Greenman Tim of Walking the Berkshires started this meme. And it was a bit difficult simply because there was so much to work with. The question was “what were the 10 most formative albums of your teenage years?”
I’m not sure how to answer that; only rarely has music had a shaping influence on me. But I do love music of all sorts and I love the nostalgic feelings that working on this brought about. I thought about the music that meant the most to me for whatever reason. I couldn’t keep it to ten. So a lot of it is not profound–hey, we were teenagers–but it is what it is.
Technically speaking, I was a teenager from October 3, 1967–just after the Summer of Love–to October 2, 1974. That short period covers a lot of ground culturally in America. The music that I heard then I heard first on the AM rockers: during the day, KQEO 920 AM in Albuquerque; at night KOMA out of Oklahoma City. Later, after we moved, it was Music Power KMBY 1240 AM in Monterey, California, and of course, the greatest West Coast rocker of all, San Francisco’s legendary KFRC 610 AM. Toward the end of my teen years, I was listening to the KEDI-AM/KCMS-FM combo (“Colorado’s Music Mother!”) out of Manitou Springs, Colorado, which became KIIQ-AM-FM (“Top of the Rock”–a geo-musical pun). And I worked at a couple of radio stations, which I’ll have more about in some future post.
It’s a fairly eclectic list. That has to do in part with the constrained formats of commercial radio in those days. There wasn’t proliferation of individual formats; for the most part, it all got played on the same stations. Anyway, to do this, I referred to Billboard magazine’s Hot 200 Albums to help refresh my memory for the years in question, although I do own many of these. So here we go:
The Fifth Dimension, Up, Up, and Away
Paul Revere and the Raiders, Revolution!
Diana Ross and the Supremes, Greatest Hits (charted #1 in US and UK)
Simon & Garfunkel, Parsley, Sage, Rosemary and Thyme
The Association, Insight Out
The Jimi Henrdix Experience, Are You Experienced? (the first album I ever bought myself!)
Judy Collins, Wildflowers
Craig & posse visit with The Temptations
Glen Campbell, Witchita Lineman (Glen’s uncle, the late Dick Bills, was a radio and television celebrity in Albuquerque at the time).
The Chambers Brothers, Time Has Come
Barbra Streisand, Simply Streisand
The Rascals, Groovin”
The Moody Blues, Days of Future Past (you couldn’t hear this on AM radio in 1967; You had to find a cool friend who had a weird thing called an FM radio!).
Jose Feliciano, Feliciano!
Aretha Franklin, Lady Soul
The Beatles, Let It Be
Blood, Sweat and Tears, Blood, Sweat and Tears (Grammy Award, Best Album of the Year)
Creedence Clearwater Revival, Green River
Isaac Hayes (a moment of silence, please . . .), Hot Buttered Soul
Donovan, The Hurdy Gurdy Man
The Who, Tommy
Three Dog Night, Suitable for Framing
The Fifth Dimension, The Age of Aquarius
Blood, Sweat and Tears, BST III
Creedence Clearwater Revival, Cosmo’s Factory
Crosby, Stills, and Nash, Crosby, Stills and Nash
Simon & Garfunkel, Bridge Over Troubled Waters
1971–a year of romance for me!
The Carpenters, Close to You and Carpenters
Rod Stewart, Every Picture Tells a Story
Marvin Gaye, What’s Goin’ On?
Cat Stevens, Tea for the Tiller Man and Teaser and the Fire Cat
Chicago, Chicago III
Sly and the Family Stone, There’s a Riot Goin’ On
Elton John, Madman Across the Water
Neil Young, After the Gold Rush
Barbra Streisand, Stony End and Barbra Joan Streisand
1972–one of the best years of my adolescence!
The Carpenters, A Song For You
Al Green, Let’s Stay Together
Bread, Baby I’m-a Want You
Don MacLean, American Pie
Elton John, Honky Chateau
Isaac Hayes, Shaft and Black Moses
Carly Simon, Anticipation and No Secrets
Bette Midler, The Divine Miss M
Carole King; Fantasy
Seals and Crofts, Diamond Girl
The Doobie Brothers, The Captain and Me
The O’Jays, Backstabbers
Al Green, I’m Still in Love with You
Elton John, Don’t Shoot Me, I’m Only the Piano Player
John Denver, Back Home Again
Elton John, Good-Bye, Yellow Brick Road
The Beach Boys, Endless Summer
Gladys Knight and the Pips, Imagination
Barbra Streisand, The Way We Were
Love Unlimited Orchestra with Barry White, Rhapsody in White
August 22, 2008 Friday at 10:56 pm