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Every Picture Tells A Story

March 31, 1998 | Format: MP3

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Product Details

  • Original Release Date: March 31, 1998
  • Release Date: March 31, 1998
  • Label: Island Def Jam
  • Copyright: (C) 1971 The Island Def Jam Music Group
  • Record Company Required Metadata: Music file metadata contains unique purchase identifier. Learn more.
  • Total Length: 40:48
  • Genres:
  • ASIN: B000V63BX6
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars 178 customer reviews
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,153 Paid in Albums (See Top 100 Paid in Albums)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD
In retrospect, Rod Stewart's early career appears to have been a miracle. His later career was a huge disappointment, not because his music was so terrible (it wasn't, really), but because fans like me couldn't believe that an artist who seemed to have developed a seamless blend of folk, rock, soul and country that at once sounded highly traditional and completely innovative would turn his back on his muse. But the muse is in full control on this album, as she was on "Gasoline Alley" "The Rod Stewart Album" and "Never a Dull Moment."
Listening to this album in totality after many years (I confess I heard it not as a stand alone, but as part of the highly enjoyable "Complete Mercury Years" set, which is worth getting if you're ready to go the whole hog, and intelligently programs the albums rather than trying to re-sort the songs), what stands out to me is that the hit songs were somewhat arbitrarily chosen. "Maggie May" and "Mandolin Wind" are great songs, with the characteristic viewpoint of Rod's self-penned songs in those days, the betrayed innocent looking back on the bittersweet episodes of his past. He was a troubador for those emotions. But he probably could've gotten just as big a hit out of his gorgeous version of Bob Dylan's "Tomorrow is a Long Time," or his fierce, slide guitar anchored cover of Elvis' "That's All Right," (which has a strange but lovely coda of "Amazing Grace"). It's that consistent.
My favorite era of pop music was the late 60s and early 70s, when it seems to me rock music was at its most creative and yet its most deeply-rooted to the American culture.
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Format: Audio CD
Rod Stewart was #1 with "D'ya Think I'm Sexy?" about the time Orson Welles assured us Paul Masson would "sell no wine before its time." It was hard comparing them until you realize the artistic peaks, achieved young, from which both had fallen. For Welles it was "Citizen Kane," and for Stewart this album, which to now overshadows over every note he's recorded since.

Few rock albums are as cohesive in music and message. Folk guitars and violins inch up to slapping drums and spare, pinpoint electric solos. Stewart's folksy, soulful vocals paint a a story of a young man's first life experiences. He loves the wrong woman ("Maggie May," which refreshes itself among the other songs), then the right one (the title cut). He's impatient with adversity ("Seems Like A Long Time," the splendid "Mandolin Wind") but learns persistence from his experience (Tim Hardin's "Reason To Believe").

The one break from the album flow is welcome; one of Stewart's finest moments. He has covered Motown well ("This Old Heart of Mine") and callously ("Standin' In The Shadows of Love," and "You Keep Me Hangin' On"). But his rendition with Faces of "(I Know) I'm Losing You" intensifies the original's paranoia and sorrow. It recalls the soul heroes (Cooke, Redding, Ruffin) Stewart admired when he was the new boy, while drummer Kenny Jones delivers a charging, tumbling drum solo that's one of his finest on disc.

"Losing You" showed the hard-rock/folk/soul blueprint Stewart would use to construct his albums since this 1971 release, with intermittent success and at times howling failure. No matter; like Welles' masterpiece, Rod Stewart's "Every Picture Tells A Story" is one of rock's most influential, essential works.
3 Comments 41 of 46 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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Format: Audio CD
Rod Stewart's Every Picture Tells A Story is generally rated as one of the greatest records in the history of rock. In his book, The Top 100 Rock 'N' Roll Albums of All Time, Paul Gambaccini listed the album at number one. I'd disagree with Mr. Gambaccini that it is the best of all time, but it is among the elite. From beginning to end, every song is superb and he takes the sound from Gasoline Alley to another level. The title track is opens the album with a bang. The song is filled with descriptive and vivid lyrics and Mr. Stewart sings it with passion and fury. "Seems Like A Long Time" slows things down and has some very poignant lyrics. He does a roaring take on "That's All Right (Mama)" clearly inspired by Elvis Presley's version of the song. It sounds like it could have been recorded in some barn in the south. The song segues into a sampling of "Amazin' Grace" in which Mr. Stewart's gravelly voice gives it a degree of solemnity. "Tomorrow Is A Long Time" is another Bob Dylan cover that has a cool keyboard sound. "Mandolin Wind" starts off slowly and then builds to a fiery crescendo. The Faces join the party on a funky cover of The Temptation's "(I Know) I'm Losing You". "Reason To Believe" is a cover of a Tim Hardin song, but Mr. Stewart makes it all his own. "Maggie May" is the song that has become the album's definitive song and a radio classic. As a double A side with "Reason To Believe", it became his first number one single and as the album hit number one at the same time, he became the first artist to simultaneously hold the number one single and album in both the US & the UK. Though he would continue to record excellent music and have albums that sold more copies, Rod Stewart never release a more influential or important album.
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