Thompson, Don

Band members               Related acts

- Ken Carlysle -- guitar

- Michael Day -- keyboards

- George Faber - harmonica

- Thom Foster -- percussion

- Dan Owens -- percussion

- Don Thompson -- vocals, guitar, synthesizers

- Harry Washburn -- bass

- Gordon Wilson -- synthesizers



- none known





Genre: folk-rock

Rating: 2 stars **

Title:  Jupiter

Company: Sunday

Catalog: KS5101

Year: 1975

Country/State: Illinois, USA

Grade (cover/record): VG+ / VG+

Comments: original Sunday pressing; gatefold textured sleeve; no bonus 45 (some of the original pressings apparently had such); includes inserts

Available: 1

Catalog ID: 5105

Price: $125.00


Here's another Midwestern obscurity that probably owes most of the attention focused on it to the fact it was listed in one of the Hans Pokora "Record Collector Dreams" books (I'm too lazy to look, but believe it might have been the 2001 volume).  That said, the record's certainly rare, but given the number of copies that seem to turn up on the market, I doubt that it was limited to the reported 100 or 500 copies.


Coming close to being a true one man show, in addition to producing 1975's "Jupiter", namesake Don Thompson wrote all of the material, handled the vocals, arrangements and much on the instrumentation.  To be perfectly honest the first couple of times I listened to this album I felt kind of suckered.  Tracks like the lead off 'Horizons', 'Yin Yang' and 'Columbus' were all pretty, but in a surprisingly new age-ish style. As for those high priced dealer catalog descriptions 'exploration/space-travel fantasy theme, with lots of strange electronic sounds ...' well ignore them because they're total crap. Propelled by Thompson's decent (if occasionally quivering voice) and some nice acoustic guitar performances, the overarching sound was that of prime mid-1970s sensitive singer-songwriter ...   The largely acoustic arrangements (with occasional synthesizer touches) were coupled with deep, insightful and painfully personal lyrics.  (Okay, I'll admit that I found much of it to be nauseatingly sophomoric - be sure to check out the 'Myth of Jupiter' liner notes.)  To be fair, the album wasn't a complete wipeout. Backed by a full band, Thompson was quite good on atypical rockers like 'Step Away' and 'For Folks On Highland'.  Too bad there wasn't more rock and less sensitive hippy-dippy posturing ('Fly Eagle Fly').  Anyhow, back to Thompson's voice -  It took awhile for me to figure out who he reminded me of, but it finally hit me ... imagine Donovan had he been born in the Midwest ('Jupiter'), or perhaps Spooky Tooth's Gary Wright without the rock star pretenses and you'd be in the right neighborhood.  


"Jupiter" track listing:
(side 1)

1.) Horizons   (Don Thompson) - 5:33

2.) Yin Yang   (Don Thompson) - 4:55

3.) Columbus   (Don Thompson) - 4:37

4.) Malanie   (Don Thompson) - 3:29

5.) Step Away   (Don Thompson) - 


(side 2)
1.) Shores of Time   (Don Thompson) - 3:51

2.) For Folks On Highland   (Don Thompson) - 2:41

3.) Fly Eagle Fly   (Don Thompson) - 5:12

4.) Jupiter   (Don Thompson) - 6:01