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Comment: BMG CLUB DISC. Some light surface scratches on disc plays perfect!
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Arc Of A Diver

47 customer reviews

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Audio CD, September 18, 1990
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$10.99
$3.60 $2.45
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$10.99 & FREE Shipping on orders over $35. Details Temporarily out of stock. Order now and we'll deliver when available. We'll e-mail you with an estimated delivery date as soon as we have more information. Your account will only be charged when we ship the item. Ships from and sold by Amazon.com. Gift-wrap available.

Frequently Bought Together

Arc Of A Diver + Back in the High Life + Roll With It
Price for all three: $28.45

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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

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He wasn't Little Stevie, the 16-year-old phenom who set mid- '60s London blazing with his Ray Charles-like vocals, anymore. He was a half-forgotten ex-member of some of rock's most progressive (Traffic) and vilified (Blind Faith) bands, and he was considering leaving show business while recording this--his second album--alone and without a backup band. Arc of a Diver reflects a resigned-to-fate mood. It boasts a synth-heavy, dub-like ambience, with dirge-y tracks like "Spanish Dancer" and the wistful single "While You See a Chance" all but zoning out of your speakers. The fates were kind, though. Recording the single, Winwood inadvertently erased the drum intro. This spacey alteration, together with his catchiest tune since "Paper Sun," catapulted the song onto the charts. In a few years he would be among the top-selling vocalists in the world. His mood was lighter. He could afford to hire engineers that didn't make mistakes. --Don Harrison

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Product Details

  • Audio CD (September 18, 1990)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Island
  • ASIN: B000001FSY
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (47 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #45,308 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

18 of 20 people found the following review helpful By Brian D. Rubendall HALL OF FAME on September 5, 2000
Format: Audio CD
The 1986 album "Back in the High Life" may have sold more copies, but "Arc of a Diver" is Steve Winwood's best solo album. It contains the smash hit "While You See a Chance," and plenty of other smooth jazzy pop songs in the same mode. There is not a bad song in the mix, though the standouts are "Slowdown Sundown," "Spanish Dancer," and "Dust." Though fans of Winwood's days with Traffic may lament the lack of adventurism on this album, those who love great songcraft will feel right at home.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Daniel J. Hamlow HALL OF FAME on May 8, 2005
Format: Audio CD
During my MTV days, Steve Winwood's big 80's splash with songs from Back In The High Life didn't go unnoticed by me. After discovering that album and Chronicles, I had the good fortune of someone loaning me her tape of Arc Of A Diver, which I copied. My interest in his second solo album was due to the upbeat "While You See A Chance." Winwood's sweeping organ-like synths open his first Top Ten solo hit-it reached #7 in 1981-along with the accompanying lively piano that gives it a radio-friendly beat, with some downright introspective lyrics on if one is truly free from the past and ready to take another road one blue morning with a gray wind blowing. I find myself enjoying this song more than "Higher Love."

The title track reached #48 on the singles chart, a slower midpaced affair. "Spanish Dancer" along the same languid lines, may be an example of what many called "lazy music" to describe Winwood's early solo stuff. This song was included on the Chronicles compilation made to cash in on the success of Back in The High Life.

I wonder why "Second-Hand Woman" wasn't a chart-topper, as it's a more lively affair with Winwood's trademark keyboards set to a disco beat. Some racy imagery is present with the title woman being "a slot machine to take my dime" but it is quite the danceable track. The same holds true for the near eight minute on-the-run opus "Night Train" with its funky beats mixed with guitars, particularly a solo around the six minute mark, and the usual keyboards. A single mix of this could've done well, but alas.

Two non-singles in particular strike me and both are slow songs. They are "Slowdown Sundown." A wistful ballad, calling wine that "glassful of memories" and something to soothe the balm of yesterday's pain.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Terry in Oklahoma City on January 23, 2004
Format: Audio CD
I have been listening to Arc of a Diver from Steve Winwood since 1980 and I absolutely love it. It is on my top 100 rock recordings of all time along with some of his other works. The reason I am giving this album 5 stars is because their are no weak songs on this album. The idea that he wrote and recorded this album at home and by himself playing all the instruments with a little help from his friends on the lyrics is incredible to me!
I have been listenig to Windwood for nearly 30 years through the Traffic and Blind Faith Period so I was very familiar with Winwood's Professional Career. 'ARC' is smooth as silk and is like putting on a new suit it feels good and you know you look good! Some of the reviews of this album are being far too critical and should just shut up and listen....this is a very enjoyable album from start to finish. Oh and while you have this CD playing you might consider Steely Dan's Aja up next! Go ahead and get another glass. Later
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Alan Caylow on November 12, 2004
Format: Audio CD
Steve Winwood's second solo album, 1980's "Arc Of A Diver," remains one of his most popular releases, and it is indeed an excellent album. Winwood produced it, co-wrote all the songs, and plays all of the instruments himself. And, of course, he sings with that marvelous Ray Charles-ish voice. The album is a keyboard-heavy platter of pop, and it's all good. The catchy "While You See A Chance" was a big #2 hit for Steve on the U.S. singles chart, but there are also other goodies including the atmospheric title song, the breezy "Second Hand Woman," the great grooves of "Spanish Dancer," and the up-tempo funk-pop of "Night Train" (featuring some fine electric guitar from Winwood). Steve also slows things down a bit for the cool mellowness of "Slowdown Sundown" and "Dust." "Arc Of A Diver" is a great Steve Winwood album.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By David G. Wood on April 17, 2004
Format: Audio CD
i listened to this album over and over again when i first bought it around 1980. i am a huge fan of traffic and basically anything to do with steve winwood. i hadn't heard it in years and just recently picked it up again . it may not be steves finest moment but it's still a good album. it does sound abit 80ish but that's not really a bad thing considering whats out there thats new...i'd never pay full price for it but given the chance to pick it up for 12bucks like i did well it's a worth while buy.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Frederick Baptist on January 20, 2012
Format: Audio CD
Amazing what you can do when your back's against the wall! It is said that Winwood was seriously considering giving up on his musical career and this album was his last throw of the dice; what a throw! The sparse instrumentation as compared with his group work plus the signature synthesizer which I personally like and think gives the album a unique sound allows for Steve to showcase his best talent i.e. his remarkable tone in his vocals without the rest of a band to distract from it and he bares his soul here with meaningful lyrics told by a master storyteller. I enjoyed every track which are all consistently strong making this come in a close second to Back in High Lifeas his best ever album. This mini-lp replica sleeve (mlps) release is pretty good and although the design and assembly is not among the best that I've seen it is good enough coming with a very good inner sleeve and a foldout containing all the lyrics in Japanese only. Overall this will please both the mlps collector as well as other fans as the sound quality has been remastered very well too.

Good enough mlps design, good sound quality and excellent tracks makes this an easy review.

Recommended!
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