Friday, November 17, 2023

Various Artists - The Hitmakers Sing Elton John's 'Tumbleweed Connection' (2002)

As a result of the reasonable success of the 'Elton John' album, John recruited former Spencer Davis Group drummer Nigel Olsson and bassist Dee Murray, and flew to America for his first US concert at the Troubadour in Los Angeles on 25 August 1970. It was a such a success that the next day he received a telegram from Bill Graham, America’s most important promoter, offering him $5,000 to play at the Fillmore East in New York. Two months later, in October 1970, the concept album 'Tumbleweed Connection' was released, reaching number two in the UK and number five in the US. Co-writer Bernie Taupin has confirmed that despite people thinking that he was influenced in his lyrics by Americana and by seeing America first hand, the album had been written and recorded before they'd even been to the United States, and it was more influenced by The Band's album, 'Music From Big Pink', and Robbie Robertson's songs. Basic tracks for three of the album's titles, 'Come Down In Time', 'Country Comfort' and 'Burn Down The Mission', had been recorded at Trident during the sessions for the previous LP, 'Elton John', and Dee Murray and Nigel Olsson appeared for the first time together on this album as the rhythm section on 'Amoreena'. No singles were released from the record in the US, but 'Country Comfort'/'Love Song' (the latter a Lesley Duncan composition) was released as a single in Australia, New Zealand and Brazil. Once again, other artists clamoured to record these songs, and this time the big names included Al Kooper, Rod Stewart, Spooky Tooth and Sergio Mendes and Brasil '77, and new artists were still looking to 'Tumbleweed Connection' for inspiration in the 1980's and 2000's, with this album closing with a rousing version of 'Burn Down The Mission' by Toto from 2002. 

Track listing

01 Ballad Of A Well Known Gun (Kate Taylor 1971)
02 Come Down In Time (Al Kooper 1971)
03 Country Comfort (Rod Stewart 1970)
04 Son Of Your Father (Spooky Tooth 1969)
05 My Father's Gun (Miranda Lambert 2018)
06 Where To Now St. Peter (Sergio Mendes & Brasil '77 1976)
07 Amoreena (Panhandle 1972)
08 Talking Old Soldiers (Michael Callen 1988)
09 Burn Down The Mission (Toto 2002)



  2. Thanks again for another great post.