Saturday, March 30, 2013


 Steelyard Blues is a 1973 comedy crime film starring Donald Sutherland, Jane Fonda and Peter Boyle.

Tagline: If you can't beat 'em ... drive 'em crazy!

Because Fonda, Sutherland and Boyle were active in anti-war activities when this movie was made, it seems that Steelyard Blues was not given a wide release or much publicity. Nevertheless, it is memorable for its portrayal of oddball characters, and found a warm reception among college students and non-conformists. With its anti-establishment message and hip soundtrack by musicians Mike Bloomfield, Paul Butterfield, Nick Gravenites, Maria Muldaur and others, it is an iconic seventies film.

A tremendous soundtrack album to director Alan Myerson's film Steelyard Blues, which starred Jane Fonda, Donald Sutherland, and Peter Boyle, this collection feels like a side project collaboration between the Electric Flag and Paul Butterfield Blues Band with added performances by Maria Muldaur and Merl Saunders. The majority of the material is written and performed by the great Nick Gravenites and Mike Bloomfield, the 14 songs really standing up on their own as a work not dependent on the film and not feeling like they are mere chess pieces to supplement a Hollywood flick. Gravenites does a masterful job of producing, with "Common Ground" resembling a great lost Electric Flag song -- Annie Sampson trading off on the vocals with Gravenites as Janis Joplin did with him on In Concert. Muldaur co-wrote "Georgia Blues" with Bloomfield and Gravenites, while they gave Muldaur and Saunders the opportunity to contribute a tune by including their "Do I Care." "My Bag (The Oysters)" adds some pop/doo wop to the affair, a nice twist, and it borders on parody. Gravenites is always able to juggle his serious side with a tongue-in-cheek wink, and this interesting and enjoyable effort deserved much wider play.


Anonymous said...

Thank you, I've been trying to track this down for years! Much appreciated for sharing this long-lost legendary album session.

24HOURDEJAVU said...

You are quite welcome I know what you mean when you say sometimes it takes a while but eventually they will be out there somewhere

Count Talent said...

Thanks man, I've been looking for this for a while. Looks like a good movie too.

tut said...

sluggo sez thanks..I have this lp, bought it years ago but this is a nice chance to have a disc version.Bloomfield was so good..thanks again.

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