Faria, Glenn


Band members                         Related acts

- Glenn Faria -- vocals, guitar

 

 

- Headstone Circus

 

 


 

Genre: rock

Rating: 3 stars ***

Title:  Glenn Faria

Company: Tiger Lily

Catalog: TL 14058
Year: 1976

Country/State: Washington, DC

Grade (cover/record): VG+ / VG+

Comments: --

Available: 1

Catalog ID: 135

Price: $500.00

 

So this is one of the rarer releases on Morris Levy's infamous Tiger Lily tax scam label.  I've seen two copies in the thirty years I've been collecting - one fairly trashed.  That said, for anyone who doesn't want to invest a couple of paychecks to buy a  copy of the rare and expensive original album, the collection's become easier to locate and much more affordable thanks to Wolfgang Reuther's World In Sound label which reissued the album in CD format (World In Sound catalog number WIS 1007).

 

Shadoks catalog 061

As a tax scam release, there isn't a great deal of information to be found on 1976's "Glenn Faria" (curiously, the inner label showed his name as Glen (one 'n').  Production and songwriting were credited to Eric Nathinson who'd worked with a bunch of lesser know '60s sunshine pop acts including Boffalongo,  And that's about it for hardcore biographical information - no performance credits, or any additional data.  I can add that Faria was born and raised in Washington, D.C. and his professional career started as a member of Headstone Circus which saw a wonderful posthumous album released by the Shadoks label. Anyhow, that absence of biographical detail leaves lots of room for speculation.  Against that backdrop I'd guess that these tracks were recorded in the early-1970s after the break-up of Headstone Circus.  Most of the eight songs reflect a slightly raw and under-produced feeling, leaving the impression they were probably early demos originally intended for some sort of Faria solo project.  Musically the collection was split between barebones singer/songwriter numbers like 'Summer's Gone' and 'Centuries To Live' and full band rockers like 'Born In Georgia' and 'Reason To Live'.  While far from perfect, there was plenty to like on the album; including Faria's gruff, but likeable voice and his taunt, snarling lead guitar.   Too my ears he occasionally recalled a young Stephen Stills without the penchant for Latin touches.  How the LP ended up in Morris Levy's hands is a mystery to me.

 

- 'Born In Georgia' started the album off with a slinky blues-rocker that would have made The Allman Brothers proud.  Kicked along by some tasty wha-wha guitar and Faria's gruff, rustic, but imminently likeable voice, this was a wonderful way to start off an album.   One of the best songs on the album !!!   rating: **** stars

- A pretty acoustic blues number (Faria with acoustic guitar and a ouch of organ), 'Summer's Gone' sounded like an early demo that had never been completed.   The pretty melody and the multi-tracked vocals were simply gorgeous.  Artists like John Denver and Dan Fogelberg would have killed for something as good as this one.   rating: *** stars

- Backed by a full electric arrangement, 'Reason To Live' still sounded like a demo, but actually benefited from the slightly raw, under-produced sound.  Imagine a good Stephen Stills composition on the first CSN&Y album and you'd have a feel for what this rocker sounded like.  Extra points for the snarling lead guitar.  rating: **** stars

- 'Centuries To Live' found Faria returning to singer/songwriter mode.  Pretty acoustic number that should appeal to Neil Young fans.   rating: *** stars

- Kicked along by Latin percussion and Faria's snarling lead guitar, the mid-tempo rocker 'Feast Your Eyes' provided another album highlight.  Easy to see it having garnered commercial attention with a bit of publicity.    rating: **** stars

- Normally acoustic ballads don't do a great deal for me, but as exemplified by 'Love Is Calling', the combination of Faria's voice and earnestness strikes a chord with me.  Not sure why, but it almost sounded like the song was edited to extend the playing time ...    rating: *** star

- As you've probably figured out, as much as I like Faria's acoustic stuff, I'm an even bigger fan of his full-band arrangements and 'No Time for Your Tears' is no exception to the rule.   Sporting another dark, slightly, ominous melody, this was the kind of stuff that Stephen Still would have loved to churn out.   rating: **** star

- A straightforward acoustic blues number, 'I'm Crazy' was probably the least impressive song on the album.  Just Faria and acoustic guitar, I'll give him credit for turning in a dark, ominous, and slightly disturbing performance (might have something to do with the way he snarled out the lyric "you're young now, but won't be young for long ...").   rating: ** star

- The album's most commercial and radio-friendly performance, 'Reach Out To a Strange' would have made a dandy top-40 song.  A great melody with a breezy vocal, great hook, and a cool sax made this one a major treasure.   Shame nobody ever heard it.      rating: **** star

 

"Glenn Farina" track listing:
(side 1)

1.) Born In Georgia  (Eric Nathinson) - 
2.) Summer's Gone  (Eric Nathinson) - 
3.) Reason To Live  (Eric Nathinson) - 
4 ) Centuries To Live  (Eric Nathinson) - 
5 ) Feast Your Eyes  (Eric Nathinson) - 

 

(side 2)
1.) Love Is Calling
  (Eric Nathinson) - 

2.) No Time for Your Tears  (Eric Nathinson) - 

3.) I'm Crazy  (Eric Nathinson) - 

4.) Reach Out To a Stranger  (Eric Nathinson) - 

 

Faria's still alive, but seemingly retired from the music business.  I believe he still lives in the Washington, D.C. area, but is apparently rather protective of his privacy so I've never made any attempt to track him down.   

 

As mentioned above, the World In Sound label reissued the LP (though I have no idea if it was done with Faria's approval and cooperation).   The reissue package included seven bonus tracks:

 

1.) I'm Crazy (original demo)
2.) Get Off My Back

3.) I Can't Take It
4.) Strange Love
5.) I'm Goin' Down
6.) You Got To live
7.) Bear Down

 

 

 

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