adkins <> (05.12.2003)

I must disagree with you on this one and CCR in general. I don't think this album is all that different than Green River or Cosmos Factory, maybe a point less, but it deserves no less than an 8. I love the instrumental takes and don't see any major problems with the sound coming out of my speakers. And of course the album has it's share of radio hits that made it to Chronicles. I also don't think albums like this and Sgt Peppers are all that conceptual but that doesn't help nor hurt the album. I mean The Who Sell Out is concept, not this. But anyway, I'm happy to agree to disagree and apologize that you don't get the same enjoyment as I do from this album, it's really lots of fun to be missing.

Fritsch Michael <> (14.02.2004)

While there´s not too much else about the other stuff, I seriously disagree with the original view on 'Effigy' - it´s one of these songs that carry you away in their spirit and carpet of sound, very much like other classics like Pink Floyd´s 'Comfortably numb' of Uriah Heep´s 'Circle of Hands'... Does seem a bit out of place for CCR, but still one of my favorites...

Jim Greer <> (24.05.2006)

I thought I was familiar with CCR's work until I heard 'Effigy' for the first time tonight. Unlike the other commenters, my initial take wasn't concerned with whether it was good or bad: my initial impression was to question whether it or Jimi Hendrix's "Hey Joe" was recorded first.

[ Hendrix played "Hey Joe" publically in 1967; I assume CCR wrote and recorded "Effigy" in 68 or 69. ] I recommend listening to these two tunes back to back to compare.

Tagbo Munonyedi <> (31.07.2006)

This is a funny album for me, one that I've tried desperately to like since I first heard it in '79. Around that time, I was really going through what turned out to be the most cataclysmic musical leap I ever took of the 8 or 9 that I've taken in my life. I had just gotten into early Floyd and Purple and my headspace was more than ripe for change....and I tended to pick up all kinds of LPs at this time and the overwhelming majority have stayed with me up to the present day. This one looked interesting......but only EFFIGY and POORBOY SHUFFLE stood out. As I listened to it more over the years, FEELIN' BLUE and SIDE O' THE ROAD made the grade. But I've given up ! Twenty seven years is a long time, many marriages don't last that long ! But those four are great songs. FEELIN' BLUE is nice and sparse with wordplays that sound rather daft now but didn't then, I presume. I like SIDE O' THE ROAD with it's metallic guitars. It's an instrumental that keeps up the interest, as does POOR BOY SHUFFLE. I don't know why but it sounds like skiffle to me, the stuff that John Lennon, George Harrison, Keith Richards and millions {well, ok, maybe thousands, alright, hundreds} of young boys in England started out with in the 50s before rock'n'roll hit their lives. It's got all the ingredients of skiffle, washboard, tea chest bass, guitar, harmonica if someone could play it......It tweaked me from the kick off. The day I first heard it, my Dad was roasting a deer and whenever I hear it, I remember the anticipation of that deer ! EFFIGY is one of my favourite songs of all time. The discordant note is the song is one of the most effective twangs ever, the intro is intriguing, the deadpan delivery is fantastic, tense and evocative of something....but I've never been able to put my finger on what; the bass and drums are steady and inventive, with that solid beat and as for the two solos, well !The first one is glorious in it's minimalism, but electric. The second is an extension of the first but better and more in depth. The harmony to it is great and it's one of the best closers to an album that I know. I also love WHO'LL STOP THE RAIN from the next album.


Glenn Wiener <> (26.08.99)

Their best effort from start to finish. Personally I think 'I Heard It Through The Grapevine' should be credited to CCR on the account of good taste(not that Marvin Gaye's version is lacking, its aok), but Fogerty's guitar and Cosmo's drumming is just plain excellent! God and look at all the singles from this record. Its like a Greatest Hits Collection.

Lyolya Svidrigajlova <> (07.11.2000)

Better than the previous one but the complaint is - TOO many hits! There are certain kicks like saxophone which appears first in "Travelin'band" and then it leads this wonderful closer slow ballad which I adore - "Long as I can see the light" (well, in fact, vocals are terrible here, but the whole song is still allright). Another complaint is that "Who'll stop the rain" would be far much better if Tom sang there (well, at least, more natural cause if we look through Tom's solo songs, many of them remind us... guess what? mmhum, sure, "Who'll stop the rain"). And... there's too many covers! Not disgusted, just a bit disappointed - Lyolya Svidrigajlova.

Bob Josef <> (21.12.2000)

With all due respect to Lyola, I don't see how one can complain about a record having too many hits! This was the first LP I ever bought as a little 12-year-old, because so many of the songs were major AM hits. Even "Grapevine" was edited for a single release in 1976. John just comes up with so many great hooks and meaningful lyrics -- "Jungle" and "Rain" are statements on the Vietnam Road, "Bend" and "Band" convey the joys of playing rock and roll, and "Lookin' " is a delightful childlike fantasy -- I don't really think it's an acid thing at all. And I 'll take the jams of "Grapevine" and "Ramble Tamble" over anything Jerry Garcia has ever done. The sense of melody and structure are never forgotten, no matter how long these songs go on. Just brilliant. The other three covers are the weakest things here. Compared with John's originals, they don't quite cut the mustard. All in all, though, an absolute classic, the band's best album.

Morten Felgenhauer <> (10.01.2001)

10/10 - It's perfect from start to finish. Each and every friggin' Fogerty original is so good it hurts and the covers are at least as good as their origins, if not better. On an album like this there really are no peak moments, but listen to those tempo changes in "Lookin' Out My Back Door" and dig. Listen to the whole damn album, for God's sake!

