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Articles Home » 1977 Articles » Oklahoma - 1977 Oklahoma
 
Oklahoma - 1977 Oklahoma



ARTIST: Oklahoma
ALBUM: Oklahoma
LABEL: Capitol
SERIAL: ST 11646
YEAR: 1977

COUNTRY OF ORIGIN:

LINEUP: Steve Crossley - guitars, vocals * Ben Blakemore - bass, vocals * Don Juntunen - lead guitar * San Flores - drums, background vocals

TRACK LISTING: 01 One More Round * 02 Whatcha Treatin' Me So Bad For * 03 Tracy * 04 Together Now * 05 Magic * 06 Piece Of My Life * 07 Ain't It Sad * 08 Love You Tonight


Background
I have to thank the controversial Martin Popoff for bringing this album to my attention through his book 'Southern Rock Review' which I recommend to all fans of the genre. Yee hah! Ok, unpaid plug over.. Oklahoma were, as their name implies from the state of oil wells and twisters and seems to have been the vehicle for bassist Ben Blakemore who wrote the majority of the record, with guitarist Steve Crossley contributing two tracks. The album was recorded and produced in both Los Angeles and Oklahoma City by Mark Lindsay formerly of Paul Revere & the Raiders and the late Terry Melcher best known for his work with The Beach Boys and The Byrds as well as the former resident of the home where Charles Manson committed his atrocious killing spree.


The Songs
Fortunately, Oklahoma's only LP is far from bloody; in fact it's a damn fine album. Opening with the Crossley penned 'One More Round' is a pretty good start with a meandering guitar solo and is an ode to drinking.. after a reflective day on the road. While lyrically, the group never strays far from typical home-in-Dixie fare unlike many Southern styled bands, Oklahoma had an ear for a good tune grounded in pop and the album walks a line between southern and country rock without falling too far in either style. Draw any comparisons to Buckacre, Cowboy or Stillwater and you'd be right on the money.


In Summary
This was the final word from Oklahoma it seems. Blakemore and Crossley went on to other bands and studio sessions while the drummer and lead guitarist are nowhere to be found. A recent check on eBay saw the LP coming way too close to the fifty dollar mark. I picked up my copy at a local shop for four bucks. I won.


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Comments
#1 | jefflynnefan on June 03 2008 05:36:47
I heard one of the songs from this album on the jukebox here. It was pretty good. My older brother has this album so I'll give it a listen one day when I go for a visit. Capitol has always been good to Oklahoma artists.
#2 | gdazegod on June 15 2010 07:02:11
Very interesting to read the story of Terry Melcher, who helped produced this album. He was the son of Doris Day, and had deep (real deep) ties into the Laurel Canyon music scene of the 1960's alongside Beach Boys Dennis Wilson. Some say that Charles Manson's rampage was due to Terry turning him down on a recording contract. There's a lot to read on the Internet about the subject, go search it out.. reader
#3 | super80boy on January 11 2015 20:02:42
I bought this at a local record store years ago for a few bucks and I'm finally getting around to spinning it. I must say, it turned out to be a pleasant surprise; it's filled with quality tunes. 'One More Round' does start things off well and along with the riffing guitars, it also has some nice keys added to the mix. 'Tracy' has a favorable mid-tempo vibe and the keyboards make another strong appearance in 'Together Now'. The opening to Side Two, 'Magic' is just a stellar jammer with more inviting guitar work. Finally, 'Ain't It Sad' slow rolls the set to the finish with big progressive choruses and a wicked guitar solo. I totally concur - this is a damn fine album indeed.
 
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