Osmonds, The

Band members               Related acts

- Alan Osmond - vocals, keyboards, guitar

- Donnie Osmond - synthesizers

- Jay Osmond - drums, percussion, vocals

- Merrill Osmond - bass, vocals

- Wayne Osmond - vocals, lead guitar, woodwinds




- Donny Osmond (solo efforts)

- Donny and Marie




Genre: pop

Rating: ** (2 stars)

Title:  The Osmonds

Company: MGM

Catalog: SE-4724

Country/State: Utah

Year: 1971

Grade (cover/record): VG /V G

Comments: gatefold sleeve

Available: SOLD

GEMM catalog ID: 4144

Price: SOLD


Interesting how time makes you re-consider things ...  A few years ago anyone suggesting I'd listen to an album by The Osmonds, let alone own such an item would have been met with scorn on my part.  Well, I'm ready to tell you that million of pre-teen and teen girls may not have been entirely wrong.


First a short bio for those of you who've managed to avoid The Osmonds this far ...  In order of age (oldest to youngest), the lineup consisted of Alan, Wayne, Merrell, Jay and Donny.  Born into a rather strict Mormon household, under their father George Osmond's wing, starting in the late 1950s the four oldest brothers began performing barbershop and religious oriented material at talent shows, parties and country fairs.  1962 saw George try to get the brothers a job on the Lawrence Welk Show.  While Welk wasn't interested in them, a trip to Disneyland won the group a job performing in the amusement park.  Within a matter of weeks they'd caught the attention of Jay Williams - Andy Williams' father.  Jay convinced his son to check the group out and he quickly signed them to appear on The Andy Williams Show.  


The next five years saw younger brother Donny added to the lineup and the brothers begin to expand their musical repetoiree to include pop numbers.  They also began playing their own instruments.  With Williams' show being cancelled in 1967, the brothers moved their talents to The Jerry Lewis Show and began touring in support of MOR acts such as Pat Boone and Phyllis Diller.  


With the public suddenly having an insatiable lust for family-oriented bands (e.g. The Jackson Five), it was only a matter of time before someone decided to market The Osmonds.  That person turned out to be Mike Curb.  Signed to Curb's MGM Records, 1971 saw the brothers were teamed with produced Rick Hall.  The result was the debut single "One Bad Apple" b/w "He Ain't Heavy, He's My Brother" (MGM catalog number KE-14193).  A Jackson Five sound-alike  effort, the single sported a top-40, radio-friendly melody and  ended up topping the charts for weeks.  


As was standard marketing procedure, MGM rushed the group back into the studio to record a supporting album.  Continuing their partnership with producer Hall, 1971's "The Osmonds" was recorded in Muscle Shoals. Musically the debut album served as the template for their forthcoming catalog.  Tracks such as the earlier "One Bad Apple" and "Flirtin'" ensured commercial success with top-40 moves, "Lonesome The Call Me Lonesome I Am" and "Sweet and Innocent" guaranteed sweet dreams for legions of young female fans, while "He Ain't Heavy, He's My Brother" and "Think" were geared to show parents these guys weren't a threat to anyone.  Sure, it was all very calculated (down to the inner sleeve poster offer), but you had to be impressed by the brothers' ability to pull it off.  (Love the little bios on the inner sleeve ..  "Alan is the leader of the group.  He's very concerned about 'now things ...") 


"The Osmonds" track listing:

(side 1)

1.) (Would It Make You) Think   (Chandler) - 2:58

2.) One Bad Apple   (Jackson) - 2:46

3.) Catch Me Baby   (Osmond) - 5:13

3.) Lonesome The Call Me Lonesome I Am   (Elledge Day) - 

4.) Motown Special   (various) -


(side 2)

1.) Sweet and Innocent   (Rick Hall - Sherrill) - 4:04

2.) He Ain't Heavy, He's My Brother   (Scott - Russell) - 3:56

3.) Fine 'em, Fool 'em, Forget 'em   (Rick Hall - Jackson) - 2:29

4.) Most of All   (Buie - Cobb) - 2:55

5.) Flirtin'   (Nolan) - 2:55




Genre: pop

Rating: ** (2 stars)

Title:  Crazy Horses

Company: MGM

Catalog: SE-4871

Year: 1972

Country/State: Utah

Grade (cover/record): VG / VG

Comments: gatefold sleeve

Available: 1

GEMM catalog ID: 5398

Price: $8.00


"Crazy Horses" track listing:

(side 1)



(side 2)



. Hold Her Tight 2. Utah 3. Girl 4. What Could It Be 5. We All Fall Down 6. And You Love Me 7. Crazy Horses 8. Life Is Hard Enough Without Goodbyes 9. Hey, Mr.Taxi 10. That's My Girl 11. Julie 12. Big Finish

Crazy Horses - 1972
Label: MGM/Kolob Records SE-4871
Singles: Hold Her Tight, Crazy Horses

There are at least a half dozen YouTube performances out there, but this seems to be the best of the lot:






The Osmonds never got the props they deserve. They actually wrote their own music and played their own instruments. yeah, some of their songs are treacly, but alot of them rock and rock hard. Not just "Crazy Horses" check out, "Hey Mr. Taxi", "Hold Her Tight", and "Life Is Hard Enough Without Goodbyes". I do think the asking price is just a tad too high....500.00 for a pirated cd? WOW

bought this album when I was 5 years old, and still have it, all scratched but a bargain compared to this $500.00 offering. I love standards, and there's a song on this album by Wayne Osmond that's gone totally unrecognized even at the Osmond website titled "And You Love Me." I'm grateful to this seller for listing the songs, because I was searching for it on iTUNES and coming up blank. If any of you can access this ONE SONG from CRAZY HORSES, you will be delighted. The song is worth the whole album, but not $1000.00 or whatever.


