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Tim Buckley

Prog Folk

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Tim Buckley Tim Buckley album cover
3.02 | 39 ratings | 8 reviews | 5% 5 stars

Good, but non-essential

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Studio Album, released in 1966

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. I Can't See You (2:42)
2. Wings (2:34)
3. Song of the Magician (3:08)
4. Strange Street Affair Under Blue (3:13)
5. Valentine Melody (3:44)
6. Aren't You the Girl (2:05)
7. Song Slowly Song (4:16)
8. It Happens Every Time (1:52)
9. Song for Janie (2:45)
10. Grief in My Soul (2:07)
11. She Is (3:08)
12. Understand Your Man (3:10)

Total Time 34:44

Bonus CD from 2011 remaster:
1. Put You Down (The Bohemians demo) (2:25)
2. It Happens Every Time (The Bohemians demo) (2:05)
3. Let Me Love You (The Bohemians demo) (2:26)
4. I've Played That Game Before (The Bohemians demo) (2:46)
5. She Is (The Bohemians demo) (3:08)
6. Here I Am (The Bohemians demo) (2:49)
7. Don't Look Back (The Bohemians demo) (2:19)
8. Call Me If You Do (The Bohemians demo) (2:46)
9. You Today (The Bohemians demo) (2:45)
10. No More (The Bohemians demo) (2:46)
11. Won't You Please Be My Woman (The Bohemians demo) (2:36)
12. Come On Over (The Bohemians demo) (2:11)
13. She Is (acoustic demo) (2:51)
14. Aren't You the Girl (acoustic demo) (2:05)
15. Found at the Scene of a Rendezvous That Failed (acoustic demo) (1:53)
16. Wings (acoustic demo) (2:26)
17. My Love Is for You (acoustic demo) (2:03)
18. Song Slowly Song (acoustic demo) (3:42)
19. Song Introductions by Larry Beckett (0:39)
20. I Can't See You (acoustic demo) (3:05)
21. Birth Day (acoustic demo) (1:35)
22. Long Tide (acoustic demo) (1:42)

Total Time 53:03

Line-up / Musicians

- Tim Buckley / vocals, guitar, arrangements

- Lee Underwood / lead guitar
- Van Dyke Parks / harpsichord, piano, celesta
- James Fielder / bass
- Billy Mundi / drums & percussion
- Jack Nitzsche / string arrangements
- Brian Hartzler / guitar (bonus 1-12)
- Larry Beckett / drums (bonus 1-12)

Releases information

Artwork: William S. Harvey (photo)

LP Elektra - EKS 74004 (1966, US) Mono audio
LP Elektra - EKS 74004 (1966, US) Stereo audio

CD Elektra ‎- 7559-61338-2 (1992, Germany)
2CD Rhino Handmade ‎- RHM2 526087 (2011, US) Both versions (Stereo/Mono) remastered with bonus CD including previously unreleased demos from Tim and also from The Bohemians

Thanks to Sean Trane for the addition
and to projeKct for the last updates
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TIM BUCKLEY Tim Buckley ratings distribution

(39 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(5%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(18%)
Good, but non-essential (62%)
Collectors/fans only (13%)
Poor. Only for completionists (3%)

TIM BUCKLEY Tim Buckley reviews

Showing all collaborators reviews and last reviews preview | Show all reviews/ratings

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Sean Trane
3 stars Debut album by an extremely shy boy that grew up in LA (Orange County) in the shadow of Disneyland, and one rather conventional folk rock album, much in the vein of the singer/songwriter albums that would plague most of the 70's. But freshly (and reluctantly) married Tim was left alone in the studio. Signed up to the LA-based Elektra label that made of folk and folk rock its centre of expertise (but also signing other locals Love and The Doors), This firm had the reputation of nurturing their talent and direct them with an iron hand (where Elektra-legend Joe Boyd in the UK acted mostly the opposite, when needed), so young Tim was directed and had very few things to say about this album, but it's not a typical folk album either, partly because of Tim's voice and compositions.

