SW-3417 Goodnight Vienna
Produced by Richard Perry
Released on November 15, 1974
UK CHART POSITION #30 . . . US CHART POSITION #8 . . . GOLD RECORD (12/9/74)
Find it at GEMM
SW-3417 cover
[high resolution photo]
 

I know, I know… Ringo Starr can barely carry a tune. And yet the loveable scruff managed to deliver more actual, honest-to-goodness hits on Goodnight Vienna. “No No Song,” “(It’s All Da-Da-Down To) Goodnight Vienna,” “Snookeroo” and “Only You” did well on the charts, and only the last could be credited to post-Beatlemania inflation -- the rest of these are actually really catchy. Funkier and more electric than his last record (and thus, I guess, more boogaloo-ey), Goodnight Vienna starts on familiar footing with a new song from John Lennon, but George and Paul are noticeably absent this time around. Ringo carries the rest of the record with the usual stalwarts (Jim Keltner, Klaus Voormann, Vini Poncia) and some fellow stars (Elton John, Robbie Robertson, Dr. John). Ringo again manages to pull a few good originals from his hat and chooses some interesting covers, including Roger Miller’s “Husbands and Wives” and Allen Toussaint’s “Occapella.” His voice hasn’t improved, and yet it’s oddly compelling on songs like “Easy For Me” (featuring piano accompaniment from Lincoln Mayorga of all people), almost as if Ringo has grown comfortable enough with his voice to render songs in his own idiom (think Frank Sinatra with a headcold). The horn sections and backing vocalists further help sweeten the nasally roughness of Ringo’s voice, which seemed a little dry on his last album, all of which lends to the impression that Goodnight Vienna is a more musical-sounding album than its predecessor. It is more lively by a little, but that doesn’t compensate for the lack of The Beatles’ participation. Thus, without George Harrison contributing harmony vocals or Paul McCartney’s romantic ballads in the mix, there might be a little too much Ringo in this strawberry tart for some tastes. Still, compared to the albums that followed, Goodnight Vienna has to be considered a partial triumph.

SW-3417 back cover SW-3417 lyric sleeve
SW-3417 back cover SW-3417 lyric sleeve

TRACK LISTING

  1. (IT'S ALL DA-DA-DOWN TO) GOODNIGHT VIENNA    (John Lennon)    2:32
  2. OCCAPELLA    (Allen Toussaint)    2:55
  3. OO-WEE    (Richard Starkey/Vini Poncia)    3:42
  4. HUSBANDS AND WIVES    (Roger Miller)    3:20
  5. SNOOKEROO    (Elton John/Bernie Taupin)    3:27
  6. ALL BY MYSELF    (Vini Poncia/Richard Starkey)    3:20
  7. CALL ME    (Richard Starkey)    3:57
  8. NO NO SONG    (Hoyt Axton)    2:30
  9. ONLY YOU    (Buck Ram/Andre Rand)    3:16
  10. EASY FOR ME    (Harry Nilsson)    2:18
  11. GOODNIGHT VIENNA (REPRISE)    (John Lennon)    1:15

    CD reissue bonus tracks
  12. BACK OFF BOOGALOO
  13. BLINDMAN
  14. SIX O'CLOCK (EXTENDED VERSION)

CREDITS

RINGO STARR -- vocals, drums, percussion
JIM KELTNER -- drums
BOBBY KEYS -- horns
TREVOR LAWRENCE -- horns, horn arrangements, string arrangement
STEVE MADAIO -- horns, trumpet solo
VINI PONCIA -- harmony vocal, acoustic guitar, backing vocals, string arrangement, production assistance
LON VAN EATON -- guitar, horns, acoustic guitar, backing vocals
KLAUS VOORMAN -- bass, backing vocals
Richard Bennett -- electric guitar solo (4)
The Blackberries -- backing vocals
Dennis Coffey -- guitar (3)
Steve Cropper -- guitar, electric guitar
Dr. John -- electric piano
Jesse Ed Davis -- guitar, electric guitar
Chuck Finley -- horns (5)
Carl "Weddings and Bar Mitzvahs" Fortina -- accordion
David Foster -- piano (7)
Jimmy Gilstrap -- backing vocals (2)
Joe Greene -- backing vocals
Ira Hawkins -- backing vocals
Tom Hensley -- electric piano (4)
Nicky Hopkins -- electric piano (8)
Elton John -- piano (5)
Clydie King -- backing vocals
Linda Lawrence -- backing vocals
John Lennon -- piano and inspiration, guitar, acoustic guitar
The Masst Alberts -- backing vocals (1)
Lincoln Mayorga -- piano (10)
Lou McCreery -- horns
James Newton Howard -- synthesizer (5)
Harry Nilsson -- backing vocals
Richard Perry -- backing vocals, conductor
Billy Preston -- clavinet, electric piano
Robbie Robertson -- guitar (5)
Alvin Robinson -- guitar (6)
Derrek Van Eaton -- backing vocals
"Sweet" Cynthia Webb -- backing vocals (7)
Bill Schnee -- recoding and remix engineer
Roy Kohara -- art direction
Larry Emerine -- photography (inner sleeve)

REGION RELEASE DATE LABEL MEDIA ID NUMBER FEATURES
UK November 15, 1974 Apple LP PCS 7168 lyric sleeve
US November 18, 1974 Apple LP SW-3417 lyric sleeve
ARG 1974 Apple LP 8106  
COL 1974 EMI/Odeon LP 11344 inner sleeve
ITA/NET 1974 Apple LP 3C/5C 062 05762 lyric sleeve
YUG   Jugoton LP LSAP70702  
US   Capitol LP SN-16219  
US 1993 Capitol CD 80378  
JPN July 12, 2000 EMI/Toshiba CDX TOCP-53155 w. bonus tracks

 

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