First, I was a huge Osmond fan as a pre-teen, but this album even appealed to my brothers who thought I had no musical taste. I still have my Osmond album collection after all these years including this LP (that's what we called 33-1/3 albums). There was a big controversary when this album came out and some radio stations refused to play it thinking "Crazy Horses" was another name for heroin. The Osmonds had to explain it was an anti-pollution statement and nothing to do with drugs. For a conservative Mormon family, it must've been a big headache.




On Crazy Horses, the Osmonds attempted to roughen up their clean-cut musical image with some hard rock and psychedelia Led Zeppelin's "Immigrant Song" riff is used for bottom-heavy effect on "Hold Me Tight," while Sgt. Pepper's-era Beatles and Paul McCartney are the inspiration for "What Could It Be" and "We All Fall Down." Further tarnishing is attempted with the exclusion of Donny's bubblegum vocals the elder Osmonds share the microphone on all the tracks, presumably to insure that this will be a seriously rockin' affair. These "subversive" elements are mostly decorative, though, as variety-show arrangements and "One Bad Apple"-like melodies predominate on cuts like "That's My Girl" and the Bread-inspired number "And You Love Me." What stands out on this plodding album, though, is the excessive yet impressive title track, with its banshee-wail synth intro, Vegas horn arrangements and chugging Bachman-Turner Overdrive rhythm. If only the group could have perfected this Broadway/acid rock alliance on the whole album, we might have had a kitsch rock classic. This one is for die-hard fans and novelty hounds only; stick with one of their greatest-hits packages if you just want a good introduction to the Osmonds' recordings.

The song was written about Air Pollution - "Crazy Horses" represents automobiles - "horsepower" - that creates pollution in the skies from the exhaust. (thanks to Cathy at Osmond.net)
This was written by Alan, Merrill and Wayne Osmond. They were the oldest of the group, who were all fathers.
This song was originally banned in South Africa because "horses" is a slang term for heroin there, so "crazy horses" was thought to be referring to drugs. (thanks, Edward Pearce - Ashford, Kent, England, for all above)


Genre: pop

Rating: ** (2 stars)

Title:  Love Me For a Reason

Company: MGM

Catalog: M3G 4939

Year: 1974

Country/State: Utah

Grade (cover/record): VG / VG

Comments: minor corner wear

Available: 1

GEMM catalog ID: 4144

Price: $5.00

Cost: $1.00


As a cynical teenager in the 1970s I wouldn't have touched an Osmond product with a ten foot pool.  That's my loss since in hindsight these guys weren't without some talent.  Besides. how can you not like an LP that shows the world's most famous Mormon family dressed up like a group of inner city pimps?  Too bad Marie wasn't part of the line up.  Can you image her posed as a lady of the evening?


With the Osmonds serving as executive producers, 1974's "Love Me for a Reason" wasn't a major change in musical direction.  Exemplified by material such as the title track, "Peace" and "I Can See Love In You and Me" the album offered up a now-familiar selection of top-40-styled pop. Propelled by Donny's nice, but strangely anonymous voice the material was perfectly suited for conservative top-40 radio.  Curiously, at least to our ears the group's actually far more interesting when they struck a tougher stance (we say that with a smile).  While not even your grandmother would feel threatened by these beacons of goodness, there's something entertaining in hearing these guys try to be bad boys.  Check out their stab at getting heavy on the original "Sun, Sun, Sun" (Donny sounds like he has a frog caught in his throat) and the hysterical "Having a Party".  Also worth hearing are the LP's odder offerings, including The Four Tops-knock off "Gabrielle", the risquely titled "Balling the Jack" (which is actually about a new dance step) and their smiley group-sing cover of Solomon Burke's "Send Me a Little Love".   Propelled by the top-10 title track, the parent album eventually hit # 47 on the US charts.


"Love Me for a Reason" track listing:

(side 1)

1.) Having a Party   (B. Massey - H.B. Barnum - C. Brown)- 3:20

2.) The Girl I Love   (B. Massey - H.B. Barnum - F. Butler) - 3:45

3.) Love Me for a Reason   (Johnny Bristol - W. Brown r. - D. Jones Jr.) - 4:02

4.) Ballin' the Jack   (Chris Smith - James Henry Burns) - 3:08

5.) Send Me a Little Love   (Solomon Burke) - 3:20


(side 2)

1.) Peace   (H.B. Barnum - B. Craig)  - 4:50

2.) Gabrielle   (Denny Randell - Lefty Jo Randell) - 3:30

3.) I Can't Get Next To You   (Norman Whitfield - Barrett Strong) - 3:08

4.) Sun, Sun, Sun   (Alan Osmond - Merril Osmond - Wayne Osmond) - 3:32

5.) I Can See Love In You and Me   (Dalton - Duberri) - 3:08

6.) Fever   (Denny Randell - Lefty Jo Randell) - 3:15




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