First, Tim already has in his entourage lyricist Harry Beckett (although he writes half of them alone) and guitarist Lee Underwood, and as guest interestingly enough, Van Dyke Parks on keyboards. Indeed tracks like I Can't See You (most likely a shot towards his forced-upon wife, especially that later on he has a song for lover Jainie) are of a personal nature, but well written enough to be of interest to everyone. Other stand-out tracks are Song Of The Magician, Song Slowly Song (Van Duke shines on this one) and the rockier Understand Your Man (intended for wifie and lover) are already pointing to the next album's more instrumental nature. Other like Wings, Strange Street Affair, Jainie Don't You Know, Grief In My Soul are just boring run-of-the-mill, early country (a dimension that will not be pursued latter on), while a few folk song like She Is, Happens Every Time and Valentine Melody are average folk tracks, just like most early Dylan fans liked them.

In some ways this album will be very quickly forgotten about, Tim never really disavowing it, but just shutting it out of his mind, something that most progheads could easily do, although I hear a frustrated growl from the folk purists.

Review by Easy Livin
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator / Retired Admin
3 stars Bohemians rhapsodies

We have to go way back to 1966 to find Tim Buckley's debut album. He recorded this release while still a teenager, Elektra records having signed him as a singer/songwriter in the folk vein of artists such as Tom Paxton. They certainly got what they paid for with this first release, although Buckley would display an urge to move into altogether more challenging and innovative areas soon afterwards.

"Tim Buckley" was released 2 days after the birth of Tim's son Jeff Buckley in late 1966. We should remember that in 1966, prog was not even a glint in the eye, although there were some proto-prog releases starting to appear. This is most definitely not one of them. Here we have a highly accomplished and enjoyable folk pop album which finds Buckley sounding at times like the aforementioned Paxton, and at times like the great Roy Orbison. Unlike later Buckley releases, this album needs to be looked at on that basis, rather than looked to for early signs of prog.

The first thing which strikes us is Buckley's fine voice. At this stage, he is effectively still the lead singer in a band (The Bohemians), the rest of the members agreeing that it made sense to give their leader the recognition he warranted (as an aside, the other three members of Creedence Clearwater Revival might have been well advised to have done the same in respect of John Fogerty).

While it would never win any prizes for originality even then, there is a wonderful beauty and innocence to the music. The Mama's and the Papas, Family Dogg, Gary Puckett and many more were using songs such as these to mesmerise the record buying public on both sides of the Atlantic. Songs such as "Wings" not only display the richness of Buckley's voice, but also his ability to capture a fine melody and set it to atmospheric lyrics. That said, the lyrics of Buckley's songs tend to be lighter than might be expected of your average singer/songwriter following in the wake of Dylan, the presentation of the songs clearly being the most important thing as far as Tim is concerned.

We do get occasional changes of tempo within the song, but on "Strange street affair under blue" for instance, it is merely in the form of a "Zorba's dance" like quickening and slowing. The most obvious hint of what is to come is "Song slowly song", a soft, broody number with a sparse arrangement, devoid of the strings which embellish many other songs here.

In all, a fine demonstration record of Buckley's ear for a strong melody, and for his alluring singing. Those who enjoy the US folk music of artists such as Tom Paxton and Pete Seeger should enjoy this collection a lot. It should be recognised though that had Buckley not moved on from his style here, he would not be listed on this site.

Review by UMUR
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
3 stars "Tim Buckley" is the eponymously titled debut full-length studio album by US folk rock/psychadelic rock artist Tim Buckley. The album was released through Elektra Records in October 1966. After a only a few weeks in college, Buckley left to pursue a career in music, and spend most of 1965 playing the Los Angeles folk club circuit. After attending a Tim Buckley concert, Frank Zappa & The Mothers of Invention drummer Jimmy Carl Black recommended the groupīs manager Herb Cohon that he take a listen to the then 19 years old Buckley. Cohon arranged for Buckley to play for a longer period in New York, and also managed to get a recording deal with Elektra Records in place.

