If I Could Only Remember My Name

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If I Could Only Remember My Name
Ificouldonly.jpg
Studio album by David Crosby
Released February 22, 1971
Recorded 1970–1971
Studio Wally Heiders
San Francisco, CA, A&M Studios,
Hollywood, CA[1]
Genre Rock
Length 37:04
Label Atlantic
Producer David Crosby
David Crosby chronology
If I Could Only Remember My Name
(1971)
Oh Yes I Can
(1989)Oh Yes I Can1989
Professional ratings
Review scores
SourceRating
AllMusic4.5/5 stars[2]
Rolling Stone4/5 stars[3]
The Village VoiceD+[4]

If I Could Only Remember My Name is the debut solo album by David Crosby, released in February 1971 on Atlantic Records. It was one of four high-profile albums released by each member of Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young in the wake of their chart-topping Déjà Vu album (along with Stephen Stills, Songs for Beginners, and After the Gold Rush). It peaked at #12 on the Billboard 200 and earned a RIAA gold certification for selling over 500,000 copies in the United States.

The album gained new recognition in 2010 when it was listed second on the Vatican's "Top 10 Pop Albums of All Time" as published in the official newspaper of the Holy See, L'Osservatore Romano.[5]

Content[edit]

Many prominent musicians of that era appear on the record, including Nash, Young, Joni Mitchell, members of the Grateful Dead (most notably Jerry Garcia, who helped to arrange and produce the album), Jefferson Airplane, and Santana. The ensemble was given the informal moniker of The Planet Earth Rock and Roll Orchestra by Jefferson Airplane bandleader, longtime Crosby associate and fellow science fiction fan Paul Kantner; the core of this agglomeration (including recording engineer Stephen Barncard) also worked on Kantner's Blows Against the Empire (1970) and the Grateful Dead's American Beauty (1970), both recorded concurrently with Crosby's album at San Francisco's Wally Heider Studios.

Two singles were taken from the album, including the minor hit "Music Is Love," a collaboration with Nash and Young that was released in April 1971 and subsequently peaked at #95 on the Billboard Hot 100.[6][7] The album has remained continuously in print.[2][3]

If I Could Only Remember My Name was initially released on compact disc on October 25, 1990, having been digitally remastered from the original master tapes, using the equipment and techniques of the day, by Barncard. A double-disc reissue appeared on November 6, 2006, with an audio disc remastered in HDCD, including a bonus track (the hitherto unreleased "Kids and Dogs", previously earmarked for an unreleased Crosby solo album slated to appear on Capitol Records in the early 1980s) and a second DVD Audio disc of the original album remixed for 5.1 digital Surround Sound. Reviews of the most recent reissue place the album in the same influential company as the more baroque works of Nick Drake and Meddle-era Pink Floyd; it has also been cited as a progenitor of the freak folk and New Weird America subgenres of indie rock.[8][9]

Legacy[edit]

On 18 November 2013, Crosby appeared on an edition of the BBC Radio 4 programme Mastertapes, which was dedicated to the making of the album,[10] the following day, he took part in the programme's "B-side" edition, answering audience questions and performing songs from the album.[10]

Japanese musician Cornelius included it in his list of "10 Experimental Albums that Everyone Should Own."[11]

Track listing[edit]

Side one[edit]

No.TitleWriter(s)Length
1."Music Is Love"David Crosby, Graham Nash, Neil Young3:16
2."Cowboy Movie"David Crosby8:02
3."Tamalpais High (at about 3)"David Crosby3:29
4."Laughing"David Crosby5:20

Side two[edit]

No.TitleWriter(s)Length
1."What Are Their Names"Crosby, Garcia, Lesh, Shrieve, Young4:09
2."Traction in the Rain"David Crosby3:40
3."Song with No Words (Tree with No Leaves)"David Crosby5:53
4."Orleans"traditional1:56
5."I'd Swear There Was Somebody Here"David Crosby1:19

2006 reissue bonus track[edit]

No.TitleWriter(s)Length
10."Kids and Dogs"David Crosby7:01

Personnel[edit]

Musicians[edit]

Production[edit]

References[edit]

External links[edit]