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Symphonic Slam - Symphonic Slam   CD (album) cover


Symphonic Slam


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3.74 | 50 ratings

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4 stars They used to rehearse for hours on end in a little 2-bedroom house in Fresno, CA (Yes, I know - that sounds like Ted Knight's intro for his "Ted Baxter" character on the Mary Tyler Moore Show. Ha!) that I ended up renting that summer from one of the ORIGINAL two "sidemen", (drums + keys, guitar) who were both good friends of mine. Clearly, it was "Timo's band", and he was very exacting about how he wanted things to sound. And the "Guitorgan", odd as it was, was no doubt the primary instrument and focus of the group. Though my "landlord" (friend) did have one of the few Chamberlin (i.e., basically, an advanced Mellotron) keyboards in the US at the time, and that classic string sound was also an intrinsic part of the original repertoire.

But the trek from California to Canada that summer to play the clubs and develop the act further was not done with the players who performed on the record. I was told by my friends upon their sudden return, that "before the ink had even dried on the contract with A&M", they were basically shown the door and their "replacements" were ushered in by the label. It seemed to me that they had invested quite a bit of themselves in the belief that their "bandleader" would honor their commitment and take them with him to their first major recording contract. This was evidently not to be. Of course there's always "2 sides to every story" and this is not exactly a review of the CD, but I recall the music I heard as being very progressive for its' day and witnessed much effort to see it polished enough to land a (coveted then, as now) "major label recording contract". So next time they tell you "Don't try this at home." - don't believe 'em.

| 4/5 |


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