Leonard Nimoy

Band members                             Related acts

- Leonard Nimoy - vocals



- none known





Genre: pop

Rating: *** (3 stars)

Title:  The Touch of Leonard Nimoy

Company: Dot

Catalog: DLP 25910

Year: 1969

Country/State: Boston, Massachusetts

Grade (cover/record): VG+/VG+

Comments: --

Available: 1

Catalog ID: 184

Price: $20.00


C'mon, you know you want to have at least one Leonard Nimoy album in your collection ...  Think of how impressed your friends would be - vinyl and Star Trek cache too boot ...   You'll be a hero in your social circle !!!



1969's Charles R. Greane produced "The Touch of Leonard Nimoy" was Nimoy's fourth studio set and is considered by many fans to be his artistic and creative zenith. The irony here is that most Nimoy fans are going to be Trekies, yet this was the first album where with the exception of the track 'Contact' Nimoy largely ignored his Star Trek roots (he didn't even sport the Vulcan ears on the back cover photo).   I have no idea if he really thought he could make it as a musician, or perhaps this was one of those contractual obligation albums, but Nimoy and company played it pretty straight ahead this time. Musically most of the album had kind of late-'60s  singer-songwriter/folkie vibe ('I Search for Tomorrow'), with Nimoy's vocals surrounded by tasteful and mostly subdued arrangements.  So it would be very easy to dump all over this album and while it isn't anything awe inspiring, in the realm of celebrity albums, this one wasn't half bad.  Nimoy already had an advantage over most celebrities, given he could actually carry a tune (as a comparison baseline, think along the lines of Tele Savalas, or William Shatner) and he seemed to have good taste when it came to covering outside material - Barry Mann, The Blue Things Val Stoecklein, and Randy Newman.  Add to that, producer Greane and arranger George Tipton actually seemed to have personal interests in the project, avoiding the usual boilerplate production-line approach, instead showing considerable care across these eleven tracks - check out the nice arrangement of Randy Newman's ' I Think It's Gonna Rain Today'.   


- A pretty folk-tinged ballad, 'I Search for Tomorrow' served to showcase Nimoy's decent voice.  Yeah, he didn't have a great deal of range, or inflection, but give the man a break in that he really could carry a tune.  rating: *** stars

- Built on what sounded like a traditional folk melody, 'Maiden Wine' was one of four Nimoy originals and is the one Trekies are most familiar with.  Nimoy actually performed a stripped down version of the song in a Star Trek episode - the third season's "Plato's Stepchildren".  To my ears it sounded like one of those songs you were first to sing in elementary school, which probably explains why I'm not a big fan.    Anyhow, if you haven't heard/seen it, YouTube has a number of clips of the original Start Trek performance:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=858FBUVzvg4  rating: ** stars

- Penned by The Blue Things Val Stoeckein, 'Now's the Time' found Nimoy doing his best Dylan impression.   Since he was channeling Dylan, it really didn't matter that the vocal was gruff and only marginally in tune.   rating: *** stars

- 'Cycles' was another folkish tune that didn't require a lot of vocal dynamics from Nimoy.  Pretty tune so, you could kind of overlook the vocals.   rating: ** tunes

- I'm sure some folks will think I'm being a dick, but with a straight face I can say I actually liked his cover of Randy Newman's ' I Think It's Gonna Rain Today'.   I don't know how many folks have ever heard the Newman original (found on 1971's "Randy Newman"), but in terms of being listenable, Nimoy's orchestrated cover was certainly no worse than the Newman original - his voice certainly wasn't any worse than Newman's.   (If you want to hear really stunning versions of the song, I'd suggest looking for the versions done by Peter Gabriel (the track's dark soul actually sounds like a Gabriel composition), Nina Simone, or Dusty Springfield.   rating: *** stars

- 'I Just Can't Help Believin'' wasn't any worse than a Jimmy Webb song - in fact the song's MOR pop flavor sounded very similar to the kind of stuff Webb was writing for Glen Campbell.  As for Nimoy, his easy-going delivery gave the song a surprisingl low-key charm.  rating: *** stars

- Nimoy's speak-talk version of Eden Ahbez's 'Nature Boy' was entertaining, though it won't make you forget the original.  Wonder how he came across this obscurity ...   rating: ** stars

- One of two tracks co-written with arranger George Tipton, 'Contract' was the one track that connected with his Star Trek history - in this case a 'Major Tom' piece of sci-fi.  Kind of spooky ...      rating: *** stars

- Another Nimoy-Tipton collaboration, 'The Man I Would Like To Be' was another slice of MOR-pop with Nimoy finding a comfortable groove that he didn't stray from.  This one could've been released as a single.   rating: *** stars

- Complete with heavy orchestration and shrieking background singers, to my ears 'A Trip To Nowhere' sounded like a Jacques Brel tune.  That wasn't meant as a compliment.   rating: ** stars

- Another Nimoy original, 'Piece of Hope' was clearly a '60s time-piece ...  peace, love, and happiness to all ...  interestingly you could also see the song as having an activist political stance.  rating: *** stars


Nah, you won't play this very often, but so what ...   how many LPs do you play on a regular basis ?

