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Albums that Influenced a Life

Written on:January 15, 2017
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January 15, 2017

Recently I was asked asked by a musician friend of mine to list Ten Albums that made an impression on me as a teenager. In my case it was the years 1971-78. There were only two stipulations. Only one per band/artist and not too spent to much time thinking about it.

I spent maybe a total of 3 minutes developing this list.

Chicago III
The Who – Who’s Next
YesSongs (live album by Yes)
Emerson Lake and Palmer – Welcome Back My Friends to the Show that Never Ends
The Beatles – The White Album
Heart – Dreamboat Annie
The Osmonds
The Partridge Family – Up To Date

I still often listen to these albums. Some I will play from beginning to end and others it may be just certain songs.

Taking a closer look at these, I am a bit surprised. Half of the albums were released before I turned 13 in the late summer of 1971. Chicago III, The Osmonds, Up to Date, Who’s Next in 1971 and The Beatles in 1968. All but Who’s Next and The Beatles I had in my collection prior to that 13th birthday. Other than Dreamboat Annie, all were released prior to my high school graduation and my 18th birthday.

A couple of these are considered classic albums. I would put The Beatles, Who’s Next, Boston and Dreamboat Annie in that list.

The Osmonds and Up To Date would come under the category of Bubblegum Pop.

Three are by groups that are considered Progressive Rock; Flash, YesSongs and Welcome Back my Friends.

Many may not even recall or even have much memory of all about Flash. Their best known song is Small Beginnings. Flash was the first of 3 releases in 1972-73. Former Yes guitarist Peter Banks was a founding member.

Chicago III and the songs from it, other than Free, is not often mentioned in conversations of the best of Chicago As the first album I purchased by the group, it does hold special memories. And I think it’s a neglected album that deserves a listen.

Why did these albums influence me? All I can really say is that when listening to them, they bring back good memories. And the fact that these were the first 10 that came to mind, obviously shows that they are a big part of the person that I am.

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