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Buzzy Linhart - Buzzy ((LP)

Buzzy Linhart - Buzzy ((LP)

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Genre: rock
Rating: 2 stars **
Title:  Buzzy
Company: Kama Sutra
Catalog: KSBS-2053
Year: 1972
Country/State: Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
Grade (cover/record): VG / VG
Comments: minor ring wear; gatefold sleeve; includes inner sleeve
Available: 1
Catalog ID: 6125
Price: $15.00

His third album for Kama Sutra, 1972's Todd Rundgren produced "Buzzy" surrounded Buzzy Linhart with an impressive backing band including Steely Dan guitarist Jeff "Skink" Baxter and Ten Wheel After drummer Luther Rix. That said I'll readily admit this one did nothing to improve my appreciation for Linhart's talents. If anything the collection's versatility left me at a loss in terms of figuring out what Linhart's game was. Did he want to be a jazz star? A pop artist? A rocker? Who knows since he didn't seem to excel in any of these roles.

- Not to sound overly critical, but 'Tornado' was an irritating jazz-tinged number that simply tried too hard to be cute and clever and ended up sounding neither. Linhart's strained vocals didn't help much. Yech. rating: ** stars
- An acoustic ballad, Linhart, acoustic guitar, and vibes), 'Rollin' On' had a certain low tech charm. With a likeable, breezy melody, it wasn't going to get you overly excited, but was still worth hearing. rating: *** stars
- 'You Got What It Takes' found Linhart seemingly trying to get down and funky ... You could just hear him trying to find a hip groove. Shame he didn't come close to that goal. Hard to believe it, but the James Taylor cover actually beats the crap out of this version. rating: ** stars
- Not sure what was up with the goofy title, but the brief 'Boogaloother or Captain Hornbone's Last Desperate Truck' offered up an okay jazz-rock fusion instrumental. Shame the song faded out just as Baxter's guitar solo was starting to ramp up. rating: ** stars
- Previously recorded for a 1969 LP on Philips, the first half of the 'Sing Joy / Tutti Frutt' medley had a distinctive raga and psychedelic feel. The song actually sounded like Linhart had been hanging out with Donovan, or perhaps the Beatles on their brief trip to India. Yeah, stretching the song out over eight minutes in order to give each member a solo spot was a nice and democratic thing to do, but really didn't do anything to improve the song. Still, compared to the previous four tracks this one was actually quite innovative and enjoyable. As for the second half of the medley ... Apparently recorded live in the studio, at least it was relatively short. rating: ** stars
- While Linhart deserved some credit for being one of the first acts to cover an Elton John song, deciding to turn 'Take Me To the Pilot' into a country-rocker may not have been the smartest move. The song's wonderful melody remained intact, but the country-rock arrangement (complete with some scat singing) only served to mess with a classic tune. And what was up with the throat tearing squeal at the end of the song? rating: ** stars
- Normally a horn-propelled slice of Chicago blues like 'Eye 1-2-C-U Shuffle' genre wouldn't do much for me, but this one actually generate a bit of energy. Again, it wasn't anything particularly original, but Linhart sounded fairly enthusiastic on this performance. rating: *** stars
- Probably the album's most commercially oriented number, the ballad 'Tell Me True' featured a beautiful country-rock tinged melody and one of Linhart's most subdued and effective vocals. Wonderful performance and could have been a hit. rating: **** stars
- 'Don't You Pay Me No Mind' ended the album with another too cute stab at a rocker. rating: ** stars

The album was also tapped for a single:

- 1972's 'You Got What It Takes' b/w '' (Kama Sutra catalog number KA 548)
"Buzzy" track listing:
(side 1)
1.) Tornado (Buzzy Linhart - Artie Traum) - 2:30
2.) Rollin' On (Buzzy Linhart) - 3:20
3.) You Got What It Takes (Berry GOrdy Gwen Gordy - Tyron Carlo) - 2:45
4.) Boogaloother or Captain Hornbone's Last Desperate Truck (instrumental) - 1:10
5.) Sing Joy / Tutti Frutti (Buzzy Linhart - Dpmma Calles) - 8:30

(side 2)
1.) Take Me To the Pilot (Elton John - Bernie Taupin) - 5:00
2.) Eye 1-2-C-U Shuffle (Buzzy Linhart) - 2:30
3.) Tell Me True (Buzzy Linhart) - 3:30
4.) Don't You Pay Me No Mind (Buzzy Linhart) - 3:55
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