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Articles Home » 1989 Articles » Thomas, B.J - 1989 Midnight Minute
Thomas, B.J - 1989 Midnight Minute

ARTIST: Thomas, B.J
ALBUM: Midnight Minute
LABEL: Reprise
SERIAL: 9 25898-2
YEAR: 1989


LINEUP: B.J Thomas - lead vocals * Dan Huff, Dean Parks, Michael Landau, Paul Jackson Jr - guitars * Joe Chemay - bass, baking vocals * Randy Kerber, Pat Coil, Steve Dorff - keyboards * Joel Peskin - sax * Paul Leim - drums * Guy Roche - drum programming * Terry Williams, Maxine Waters, Julia Waters, Luther Waters, Oren Waters, Gene Moreford, Suzanne Benson, Michael Elias, Tony Sciuto, Carmine Twilley - baking vocals

TRACK LISTING: 01 Half A Heart * 02 Don't Leave Love (Out There All Alone) * 03 Midnight Minute * 04 Second Chances * 05 One Last One More Time * 06 Someone Like You * 07 Young Hearts * 08 If It Takes All Night * 09 One Woman * 10 As Long As We Got Each Other


The name B.J Thomas is one that goes back into the formative days of Americana pop. Old heads will remember some of his tunes like 'Hooked On A Feeling', 'Raindrops Keep Falling On My Head', 'Somebody Done Somebody Wrong Song' and a whole heap of other pop tunes from back in the day. Many AORsters would not be aware of his shift into the AOR world with this 1989 album 'Midnight Minute'. It certainly wasn't something that many of his fans were expecting, considering his prior release - 1986's 'Night Life' was a cover album mostly of country songs! And there lies the conflict, the boy from Arlington Texas has gone through many phase changes throughout his career. Pop, Country, Christian contemporary and commercial AOR - the latter only a shortlived experiment which resulted in this one-off album. Look at the line-up and you'll see that Reprise Records has thrown some money at this album, and to be fair, B.J Thomas has a voice well suited to this style, and with a flurry of solos and glorious guitar lines from Dann Huff and Michael Landau, you know you're in the zone listening to this.

The Songs
It doesn't take long to pick up on B.J's new musical style. With 'Half A Heart' it's as if he's been singing AOR all his life! The big David Foster like production and Dann Huff solo scorches this tune in a big way. 'Don't Leave Love (Out There All Alone)' is a mid-paced affair that features big drums and a mellow keys which sort of reminds me of Jim Jidhed's 'Two Strong Hearts'. Things get interesting on the title track 'Midnight Minute' - an energetic slice of AOR which bounces off the rooftops. Taking a breather is the mellow 'Second Chances', also in the mellow vein is 'One Last One More Time' - the difference with the latter is the atmospherics and sense of drama. Stan Meissner fans will recognise the track 'Someone Like You', which gets a re-hearing here. 'Young Hearts' is punchy hi-tech stuff, with clever keyboards and a funky approach, while 'If It Takes All Night' is another Stan Meissner track which can be found on his 1992 CD 'Undertow' (as can 'Somebody Like You'). The closer 'As Long As We Got Each Other' is a duet with fellow 60's luminary Dusty Springfield.It is also the theme song to the 80's TV show 'Growing Pains'.

In Summary
Thomas went on to make one more studio album for Reprise - 1992's 'Back Against The Wall', amid a whole host of Greatest Hits CD releases during that time. He also released a bunch of CCM releases during the 90's decade, so the melodic and serious songwriting attributes that these type of albums generate was a logical move after the efforts of 'Midnight Minute'. Some great songs here, but you should listen to it in the context of an AOR artist rather than the legendary solo performer that he was and still is.

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#1 | Eric on October 29 2007 20:27:35
I got dragged to a BJ Thomas concert in 1979 during his 'CCM' period. The guy had pipes back then and played all his hits, plus some very boring Christian songs which was capped off by him getting into a verbal scolding of a heckler in the audience. BJ was pissed. Good times!
#2 | kim_hp on January 06 2013 13:47:27
I would put this in the Michael Bolton/Benny Mardones category. Very very good AOR. The title track is a classic.
#3 | code4 on October 07 2015 15:24:35
Some good stuff here. A calculated foray into AOR as you point out, but done rather well. I can see why the title track and also 'If it takes all night' go down well with a lot of fans of this music..though maybe not 'his' music (on which note i bet he confused or even disappointed a few of his long-time fans with this album!). 'Don't Leave Love' is pretty dated, with instrument arrangements in the verses that recall Foreigner's biggest hit of the 80's, but it is nevertheless pretty good. The song seems to plead with the listener that love in itself needs caring for in order for it to survive and grow in the world. A haunting tune. As was one of my favourites here, the melancholic keyboard ballad 'One More One Last Time'. Definitely worth an ear
#4 | reyno-roxx on June 22 2016 15:46:38
Picked up a cheap copy of the CD a few weeks ago. Very pleasant listening.
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