sad albums

  • i'm not sure if i should post this thread on the 'other bands' sections, because i'm going to mention certain albums by genesis members...


    some artists have recorded albums after a breakup, or after the lost of a loved one. not all the songs are necessarily about that particular issue, but there's a feeling of sadness throughout the album.


    i'm thinking of works such as:


    phil's both sides: it was about his second divorce. ok, 'face value' was about a divorce too, but for whatever reason, it doesn't sound as depressive as 'both sides'.


    peter's up: it's not a concept album, but certain songs such as darkness or i grieve make me think that peter wasn't going through a happy time when he wrote them.


    sting's the soul cages. it's an album dedicated to his father, who had recently passed away. the songs include many references to the sea, because sting's father dreamed of being a sailor...


    suzanne vega's songs in red and gray. she had divorced his husband and producer mitchell froom. that album isn't very enjoyable to me, because suzanne's strength was telling stories from a distant perspective.


    have you listened to these albums? did you like them at first? and, if not, did they grow on you? can you think of other similar albums that the artist in question recorded as some kind of therapy...?

    Edited once, last by chema ().

  • Blood On The Tracks by Bob Dylan which concerns his breakup with Sara Lowndes.

    Blackstar by David Bowie is obviously about his impending death.


    But overall at least in my collection I think of sad songs, rather than sad albums.

  • "Boatman's Call" by Nick Cave & the bad Seeds

    "Scratch My Back" by Peter

    "Ghost of Tom Joad" by Bruce Springsteen


    to name just a few

    some are wise ... and some otherwise

  • Adore by the Smashing Pumpkins. Billy's wife had left him, his mother had died and on the tour for the previous album Mellon Collie, their drummer Jimmy and their touring keyboard player (something Melvoin) overdosed in a hotel leading to the death of Melvoin and Jimmy (Billy's closest friend and ally in the group) being fired.


    Result? Heartache and beauty, and a massive change of direction for what was, at the time, a very very big band. It led to them being a rather smaller band.

  • In its own way I always thought that Calling All Stations was a rather sad album. So many of the lyrics seem to focus on loss/being lost, which if true is interesting given where the band was at then.

  • On the tour for the previous album Mellon Collie, their drummer Jimmy and their touring keyboard player (something Melvoin) overdosed in a hotel leading to the death of Melvoin and Jimmy (Billy's closest friend and ally in the group) being fired.

    Jonathan Melvoin, brother of Wendy and Susannah Melvoin.

    Wendy was (and is still !) the guitarist of Prince and The Revolution (a.k.a "Purple Rain Era", from 1983 to 1986). The opening chord sequence of Purple Rain ? That's her.

    Susannah is a singer and was briefly engaged with Prince in 1985-1986, but they broke up.


    Jonathan was a multi-instrumentalist, he played drums and percussion on a few Prince's tracks. For example, this one :



    His death led to the recording of a very sad album by Wendy & Lisa (Lisa Coleman was one of the two Prince's keyboardists between 1980 and 1986, the two girls were in a relationship and they formed a duo, "Wendy & Lisa", after the Revolution disbanded). The album is Girl Bros, released in 1998.



    And, since we are here on a Genesis related forum, there is actually a thin connection. Wendy Melvoin played bass on this 1991 Peter Gabriel track :



    EDIT : Besides Genesis, I'm also a Neil Young and Prince fan. Now you know...


    ;)

  • Speaking of Neil Young, Tonight's the Night, recorded in 1973, released in 1975.

    Between 1972 and 1973, Neil Young lost two of his friends :

    - Danny Whitten, guitarist of Crazy Horse (you know, Neil Young and Crazy Horse) in 1972.

    - Bruce Berry, a roadie for Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young in 1973.


    Both died from heroin overdose. Neil felt guilty, especially for Danny, because he had just invited him to record stuff. But Danny was in a complete mess, completely junkie. He could not follow the music. Neil Young told him to go back home and rest. He gave him 50 dollars to pay his trip back. And Danny paid his fatal dose with these 50 dollars.


    Neil Young then entered in a depression/alcohol phase. He managed to organise a recording session with friends in Ken Berry's studios (Ken is the brother of Bruce Berry). There, they would drink alcohol, play games... And start recording past midnight, completely drunk, in a kind of pagan-rock 'n' roll-celebration atmosphere.

    The result is Tonight's the Night.


  • Wow, thanks for all of that, none of which I knew. Really interesting. The Melvoins sound like a very talented family, what a tragedy for them that their brother died.

  • You are correct about Tonight's The Night. However, for me it remains one of the most overrated albums ever made. It isn't that I don't relate to the loss he felt. It is just that the songs are not that good. Critics love albums like this (and indeed the one I mentioned, Blood On The Tracks) because they seem to think 'naked emotion' and 'rawness' etc have more critical value than 'positive' songs.

  • You are correct about Tonight's The Night. However, for me it remains one of the most overrated albums ever made. It isn't that I don't relate to the loss he felt. It is just that the songs are not that good. Critics love albums like this (and indeed the one I mentioned, Blood On The Tracks) because they seem to think 'naked emotion' and 'rawness' etc have more critical value than 'positive' songs.

    Plus critics love to make themselves look "cool" and more intellectual than they almost ever are! ;)

    Ian


    Works with chess - Not with life

  • i had thought of another r.e.m. album, 'new adventures in hi-fi'. there's a depressive and grunge-like feeling in most of the songs.

    To me ear with the exception of “Stand” every REM song I’ve ever heard sounds depressing. Then again I own none of their albums and am only familiar with their music from the radio.