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Thread: Robert Palmer

  1. #1
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    Robert Palmer

    Wasn't there a thread about him on the old site? Well, here we go again. I wanted to explore some of Robert Palmer's work in the '70s. I figured that if Genesis and the J. Geils Band had albums in the '70s that not many people paid attention to, but are now considered classics, what about Robert Palmer? I found a used copy of Sneakin' Sally Through The Alley on cd at Second Spin, and decided to snap it up cause it was used and cheap. I do not regret my purchase. This white boy could sure do funk and soul like the greats. Since this is a prog site, this cd does have some proggy bits:the first three songs form a suite and the last song(Through It All There's You) is twelve minutes long. What does everyone at PE think of the late, great Mr. Palmer? Should I explore his work further? If so, where should I go next?
    Last edited by JIF; 12-07-2012 at 01:50 AM. Reason: missing word

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    Member Boceephus's Avatar
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    I really enjoy Some People Can Do What They Like. RP was a helluva great vocalist, imo.

  3. #3
    Member FrippWire's Avatar
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    I'm a fan of Robert Palmer and think you really need to check out the "Clues" album. I believe an open minded progger can find something to like in this album. Stylistically "Clues" is all over the map but the songwriting, performance and production values remains high in spite of the stylistic variance.

  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by JIF View Post
    Wasn't there a thread about him on the old site? Well, here we go again. I wanted to explore some of Robert Palmer's work in the '70s. I figured that if Genesis and the J. Geils Band had albums in the '70s that not people paid attention to, but are now considered classics, what about Robert Palmer? I found a used copy of Sneakin' Sally Through The Alley on cd at Second Spin, and decided to snap it up cause it was used and cheap. I do not regret my purchase. This white boy could sure do funk and soul like the greats. Since this is a prog site, this cd does have some proggy bits:the first three songs form a suite and the last song(Through It All There's You) is twelve minutes long. What does everyone at PE think of the late, great Mr. Palmer? Should I explore his work further? If so, where should I go next?
    Regrettably, you already have his best work. He got way, way too slick way too fast. Sneakin’ Sally was one amazing album, though. His work with Vinegar Joe may be of interest, though, but I thought his solo career was all downhill after that great debut.

    Don’t even think of going near the Powerstation album, if you know what’s good for you.

    -------------
    MIKE (a.k.a. "Progbear")

    ‘“What blow, Goblin?” said Corinius.’ --E. R. Eddison

    N.P.:nothing

  5. #5
    Studmuffin Scott Bails's Avatar
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    Of his 70s stuff, I only have Sneakin' Sally, but I have both Addictions sets, Don't Explain, and Honey and enjoy them all. I've wanted to explore more but just haven't gotten around to it.

    Oh, and I LOVE the Power Station album. There was a second one made, but I've never seen it nor heard it.
    Music isn't about chops, or even about talent - it's about sound and the way that sound communicates to people. Mike Keneally

  6. #6
    cunning linguist 3LockBox's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scott Bails View Post
    There was a second one made, but I've never seen it nor heard it.
    I've heard a couple of songs off it, Living In Fear(1996) including a cover of Marvin Gaye's Let's Get It On... meh. The novelty of the idea (a band made up of former Duran Duranbassist and guitarist teaming with formerChicdrummer and Robert Palmer on vox) worked in the image conscious '80s, but was way past its relevance by time the follow-up was recorded in the mid '90s. By then, Palmer's voice was a bit sketchy and the couple of songs I heard were pretty generic '80s arena rock, with Let's Get It On being a fairly straightforward rendition with Palmer trying to approximate Gaye.





    The reason why the follow-up never developed until years after the debut was that Palmer's solo album Riptide, released just months after The Power Station's debut album, was a runaway success. Even though members of Power Station played on that solo album, Palmer opted to tour as a solo artist on the strength of his new found popularity, subsequently bailing on a scheduled tour with Power Station, not to mention pulling out at the last minute from the band's Live Aid appearance. The only time Palmer played live with The Power Station was their lone SNL appearance in the spring of '85 (I remember seeing that actually).

    I bought the debut album when it came out but the older guys I worked with were appalled at their rendition of Bang A Gong. I heard the original T-Rex version some time afterward and didn't really get the sentiment. Actually, I never got the reverence for T-Rex anyway. I like Power Station even in all its '80s sheen. Sounded killer on my car stereo.
    Digital playback brought high fidelity to the masses and audiophiles will never forgive it for that

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    Studmuffin Scott Bails's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 3LockBox View Post
    The reason why the follow-up never developed until years after the debut was that Palmer's solo album Riptide, released just months after The Power Station's debut album, was a runaway success. Even though members of Power Station played on that solo album, Palmer opted to tour as a solo artist on the strength of his new found popularity, subsequently bailing on a scheduled tour with Power Station, not to mention pulling out at the last minute from the band's Live Aid appearance. The only time Palmer played live with The Power Station was their lone SNL appearance in the spring of '85 (I remember seeing that actually).
    I always thought that Palmer told the guys in The Power Station when they formed that he was only in for the album - no touring. So, they asked him to play Live Aid, and he declined.

