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Rock - Released January 1, 1969 | Fantasy Records

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions The Qobuz Ideal Discography
Opening slowly with the dark, swampy "Born on the Bayou," Bayou Country reveals an assured Creedence Clearwater Revival, a band that has found its voice between their first and second album. It's not just that "Born on the Bayou" announces that CCR has discovered its sound -- it reveals the extent of John Fogerty's myth-making. With this song, he sketches out his persona; it makes him sound as if he crawled out of the backwoods of Louisiana instead of being a native San Franciscan. He carries this illusion throughout the record, through the ominous meanderings of "Graveyard Train" through the stoked cover of "Good Golly Miss Molly" to "Keep on Chooglin'," which rides out a southern-fried groove for nearly eight minutes. At the heart of Bayou Country, as well as Fogerty's myth and Creedence's entire career, is "Proud Mary." A riverboat tale where the narrator leaves a good job in the city for a life rolling down the river, the song is filled with details that ring so true that it feels autobiographical. The lyric is married to music that is utterly unique yet curiously timeless, blending rockabilly, country, and Stax R&B into something utterly distinctive and addictive. "Proud Mary" is the emotional fulcrum at the center of Fogerty's seductive imaginary Americana, and while it's the best song here, his other songs are no slouch, either. "Born on the Bayou" is a magnificent piece of swamp-rock, "Penthouse Pauper" is a first-rate rocker with the angry undertow apparent on "Porterville" and "Bootleg" is a minor masterpiece, thanks to its tough acoustic foundation, sterling guitar work, and clever story. All the songs add up to a superb statement of purpose, a record that captures Creedence Clearwater Revival's muscular, spare, deceptively simple sound as an evocative portrait of America. © Stephen Thomas Erlewine /TiVo
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Rock - Released October 27, 2014 | Fantasy Records

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Rock - Released July 25, 1970 | Fantasy Records

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Rock - Released November 1, 1969 | Fantasy Records

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Rock - Released November 1, 1969 | Fantasy Records

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Rock - Released August 1, 1969 | Fantasy Records

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Rock - Released July 25, 1970 | Fantasy Records

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Rock - Released August 2, 2019 | Craft Recordings

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Creedence were the first to sign up for Woodstock. In April 1969, the Fogerty brothers' band pocketed a cheque for $10,000. Now that they'd landed such a big fish, the organisers knew that other big names would start looking for their own spot on the bill of what was set to be THE festival of the year... But all the same, the group were disappointed to find themselves with a very late billing, between half past midnight and 1:20am, after the Grateful Dead. But that didn't do anything to dampen a perfect performance, presented here in full and remastered. In 1969, Creedence Clearwater Revival was already one of the most popular acts of the day, thanks to their three albums Creedence Clearwater Revival (May 1968), Bayou Country (January 1969) and Green River (August 1969, released two weeks before Woodstock). At the height of the reign of the Beatles and Stones, John Fogerty's Californian gang had something original up their sleeve: savage, raw rock'n'roll, built from rough-hewn, unadorned blues and country. Creedence marked themselves out with their marriage of redneck ways and a hippie style; of tradition and rock'n'roll modernity. Flanked by his big brother Tom, drummer Doug Clifford and bassist Stu Cook, John Fogerty would serve up Dantean hits like Born On The Bayou, Proud Mary and Green River: which are all given a lively, strong treatment here. As ever, Fogerty brays down the mic like a madman (his version of Screamin’ Jay Hawkins's I Put a Spell on You is a show-stopper) while his brother provides pared-down, sharp and affecting guitar lines. With Creedence, you don't get any blowhard solos or incontinent psychedelics. Just a full-frontal blast. Bam! © Marc Zisman/Qobuz
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Rock - Released January 1, 1976 | Fantasy Records

Chronicle, Vol. 1 contains every one of Creedence Clearwater Revival's original 19 hit singles -- including "Proud Mary," "Bad Moon Rising," "Green River," "Down on the Corner," "Travelin' Band," "Up Around the Band," and "Have You Ever Seen the Rain" -- plus "I Heard It Through the Grapevine," which became a hit at the same time this double-record compilation was released. It's a lean, concise collection that tells you everything you need to know about Creedence. Several of the band's individual albums are essential, but Chronicle is not only an excellent introduction to the group, it offers definitive proof that the group was one of the definitive singles' bands of the late '60s. Rarely has a greatest- hits collection been so well-assembled. [The compact disc edition is hampered by the inclusion of the full-length, 11-minute album version of "I Heard It Through the Grapevine"; its presence slows down the momentum of the collection considerably.] © Stephen Thomas Erlewine /TiVo
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Rock - Released January 1, 1976 | Concord Records, Inc.