Oleg Sobolev <> (18.04.2002)

I LOVE the version of "I Heard It Through The Gravepine"! Guys just rule. Especially John, 'cos his guitar and voice is more than great for me. "Ramble Tamble" is the second best song - GREAT melody! "Run Through The Jungle" is almost perfect, "Lookin' Out My Back Door" is a good song that perfectly works in hospital and 'Who'll Stop The Train" is gorgeous. Other songs on this album are good too, except for "Before You Accuse Me" (I prefer Eric Clapton's version), which is just boring as hell and "Ooby Dooby', which is stupid, but short. Ah, and I almost forgot about "Up Around The Bend" - it is an AWFUL song. I give it a nine, though. There is a filler, but not too much of it. My advice - buy this one.


Glenn Wiener <> (26.08.99)

Truthfully, I find this record to be Creedence's weakest effort. Experimentation is good but there is too much use of the bland Organ effects and some of the song-writing seems to run out of lyrics in such semi-throwaway numbers like 'Sailors Lament' and 'Chameleon'. 'Have You Ever Seen The Rain' is probably one of CCR's best songs both musically and lyrically.

Lyolya Svidrigajlova <> (07.11.2000)

And, finally, something really interesting. I can't agree with mr. Wiener that this is CCR's weakest effort. It's just something different, and the point is that there was already a certain stereotype about CCR and they just tried to break through it, but... they weren't excused for it. Who needs you trying to move further if they're satisfied by you doing the same things again and again?

The best ones here, IMHO, are:

1. 'Rude Awakening #2'. Really!!!!!!!! Well, maybe "too late for psychedelia" but how this one is... awww! supernatural! Something from Mars or so? :-)))) A very crazy one! well, maybe they just drank TOO much before recording this cut, but the result is... ooh!!! I can hardly understand why people hate it...

2. 'Chameleon'. A little bit of funny lyrics, well-done horn section by brothers&Cook (or it was only John? doubtfully...) and a nice vocal effort. I like it! boom!

3. 'Hideaway'. This is John's best vocal effort. That's a pity he could never do it again... A very emotional song - that's all you need to know about it. Mmm... I'm still crying... that's like "bye-bye, Tom, and sorry..." And you still say that JC is an indifferent guy? who knows? "It's just a thought" is not bad, and "Pagan baby" too, and "Sailor's lament" is something strange, while the rest is... mmm... not to comment upon. But remember, there are NO covers, finally! Delighted, Lyolya Svidrigajlova.

Morten Felgenhauer <> (10.01.2001)

8/10 - I miss Tom's rhythm guitar (although he was still in the group), but the "radical" experimentation (we are talking about CCR here) largely compensates for that. And the songs themselves are mostly of very high quality. The production is very clear and much effort has been made in the instrumentation. As mentioned there are lots of keyboards and horns (all played by John?) to compensate for the lack of guitars. Listen to Stu's bass playing as well. The only misfire is of course "Rude Awakening #2" - it starts out nice, but it really should have been faded out earlier. It's worthless. Highlights: "Have You Ever Seen The Rain", organ in "Born To Move" and the full stop in "Molina". Can you believe that the dorks that made Chronicle 2 forgot the remaining part of the latter song when mastering the CD I have?

Ryan McKay <> (14.02.2004)

All I really want to say is that of all the songs I have ever heard and loved (quite a few), "Have you ever seen the rain" is my favourite. Ever.


Glenn Wiener <> (26.08.99)

This is agent GJW from the MDG. This Mardi Gras record from the Creedence Clearwater Revival is one CLASSIC piece of work. That song-writing tandem of Clifford and Cook really bring CCR to new heights that even the Beatles could not touch on their best day! You say you want a revolution. Well the Nashville CCR Revolution has begun and this record should be 'Tearing Up The Country'(Yours and Mine) with classic songs anyday now. So you all better be 'Looking For A Reason' to 'Take This Record Like A Friend'. Or else the MDG will get ya!

Well if you believe what I wrote above, you'll believe that Jim Morrison is really alive and well and living in Africa, the moon is made of cheese, and Traffic is going to jam with George Starostin in downtown Moscow. Seriously, this record is not as bad as everyone says it is. If you are not much for Country music you will not like this record. Truthfully, I find it kind of light hearted with some good rock elements here and there. The guitar playing on 'Sweet Hitch A Hiker' and Clifford's 'What Are You Going To Do' are very good. The cover version of 'Hello Mary Lou' is quite snappy and 'Someday Never Comes' is one beautiful song. The other songs are simple but pleasant. This is by no means top of the line material. However, it is frequently overlooked because it is different.

Mats Fjäll <> (05.01.2000)

I just got this record to day, and what can I say? Well, that I'm not so surprised about the CCR getting into country, (hell even The Byrds recorded a countryalbum) and 'Looking out my backdoor' and 'Bad Moon Rising' has some country feelings...

I guess that I can learn to like this album if I give it some time...

Anyway, 'Someday Never Comes' and the non-country song 'Sweet Hitch-Hiker' stands out and is really great!

The cover of 'Mary Lou' isn't very thrilling (Queen does it way better on their Live at Wembley album!) and the rest is just fillers...

Get Green River or Cosmos Factory instead!