    I forgot - I have Riptide, too. Pretty good album.
    Music isn't about chops, or even about talent - it's about sound and the way that sound communicates to people. Mike Keneally

  8. #8
    meimjustalawnmower
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    Saw Vinegar Joe in New Orleans back in '73. Won tix and a t-shirt from a radio station. They opened for Wishbone Ash, iirc. Don't much remember Palmer so much as Elkie Brooks.

  9. #9
    He was great with the Little Feat guys.

  10. #10
    Pressure Drop and Double Fun are wonderful. A great talent and a guy who appeared to enjoy the finer things in life - judging by his album covers anyway.

  11. #11
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    "pressure drop" is killer as is "clues," "double fun" and "secrets" ,"pride" and "riptide" are good if a step down in song quality overall. after about 1986 the songs became more average/ meh. nothing here really proggy per se. I had a lot of his stuff back in the day but now i just have "the best of island years" and it works well for em.

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    Quote Originally Posted by yogibear View Post
    "pressure drop" is killer as is "clues," "double fun" and "secrets" ,"pride" and "riptide" are good if a step down in song quality overall. after about 1986 the songs became more average/ meh. nothing here really proggy per se. I had a lot of his stuff back in the day but now i just have "the best of island years" and it works well for em.
    What about Sneaking Sally Through The Alley?

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    Member yogibear's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JIF View Post
    What about Sneaking Sally Through The Alley?
    I just assumed that was one every one should have and really had no comment. every album he did had some good stuff but not every album had consistenet quality tunage all the way through. again all imo. ymmv

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    Quote Originally Posted by yogibear View Post
    I just assumed that was one every one should have and really had no comment. every album he did had some good stuff but not every album had consistenet quality tunage all the way through. again all imo. ymmv
    It's good to know that I got this as my first Palmer cd purchase.

  15. #15
    I thought Clues, You Are In My System, Some Guys Have All The Luck, Addicted To Love, and and Simply Irrestible were all good songs. Never had any of his albums. First time I heard Bad Case Of Loving You, I actually thought it was The Rascals or somebody like that.
    Last edited by GuitarGeek; 12-04-2012 at 11:25 PM.

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    Power Station Touring With Robert Palmer

    Actually, Robert Palmer did tour with The Power Station in support of the "Living In Fear" album. I saw them at the Electric Factory in Philadelphia. I remember enjoying the show.

    Library Jon

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    not to forget the iconic imagery he created with the “addicted to love” video ;-)> ... sadly he passed away in 2003. great artist, albeit a little underappreciated.

  18. #18
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    Sneakin' Sally is a funked-up classic. How could it be anything else, with the Little Feat and Meters guys supporting you? I always thought he had a great voice and good taste in material overall. Pretty much a class act, despite being caught up in that slick '80s sound like everyone else in the mainstream at the time.

    Regarding the Power Station, I did like that album. Tony Thompson was a monster on the skins, so much so Zep took notice and got him to fill Bonzo's throne at Live Aid - and I believe he probably did the best job on stage of all of them during their performance (and recruiting the already overworked Phil Collins to "help", why??)! Michael Des Barres took over vocals for the Power Station performance at Live Aid - I still remember being thoroughly disappointed.

  19. #19
    My favs are "Sally", "Clues", "Secrets" and "Some People Can Do What They Like". Fantastic singer and the first three albums are must buys if you're a Little Feat fan ('though it's only Lowell on "Sally" but there's the added plus of The Meters, Bernard Purdie, Richard Tee, etc.)

    The new Edsel 2-in-1 reissues are excellent with good informative liner notes. I think Palmer's image and album covers were a bit against him even 'though they were meant to be ironic.

  20. #20
    Member Mikhael's Avatar
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    Ah, "Some People Can Do What They Like". Not my style of music, but yet it really got me. His later stuff was okay, I guess, but this was Good Stuff.
    Gnish-gnosh borble wiff, shlauuffin oople tirk.

  21. #21
    Member Emeritus (A.M.P.) rcarlberg's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by iguana View Post
    not to forget the iconic imagery he created with the “addicted to love” video
    Aptly parodied by Shania Twain on "Man I Feel Like A Woman."

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    Not my cuppa at all.

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    He was great in Vinegar Joe and Dada, pretty good with Alan Bown. Solo stuff = not for me.

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