PAS-6004 Original Soundtrack Recording from the Paramount Picture "Friends"
Produced by Gus Dudgeon
Released on March 5, 1971
US CHART POSITION #36 . . . GOLD RECORD
Find it at GEMM
PAS-6004 cover
[high resolution scan]
 

T his one’s pretty gay even before you get to the packaging: a light classical film score, ballads, a song about the importance of friendship. Elton John and Paul Buckmaster lent their talents to this story of young love, but neither the film nor the soundtrack have escaped the dust of time. I bought this for one song, “Can I Put You On,” and was happy to get the honky-tonkin’ “Honey Roll” as a throw-in. The remaining ballads from Elton and Bernie are precious and precocious: “Michelle’s Song,” “Seasons,” “Friends.” The title track was a minor hit over here, as was the album, but this is typical of most soundtracks: one or two good songs, some half-baked leftovers and classical pop that strives to make silk suites out of a polyester melody or two. On the classical side, Buckmaster’s ten-minute “Four Moods” is at least ambitious, but there are plenty of other B’s in the alphabet (Bach, Beethoven, Brahms, Bruckner) who do this sort of thing better. As someone who owns more than a few Elton John albums, I can tell you that Friends can wait. The proper classic albums (even Caribou) have more in store, and from there you’d be better off spending your money on live albums, the tacky ‘80s stuff, even the early Empty Sky before making the acquaintance of Friends. What’s on here from Elton is all right, there just isn’t enough of it. Of minor interest, it does feature one song (Honey Roll) with an actual saxophone solo, which is a rarity among Elton John songs. For a good reason, apparently.

TRACK LISTING

  1. FRIENDS    2:20
  2. HONEY ROLL    3:00
  3. VARIATIONS ON FRIENDS    (Introduction and Coda composed by Paul Buckmaster)    1:45
  4. THEME (THE FIRST KISS)/SEASONS    3:52
  5. VARIATIONS ON MICHELLE'S SONG (A DAY IN THE COUNTRY)    (Introduction composed by Paul Buckmaster)    2:44
  6. CAN I PUT YOU ON    5:52
  7. MICHELLE'S SONG    4:16
  8. I MEANT TO DO MY WORK TODAY (A DAY IN THE COUNTRY)    (Introduction composed by Paul Buckmaster)    1:32
  9. FOUR MOODS    (Paul Buckmaster)    10:56
  10. SEASONS REPRISE    1:33

    All songs composed by Elton John/Bernie Taupin unless noted

CREDITS

ELTON JOHN -- vocal and keyboard performances
PAUL BUCKAMSTER -- arrangements and additional music
BERNIE TAUPIN -- lyrics
Madeline Bell -- backing vocals
Lesley Duncan -- backing vocals
Rex Morris -- tenor sax (2)
Dee Murray -- bass (2,6)
Nigel Olsson -- drums (2,6)
Caleb Quaye -- guitar (2,6)
Liza Strike -- backing vocals
John Gilbert -- executive producer
Robin Geoffrey Cable -- engineer

REGION RELEASE DATE LABEL MEDIA ID NUMBER FEATURES
US March 5, 1971 Paramount LP/8T PAS/PA8-6004  
GER 1971 Paramount LP 1C-062-92266D  
JPN 1971 Paramount LP SWG-7512  
US 1978 Pickwick LP SPC-3598  
JPN 1979 Paramount LP VIM-7249  

 

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