Time Life's AM Gold '70s series provides a highly enjoyable history lesson. Each year is represented by songs drawn from a wide range of sources, features all very big hits all the time and plays like an hour of true golden oldies radio. As usual with the series, you'll get a pretty good idea of what was going on in the charts from this disc and would be hard-pressed to find a better single-disc collection of hits from the year.
By 1971, James Taylor, was recognized as the living embodiment of the post-hippie singer-songwriter movement. But until YOU'VE GOT A FRIEND, culled from his third album, he hadn’t enjoyed a No.1 single. The song was written by former Brill Building tune-smith Carole King, who had fled New York for laid-back California and during the early '70s, was herself making the transition to solo recording artist.
Taylor and King were introduced to each other by Danny Kortchmar, a guitarist who had previously worked with him in the Flying Machine and with her in the City. As Carole was recording her landmark album Tapestry, James was a few blocks down the street cutting his own Mud Slide Slim and the Blue Horizon, and You’ve Got a Friend appeared on both sets. King decided not to release her version as single, so Taylor did-though when they toured together that summer, they usually shared the song in a show-closing duet.
In 2011, bassist Charlie Haden and pianist Carla Bley led an iteration of the Liberation Music Orchestra in a live concert at the Jazz Middelheim Festival in Antwerp, Belgium. It was partially intended as a warm-up for a forthcoming Liberation Music Orchestra album, a process that had been in the works since 2007. Sadly, Haden died from post-polio syndrome in 2014 before any new LMO tracks could be recorded. Thankfully, Haden, along with his wife, Ruth Cameron Haden, and Bley had discussed his desires for how to finish the album prior to his passing. Furthermore, the 2011 performance, which included two new arrangements earmarked for the planned album, had been recorded for Belgian public radio. All this meant that an album was possible, and in 2015 Bley convened the LMO in a studio to record the new material. Per Haden's request, longtime friend and esteemed bassist Steve Swallow was brought in to play his parts.
Your Hit Parade – was a 41-volume series issued by Time-Life during the late 1980s and early 1990s, spotlighting popular music from the pre-rock era years of 1940-1954, and non-rock and roll songs from 1955 through mid-1960s.
Much like Time-Life's other series chronicling popular music, volumes in the "Your Hit Parade" series covered a specific time period, including single years in some volumes and stylistic trends in others.