Stylistically the material on this debut album is American folk with featuring the strong and distinct sounding voice and vocals by Tim Buckley in front. Itīs a mix of relatively nice rocking folk rock/psychdelic tinged songs and more mellow folk rock moments. While Buckley is probably mostly known for his later experimental rock releases, youīll get nothing of that on this debut album. That doesnīt mean this isnīt interesting and well sounding music, because it certainly is. Itīs not a perfect release, and I could for example have done without the string arrangements (by Jack Nitzsche) which are featured on some tracks, which provide the music with just a little too much polish, but itīs impossible not to be moved by the melancholic and intense vocals delivered by Buckley. He is an exceptional singer.

Paul A. Rothchild, Jac Holzman, and Bruce Botnick were involved with producing, engineering, and mixing the album, and not surprisingly seasoned veterans like those guys have produced an album featuring and organic, detailed, and powerful sound, perfectly suiting the material. Upon conclusion this is a relatively mature debut album, especially considering that Buckley was only 19 years old when recording it. A 3 - 3.5 star (65%) rating is warranted.

Review by Kotro
2 stars So here we have Tim Buckley's self-titled debut - not the kind of thing one would expect to find on ProgArchives. But since it's here, and given the magnitude of the name Buckley, one might as well give it a spin. The edition I'm reviewing comes with Tim's sophomore album, Goodbye and Hello, in the same disc. The booklet, while not vast, includes complete artwork and credits for the albums, as well as a critical review of the period in Tim's career when they were recorded.

There are very few highlight, as most of the tracks sound too similar, relying too much on the work of the rhythmic section of bass, drums and a mostly discrete guitar. Musically the only true good aspects to stand out are some of the keyboards and, of course, Tim's sometimes overtly dramatic teenager vocals. Some songs work rather well and can remain stuck in your head for a while (like the beautiful Song Of The Magician, Song For Janie and the out-of-place soulful rocker Understand Your Man) but the rest is quite simply all too forgettable.

If you wish to find out why Tim Buckley is listed in ProgArchives, the first few albums are not the place to look. You do, however, get some soulful songwriting walking the line between Dylan's folk and beat-pop, but nothing to be excited about.

Review by Warthur
4 stars Tim Buckley's debut album reminds me a lot of David Bowie's second self-titled album (AKA Space Oddity). In both cases, you have an artist later known for a decidedly different musical style trying to carve out a name for themselves with naive but undeniably charming hippie folk material, with a certain amount of romantic disappointment leavening things. The distinction is that Buckley isn't overwhelmed by studio fripperies - indeed, this is very much a stripped- down-to-the-basics album - and for my money he sounds more convincing in the counterculture troubadour role than Bowie ever did. And that downright unusual voice of his is a real attention-grabber.
Review by VianaProghead
3 stars Review Nš 233

Tim Buckley was an American singer, songwriter and guitarist, who was born in Washington D.C. His music and style changed considerably all over the years and in the early days, he released his first two studio albums, this eponymous debut "Tim Buckley" and his second "Goodbye And Hello" more oriented to the folk rock music. As he was a very eclectic musician, all over the time his music incorporated other styles like jazz, psychedelic, funk, soul and avant-garde. Tim Buckley had also a powerful and unique voice and due to his voice he attracted attention because of the sharp of his voice which approached him as a coral singer, what made him also a great and a very special vocalist. He was able to sing in lower register and higher falsetto in equal measure as an evolving "voice as an instrument" sound.

"Tim Buckley" is the self titled debut studio album of him and was released in 1966. Most of the songs were co- written by Tim Buckley and his friend Larry Beckett, while they were in the high school. Larry Beckett is a poet and songwriter, best known for his collaboration with his colleague and friend Tim Buckley in the latter years of the 60's.

For this album, Elektra put together an amazing team to record the album. They began by bringing in the producer Paul Rothchild and the engineer Bruce Botnick to help Buckley with the sessions. They were the team behind The Doors. About the musicians who colaborated with him, they brought the guitarist Lee Underwood, the keyboardist Van Dyke Parks, the bassist Jim Fielder and the drummer Billy Mundi. And if these weren't enough, Jack Nitzsche provided the string arrangements. So, everything was in place. It couldn't fail. But it did. The album only sold about 20.000 copies.

