Thursday, April 17, 2014

Dave Mason - Alone Together (1970)





The Album

After being a key musician and songwriter for the band Traffic, Dave Mason struck out on his own in 1970 and began recording solo. “Alone Together” is his first solo release which also hosted a number of guest and session musicians:


• Delaney Bramlett - guitar, vocals (Delaney & Bonnie )
• Bonnie Bramlett – vocals
• Leon Russell - keyboards
• Carl Radle – bass (Delaney & Bonnie , Derek & The Dominoes, Eric Clapton)
• Chris Ethridge – bass (International Submarine Band, Flying Burrito Brothers)
• Larry Knechtel – bass (Bread)
• Jim Capaldi – drums (Traffic)
• Jim Gordon – drums (Delaney & Bonnie, Derek & The Dominoes, Little Richard)
• Jim Keltner – drums (George Harrison, John Lennon, Ringo Starr, Plastic Ono Band)
• Michael DeTemple – guitar (Rick Danko Band)
• Don Preston – keyboards
• John Simon – keyboards (The Band)
• John Barbata – drums (The Turtles, Jefferson Airplane, CSN& Y)
• Rita Coolidge - vocals
• Mike Coolidge - vocals
• Claudia Lennear - vocals
• Lou Cooper - vocals
• Bob Norwood - vocals
• Jack Storti – vocals

The original album is a piece of artwork. The album cover folds out into an almost 4 foot poster which held a very uniquely marbled vinyl album with a psychedelic colored blue thumb print on the label.






The Music

Dave had quite a bit of written songs left over from his time with Traffic and used some of this material on “Alone Together”. The songs are simple with smooth melodies. Dave has a great voice which is only enhanced by the guest vocalists creating some fabulous harmonies. You will hear awesome acoustic guitars embellished with electric guitars, along with some excellent wah-wah action. There is an un-credited jaw dropping solo from Eric Clapton at the end of “Look at You, Look at Me”. You will find a boogie woogie treat (Waitin’ On You) tucked neatly into the album, that is guaranteed to make you smile and tap your foot. The lyrics on “Alone Together” are well written and heartfelt, although, the song titles are lack luster. The piano and keyboard work is outstanding. Your ears will definitely take notice of the keyboard solo on “World in Changes” and the piano on “Sad and Deep As You”. There are also some cool fill-ins with the banjo on “Just a Song”. For me, the highlight of the album is the closing song, but the entire album is so smooth and flawless it is hard to pick an absolute favorite song.

This album is Dave Mason at his peak. The album is put together flawlessly and flows effortlessly from song to song. Excellent to listen to when you are in the mood to relax. Anyone who is a fan of Traffic will definitely love this album.
 
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