"The Touch of Leonard Nimoy" track listing:
(side 1)

1.) I Search for Tomorrow  (Paul Evans - Paul Parnes) - 2:25

2.) Maiden Wine   (Leonard Nimoy) - 1:40

3.) Now's the Time   (Val Stoecklein) - 2:38

4.) Cycles    (Gayle Caldwell) - 2:52

5.) I Think It's Gonna Rain Today   (Randy Newman) - 3:05


(side 2)
1.) I Just Can't Help Believin'    (Barry Mann - Cynthia Weil) - 2:34

2.) Nature Boy   (Eden Ahbez) - 2:15

3.) Contract   (Leonard Nimoy - George Tipton) - 2:13

4.) The Man I Would Like To Be   (Leonard Nimoy - George Tipton) - 2:35

5.) A Trip To Nowhere   (Cymbal - Costa) - 2:14

6.) Piece of Hope   (Leonard Nimoy) - 2:24





Genre: bizarre

Rating: *** (3 stars)

Title:  Outer Space/Inner Mind

Company: Famous Twinsets

Catalog: PAS-2-1030

Year: 1974

Country/State: Boston, Massachusetts

Grade (cover/record): VG/VG+

Comments: double LP; gatefold sleeve; little tape residue on side of cover'; wrong label on side four

Available: 1

Catalog ID: 4390

Price: $40.00

Cost: $66.00


So sue me ...  Yeah, I'll readily admit to having a bizarre fascination with so called 'golden throat' artists like Tele Savalas, Mrs. Miller and everyone's favorite Vulcan - Leonard Nimoy.


One of the things that's impressive about Nimoy is the fact the guy has an extensive musical catalog.  I'm sure I've missed some, but to my knowledge, he's recorded at least a dozen albums and a handful of 45s.


Released in 1974, "Outer Space/Inner Mind" was a double album, 22 track compilation, pulling together the bulk of his 1967 debut "Mr. Spock's Music from Outer Space" with an equally bizarre series of rock covers from latter releases.  There isn't much to say here other than you either get it, or you don't.  Talking and croaking his way through this material Nimoy's apparently fairly earnest in his musical endeavors (he's also supposedly a poet), making you wonder why nobody had the guts to tell him that a musical career was probably not in his (or anyone else's) best interests.  Thematically the material's basically split between Star Trek oriented camp ('Alien', 'Twinkle, Twinkle Little Earth' and the hysterical 'Music To Watch Space Girls By') and a series of over orchestrated pop and rock covers.  That said, there's something morbidly fascinating about hearing Nimoy fight his way through tracks such as 'Put a Little Love In Your Heart' and 'Abraham, Martin & John'.   Besides, every time I think of John Fogerty getting a royalty for Nimoy's cover of 'Proud Mary' I have to smile.   Personal favorites include the "Theme From Star Trek" (done as a 1960s surf instrumental) and the too-strange-to-describe 'Twinkle, Twinkle Little Earth'.  One word of warning on the sound quality - Paramount (which released the album) apparently didn't have access to the original master tapes, or simply didn't care about sound quality since these tracks don't sound nearly as good as the original releases.  

"Outer Space/Inner Mind" track listing:
(side 1)

1.) Theme From Star Trek (instrumental)   (Courage - Gene Roddenbury) -2:04

2.) Alien   (Coben) - 1:57

3.) Where is Love?   (Bari) - 1:50

4.) Music To Watch Space Girls By (instrumental)   (S. Ramin) - 2:17

5.) Beyond Antares (instrumental)   (Hatch Conn) - 1:54

6.) Twinkle, Twinkle Little Earth   (Hertz Nimoy Green) - 2:12


(side 2)
1.) Mission Impossible (instrumental)   (Lalo Shiffrin) - 1:58

2.) Lost In the Stars   (Weil - Anderson) - 2:25

3.) Where No Man Has Gone Before (instrumental)

4.) You Are Not Alone   (Courage) - 2:24

5.) A Visit To a Sad Planet    (Christopher Grean) - 2:59

6.) Spock Thoughts   (Gene Roddenbury) - 3:09


(side 3)

1.) I'd Love Making Love To You   (Hal David) - 2:53

2.) Sunny   (Bobby Hebb) - 3:17

3.) Both Sides Now   (Joni Mitchell) - 2:51

4.) Love is Sweeter   (Hartford) - 2:42

5.) Put a Little Love In Your Heart   (Holloway - Meyers - Jackie DeShannon) - 2:34


(side 4)

1.) Abraham, Martin & John

2.) Proud Mary

3.) Everybody's Talkin'

4.) Gentle On My Mind

5.) If I Were a Carpenter