Category Archives: Album Cover Art

Album Cover Art Wednesday: After The Storm

This week, the cover of a 2005 benefit album that I’d never heard of until recently. I was living it back then. A bunch of prog rockers put together this album: After The Storm: A Benefit Album For The Survivors Of Hurricane Katrina. Thanks, y’all.

The cover is by Michael Bennett:

I couldn’t find the whole album online so here’s a cut from Camel:

Album Cover Art Wednesday: Saul Bass

Artist/Graphic Designer Saul Bass was best known for his film work with such luminaries as Otto Preminger and Alfred Hitchcok to name a few. I featured his album cover for Anatomy of a Murder in this space 4 years ago.

Here are some more examples of Saul Bass’ album cover work:

Since The Smithereens are one of my favorite bands, I give you Blow Up via Spotify:

Album Cover Art Wednesday: Mongo ’70

I’m in the minority about Summer Of Soul, which is a good documentary but not a great concert film. There’s not enough uninterrupted music for it to qualify as a concert film.

I was, however, delighted to see Mongo Santamaria get some love in 2021 because of the movie.

I wasn’t able to learn who did the album art for Mongo ’70, but to call it a period piece is an understatement.

Here’s the whole damn album via Spotify:

Album Cover Art Wednesday: Nils Lofgren

Nils Lofgren is best known as a sideman to Neil Young and Bruce Springsteen. But he’s had a lively career as a solo artist. What’s not to love about a cover inspired by sideshow banners? Not a damn thing.

Lofgren fans call this eponymous 1975 record The Fat Man Album. He looks nothing like Jackie Gleason, William Conrad or Sydney Greenstreet. Neither does Nils.

Here’s the whole damn album via Spotify:

Album Cover Art Wednesday: Face Dances

The band is The Who. The album is Face Dances. The artist is Peter Blake.

Here’s an extended version of the whole damn album via Spotify:

It’s lagniappe time. Pete Townshend wrote and recorded a song called Face Dances (Pt. 2) but it’s on a solo album, not a Who record. Rock stars are quirky.

Album Cover Art Wednesday: Pink Moon

Nick Drake was a shooting star who brightened the musical horizon for a few years before his tragic death in 1974 at the age of 26.

Pink Moon was released two years before Drake died and was his final album. The album cover is by neo-surrealist artist Michael Trevithick.

Here’s the gatefold:

Here’s the whole damn album:

Album Cover Art Wednesday: Fool For The City

If you attended a rock concert in the 1970’s, chances are you saw Foghat. I saw them 3 or 4 times as a supporting act. They were always fun as is the cover of their 1975 album, Fool For The City.

The guy on the cover is drummer Roger Earl. A drummer joke that writes itself.

Here’s the whole damn album. Rock on, y’all.

Album Cover Art Wednesday: A Pocket Full Of Miracles

There were two more Miracles but they were out of pocket on this silly cover. It’s a goofy take on a mediocre Frank Capra movie, Pocketful Of Miracles.

The album is much better than the cover. Here it is via Spotify.

 

Album Cover Art Wednesday: Can’t Stop The Love

Maze featuring Frankie Beverly regularly funk it up at New Orleans’ top two music festivals: Jazz Fest and Essence. It’s high time that I featured one of their album covers. I really dig this one by Spanish artist Montxo Algora.

Here’s the whole damn album via Spotify:

 

Album Cover Art Wednesday: Stormbringer

After yesterday’s McCloskey Mishigas post, it was either a REO Speedwagon or Deep Purple album cover. I chose the latter since I used the song Stormbringer in that post.

Let’s set the Wayback Machine to 1974 and rock out to an album featuring the Whitesnake dude with a cover designed by John Cabalka.

Here’s the whole damn album via the YouTube:

Album Cover Art Wednesday: Bernard Herrmann

Bernard Herrmann was one of the greatest film composers of all-time. He’s best known for his work with Alfred Hitchcock, but he composed many classic scores. His career ran the gamut from Orson Welles’ Citizen Kane to Martin Scorsese’s Taxi Driver.

The classical music world eventually took Herrmann seriously as a composer and he conducted many of his works with major symphony orchestras around the world.

There are a gazillion Herrmann albums out there, here are two compilations with striking covers:

Here’s the Vertigo soundtrack:

Album Cover Art Wednesday: Renaissance

Vanilla Fudge were among the founding fathers of hard rock, so it’s only fitting that they have their own monument:

Here’s the whole damn album:

Album Cover Art Wednesday: Cellophane Symphony

You learn something new every day. I had no idea that Tommy James and the Shondells recorded an experimental album in 1969. They were better known for their bubble gum hits such as Mony Mony and Hanky Panky but they were also among the first rockers to use the Moog synthesizer.