Tony Souza <> (22.01.2000)

First of all, let me say that this is one great site. Great graphics with well-articulated reviews. I couldn't agree with you more about this album. On it's own I guess you cold say it's not that bad an album. However, there are six previous albums that are so much better by this band than this one. This is simply a bland mediocre album with only two good songs on it ("Sweet Hitchiker" and "Someday Never Comes"). The rest just prove, to me at least, that Cook and Clifford, while good as a rhythm section, are simply not up to it as singers and songwriters. Fogerty, Cook and Clifford now pretty much disown this album with Fogerty saying that the other two wanted to have more say in the proceedings and Cook and Clifford saying that Fogerty "forced" them to write and sing their own materiel. Whichever one you believe, this still comes out as one stinker of an album.

Lyolya Svidrigajlova <> (07.11.2000)

Well, at first something not about this one but the situation in general. Well, about the song called "Take it like a friend"... mr. Cook said it wasn't about John but after reading his (Cook's) interview where he tells all the world what a piece of shit John is (well, this is very close to truth, but why do you have to tell it to everybody? I guess, Mr.Cook, you are more than 15-years-old...) - well, I can't hardly believe the first statement. That's the way. Humiliating and insulting is not the best way to be up, I guess?

Even if you're insulting a piece of shit...

Okay, about the other material. There are two good songs - "Sweet hitch-hiker" and "Door to door". A "not bad" one is "Someday never comes". The rest is awful. Not because it is different (Pendulum is different, too) but just because it's not done very well. While Cook's "roaring" is sometimes supportable, Clifford's efforts to sing and his flat voice are just disgusting! But, of course, they are "non-experienced" and you could excuse them. But... ohhhhhh... what's the opening track?! This is John who wrote it?! Bammm... And what happened to his voice? It sounds just as disgusting as Clifford's one... Terribly disgusted - Lyolya Svidrigajlova.

Bob Josef <> (17.12.2000)

The record reminds me of a post-Sweetheart of the Rodeo Byrds album. One great singer/songwriter surrounded by backing musicians who just aren't up to snuff in terms of singing and songwriting when compared with the star of the band. and, like the Byrds, Clifford and Cook should NEVER have been allowed to write and sing.

Democracy doesn't always work in the musical sphere!

I tend to believe John's side of the story: big bro Tom left because John was totally dominating the proceedings, and he gave in to the other two in order to keep the band together. But it was almost like he was saying "Ha! I told you so!" when this record was released --the band broke up only about 4 months later after it was critically blasted. "Sweet Hitchhiker" is really the only song that recalls classic Creedence, although I agree that "Someday Never Comes" is the most powerful song on the album, with very poignant lyrics about abandonment.

George, I've been interested in your theory that 1986 was an abysmal year for classic rockers (although I really don't agree about including Gabriel's So). Some people have the same theory about 1972, when great 60's bands were either silent (the Who, George Harrison,Dylan), dead (the Doors, Hendrix) or releasing mediocre-to-awful records that sound like these people were falling to pieces. Think about it -- Wings' Wild Life, Lennon's Sometime in New York City, the Kinks' Everybody's in Showbiz, the Beach Boys' Carl and the Passions:SoTough. And this record would make the list, definitely. Maybe it's a 14 year cycle -- which means this current year would be a baddie, too! I on to something here?

[Special author note: well let's see... at least we have the Stones' Exile On Main Street. Would that mean that it also sucks?]

Morten Felgenhauer <> (10.01.2001)

5/10 - This is easily the least interesting CCR album, as the only interesting songs are "Sweet Hitch-Hiker" and "Someday Never Comes". The rest are not awful, but they're not very good, either. In other words - don't buy it if you only have a casual interest in the group, as the best songs are included on Chronicle. It's funny, though, that the least interesting album gets more responce than the others. And they're not even disagreeing!

Alexander Zaitsev <> (25.06.2003)

I've just downloaded the tracks from Mardi Gras credited to John, and all I can say is that everyone more or less interested in CCR must find a way to get 'Someday never comes', because it is magnificent! George, thanks for a great review of the album!


Mats Fjäll <> (11.11.99)

Maybe this record isn't that good, I.m not gonna say anything else.... But there's a few songs that a really great: 'Travelin' Band' & 'It Came Out of The Sky'! To me the relly big flop is......'Proud Mary'! It sounds very boring and uninspired. Sadly enough....


Bryan B. <> (09.07.99)

Well, you wrote up an interesting John Fogerty page, George. I was a bit taken aback by the '1' rating when McCartney and Lennon got 4's...but I forgot, it all goes back to revolutions and revolutionaries, doesn't it? I would actually agree with most of your album ratings, though. I don't agree that "The Old Man Down The Road" is a rip-off of "Run Through The Jungle." I heard the similarities when I first listened to it, but eventually I came to realize what a different song it was indeed.(Try listening to the "Run Through The Jungle" and "The Old Man Down The Road" back to back.)

Also sounds to me that John is playing excellent guitar throughout the record, something you didn't mention at all aside from saying "there's quite a lot of guitar on here."

As for Blue Ridge Rangers, it is John who is playing the banjo. He did everything on the record but the background vocals. Violin, trumpet, guitar, drums, production...he did it all!

All in all, I think you probably like these solo records more than your reviews showed. The ratings certainly balance out this theory of mine. If I had to make a single complaint about the page, I would say it comes off sounding way too rushed. You sound as if you made your mind up about these albums long before you heard them! I generally hate references in reviews to "ripoffs" when a serious artist is being discussed. I don't think John's career is really so much about "imitating himself and generally failing"...I actually couldn't respect the man very much if that is all he was about during must of his post-CCR period. This is not to say that your reviews were BAD or anything; of course not! At times you were more than fair to JF(I never could have anticipated you would like "Vanz Kant Danz" so much!). This is all just my opinion. I wouldn't have a reviews page if I found I didn't disagree with most people quite a lot of the time...