Chronicle, Vol. 1 contains every one of Creedence Clearwater Revival's original 19 hit singles -- including "Proud Mary," "Bad Moon Rising," "Green River," "Down on the Corner," "Travelin' Band," "Up Around the Band," and "Have You Ever Seen the Rain" -- plus "I Heard It Through the Grapevine," which became a hit at the same time this double-record compilation was released. It's a lean, concise collection that tells you everything you need to know about Creedence. Several of the band's individual albums are essential, but Chronicle is not only an excellent introduction to the group, it offers definitive proof that the group was one of the definitive singles' bands of the late '60s. Rarely has a greatest- hits collection been so well-assembled. [The compact disc edition is hampered by the inclusion of the full-length, 11-minute album version of "I Heard It Through the Grapevine"; its presence slows down the momentum of the collection considerably.] © Stephen Thomas Erlewine /TiVo
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Rock - Released July 1, 1968 | Fantasy Records

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Rock - Released January 1, 1969 | Fantasy Records

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Opening slowly with the dark, swampy "Born on the Bayou," Bayou Country reveals an assured Creedence Clearwater Revival, a band that has found its voice between their first and second album. It's not just that "Born on the Bayou" announces that CCR has discovered its sound -- it reveals the extent of John Fogerty's myth-making. With this song, he sketches out his persona; it makes him sound as if he crawled out of the backwoods of Louisiana instead of being a native San Franciscan. He carries this illusion throughout the record, through the ominous meanderings of "Graveyard Train" through the stoked cover of "Good Golly Miss Molly" to "Keep on Chooglin'," which rides out a southern-fried groove for nearly eight minutes. At the heart of Bayou Country, as well as Fogerty's myth and Creedence's entire career, is "Proud Mary." A riverboat tale where the narrator leaves a good job in the city for a life rolling down the river, the song is filled with details that ring so true that it feels autobiographical. The lyric is married to music that is utterly unique yet curiously timeless, blending rockabilly, country, and Stax R&B into something utterly distinctive and addictive. "Proud Mary" is the emotional fulcrum at the center of Fogerty's seductive imaginary Americana, and while it's the best song here, his other songs are no slouch, either. "Born on the Bayou" is a magnificent piece of swamp-rock, "Penthouse Pauper" is a first-rate rocker with the angry undertow apparent on "Porterville" and "Bootleg" is a minor masterpiece, thanks to its tough acoustic foundation, sterling guitar work, and clever story. All the songs add up to a superb statement of purpose, a record that captures Creedence Clearwater Revival's muscular, spare, deceptively simple sound as an evocative portrait of America. © Stephen Thomas Erlewine /TiVo
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Rock - Released January 1, 1971 | Fantasy Records

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Rock - Released April 1, 1972 | Fantasy Records

