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Conaway, Jeff - 1979 Jeff Conaway




ARTIST: Conaway, Jeff
ALBUM: Jeff Conaway
LABEL: CBS
SERIAL: JC 36111
YEAR: 1979

COUNTRY OF ORIGIN:

LINEUP: Jeff Conaway - lead vocals * Stephen Cavaretta, Louis Lahav, Nick Moroch, Abdul Zuhn - guitars * Skip Anderson - keyboards * Ivan Elias, Alon Oleartchik - bass * Omar Hakim, J.T. Lewis - drums * Mark Horowitz - pedal steel guitar * Sammy Figueroa, Jose Rossy - percussion * Andy Statman, David Luell - sax * Jon Joyce, Jim Haas, Stan Farber, Aura - background vocals

TRACK LISTING: 01 City Boy * 02 Livin' On The Edge Of Love * 03 Oh It's So Easy To Fall In Love * 04 No Getting Over You * 05 She Must Have Her Reasons * 06 Fever In The Blood * 07 Still In Love With You * 08 I Ain't Nobodys Fool * 09 I'll Love You Again * 10 I Don't Want To Be Alone Tonight

WEBLINKS: www.jeffconaway.net


Background
Recognize this guy? For better and more often for worse Jeff Conaway has appeared on TV and movie screens for over 30 years, first as 'Kenickie' in the mega movie musical 'Grease' then as 'Bobby Wheeler' in the Emmy award winning television sitcom 'Taxi'. With his star rising came this album, his one and only by the way, followed by a slew of second rate movie and TV roles which found Conaway slipping deeper into drug addiction. For some reason VH1 producers believed we needed to see Conway's struggle in 'Celebrity Fit Club' and later 'Celebrity Rehab with Dr. Drew'. It's a strange world we live in and I don't know why anyone would want to watch Conaway coked up and crying over his life curled up in a fetal position but that's what our voyeuristic society has come too. A tragedy and how different things might have been as we go back to 1979, when Conaway was something of a sex symbol and had a lot going for him with this album under the direction of Bruce Springsteen producer Mike Appel; a first step to a music career that never was.


The Songs
As a vocalist, Conaway's phrasing is in line with early John Cougar and the long lost Chuck Francour, adequate for the material covered, most of which was written or co-written by producer Appel. 'City Boy', the albums only single and the Eddie Schwartz styled 'Livin' On the Edge Of Love' will please AOR fans although from here the album slides into more poppy fare, not bad just not up to the promise of the previous cuts. Having said this I do like the slick disco track 'She Must've Had Her Reasons' which is dated as it gets.. it was 1979 after all, but it's over to side two for 'Fever In The Blood', 'Still In Love With You' and 'I Ain't Nobody's Fool' all of which are comparable to Michael Stanley Band and pretty good at that. Of course, the influence of Appel just had to make an appearance with the Springsteenesque 'I Don't Want to Be Alone Tonight'. A decent cut in the end, but since I've never been a big fan of 'The Boss' and the Jersey sound, I have more of a take it or leave it attitude towards this song, your mileage may vary.


In Summary
More often than not when a 'star' puts out a record it's nothing more than forgettable pap which was not quite the case with Jeff Conaway. While this album does not reach the same heights as other stellar AOR releases from 1979, it's good enough to stay in my collection and hopefully will make it into yours at some point as well.


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Comments

#1 | gdazegod on May 30 2011 01:32:36
R.I.P Jeff. Pity you couldn't fight your demons.. Passed away May 27, 2011.
#2 | gdazegod on October 01 2011 04:10:16
Report on Yahoo News (Sept 30, 2011)

'Grease' actor Conaway died of major infections
LOS ANGELES, An autopsy has ruled that "Taxi" and "Grease" star actor Jeff Conaway's May 27 death was accidental and caused by major internal infection.

Los Angeles County coroner Craig Harvey says coroners did not conduct a toxicology test because Conaway had been hospitalized for weeks prior to his death, so his blood would have come back clean.

However, Harvey says when Conaway entered the hospital May 10, opiates and other drugs were in his system.

Conaway struggled publicly with his addictions on "Celebrity Rehab with Dr. Drew."

Conaway, who had repeated back surgeries for an injury, blamed his drug abuse, in part, on his lingering back problem.

Conaway was known for playing vain, struggling actor Bobby Wheeler on "Taxi" and Kenicke, the swaggering best friend of John Travolta in "Grease."
#3 | super80boy on September 06 2013 15:37:37
The first two songs on Side 1 are decent AOR, but then it descends into wimpy territory. Side 2 also starts out well with 'Fever In The Blood' being one of the better tracks on the LP. Shame it couldn't be a more consistent AOR rock affair.

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