J.van.Doorn <> (15.08.2000)

I like this page very good. I saw John Fogerty finaly in the Netherlands and it make me a happy guy. the last time he was here in the Netherlands was 29 years ago and my mother saw that show in the Concert gebouw with suport act Tony Joe White. It was the magic to hear his voice for the first time real live and the power was great and the second thing is the guitarsound who made the show. There were a few thing I don't like about the show that was a new version of Down on the Corner with the modern drum and the drum guy who is playing with John for the last couple of years that guy don't have that swampie sound he is more a drummer for a heavy metal band. I have all the records of John fogerty and CCR and even some Golliwogs songs. CCR is always in my live it started when I was a little kid my mother was young and she and my uncle were big fans of CCR and Jerry lee Lewis so that's what I hear a lot. I remeber she go to that show in 1971 and she said it was great and now I had the chance but he was suport act in the Tina tour that is a shame that guy have to do his own tour. I hope he come back.But after all what do I think about John Fogerty is nothing than he is a great songwriter and peformer and it's a shame those stupid money thing and bad people destroy a good band and John Fogerty for a long time. But the old man s on the road again and that make me feel good.

Lyolya Svidrigajlova <> (04.11.2000)

Our thoughts about JC in general:

Some funny trivia (maybe unnecessary, but still):

1. As well as on Blue Ridge Rangers, all the instruments on Centerfield are played by John.

2. John didn't play any CCR songs for 15 years (1972-1987) bar the occasion when he was urged to the stage during his brother's wedding. In fact, he was not intended to add anything to CCR's legacy at that time.

3. A quotation: "...I have never wanted to be thought of as an oldies or a revival guy, you know, nostalgia." (Larry King Live Weekend, 30.01.99)

4. 1975's album also has another title, "Shep" (Shep is John's dog which you see in the cover).

5. Blue Moon Swamp cover photo is NOT a retouched photo, everything is real (except for the sky).

6. And the last thing. Eye of the Zombie reached the golden status. Really. It also has at least one favorable review (written by Matt Loewen, he even says it is better than Centerfield).

As I see it, the main problem is not ripping-off although I don't mean this factor doesn't exist. [Well, I'd rather use the word "reminiscence" to be, say, more polite. Don't treat it as a piece of advice, nevertheless.] The guy is not given a chance, or, at least, it could seem that he thinks so. So many reviewers tell something like "I would never expect any breakouts of him" or "why John's release should be original or something". And he seems to be so affected by people's opinion that sometimes it seems that his goal is just to break the common stereotype... at least, before BMS... Another problem is that sometimes he bares his soul and shows his vulnerability TOO much (sometimes his songs sound more CONFESSION than MUSIC, in fact... go check "Searchlight", for instance, and then say I'm wrong), and it is not very clever since he is still a "public figure"... The main problem is concept or, less pompously, motivation. One might disagree but, as I see it, there is a "concept" of "an ugly duckling trying to become a swan by falling deeper into dirt". Cherishing depression, being an "impostor martyr". It is not evident in 70's albums... well, okay, it is not evident in Rangers, it is just a bit clearer in Shep (I mean, a self-titled album). It IS obvious in Hoodoo but who has heard it? It is quite evident in 80's. You can see there not only an impostor martyr but an angry impostor martyr. It is a bit hidden in Centerfield. So, what do we hear there? "Put me in, coach... let me say, please! Don't bury me, give me a chance!" The concept reaches its peak in Zombie. Yes, so few people like it, and yes, it is a dead-end but it is a peak. A peak of what? "You don't want to listen to me, you goddamn suckers? So keep your dirty hands off! Or kill me, kill me, KILL me... ah shit... what the hell am I doing? But still, you don't want to listen to me, you goddamn suckers?.." and so on by the same circle. Who wants to be a "goddamn sucker"? So, the hostility for this album is quite understandable.

Ok, the dead-end is reached, the wall got so high that there is no way to get over it. This position and this situation are more typical for Russian rock. There are three most popular ways out: a) suicide; b) monastery; c) recognizing the symptoms and starting everything over, as if you haven't done anything yet. This latter way is less popular, so, I can only respect the one who chose it. Of course, you may begin to write cliches, mediocre songs but this is just as if you have never been a songwriter before. Of course, this is hard to do when you're an underdog buried alive many years ago (and you recognize that it's only your fault). But some people will surely appreciate it. Don't forget that BMS won a Grammy... [I can hardly guess for what, but that's okay.]

And don't forget that all above is only my view. [Anyway, I think that such a hard worker (it is not at all secret that it usually takes him at least a month to write one song) deserves a 2... okay, okay, 1.5... Still, that's only an emotion, but... I can't agree that he's worse than ABBA, for instance.]

[Aah... oops... No, forget that. The main problem is that most of you knew from the very beginning that he was "a guy from CCR". I did not. Really. For about eight years. So, for me, CCR and JCF are two different things (very different, in fact). Although John himself doesn't like it when anybody tries to separate him from or compete him with "that guy in Creedence, which is silly". Or you might say that it is MY problem. (Aww, I DID know what was CCR, I just didn't know that he took part in it. The same story with Mark Knopfler). Anyway, it is all in brackets, so I have a good opportunity to tell what are the factors that made me like him: a) he's not very successfull in show business; b) he's not a handsome boy; c) he's ALWAYS sincere and emotional; d) he doesn't try to hide his influences; e) he has a very, very, VERY male identity; f) he wrote one of two most affecting lullabies (to my ear and to my child's ear) if we are talking about rock-musicians (along with Knopfler's "Why worry"). Ah, I forgot... it is "Dream Song", of course.]

