SOME STUFFS: Loggins & Messina’s “Full Sail” receives a new audiophile treatment from Audio Fidelity

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One of my all time favorite albums, one I’ve loved since I was introduced to it through my parents, has been remastered by Audio Fidelity. Kenny Loggins & Jim Messina released the incredible Full Sail album and it was released in proper stereo along with a quadraphonic pressing soon after. Audio Fidelity have given Full Sail the SACD treatment, meaning you’ll get to hear a new remastering via Steve Hoffman and the original quad mix will be heard on the SACD.

While the album did produce one single (“My Music”), it was not a hit but the album does feature such songs as “Lahaina”, “You Need A Man/Coming To You”, “Watching The River Run” and the Chicago stepping classic, “Pathway To Glory”. I’ve had this album on vinyl, cassette, and 8-track and the remaster Mobile Fidelity Sound Lab (MFSL) is nothing short of amazing and I’m sure Hoffman has done an incredible job with it too.

It was released last week and you can order it below via Amazon.com.

SOME STUFFS: Loggins & Messina second album, Sly & The Family Stone’s “Greatest Hits” get the SACD audiophile treatments

Audio Fidelity: Loggins & Messina/Sly & The Family Stone photo AFLogginsSly_covers_zpsyoegnicw.jpg

  • As a lifelong fan of Loggins & Messina, this new audiophile pressing on Audio Fidelity is going to be worth waiting for. Some call this the debut album by Loggins & Messina, at least by name but in truth, it’s their second album, their follow-up to the amazing 1971 album Sittin’ In. For most fans of pop music, this is the album that features their biggest and arguably only hit, “Your Mama Don’t Dance”. However, this album is also known for a number of key album tracks, including the amazing “Angry Eyes” (later covered by The Pointer Sisters), along with “Thinking Of You” and “Golden Ribbons”. This 1972 album helped keep the band on the charts and on the radio, with “Your Mama Don’t Dance” still getting airplay 43 years later.

    Steve Hoffman did the remaster on the regular CD audio.

  • Released in 1970, Sly & The FamilY Stone’s Greatest Hits was released while Epic Records was waiting for new music from Sly and friends. His performance at Woodstock in 1969 had been released in the film in March of 1970 and they wanted to be sure he would supply fans with new music. He wasn’t working on that pace, or any pace. Some have said Sly was working on what would become There’s A Riot Goin’ On but whatever was happening, it wasn’t driving him to finish anything new. Epic Records decided to do what was best by putting together a compilation of all of the hits Sly & The Family Stone had between 1967 and 1969 and give it to fans, which helped. As the saying goes, most greatest hits albums are usually the sign of death for an artist but not with Sly, for many of those songs were still getting a lot of airplay on many radio stations.

    The interesting thing about the Greatest Hits package is that a lot of the singles were mono only, in that proper stereo mixes were not made, since they weren’t intended for release on an album, back when it was customary to release mono and stereo mixes. What Epic Records did was “electronically reprocess” some songs to be fake stereo, so one channel had a lot of high end, the other channel had a lot of low end. Then something happened. A few years later, when quadraphonic albums were the hip thing to do, they went to the multi-tracks to make all new mixes for the album. In the process, by making quad mixes in stereo for the vinyl pressing, it essentially was the first time three songs made their stereo debut, including “I Want To Take You Higher”, “Thank You (Falletinme Be Mice Elf Agin)”, and “Hot Fun In The Summertime”. For the longest time, the quad mix became the hit album to get for those who preferred hunting down true stereo mixes. Slightly different stereo mixes were later released on compilation albums in the 80’s and 90’s but now you’ll be able to it in all of its true quadraphonic glory on the SACD. No word on if the stereo or quad-in-stereo mix was remastered.

    (Mahalo nui to Tom Hayes for the tip on both discs.)

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  • RECORD CRACK: Loggins & Messina’s “Sittin’ In” gets audiophile treatment

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    This album has been with me for most of my life. My dad loved this album, played the record a lot and also would jam with friends when they came over. I loved the sound of it, grew up loving it even more, and when I became a record collector and obsessive music maniac, I would notice this record everywhere. One might argue “it’s because it’s trash” but I say it’s because enough people loved the album the first time, and they’re cleaning out their garages for the next generation.

    Some facts. Kenny Loggins was a young singer/songwriter who caught the attention of Jim Messina, previously of Buffalo Springfield and then of the group Poco. Loggins was actually signed as a solo artist and this album was meant to be a solo album, thus the credit “Kenny Loggins with Jim Messina“. The title was meant to say that buddy Messina was merely Sittin’ In on this album to give this artist a shot. Instead, he found himself sittin’ in with Loggins for five years, where they recorded some of the best music of the early 1970’s, and definitely of my childhood. My very first concert was Loggins & Messina at the Neal S. Blaisdell Center (the NBC Arena, or for some, the HIC, when it was called the Hawai’i International Center. My parents called it this and I still call it that) on their Native Sons tour, so I am and will always remain a fan of these two.

    An album that has become a dollar bin/thrift store favorite has been given the audiophile treatment, and will be released as a 180g virgin vinyl pressing on May 10th. Sittin’ In features songs like “Nobody But You”, “Vahevala”, “Listen To A Country Song”, “House At Pooh Corner”, “Back To Georgia”, and a great three song medley featuring “Lovin’ Me”, “To Make A Woman Feel Wanted”, and “Peace Of Mind”. When I realized that this was meant to be a Loggins solo project, you realize what other people had heard: these two were incredible as a duo. Messina was meant to play the role of the producer, someone who would offer vocal harmonies and play guitar, but this is very much Messina’s album as it is Loggins, and yet you can hear the emphasis on Loggins in “House At Pooh Corner” and a song that showed my dad was a fan of the music of Jamaica far earlier than I had known, “Vahevala”. In fact, I would say my love of ska and reggae may have come from hearing this song, Paul Simon‘s “Mother And Child Reunion”, and Charlie Nash‘s “I Can See Clearly Now”.

    The point is, this album was recorded incredibly well. There are two audiophile CD pressings that are worth seeking out: the Mobile Fidelity Sound Lab (MFSL) pressing:
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    and the CBS Mastersound disc:
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    I love both pressings for different reasons. The MFSL silver disc has a bassier feel to it, more “woodsy”, and I use that term as a way to describe how my parents and grandparents used to listen to music with wood cabinets, speakers, and in rooms with wood walls. In my mind, it’s a “woodsy” sound, a warm feel if you will. On the other hand, the CBS Mastersound disc is brighter and offers a different sense of clarity that the MFSL pressing arguably lacked. Yet I love both discs for those reasons: if I want warm, I go for MFSL. If I want it to sound slightly cleaner, I shoot for Mastersound.

    So what will this new pressing offer to fans? It’s being released by Friday Music, a great label who have released and reissued an incredible selection of albums. Sittin’ In was remastered by Joe Reagoso and Kevin Gray, both of whom have done incredible jobs on the albums they have made over the last two decades. On top of that, Friday Music’s pressing of Sittin’ In will have something that the original LP did not have: a gatefold cover.

    When it comes to this album, I do not joke around. I love the fact that it’s being remastered, and that it’s being pressed up audiophile style. The album will celebrate its 40th anniversary at the end of the year, so celebrate in style by hearing an album that has been a partial soundtrack to my life.

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