Alive on Arrival/Jack Rabbit Slim

Alive on Arrival/Jack Rabbit Slim

by Steve Forbert
     
 

Given the brutal nature of the music business, it's not really surprising that singer and songwriter Steve Forbert was generally abandoned by it after his contract dispute with Nemperor following the release of his self-titled album in 1982. Due to contract issues, he wasn't allowed to record again for nearly six years -- a death sentence for most artists. It's a… See more details below

Overview

Given the brutal nature of the music business, it's not really surprising that singer and songwriter Steve Forbert was generally abandoned by it after his contract dispute with Nemperor following the release of his self-titled album in 1982. Due to contract issues, he wasn't allowed to record again for nearly six years -- a death sentence for most artists. It's a familiar story, but one that is particularly poignant and heartbreaking because ever since Forbert released the two albums included in this package, 1978's Alive on Arrival and 1979's Jackrabbit Slim, he has been one of the most consistent, canny, sophisticated songmen on the planet. This set is being issued on the 35th anniversary of the former title, a commemorative edition licensed by Blue Corn Music with a fine, very personal liner essay from David Wild and great sound. Perhaps what's most astonishing about these two albums is how timeless they are; as in-the-moment now as when they were recorded. Had Jackrabbit Slim been released in the 21st century, it would have been a hit on contemporary country radio effortlessly melding folk, blues, rock, and even R&B. (Keith Urban cut Forbert's biggest hit -- "Romeo's Tune" -- as the opening track for his 2008 Greatest Hits set. No matter the labyrinthine nature of Forbert's career, two things remain constant: his work is consistently excellent and original, and these two albums stand among the greatest freshman and sophomore releases in pop history. 1978's Alive on Arrival came out of nowhere and revealed a songwriter in full possession of his gifts, right out of the gate. Just take a listen to "Goin' Down to Laurel," "It Isn't Gonna Be That Way," "Tonight I Feel So Far Away from Home," and the rocking closer "You Cannot Win If You Do Not Play," to see if you agree. Jackrabbit Slim is, if anything, even stronger than its predecessor. Cut in Nashville with producer John Simon, it's a crystalline view of how country, folk, pop, and rock -- which we now casually refer to as "Americana" -- work together in a balance that is confident and sophisticated. Forbert understands implicitly what his lyrics and melodies need to put across, and there isn't anything extra. From "Romeo's Tune" to "I'm in Love with You," to "Say Goodbye to Little Jo," to "Make It All So Real," "Sadly Sorta Like a Soap Opera," and "January 23-30 1978," his writerly (not pretentious) storytelling, sly wit, and an empathy with his characters, leaves other songwriters -- many we celebrate as legend -- in the dust. Over both discs, there are a slew of session and live bonus tracks that, all tolled, result in a glorious package that contains 32 tracks. This is easily one of the best reissues of the year and serves to remind anyone who ever knew it -- and inform those who didn't -- that not only is Forbert special, but that these records are, and will remain, bona fide classics.

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Product Details

Release Date:
03/26/2013
Label:
Blue Corn Music
UPC:
0677967130424
catalogNumber:
71304
Rank:
28748

Tracks

Disc 1

  1. Goin' Down to Laurel  - Steve Forbert
  2. Steve Forbert's Midsummer Night's Toast  - Steve Forbert
  3. Thinkin'  - Steve Forbert
  4. What Kinda Guy?  - Steve Forbert
  5. It Isn't Gonna Be That Way  - Steve Forbert
  6. Big City Cat  - Steve Forbert
  7. Grand Central Station, March 18, 1977  - Steve Forbert
  8. Tonight I Feel So Far Away From Home  - Steve Forbert
  9. Settle Down  - Steve Forbert
  10. You Cannot Win If You Do Not Play  - Steve Forbert
  11. It's Been A Long Time  - Steve Forbert
  12. House of Cards  - Steve Forbert
  13. Song for the South (Time's Gonna Take Me Back)  - Steve Forbert
  14. Steve Forbert's Moon River  - Steve Forbert
  15. Lonesome Cowboy Bill's Song  - Steve Forbert

Disc 2

  1. Romeo's Tune  - Steve Forbert
  2. The Sweet Love That You Give (Sure Goes a Long, Long Way)  - Steve Forbert
  3. I'm in Love With You  - Steve Forbert
  4. Say Goodbye to Little Jo  - Steve Forbert
  5. Wait  - Steve Forbert
  6. Make It All So Real  - Steve Forbert
  7. Baby  - Steve Forbert
  8. Complications  - Steve Forbert
  9. Sadly Sorta Like a Soap Opera  - Steve Forbert
  10. January 23-30, 1978  - Steve Forbert
  11. The Oil Song  - Steve Forbert
  12. Make It All So Real  - Steve Forbert
  13. Witch Blues  - Steve Forbert
  14. Oh, Camille  - Steve Forbert
  15. Smoky Windows  - Steve Forbert
  16. Poor Boy  - Steve Forbert
  17. Romeo's Tune  - Steve Forbert

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Album Credits

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