Still, the best epitaph for him would have been a Vonnegutish one: "Somebody ... Sometime to Sometime ... He tried". If you insist on funeral...

skeeter <> (09.01.2001)

I am a Fogarty fan as well, and a songwriter/musician , and, i gotta tell you, there is nothing wrong with staying in the same groove, as long as the newest stuff is creative and somehow distict from the past. Blue Ridge Rangers was different fro Willy and the Poorboys, and Blue Moon Swamp is not BRR. Just because Mr Fogertys sound is so destinct and unique does not mean it is stagnant. The mans music is constantly creative, and that is the true issue. If Hank Williams senior were here in front of me i would want to hear HIM, not Randy Travis.

If you like J Fs music AND music in the style of that from the rock era, you may like this:

Glenn Wiener <> (05.07.2001)

The star behind Creedence has proven that he could produce quality music on his own. Although John Fogerty has gone through several long dry periods in between releases, time has not aged the mans ability to write a good song. Blue Moon Swamp received a Grammy Award . And John’s eighties smash Centerfield will always go down in history as one of the great Baseball Songs of all time. The self titled John Fogerty album is also a winner. Just avoid Eye of The Zombie as John’s synthesizer experiment goes way too far. None the less, John Fogerty is a proven comodity in the rock n roll world.


Lyolya Svidrigajlova <> (04.11.2000)

"Here comes Johnny singin' oldies goldies..." (copyright Mark Knopfler - all-time the best!) Hummm... country music... Well, I like some tunes out, like "Somewhere listening", "You're the reason", and, of course, "I ain't never", but there's a thing that was always surprising for me - how could he make these "oldies goldies" sound as if they were his own songs???? That's the point. Well, sometimes his voice sounds very much like Carl Perkins but I don't mind - I love Perkins! And sometimes you can even think that he (I mean, Fogerty) has a good voice. Well-done imitation. Actually, he has none. But he sings well. Why? Just because he puts all the emotion and force in his very poor and weak voice. That's what I like! And, don't forget that he did all the instrumental and vocal parts - alone! Guitars, of course, bass (well, he's a very poor bass player, to be honest), drums (not bad), harmonica, banjo, something like dobro (wuww! I can't tell you how much I hate this instrument!), horns, keyboards, and even fiddle! Don't blame on me if I forgot something. Well... I just can't show non-respect for a guy who can play even fiddle (or you call it "violin"?)! But oww... he SHOULD have used little psychedelic or harmonic fiddle solos more and more! that's a great kick, especially for hard-rocking songs (like "Walking in a hurricane", for example)! And... as for me, it all sounds like a real band, not a one-man-band. A sort of onanism, huh? But it's hard to find so much musicians... especially when you have just left your glorious "favourite American" band... and so many people consider you guilty for its disband... Terrified by the number of instruments this guy can play - Lyolya Svidrigajlova

Tom Hayden <> (28.01.2001)

I agree that this is the best Fogerty solo album. In fact it is the best Fogerty solo album by far. It's great - save the gospel. "You're the reason" is phenomenal! I also agree: Fogerty's voice today is gone. He's a shell of his former self. Go listen to 'Graveyard Train' and then Blue Moon Swamp. I guess that's what 30 years and six kids will do to ya! I wonder if John even knows how terribly squeaky and shrill he now sounds. No soul. No muscle. Oh well. Blue Ridge Rangers is great beer drinkin' music!


Glenn Wiener <> (18.08.99)

A badly underrated release. Just about every song is a winner here with the possible exception of 'Lonely Teardrops'. It would have been nice if John performed the entire song instead of just the chorus. None the less its passable. Truthfully, I find 'Dream Song' very creative with the varying musically embellishments. One verse gives you a folk backing, another sweet Dixieland, and the final one a steady rock beat. Call me crazy but its my favorite on the record. My only other drawback is there is a lacking of soloing on the record. Overall I'd rate it a 12 or 13 on your scale.

Tony Souza <> (09.02.2000)

Despite it's flaws, this is actually my favorite album from Fogerty. This was a couple of years after CCR broke up and it was also the time the relationship between Zaentz and Fogerty started to get really bad. Zaentz wouldn't let him out of a contract CCR signed when they started, so David Geffen came in and contracted Fogerty out for this one album. Fogerty at the time was fairly stressed when he made this and it shows. That being said, I still like this album. It may be underproduced, but I like the organic quality of the music: The horns on "Travalin' Man" and "Lonely Teardrops", The guitar riff on "Almost Saturday Night", the beautiful "Song/Dream" etc. The sound is a little thin, but like I said, I'd rather have this than have it over-produced like Eye of the Zombie.

Lyolya Svidrigajlova <> (04.11.2000)

Welllllll... I just like it, not "la-la-like it". Somehow it works. "The Wall" is my favourite here - just a simple, hard rock'n'roller with harmonica solo. And... on the whole, the lyrics are not bad, and that's why I like it much more than all CCR commercial efforts. Horns are also great kick, and there are some funny moments when he tries to hide his horn failures under screaming "Whoooa!" or something alike. Not a good horns player, for sure, trying not to show that... funny and touching... If you want to know about "Almost Saturday Night", don't listen to this track here, just take "Premonition" version! Or, you'll never guess that it can work! I like "Dream Song", especially the part where the horns turn on. Much like Tom Fogerty, but who can ever avoid influence of their older brother? The main and practically only drawback is the ending. Great title, but a terrible disco-sounding song. Brrr... Inspired - Lyolya Svidrigajlova.


