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Tate, Richard - 1977 Richard Tate

ARTIST: Tate, Richard
ALBUM: Richard Tate
LABEL: ABC Records
YEAR: 1977


LINEUP: Richard Tate - lead vocals, bass, guitar, drums * Barry Beckett, Doug Riley, Ron Stocker, Kelly Kotera - keyboards * Roger Hawkins, Andre Fisher - drums, percussion * Jimmy Johnson, Pete Carr, Al Steiner, Butch Sanford - guitar * Brenda Russell, The Family Chadlers, Nick Urig, Marc Piscitelli, Dean Andre - background vocals

TRACK LISTING: 01 Fill My Life With Love * 02 She's Got The Time To Love Me * 03 Know No Man * 04 Velvet Hammer * 05 Woman's Desire * 06 Crazy Baby * 07 Emily * 08 Long Mountain Road * 09 Watch What You Do * 10 Can't Get High

Richard Tate hailed from Quebec and was part of the late 60's Montreal counterculture movement playing drums in The Merseys, The French Revolution and groundbreaking psych prog outfit Les Sinners. In 1974 he made the solo move and released two albums sung in French - 'Tate a Tete' and a self titled album in 1976. I have yet to hear these records but what I can gather they were in a funky pop style typical of the period. With his sights set on the American market, Tate recorded this 1977 album in Los Angeles but who bought it? I don't ever remember seeing it in stores back then and a quick scan through Billboard, the industry magazine to see and be seen in - shows almost no promotion for the album whatsoever.

The Songs
Which is a pity as this is a respectable record if you like a little funk with your pop. On the more commercial stuff like the west coast single 'Fill My Life With Love' and 'Crazy Baby', Tate comes across like a less sophisticated Gino Vanelli while 'Velvet Hammer' sounds very much like early solo Paul McCartney. On the funky side which Tate clearly favors, cuts like 'She Got the Time To Love Me' and 'Watch What You Do', I'm reminded of other blue-eyed funksters like Supercharge, Wild Cherry and Peter Brown (remember his 1979 album 'Stargazer'?) although the best cut has to be the Pink Floyd-ish 'Long Mountain Road' which gives in to Tate's proggy past in Les Sinners and yet I am left with the glaring impression there are too many styles at play here. Tate did far better with pop and should have been pushed a little harder in this direction, hell he might have given fellow Montrealer Vanelli a run for his money.

In Summary
After this album, Richard Tate went back to work in Quebec as a session player although his current whereabouts are unknown. There are plenty of copies of this record available cheaply on-line with Tate's early work a little more difficult to locate, although at the time of this review there is at least one blog with downloads that should close the gaps.

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#1 | gdazegod on May 20 2010 01:51:43

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