Date – late 1974
Studio – Stronghold Sound Recorders, Hollywood
Producer – Andy DiMartino
Engineer – Gregg Ladangi
- Don Van Vliet – vocals, harmonica
- Dean Smith – guitar
- Ira Ingber – bass
- Bob West – bass (Observatory Crest only)
- Michael Smotherman – keyboards, backing vocals
- Mark Gibbons – keyboards
- Gene Pello – drums
- Jimmy Caravan – keyboards, star machine
- Ty Grimes – percussion
This album is dedicated to Denny Rosencrantz (who is he?)
The front cover is a painting by Don’s cousin Victor Hayden (aka The Mascara Snake)
- Party Of Special Things To Do (Don Vliet / Elliot Ingber) 3.12
- Same Old Blues (J.J.Cale) 4.00
- Observatory Crest (Don Vliet / Elliot Ingber) 3.28
- Pompadour Swamp (Don Vliet) 3.27
- Captain’s Holiday (R.Feldman / W.Richmond / S.Hickerson / C.Blackwell) 5.42
- Rock and Roll’s Evil Doll (Don Vliet / Mark Gibbons / Ira Ingber) 3.09
- Further Than We’ve Gone (Don Vliet) 5.00
- Twist Ah Luck (Don Vliet / Mark Gibbons / Ira Ingber) 3.17
- Bluejeans And Moonbeams (Don Vliet) 5.09
Album overview from Graham Johnston
Well, this is mostly pretty ropey stuff – pejoratively known as the Tragic Band for good reason, it’s the only Beefheart album that I wouldn’t recommend.
The absolute nadir is Captain’s Holiday – a completely pointless and horribly dull instrumental which somehow manages to set the tone of the album and overshadow the better tracks. Party Of Special Things To Do has some redeeming qualities but still manages to sound more like a Beefheart pastiche than the real thing.
It does still have a couple of outstanding moments however – “Observatory Crest” and the title track are simply gorgeous tunes; big soppy career highlights in my opinion. Observatory Crest was the first tune I played when I learned about Don Van Vliet’s death in 2010; possibly the second, third and fourth tunes too. Here’s a very faithful cover by Mercury Rev:
It is possible that you can live without the rest of the material on this very flimsy offering but it’s worth owning for those two gems.
- Beefheart: No More Magic – the source, author and date are unknown.
Purchase Bluejeans and Moonbeams
- CD from amazon.co.uk
- Mp3 from amazon.co.uk
- Vinyl from amazon.co.uk
- CD from amazon.com
- Vinyl from amazon.com
Bluejeans and Moonbeams releases
View the Radar Station’s full information about the various editions of Bluejeans and Moonbeams which have appeared over the years.
- Bluejeans and Moonbeams on Wikipedia
- Bluejeans and Moonbeams on Discogs
- Bluejeans and Moonbeams on AllMusic
- Bluejeans and Moonbeams article by Scott McFarland at Perfect Sound Forever.
- All Bluejeans and Moonbeams-related items here at the Radar Station
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