The experimental phase lasted for one album, Cellophane Symphony. I wish I could say there was a colorful back story involving label honcho Morris Levy threatening Tommy James over the album’s flop but there is not.. FYI, Levy is the guy upon whom Heshie in The Sopranos was based.

I listened to the bits and pieces of Cellophane Symphony available online. It flopped for a simple reason: it isn’t very good. The title/opening track sounds like Pink Floyd on a bad day. Low sales and mediocre music are the reason Tommy James was back Draggin’ The Line by 1971.

An alternate title for the album could have been Surrealistic Bandstand.

Here’s the title track:

Album Cover Art Wednesday: The Blasters

The Blasters are one of the greatest roots rock bands ever. The original band were led by lead singer Phil Alvin and his younger brother, the super talented songwriter and guitarist, Dave.

Gustav Alsina is better known as a movie set designer, and he brings the drama to this 1981 cover. It’s a close up of Phil Alvin’s face that’s reminiscent of In The Court Of The Crimson King. I’ve seen The Blasters live and Phil really does sweat that much.

Here’s the back cover.

The Blasters album is unavailable online. Here’s a 1991 compilation via Spotify:

Album Cover Art Wednesday: Super Fly

I still have Curtis Mayfield on my mind after yesterday’s post. I’ve always had a special passion for Curtis’ music. Great singer, great songwriter. The Super Fly soundtrack remains my favorite Mayfield/Impressions album. Just ask Freddie; never mind, Freddie’s Dead.

I was also a white boy who loved Blaxploitation movies. I spent many happy hours at a second run theatre: the Fox In Redwood City. That’s where I saw Super Fly, Shaft, and Blacula to name but a few. We called the theatre ‘The Bone” because admission was a dollar and my circle of friends called bucks, bones. I guess you had to be there.

Here’s the album cover:

Here’s the movie poster:

Here’s the trailer:

Finally, here’s the whole damn album via Spotify:

Album Cover Art Wednesday: Ronald Colman

Ronald Colman was one of the few silent movie stars to smoothly make the transition to talkies. Oddly enough, despite his beautiful speaking voice, he was opposed to the move. Go figure.

Colman put the aforementioned beautiful speaking voice to good use on many spoken word records. Here are two of them.

Album Cover Art Wednesday: Mimi Benzell & Felix Knight Sing Cole Porter’s Can Can Kiss Me Kate

Since it’s Cole Porter month at the Friday Cocktail Hour, I decided to make it Cole Porter week here. I think it’s also the longest album title ever to turn up on a Wednesday morning.

I have never heard of either Mimi Benzell or Felix Knight but I really dig Jim Pearsall’s cover art. It makes me want to dance the Can Can and kiss Kate.

I’ve also never heard of design compatible fidelity before. Ya learn something new everyday.

Here’s the whole damn album:

 

Album Cover Art Wednesday: Send In The Clowns

The clown theme continues with this 1974 Sarah Vaughan album cover. It features a photograph by Frank Kolleogy. I couldn’t find out who the clown is so consider them unlisted or unknown.

In 1981, Sassy recorded another album with the same title. This time with Count Basie. It had an unremarkable cover so I’m skipping it. I’m not clowning around here.

Here’s the whole damn album via Spotify:

Ready for some lagniappe? Here’s the 1981 album with Count Basie:

Album Cover Art Wednesday: Bat Out Of Hell

Michael Lee Aday aka Meat Loaf is a card-carrying member of the Dingbat Right. He appeared on Celebrity Apprentice and remains a Trump lickspittle.

Meat Loaf collaborated on 1977’s Bat Out Of Hell with Jim Steinman who died recently at the age of 73. Some give Steinman much of the credit for the enormous success of the Bat Out Of Hell trilogy and said that Meat was Loafing….

I hereby admit that I selected this cover so I could make Meat Loaf jokes. Slather some ketchup on me and call me overdone.

The album is actually pretty good. It was produced by Todd Rundgren who also played on the record.

Album Cover Art Wednesday: A Twist Of Lemmon

Since it’s Oscar week, we present a 1956 album by two-time Academy Award winner Jack Lemmon.

The cover is hokey as well as dog-eared but what’s not to love about STEREORAMA?

Here’s the whole damn album via the YouTube playlist format: