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Leon Russell

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Leon Russell - Leon Russell And The Shelter People [Shelter Records SW-8903] (3 May 1971)

LP to Digital [FLAC] transfer bundle $39.99
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ITEM# SR-SHSW8903
Ratings:C=VG; LP=VG

Please allow two to three weeks for delivery.

Artist:

Leon Russell

Title:

Leon Russell And The Shelter People

Released: 3 May 1971
Label: Shelter Records
Catalog: SW-8903
Pressing: Capitol Records Pressing Plant, Los Angeles
Genre: Rock, Folk Rock


Matrix / Runout (Side A):
1-8903-F-1. 4 *

Matrix / Runout (Side B):
SW-2-8903-F2.. *
T R A C K L I S T:
01 Stranger In A Strange Land
02 Of Thee I Sing
03 A Hard Rain's A Gonna Fall
04 Crystal Closet Queen
05 Home Sweet Oklahoma
06 Alcatraz
07 The Ballad Of Mad Dogs And Englishmen
08 It Takes A Lot To Laugh, It Takes A Train To Cry
09 She Smiles Like A River
10 Sweet Emily
11 Beware Of Darkness
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Album Review

Mike DeGagne [allmusic.com]

Leon Russell's accolades are monumental in a number of categories, from songwriting (he wrote Joe Cocker's ''Delta Lady'') to session playing (with the Rolling Stones and Bob Dylan, just to name a few) to his solo work. Unfortunately, it's the last category that never really attracted as much attention as it should have, despite a multitude of blues-based gospel recordings and piano-led, Southern-styled rock albums released throughout the 1970s. Leon Russell and the Shelter People is a prime example of Russell's instrumental dexterity and ability to produce some energetic rock & roll. Poignant and expressive tracks such as ''Of Thee I Sing,'' ''Home Sweet Oklahoma,'' and ''She Smiles Like a River'' all lay claim to Russell's soulful style and are clear-cut examples of the power that he musters through his spirited piano playing and his voice. His Dylan covers are just as strong, especially ''It's All Over Now, Baby Blue'' and ''It Takes a Lot to Laugh,'' while ''Love Minus Zero/No Limit'' and ''It's a Hard Rain Gonna Fall'' have him sounding so forceful, they could have been Russell's own. A hearty, full-flavored gospel sound is amassed thanks to both the Shelter People and the Tulsa Tops, who back Russell up on most of the tracks, but it's Russell alone that makes ''The Ballad of Mad Dogs and Englishmen'' such an expressive piece and the highlight of the album. On the whole, Leon Russell and the Shelter People is an entertaining and more importantly, revealing exposition of Russell's music when he was in his prime. The album that followed, 1972's Carney, is an introspective piece which holds up a little better from a songwriting standpoint, but this album does a better job at bearing his proficiency as a well-rounded musician.


Leon Russell - Stop All That Jazz [Shelter SR-2108] (1974)

LP to Digital [FLAC] transfer bundle $44.99
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ITEM# SR-SHSR2108
Ratings: C=NM-; LP=NM-

Please allow two to three weeks for delivery.

Artist:

Leon Russell

Title:

Stop All That Jazz

Released: 1974
Label: Shelter
Catalog: SR-2108
Pressing: MCA Pressing Plant, Pinckneyville
Genre: Rock, Folk, World, & Country


T R A C K L I S T:
01 If I Were A Carpenter
02 Smashed
03 Leaving Whipporwhill
04 Spanish Harlem
05 Streaker's Ball
06 Working Girl
07 Time For Love
08 The Ballad Of Hollis Brown
09 Mona Lisa Please
10 Stop All That Jazz
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Leon & Mary Russell - Wedding Album [Paradise Records PA 2943] (1976)

LP to Digital [FLAC] transfer bundle $39.99
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ITEM# SR-PAPA2943
Ratings: C=VG+; LP=VG+

Please allow two to three weeks for delivery.

