Joey Stec

Band members                             Related acts

- Joey Stec -- vocals, guitar, keyboards (1975)


  backing musicians:

- Art Delguidico -- lead guitar

- Jim Gordon -- drums, percussion

- Bobby Keys -- sax 

- Joe Lala -- percussion

- John Neuso -- lead guitar 

- Carl Radle -- bass 

- Pigpen Sanvig -- keyboards 




- The Dependables (Joey Stec)

- Lee Mallory and Joey Stec

- The Millennium (Joey Stec)





Genre: rock

Rating: *** (3 stars)

Title:  Joey Stec

Company: Playboy

Catalog: PB 412

Year: 1975

Country/State: US

Grade (cover/record): VG+/VG+

Comments: original inner sleeve

Available: 1 

Catalog ID: 4388

Price: $25.00

Cost: $66.00


Joey Stec's one of those journeyman musicians who's got a surprisingly impressive resume, though few folks would recognize his name.  Today he's probably best known as a member of the short-lived The Millennium (along with the late Curt Boettcher and Gary Usher), though his career includes a wide variety of successes as a sessions player, touring musician (The Blues Magoos), songwriter, and record label owner (he formed Sonic Past Music in 2000). 


Outside of a small group of power pop fanatics, few folks know that Stec released an excellent if long forgotten pop-oriented LP.  Produced by Jimmy Miller (of Rolling Stones fame), and released by Playboy's short-lived mid-1970s foray into music, 1975's "Joey Stec" showcased Stec's commercial voice on a tasty mixture of  top-40 styled pop and lightweight rock.  Exemplified by material such as 'Do You Know', 'Happier (Than I've Ever Been Before)' and 'Easy To Love' the album was full of bright melodies and catchy harmonies.  I hate drawing comparisons to other groups, but anyone who liked Badfinger or The Raspberries would find this set a blast.  In fact the only disappointments here were a needless 'poppy' cover of The Temptation's 'I Wish It Would Rain' and 'Back Again' where a Bobby Keyes sax solo all but drown Stec's vocals out.  Personal favorites included the atypically stark 'No Knowing' (which sounded like an "On the Beach" era  Neil Young outtake, though Stec's voice was 100 times better than Young's) and the irritatingly catchy 'Even Angels (Have Been Known To Fall)'.  The album also sported one of the year's most impressive lists of sessions players.  Maybe not the lost masterpiece some sales lists would have you believe, but quite solid and enjoyable.  


There are actually two versions of the LP.  They sport the same catalog number and the same track listing.  As far as I can tell the only difference is the cover art.  Here's the alternative (and more common) cover:


There is a Stec FaceBook site, but it has not been updated in some time:

Joey Stec | Facebook


And here's the link to Stec's Sonic Past Music:



"Joey Stec" track listing:
(side 1)

1.) Do You Know   (Joey Stec - Warner Schwebki) - 3:25  rating: **** stars

With a breezy melody and a title refrain that won't leave your head, 'Do You Know' was a wonderful slice of Badfinger-styled pop-rock.   Add in some tasty lead guitar and it was easy to see why it was floated as a single.  

- 1975's 'Do You Know' b/w 'Even Angels (Have Been Known To Fall)' (Playboy catalog number P 6096 A/B)

In 2011 the Japanese Air Mail Archives label release the track as a CD Single (catalog number AIRPROMO-028

2.) Happier (Than I've Ever Been Before)    (J.W. Wayne) - 3:42   rating: *** stars

'Happier (Than I've Ever Been Before)' was a likeable pop tune, but I have to say Bobby Keys' sax solos gave the tune a somewhat anonymous Adult Contemporary feel.  Imagine The Archies backed by The Brecker Brothers.  

3.) I Wish It Would Rain   (Norman Whitefield - Barrett Strong) - 3:01   rating: *** stars

Covering a classic song is always risky; even more so when you decided to take a chance on a Motown performance.  Stec didn't really mess with the song's melody, though he replaced the Temptations' pain with a touch of molten anger.   Extra star for the nice arrangement of the class refrain.  Minus a star for the Bobby Keyes sax.

4.) No Knowing   (Joey Stec) - 3:40  rating: **** stars

Opening up with some piercing lead guitar the laconic ballad 'No Knowing' demonstrated Stec was more than a bubblegum act.  Imagine Neil Young having discovered the concept of melody.  LOL

5.) Give My Love To You  (Joey Stec) - 3:26   rating: *** stars

Back to highly melodic material, the rollicking 'Give My Love To You' added a country-rock flavor to the mix.


(side 2)
1.) Easy To Love   (J.W. Wayne) - 3:00
   rating: *** stars

Another commercially viable tune with a tasty Telecaster solo, but what was with Keyes' out of control sax solos?

2.) Back Again  (Joey Stec - Albert Morris) - 2:53   rating: *** stars

Featuring another breezy melody, 'Back Again' went a bit too far in the sappy pop direction.  Not to sound like a broken record, but the song would have been even better with the sax solos.

3.) Standing Here Alone  (Joey Stec) - 3:29  rating: ** stars

Bland, forgettable ballad.  'Standing Here Alone' sounded like Stec had recorded it on a dark, rain soaked Monday after discovering his dog had died and his condo had burned to the ground.

4.) Then  (Joey Stec - Art Delguidico) - 2:33 

'Then' offered up a pleasant, but undistinguished acoustic ballad.   rating: *** stars

5.) Even Angels (Have Been Known To Fall)  (Joey Stec) - 3:02  rating: **** stars

Opening up with a riff that sounded like it had been borrowed from a Monkees album, 'Even Angels (Have Been Known To Fall); closed the album with a nice rocker.  The arrangement was a bit cluttered and busy, but it was a nice change to the ballads.