Glenn Wiener <> (18.08.99)

Steady if not overly spectacular. Alot of it does sound similar to Creedence but 'Vantz Kant Danz' proves that John can vary his style somewhat successfully.

Lyolya Svidrigajlova <> (04.11.2000)

Mmmmm... yes, I've heard it... that's nice to find out that somebody enjoys "Zaentz kant danz"... I found this one very funny, although not great. I don't like this album. Just because there are only two songs which are really good IMHO - the first two. So, I listen to these ones and then turn my player off. "The Old Man Down the Road" just rocks. It sounds, mmm, a bit terrifying, but... well, I like him doing things like this. And "Rock'n'roll Girls" is just my all-time favourite. I've heard it somewhere in middle or late 80's, when I was about nine or ten years old, and it was something like... and it still is something like... well, there are songs that just MUST exist, for sure, and this one is of that kind... I can hardly explain it.. "My fading memory tells me" (copyright Mr.Cook, brrr...) that it was a nice and funny video clip which I saw on TV at that time... I can even recall some moments out... but I'm not sure if it really exists, cause I've never seen it again... I like his saxophone playing although he doesn't play well... he plays just RIGHT. A very promising beginning... but the rest is... well, I just don't want to talk about the rest... Confused - Lyolya Svidrigajlova

Donn <> (15.10.2001)

Just wanted to clarify on one of the song titles. True, 'Vanz Can't Dance' was originally directed at Saul Zaentz, but the original title was 'Zanz Can't Dance'. Shortly after the record was released (with the "Zanz" title), it was reprinted to "Vanz". I luckily have one of the original pressings.


Glenn Wiener <> (18.08.99)

Fortunately, I borrowed this album from my local library and not purchased it from my local record store. Its a nuclear disaster. Certain things in life just do not belong together. Cats and Dogs, NY Yankees and Brooklyn Dodgers, Jalepeno Peppers and Sugar. Add John Fogerty and Disco to that list. Keep synthesizers away from him as well for the most part. I have not heard this record in over eight years and the memory of one poorly arranged track after another still sticks with me. 'Changin' The Weather', an excellent song, is possibly the only track that saves this mess from a perfect 0!

Tony Souza <> (09.02.2000)

Can't really add much more than what you've already said about this. It's his worst, and anytime when an older artist wants to get "modern" by adding whatever is currently in vogue at the time (in this case, the synthesizer, drum machines) the music they put out is automatically dated. This album simply does not age well.

Lyolya Svidrigajlova <> (04.11.2000)

Quotation: "... I think I stopped worrying about fashion, I stopped worrying about all the anger, you know. I knew -- I, kind of, had gotten that out of my system with a record that I made right after Centerfield, and I realized...

KING: What was that?

FOGERTY: It was an album called Eye of the Zombie, which -- I sometimes say, "I am a zombie." And I realized I had just -- maybe there was some soul-searching and anger that was released, but it really had no other distinguishing social value." (Larry King Live Weekend, January 30, 1999) [Yup! A "distinguishing social value"? Come on! Isn't that too lofty a goal?]

[Nevertheless, it is still my favourite so I'll maybe make some efforts to defend it...]

Really... this is unbearable. But I say "unbearable" with the most favorable connotation. It is way overloaded with the mixture of "gloomy&crazy", "sad&crazy" and "sad&calm" emotions (that's more a compliment than an accusation). Even if you like it, it is not healthy to listen to it too often. Second... keep it away from children! You can take it from me... Anyway... As far as I know, there are two points about this album that people consider as self-evident. First, "keep the synths away from him", which assumes that there are far too much synths [I can hardly guess why it is too much but if you say it is too much then, okay, it is too much] and they are absolutely out of place [yes, in some cases like "cowbell" solo in the title track, and, perhaps, in Soda pop which is just a kind of an unsuccessful joke so I couldn't care less for it. Anyway, is there ANYBODY in this world who LIKES it?!] . Second, "it doesn't age well", which possibly suggests that old JC is too old for this kind of music... [come on! forty years is not THAT much!] As I see it, those statements lay on a basis of a certain background stereotype about the guy. [This is like to say: "Hey, boy, take it from me, I know better who you are and what you are to do". Hum?]. I might be wrong, anyway. [although I'm always right :-))))))))) This is a joke.]

It looks as if John is trying to create a monster out of himself. Well, just look at the cover photo and say that this guy doesn't look similar to younger Fogerty... really! Beginning with a strange keyboard tune, he then turns into a dancing zombie in some mythical place, then this "immortal dead man" gives you a funny rock-n-roll political proclamation against mass-media, then we suddenly find out that a dead man could be in love with a living woman, then he returns to his mythical place again and tries to frighten people, then back to life and another political proclamation, this time against the war and militarism, then he (or it?) tells about a certain devilish woman, then protests at all kinds of dirty tracks in show business, and then it unexpectedly turns out that this zombie is not really that dead and that monstrous... Almost a full man's story... Fortunately, he in fact doesn't reach the goal of creating a monster out of himself. The result seems to be just the opposite. It looks as if the guy is crying for help... Then... there is a so-called "statement" in this album. And it is very similar to Tom's statement in "Sidekicks". As I see it, it is the following: life is worth the trouble of living. The difference is that Tom's statement is more like "life is worth the trouble of living because it is amazing" while Jonh's statement is more about "life is worth the trouble of living despite it is shit". Whatever you prefer... still, just look at the final songs of both albums - they sound very much alike! Keyboard-driven, calm, sang in a very high voice (too high for me! ah, forget...), celebrating life... and we can see in both cases that the guys who wrote and performed them are thinking about death (unfortunately). The last point is that in my view, "Sail away" screams for whistling. Although I would rather prefer live instruments there such as, for example, piano, flute and perhaps fiddle, the synths are almost okay.