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Pared down to a trio, Creedence Clearwater Revival had to find a new way of doing business, since already their sound had changed, so they split creative duties evenly. It wasn't just that each member wrote songs -- they produced them, too. Doug Clifford and Stu Cook claim John Fogerty needed time to creatively recharge, while Fogerty says he simply bowed to the duo's relentless pressure for equal time. Both arguments make sense, but either way, the end result was the same: Mardi Gras was a mess. Not a disaster, which it was dismissed as upon its release, since there are a couple of bright moments. Typically, Fogerty is reliable, with the solid rocker "Sweet Hitch-Hiker," the country ramble "Lookin' for a Reason," a good cover of Ricky Nelson's "Hello Mary Lou," and the pretty good ballad "Someday Never Comes." These don't match the brilliance of previous CCR records, but they sparkle next to Clifford and Cook's efforts. That implies that their contributions are terrible, which they're usually not -- they're just pedestrian. Only "Sail Away" is difficult to listen to, due to Cook's flat, overemphasized vocals, but he makes up for it with the solid rocker "Door to Door" and the Fogerty soundalike "Take It Like a Friend." Clifford fares a little better since his voice is warmer and he wisely channels it into amiable country-rock, yet these are pretty average songs by two guys beginning to find their own songwriting voice. If Clifford and Cook had started their own band (which they did after this album) it would be easier to be charitable, but when held up against Creedence's other work, Mardi Gras withers. It's an unpretty end to a great band. © Stephen Thomas Erlewine /TiVo
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Rock - Released July 1, 1968 | Fantasy Records

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Rock - Released August 1, 1969 | Fantasy Records

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Rock - Released January 1, 2008 | Fantasy Records

Throughout 1969 and into 1970, CCR toured incessantly and recorded nearly as much. Appropriately, Cosmo's Factory's first single was the working band's anthem "Travelin' Band," a funny, piledriving rocker with a blaring horn section -- the first indication their sonic palette was broadening. Two more singles appeared prior to the album's release, backed by John Fogerty originals that rivaled the A-side or paled just slightly. When it came time to assemble a full album, Fogerty had only one original left, the claustrophobic, paranoid rocker "Ramble Tamble." Unlike some extended instrumentals, this was dramatic and had a direction -- a distinction made clear by the meandering jam that brings CCR's version of "I Heard It Through the Grapevine" to 11 minutes. Even if it wanders, their take on the Marvin Gaye classic isn't unpleasant, and their faithful, exuberant takes on the Sun classics "Ooby Dooby" and "My Baby Left Me" are joyous tributes. Still, the heart of the album lays in those six fantastic songs released on singles. "Up Around the Bend" is a searing rocker, one of their best, balanced by the menacing murkiness of "Run Through the Jungle." "Who'll Stop the Rain"'s poignant melody and melancholy undertow has a counterpart in Fogerty's dope song, "Lookin' out My Back Door," a charming, bright shuffle, filled with dancing animals and domestic bliss - he had never been as sweet and silly as he is here. On "Long as I Can See the Light," the record's final song, he again finds solace in home, anchored by a soulful, laid-back groove. It hits a comforting, elegiac note, the perfect way to draw Cosmo's Factory -- an album made during stress and chaos, filled with raging rockers, covers, and intense jams -- to a close. © Stephen Thomas Erlewine /TiVo
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Rock - Released January 1, 2008 | Fantasy Records

Make no mistake, Willy & the Poor Boys is a fun record, perhaps the breeziest album CCR ever made. Apart from the eerie minor-key closer "Effigy" (one of John Fogerty's most haunting numbers), there is little of the doom that colored Green River. Fogerty's rage remains, blazing to the forefront on "Fortunate Son," a working-class protest song that cuts harder than any of the explicit Vietnam protest songs of the era, which is one of the reasons that it hasn't aged where its peers have. Also, there's that unbridled vocal from Fogerty and the ferocious playing on CCR, which both sound fresh as they did upon release. "Fortunate Son" is one of the greatest, hardest rock & rollers ever cut, so it might seem to be out of step with an album that is pretty laid-back and friendly, but there's that elemental joy that by late '69 was one of CCR's main trademarks. That joy runs throughout the album, from the gleeful single "Down on the Corner" and the lazy jugband blues of "Poorboy Shuffle" through the great slow blues jam "Feelin' Blue" to the great rockabilly spiritual "Don't Look Now," one of Fogerty's overlooked gems. The covers don't feel like throwaways, either, since both "Cotton Fields" and "The Midnight Special" have been overhauled to feel like genuine CCR songs. It all adds up to one of the greatest pure rock & roll records ever cut. © Stephen Thomas Erlewine /TiVo
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Rock - Released October 27, 2014 | Universal Music Group International

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Rock - Released January 1, 1971 | Fantasy Records

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