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John P

ABM in Worst Rock N Roll Records Of Time

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Crg2   

Or it may be...some of us [Myself included] are not crazy about the song.Does not make me feel vulnerable or uncomfortable, and I believe 'Don't Want To Say Goodbye' and 'Overnight Sensation' are songs that do the same thing better...and are better songs. Yes, I'm aware OS has a differnet subject matter.

Well, of course that is possible, Hollies65. You have great taste, and, no doubt, a well-reasoned opinion to support your preference.

Obviously, people's tastes vary, even people who are fans of the same artist. However, I was thinking more about that element of music lovers and pundits, such as these writers, who sometimes, for reasons I don't understand, treat "All By Myself" like a musical whippin' boy. I should have made that clear.

As for me, all of those songs you mentioned are great, and I personally couldn't pick one over the other. I've been humming "Overnight Sensation" all day today.

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I believe ABM's whipping boy status started with Celine's over the top treatment...the same thing that cemented the franchise status of the song.

'Overnight Sensation' is a song all those damn musical hipsters on the other boards I frequent, name drop. I love it!

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No, ABM is a victim of having been released on Arista records.

When Clive took over Bell Records, he dropped most of the artists but retained Barry Manilow and Melissa Manchester, who I believe were the first two artists to have big hits on the new Arista label.

Barry scored a huge hit with "Mandy," and Melissa had a hit with "Midnight Blue". Clive signed me, and "All By Myself" became a monster hit. Suddenly, Clive was back on top and I think he seized on the "big ballad" as his personal formula for success. Radio began to see Arista as the label of "the big ballad" and then it became a self fulfilling prophesy.

It didn't help that Barry and Air Supply had hit after hit using the same formula ( "Bridge Over troubled Water" reverb on the snare drum, Mormon Tabernachle Choir, obligatory key change before the last chorus, a thousand strings on every song).

"All By Myself" was "guilty by association."

And of course, any song that gets played a few million times becomes an easy target.

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Crg2   

For me, Greg Brady killed "All By Myself." I was 9 when the song came out, and, a short time thereafter, this new "Brady Bunch Variety Show" comes on the air. On one epsiode, Greg/Barry moves out of the Brady house, singing a cheezeball rendition of "All By Myself" as he decides to come home to Mike and Carol at show's end. Well, I wasn't gonna like any damn song that goofy-fruity Barry Williams was singing, so that was that.

Sue me, but I was a kid. The next year, I found myself astounded that David Cassidy's brother could write a song as great as "Hey Deanie." wink

Aaaaaaaaaaaah . . . reckless youth.

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All By Myself and Sunrise got me hooked on Eric's solo music, but the entire Boats Against The Current just blew me away, a true classic album. I understand what you are saying Eric about Clive Davis, what he did to the single version of Boats as opposed to the album cut is blasphemy.

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Its rediculous to put ABM on this list. Just bullshit.

That whole period of time was so influenced by the piano playing song writer that it seemed every industry source/force was pushing it. There were tremendous successes, ABM included. Hard to believe that things evolved to the point that the piano playing songwriter is just an aside.

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Trindy   

Eric really hit the nail on the head as far as the Arista Records "guilt by association" thing is concerned...that was the most perfect description I think I've ever seen of everything I hate about those formulaic Arista hits.

And Crg2, I think my first hints that ABM was going to be something out of the usual were twofold: 1. when I first saw Bert Convy singing it on the Carson show; and 2. when I saw Donny Osmond singing it on the Donny & Marie show. The "joke" was that Donny was singing it in a set that was supposed to be a park, and while he was singing it, all these people came in from out of nowhere, set up blankets and picnics and a volleyball net and so on around him, and began running around him and playing games and hitting him in the head with the volleyball while he continued to sing "All by myyyyyyseeeeeeelf..." Har dee har har...I thought: Oh no, is this what poor Eric has come to? (Of course, what Eric was coming to was a major "ka-chingggg..."

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