All in all, it is: a) disputable [there is NOTHING undeniable in this world, Georgiy Sergeevich. "If one egghead wrote a song and four eggheads performed it, there will surely be found another egghead who would say it is great" (copyright Andy Lloyd; might be wrong at the point of grammar). Ah, never mind]; b) taking time to think and to get used to it [it takes a HUGE lot of time to get used to it. Not that I advise anybody who hates it to listen to it once again] and c) it shows that JC can be sometimes not so concentrated on whether people would like his music or not.

And the last and the least important thing: "Headlines" is "rewarded" by some people for "the best song ending through Fogerty's solo career". [While I would reward this "slow rap", I mean, "Violence is golden", for being the most interesting song off the album. Aww, the most interesting song by JC in general! Bar non-released songs.] Anyway, I WOULDN'T highly recommend you to listen to this album if you like Creedence, especially middle or late Creedence... [aww... forget Creedence at all... there's no place for Creedence here... if you are not crazy, in fact] You might be very, very, VERY badly grieved.

Bob Josef <> (11.06.2002)

Despite your lumping this in with your other dreaded "1986 albums," I don't think it sounds much like them. The keyboards are certainly there, but they aren't laid on nearly as thickly as on synth disasters like Leather Jackets, The Other Side of Life or Invisible Touch. And, unlike you, really think the opening instrumental, "Goin' Back Home," is very cool, with those cascading synth vocals (no human voices at all, George).And the liner notes don't mention drum machines at all, so I don't think he used any.

The problem is not the production. It's the clumsy songwriting. You're right -- John confidently thought he had regained the Creedence vibe on Centerfield (although he didn't convince me). So, he decided he needed to stretch into new areas. But he tried to do things that he just wasn't good at. Such as silly Stax-type soul grooves with kind of dorky love lyrics ("Wasn't That a Woman?", "Knocking on my Door"). I don't recall John ever writing any love songs with Creedence (he left those to covers), and he shouldn't have bothered. Or: graceless, unsubtle rockers with sledgehammer social commentary ("Violence is Golden," "Headlines"). Or, a combination of the two ("Soda Pop."). These are embarrassments, especially compared with classics such as "Fortunate Son" or "Who Will Stop the Rain?". John comes off as a cantankerous old men with these. And while "Sail Away" isn't nearly as unpleasant (but still klutzy musically), something bothers me about John writing about resignation and escapism.

This doesn't leave much left. But I do like the title track, with it's tough drum track, guitar and those scary lyrics -- which are actually about terrorists, not zombies. This makes the song even scarier today. And "Change in the Weather," with its "Bad Moon Rising"-type lyrics and its "I Heard it Through the Grapevine"-type music, is the one song that does recall CCR. I like it better than anything on Centerfield. But its no wonder John basically disowns the album today.

John took the Zombie band on the road, the best part of that being the three black guys he brought along to sing backup. But at this point he absolutely refused to play any CCR songs (maybe because he doesn't own them?), instead concentrating on Zombie and Centerfield, which didn't thrill the crowd. The only time he reached back was for the very last song, "Rocking All Over the World," which stood heads above any other number. A pre-Capitol comeback Bonnie Raitt was the opening act, and she was received far better than Fogerty was.


Glenn Wiener <> (18.08.99)

An excellent return to form. Heavy on the country influence but loaded with excellent songs. Personally I find 'One Hundred And Ten In The Shade' to be one of the records highlights. Without a doubt it was the best record of the year 1997.

Tony Souza <> (09.02.2000)

Excellent return to form. His guitar playing has improved greatly, and the sound is clear and crisp. He abandoned his one-man-band approach and the songs have a nice rich texture that wasn't there on his previous efforts.

My only complaint is that the songwriting isn't up to par and in a lot of cases it's rather cliche.

His songwriting used to have more bite to it. Still, though, a very good album.

Lyolya Svidrigajlova <> (04.11.2000)

Well, at first, it was like a... relief for me just because I've heard somewhere that John is... dead since 1986 - either a heart attack, or just committed suicide, after Zombie... mmmhum... that wouldn't be much wonderful, there's so much pain in there! But, fortunately, it was just another silly rumour around our little town in Moscow origin. Hurray! And... he's back. Oops. What can I say about this one? On one hand, it is too much similar to Tom Fogerty's albums (the vocals especially, although not as strong). Well, you know, I like Tom Fogerty but not as much as to wish everybody sound like him. Well, if I touched this point... (is that right English? sorry) Well, if it will be the last John's album (and it looks much like this - formerly, he did the second album for a decade in one or two years, and now... three years passed... and, still, he had three albums in 70's (including Hoodoo!), two albums in 80's, it would be very logical if he will have only one in 90's... and no breakthroughs, like Hoodoo or Zombie were... no wordy or new-sounding album... hummm...) - well, it wouldn't be a good "swan song", as Tom's Sidekicks was... On the other hand, it could have been much worse... it's still better than Centerfield, I can't say there are bad songs... well, except for this annoying dobro serenade which my father likes I don't know why. And there are certainly great kicks such as "Rattlesnake highway" and "Walking in a hurricane" - here, even the voice sounds as strong as before and as... mmhum... sexy... Well, I enjoy "110 in the shade" because I imagine very clearly a guy with a showel which is digging... a grave for himself... very funny, isn't it? And when somebody said that "Bad Bad Boy" could have been dedicated to... a cat (I've always thought it was self-ironic), I listened to this tape once again and I laughed a lot... "Southern streamline"... a good country song which I like to play with my acoustic guitar... and here, drums are just great! Ah... well, I adore this first verse line in "Rambunctious boy" - "I ain't good-looking and I ain't so smart..." honestly, at least..... :-))))) To sum up... very self-ironic, more than ever. A kind of music which is "out of styles" - not rock, not pop or anything else, just good music. But I miss his former sexy craze... Not disappointed, anyway. Lyolya Svidrigajlova

