MCA2-10003 Goodbye Yellow Brick Road
Produced by Gus Dudgeon
Released on October 5, 1973
UK CHART POSITION #1 . . . US CHART POSITION #1 . . .
7x PLATINUM RECORD
Find it at GEMM
MCA2-10003 cover
[high resolution scan]

K ronomyth 8.0: ELTON ON MAIN ST. This is Elton’s White Exile: the double-album chef d’oeuvre that encompassed in a single vista the breadth and depth of his musical world. The albums before and immediately after were twin peaks (typically a ballad and a rocker) in a forest of forgettable midtempo songs. Goodbye Yellow Brick Road is a tour de force (what’s the French translation for pretentious weiner?) with eighteen songs where nearly all stand tall, crowned by two great ballads (“Candle in the Wind,” “Goodbye Yellow Brick Road”) and two great rockers (“Bennie and the Jets,” “Saturday Night’s Alright for Fighting”). In other words, just the sort of multilayer wedding cake to dispel the notion that Elton had irreversibly entered the kitchen of cookie-cutter complacency. Beyond the best-known hits, Goodbye Yellow Brick Road contains credible forays into nearly every avenue of music that Elton had previously explored: 50s rock & roll (“Your Sister Can’t Twist,” which has a keyboard solo that XTC fans will find prescient), island music (“Jamaica Jerk-Off”), smartly arranged and pristine pop (“Grey Seal”), and a handful of character studies featuring outlaws (“The Ballad of Danny Bailey) and the out-of-place (“All The Girls Love Alice” and, of course, the aforementioned Candle). Like every great double-album should do (Blue Moves, I’m looking at you), Yellow Brick rewards each return with a handful of keepsakes. Maybe you’ll find yourself singing a few lines of “Sweet Painted Lady,” or it could be the chorus of “Harmony” in your head, but you’ll never walk away from this Road empty. Elton’s 70s albums are admittedly a mixed bag; some of them are great (Captain Fantastic), some are mostly stems and seeds (Caribou). Few of them are half as good as Goodbye, which for my money is the best thing Elton’s ever done.

P2-21747 cover
P2-21747 cover
[high resolution scan]

TRACK LISTING

    Record One
  1. FUNERAL FOR A FRIEND
  2. LOVE LIES BLEEDING
  3. CANDLE IN THE WIND
  4. BENNIE AND THE JETS
  5. GOODBYE YELLOW BRICK ROAD
  6. THIS SONG HAS NO TITLE
  7. GREY SEAL
  8. JAMAICA JERK-OFF
  9. I'VE SEEN THAT MOVIE TOO

    Record Two
  10. SWEET PAINTED LADY    3:52
  11. THE BALLAD OF DANNY BAILEY (1909-34)    4:24
  12. DIRTY LITTLE GIRL    5:03
  13. ALL THE GIRLS LOVE ALICE    5:13
  14. YOUR SISTER CAN'T TWIST (BUT SHE CAN ROCK 'N' ROLL)    2:41
  15. SATURDAY NIGHT'S ALRIGHT FOR FIGHTING    4:50
  16. ROY ROGERS    4:10
  17. SOCIAL DISEASE    3:45
  18. HARMONY    2:49

    2-CD reissue bonus tracks
  19. WHENEVER YOU'RE READY (WE'LL GO STEADY AGAIN)
  20. JACK RABBIT
  21. SCREW YOU (YOUNG MAN'S BLUES)
  22. CANDLE IN THE WIND (ACOUSTIC MIX)

    All lyrics by Bernie Taupin. All music by Elton John.

CREDITS

ELTON JOHN -- piano, organ, Farfisa organ, elecric piano, mellotron, Leslie piano, vocals
DAVEY JOHNSTONE -- electric guitar, acoustic guitar, slide guitar, steel guitar, banjo, backing vocals
DEE MURRAY -- bass, backing vocals
NIGEL OLSSON -- drums, congas, tambourine, car effects, backing vocals
BERNIE TAUPIN -- lyrics
Ray Cooper -- tambourine (13)
Kiki Dee -- backing vocals (13)
Leroy Gomez -- saxophone (17)
David Hentschel -- A.R.P. synthesizer, engineer
Del Newman -- orchestral arrangements
Prince Rhino -- vocal interjections (7)
Steve Brown -- co-ordination
Ian Beck -- outside cover illustration
David Larkham & Michael Ross -- inside cover illustrations, art direction
David Scutt -- inside cover illustrations
David Costa -- thanks for art direction

REGION RELEASE DATE LABEL MEDIA ID NUMBER FEATURES
UK October 1973 DJM 2LP DJLPD-1001 trifold cover
UK 1973 DJM 2LP DJE-29001 yellow vinyl, trifold cover
US October 5, 1973 MCA 2LP MCA2-1003 trifold cover, avail. as yellow vinyl
AUSL 1973 DJM 2LP L-70025/6 trifold cover
ITA 1973 Record Bazaar 2LP 2RB-384  
JPN 1973 DJM 2LP IFP-93105B trifold cover
MEX 1973 Musart 2LP EDIB-60069 gatefold cover
JPN   DJM 2LP 40AP-1561/2 trifold cover
JPN   DJM 2LP K18P-107/8 gatefold cover
AUSL   DJM 2LP L-70025/6 yellow vinyl reissue, trifold cover
CAN 1980 MCA 2LP MCA2-6894 lyric sleeves
POR 1980 DJM 2LP MM-77001 trifold cover
UK   DJM 2LP PRID-13  
US 1984 Mobile Fidelity 2LP MFSL-2-160 original master recording
UK   Rocket 2LP DJE-29001 trifold cover
US   MCA CD MCAD2-6894  
GER   DJM 2CD 821 747  
US/CAN   Polydor CD/CS P2/P4-21747  
TAI   Mercury CD 528 159  
US   MCA 2LP SD2-16614 audiophile version, trifold cover
UK 1995 Rocket CD/CS 528 159-2/4 digital remaster
UK 2003 Mercury 2CDX 9813205 SACD remaster w. bonus tracks
US 2003 Island 2CDX B0001570-36 SACD remaster w. bonus tracks
JPN 2005 Universal CD UICY-95011  
JPN 2006 Universal CD UICY-9107  
US   Mobile Fidelity CD UDCD-526 original master recording
UK 2008 Mercury 2LP 03746 180g vinyl, gatefold cover
JPN 2008 Universal 2CD UICY-93671/2 SHMCD remaster
UK 2009 Simply Vinyl 2LP SVLP-159 virgin vinyl
FRA August 3, 2009 Universal 2CD 86190 repackaged w. DON'T SHOOT ME
I'M ONLY THE PIAO PLAYER

 

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