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chicago



i can't believe that song is influenced by chicago.  that's so cool.  
most of you won't think so, but that's okay.  chicago is one of my 
favorite bands of all time.  but only the pre-1976 chicago.  everyone 
thinks of them as that "peter cetera" cheezy love song band.  fact 
is, kids, back in the day they were a great rock band.  i recommend 
any of the first eleven albums (except for the mediocre "live at 
carnegie hall" three cd concert, aka chicago IV).  the first three albums 
(chicago transit authority, II, and III....all double albums 
available on one CD) established their sound and proved 
their diversity.  c.t.a. comes out sounding political in places but 
very confident.  II and III branch into different areas than simply 
rock:  country stylings (in the country, flight 602 (or something) to 
name a few), orchestrations (the end of both albums) and even 
sounding like sammy davis jr. or some old mississippi blues man (i 
don't want your money).  after the release of the horrible live album 
(bad mixing, a lot of out of tune stuff) recorded in the midst of a 
monstrous few years of touring (on average 300 days a year....you 
just don't see that anymore), chicago came back with a great fifth 
album (V) that brought you the classic "saturday in the park".  
chicago VI starts to show obvious drug influence:  trippiness abounds 
and it's just a great all-around feel good record.  much of the 
influence that sloan got was probably imprinted from great horn 
arrangements like "feelin' stronger every day".  this one was 
recorded out in neder land, colorado at caribou ranch, a popular 
studio in the early seventies set in what is essentially a hippie 
community (and still is today).  the beach boys recorded there, as 
well as many other bands.  peter cetera even enlisted a few of them 
to sing backups on "wishing you were here", which appears on 
chicago's best album, VII.  the first 25 minutes or so of this album 
are instrumental.  lots of free/experimental jazz and incredible 
drumming by danny seraphine.  at this time, laudir de olivera became 
a full  time member on percussion and remained with them for years to 
come.   chicago VIII 
floats even more into obscurity and you might as well be tripping on 
acid when you listen to "oh thank you great spirit".  no, i've never 
done acid.  chicago IX was that stupid greatest hits album that 
people always seem to have to release.  chicago X leaned more into 
funky rump stuff, but was still good.  the album cover won them a 
grammy.  chicago XI was the last great album before lead 
guitarist/singer terry kath tragically shot himself dead in his 
apartment.  to this day, it is still not known if the death was 
accidental or intentional.  that's a story to explain for another 
day.  anyway, the song "everything you've done wrong" sounds nothing 
like anything on any of the aforementioned albums but the main horn 
shots do sound a lot like something that lee loughnane and james 
pankow would have cooked up.  check out an old chicago album today.  
"animals are for eating."  eric.