"Tim Buckley" has twelve tracks. The first track "I Can't See You" written by Tim Buckley and Larry Beckett is a very energetic good song. This is a very personal song addressed to his wife and where we can see a personal criticism to her. The second track "Wings" written by Tim Buckley is a ballad calm and beautiful with the use of an orchestra. It's one of the stands out songs of the album and is one of the most beautiful love songs I've ever heard. The third track "Song Of The Magician" written by Tim Buckley and Larry Beckett is a very beautiful song, one of my favourites, and is also one of the highest points on the album. The fourth track "Strange Street Affair Under Blue" written by Tim Buckley and Larry Beckett is a song where the rhythm will increase as the song progresses. It's a song that sounds as a Russian melody and which also reminds me the movie "Zorba The Greek" with its fast and slow dances. The fifth track "Valentine Melody" written by Tim Buckley and Larry Beckett is a simple, peaceful and calm ballad but it has nothing more special, really. The sixth track "Aren't You The Girl" written by Tim Buckley is a beautiful song with good rhythm and is amongst the songs that add some variety and diversity to the album. The seventh track "Song Slowly Song" written by Tim Buckley and Larry Beckett is a soft psychedelic song with some strange noises. It's a very interesting song with a musical arrangement more progressive indicating what he would do in the future. The eighth track "It Happens Every Time" written by Tim Buckley is a very beautiful song with good rhythm and with also an orchestra that make wonderful use of string arrangements to achieve a nice, luscious and romantic sound. The ninth track "Song For Jainie" written by Tim Buckley is a good and interesting ballad. It's another song of a personal nature but this time it's a song addressed to his lover Jainie. Despite the lyrics be very personal, it's well written enough to be interesting to everyone. The tenth track "Grief In My Soul" written by Tim Buckley and Larry Beckett is, in my opinion, a weaker song with poor interest. This is one of my less favourite songs on the album. The eleventh track "She Is" written by Tim Buckley and Larry Beckett is a very simple and nice ballad but a little repetitive and that eventually is a bit boring. This is only an average folk song. The twelfth track "Understand Your Man" written by Tim Buckley is a good rock song typical of those times and is a song with a more instrumental nature indicating what would be his music in the next future. It's another song also with personal lyrics, probably addressed to his wife Mary Guibert and his lover Jainie.

Conclusion: "Tim Buckley" was released in 1966 and isn't properly a true progressive album. However, is a good and interesting folk album with some good musical moments, very simple and naïve and it's, for me, very pleasant to hear. This album belongs to his folk musical period with his second next studio album "Goodbye And Hello". However, in my humble opinion, "Tim Buckley" is very far from the musical quality of "Goodbye And Hello". "Goodbye And Hello" is much more creative and mature, and is also a fantastic psychedelic/folk album, with some great, sophisticated and complex musical compositions, and where Tim Buckley demonstrates that he is a great musician and is the owner of a fantastic, special and unique voice. Nevertheless, "Tim Buckley" remains the most straightforward and folk-rock-oriented of his albums. The material on it has a lyrical and melodic sophistication that was astounding for a 19-year-old person. So, it's not his most adventurous album, but it's one of his most accessible, and retains a certain fragile beauty.

Prog is my Ferrari. Jem Godfrey (Frost*)

Latest members reviews

3 stars I guess, given my age and generation, it's not too too surprising that I've heard all I possibly could (at this point) of his son's work, the astounding Jeff Buckley, before I've heard a lick of Tim's discography. But here I am! To say this, in particular, feels like a long while coming is a cer ... (read more)

Report this review (#2693846) | Posted by DangHeck | Saturday, February 19, 2022 | Review Permanlink

3 stars Tim Buckley's debut is absolutely wonderful, his marvelous voice combined with the soft soothing melodies and romantic themes make of this album an very pleasant listening. Mixing folk with rock n roll, this varies between cheered up song and beautiful ballads with orchestral arrangements and m ... (read more)

Report this review (#220038) | Posted by JTP88 | Saturday, June 6, 2009 | Review Permanlink

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