Robert Olson <> (20.04.2001)

Well you asked for a response, here it is unvarnished. Moronski! Of course he sounds like CCR, he was the creative force behind CCR's sound. DUH! Apparently the years of litigation he had to endure from those that wanted to squeeze his wallet in order for him to be able to play his music again didn't figure into or fit into your "review". But he triumphed over them in style, and the Grammys were long overdue. John Fogerty doesn't release a piece until he thinks it's ready. Comprende? He doesn't just shovel musical anthracite into the blast furnace of public opinion like some people do. THAT is the definition of a musician. The man writes music, not crap. Your commentor Loyolya was right, it's just good music. Nostalgic my big pink posterior, it's toe-tappin' good stuff. The album rocked, and the tracks all stand by themselves without support from any of the other tracks. It cooked on "Southern Streamline" right on through "Hot Rod Heart" and "Rambunctious Boy", and "110 in the Shade" was as Mississippi P-farm road gang bluesey as it gets. Those weren't "hilarious growling voices", that was Delta Gospel-type vocals backin' him up. He's movin' & groovin' again, and I for one am glad for it! Of course the effects of the lyrics is not CCR-ish. The artist has grown! And I'll continue buying his albums and concert tickets as long as I judge the music worthwhile. In fact, I think I'll put the CD in again right now. All aboard!


Tony Souza <> (11.02.2000)

Good live album. Fairly good song selection from CCR and his solo records. I like the re-arraignment of "Suzi-Q" and "Born on the Bayou" is one of the all-time great opening songs. I feel the songs from Blue Moon Swamp hold up real well with the classics, although I agree that "Rattlesnake Highway" should have been on here. The problem I have with this is that it was recorded in front of a hand-picked audience and recorded for a VH1 special. This makes the audience atmosphere here seem kind of superficial for me. My wife and I saw him on this tour and the show we saw had a lot more energy and drive than the one that they recorded for this CD. I also wish this one had "Working on a Building" included on it. That song just comes alive in concert. "Who'll Stop the Rain" also came across to me as very bland. Overall, this is a good live overview of his career, but I think it could have been better.

Lyolya Svidrigajlova <> (04.11.2000)

Well, to begin with, I was afraid of listening to that... it took me a couple of years to buy it and to listen to it... The reason is... "Well, please, God help him not to sound bad!" Thrilling... but... after some "turnin' (toinin':-) on" of "Born on the Bayou", his voice begins... to sound! Just as great as ever! (and as... sexy...) I like new rendition of "SuzieQ" where he tries to imitate Tom's calm voice (or it sounds like that) - he seems to be flirting with the crowd, as he does in some of his comments between songs. What is so special about that? I don't know. The only thing I know is that even the dumbest songs from CCR catalogue (like "Down on the corner"... brrr) sound not as silly and very rocking on this record. How can he do that? Wish I could do it, too! And this deafening chorus on "Almost Saturday Night"? Actually, it's not "deafening" in the proper meaning of this word, but it drives me crazy! (and not only me!) This new song... well, it reminds me somehow Mark Knopfler, although there is no such great guitar, for sure. Just the vocal style and the whole feeling. There is some embarassement here - like backing vocals added at the studio, uninspired drumming by Kenny Aronoff, the song "Proud Mary" which I hate, lack of saxophome in "Traveling band", vocals on "Centerfield" and "The old man down the road", and so on... I'm not intended to pick up all the drawbacks, because... well, if something is done "perfectly", without any drawbacks, it usually doesn't sound alive... and this one DOES sound alive, for sure, despite old-and-thought-to-be-dead CCR songs which, too, somehow sound alive! Well, to be sincerely... why do I like it so much... it's because my father and my husband enjoy it and our three-years-old girl just adores it! For me, it's the best kick of music - when it is loved by elderly people, younger people and small kids as well! Especially if it's my kid... Excited - Lyolya Svidrigajlova

Dallas Nyberg <> (27.12.2000)

I originally saw this concert as a TV special....I missed the first couple of songs, but I was soon mesmerised by the talent that John and his band displayed. As far as I'm concerned, John Fogerty IS the sound of Creedence and he performed the CCR hits, note for note, perfect.

The song "One hundred and ten in the shade" is a knockout. John's touching tribute to his lady shows the obvious sincerity that he has for his music and the special people around him. His guitar skills are astounding and his band are wizards at getting it right......his drummer is the best I have ever seen (or heard) I read a review of this concert, that accused him of "milking" the CCR legend for all it's worth, I, for one, would have been disappointed if he did not do so! The stage setting was right on the button, it created the right mood for the whole concert.

I received the video for Christmas (thanks Santa) and I play it continuously .....

Great Music, Great Value..........

10 out of 10

Dallas Nyberg Moorland NSW Australia

PS: I am 48 years old.......and I grew up listening to CCR.....They were the best thing that happened in the '60's......


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