Artist:

Leon & Mary Russell

Title:

Wedding Album

Released: 1976
Label: Paradise Records
Catalog: PA 2943
Genre: Funk / Soul
T R A C K L I S T:
01 Rainbow In Your Eyes
02 Like A Dream Come True
03 Love's Supposed To Be That Way
04 Fantasy
05 Satisfy You
06 You Are On My Mind
07 Lavender Blue (Dilly Dilly)
08 Quiet Nights
09 Windsong
10 Daylight
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Leon Russell's Biography

Jason Ankeny [allmusic.com]

The ultimate rock & roll session man, Leon Russell's long and storied career includes collaborations with a virtual who's-who of music icons spanning from Jerry Lee Lewis to Phil Spector to the Rolling Stones. A similar eclecticism and scope also surfaced in his solo work, which couched his charmingly gravelly voice in a rustic yet rich swamp pop fusion of country, blues, and gospel. Born Claude Russell Bridges on April 2, 1942, in Lawton, Oklahoma, he began studying classical piano at age three, a decade later adopting the trumpet and forming his first band. At 14, Russell lied about his age to land a gig at a Tulsa nightclub, playing behind Ronnie Hawkins & the Hawks before touring in support of Jerry Lee Lewis. Two years later, he settled in Los Angeles, studying guitar under the legendary James Burton and appearing on sessions with Dorsey Burnette and Glen Campbell. As a member of Spector's renowned studio group, Russell played on many of the finest pop singles of the '60s, also arranging classics like Ike & Tina Turner's monumental "River Deep, Mountain High"; other hits bearing his input include the Byrds' "Mr. Tambourine Man," Gary Lewis & the Playboys' "This Diamond Ring," and Herb Alpert's "A Taste of Honey."

In 1967, Russell built his own recording studio, teaming with guitarist Marc Benno to record the acclaimed Look Inside the Asylum Choir LP. While touring with Delaney & Bonnie, he scored his first songwriting hit with Joe Cocker's reading of "Delta Lady," and in 1970, upon founding his own Shelter Records imprint, he also organized Cocker's legendary Mad Dogs & Englishmen tour. After the subsequent tour film earned Russell his first real mainstream attention, he issued a self-titled solo LP, and in 1971 appeared at George Harrison's Concert for Bangladesh following sessions for B.B. King, Eric Clapton, and Bob Dylan. After touring with the Rolling Stones, Russell increasingly focused on his solo career, reaching the number two spot with 1972's Carney and scoring his first pop hit with the single "Tight Rope." While the success of 1973's three-LP set Leon Live further established his reputation as a top concert draw, response to the country-inspired studio effort Hank Wilson's Back was considerably more lukewarm, as was the reception afforded to 1974's Stop All That Jazz. 1975's Will O' the Wisp, however, restored his commercial luster, thanks in large part to the lovely single "Lady Blue."

In June of 1975, Russell married singer Mary McCreary; the following year the couple collaborated on The Wedding Album, issued through his newly formed Paradise Records label. Also in 1976, the Russell-penned "This Masquerade" earned a Grammy Award for singer George Benson. Russell and McCreary reunited for 1977's Make Love to the Music, and upon completing the solo Americana, Russell teamed with Willie Nelson for 1979's Willie & Leon. He then spent the next two years touring with his bluegrass band, the New Grass Revival, issuing a live LP in 1981; although Paradise shut down later that year, the label was reactivated for 1984's Hank Wilson, Vol. 2 and Solid State. Russell spent the remainder of the decade largely outside of music and did not resurface until issuing the Bruce Hornsby-produced Anything Can Happen in 1992. The album appeared to little fanfare, however, and another long period of relative inactivity followed prior to the 1998 release of Hank Wilson, Vol. 3: Legend in My Time. Face in the Crowd appeared a year later. Moving into the new century, Russell issued Moonlight & Love Songs, an album of cover songs, in 2002, followed by Angel in Disguise five years later in 2007. A trio of releases, Almost Piano, Bad Country, and In Your Dreams appeared in 2008.

Russell's years in the wilderness ended in 2010 when long-time admirer Elton John contacted the pianist about recording a duet album. Produced by T-Bone Burnett, the 2010 album The Union was greeted by strong reviews and sales, reviving Russell's career in a single stroke. After playing a joint tour with John, Russell returned to the road on his own and eventually got around to recording a solo comeback called Life Journey, which appeared in April 2014.
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