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Sundown

4.8 out of 5 stars 33 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Audio CD (April 23 1987)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Reprise
  • ASIN: B000002KC2
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  Audio Cassette  |  LP Record
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars 33 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #2,795 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)
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1. Somewhere U.S.A.
2. High And Dry
3. Seven Island Suite
4. Circle Of Steel
5. Is There Anyone Home
6. The Watchman's Gone
7. Sundown
8. Carefree Highway
9. The List
10. Too Late For Prayin'

Product Description

Product Description

CD reissue of this 1974 album from the legendary Canadian Folk/Rock singer/songwriter who has had numerous Billboard charting albums throughout his career, which began in the mid '60s. His most commercially successful period ran through the '70s, although he remains one of the most influential and admired songwriters of the Rock era. Sundown reached #1 on the Billboard album charts and features the #1 single, "Sundown". It also features the Top Ten single "Carefree Highway".

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This album wasn't Lightfoot's breakthrough recording, but it was both a demonstration of the rocking electric turn most folkies would make after Dylan's revolution and a commercially successful marriage of soulful, R&B sensibility with folk narratives. The title cut is probably engrained in the memory of anyone with an A.M. radio in the '70s, but 20 years later, it sounds suggestive, even bluesy. "Carefree Highway" perhaps excessively romanticizes the road, but less familiar tracks like "Watchman's Gone" and "Too Late for Prayin'" are convincing statements of Lightfoot's lyrical endurance. --Roy Francis Kasten


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Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
If you're looking to go beyond Gord's Gold, you'll find 5 or 6 other golden tunes here. The first song, Somewhere USA, doesn't work, but after that the album achieves lift off. Seven Island Suite, Circle of Steel, The Watchman's Gone, and Is Anyone Home are all outstanding - and weren't even singles. Any of them could have been. Quite a talent that Mr. Lightfoot. Haunting, mellow, soothing music.
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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
This is Gord's most commercially successful album and certainly some of his best work - possibly his very best (although I have a slight preference for Don Quixote and Summer Side of Life). The sound of Sundown is an extension of what he was developing in Old Dan's Records. You can't really call it folk anymore. It borders on country, but without the steel guitar that would show up on his next few albums. To me, Sundown is unique in the Lightfoot library because of the confidence and frankness with which he sings. This almost provocative sound results in some of his most memorable lines. Listen to the criticism of urban life in "Seven Island Suite", his frustration with hopeless low-lifes in "Circle of Steel", and his jealous reprimand of an unfaithful lover in the classic "Sundown". My personal favourite track on the album is "The Watchman's Gone", a simple song about a transient parting with an acquaintance before jumping aboard a train while the watchman is busy "kickin' the bums about". Lightfoot's "theme" of frankness and dissatisfaction is again evident in the line "Whatever I was, you know it was all because/I've been on the town washin' the bull***t down". I like to think that this relates to why Gord has fallen from public consciousness in recent years. Popular culture doesn't reward the truly authentic. It rewards the bull***t.

In Summary: the music is relatively simple on Sundown, the talk is straight, the hits are there, and the talent is incomparable.
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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Fabulous CD. Although Sundown was one of Gordon Lightfoot's huge hits back in the '70's and it is a great song, there have been lots of other songs of his that I prefer. And this CD has some great songs on it. One of my favorite CD's of his, if it is possible to pick a favorite.
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By A Customer on June 18 2002
Format: Audio CD
Gordon Lightfoot released a string of superlative albums between 1970 and 1976 for Warner/Reprise; Sundown is definitely one of the real standouts. From the relaxed, almost serene feel of the previous album (Old Dan's Records), Sundown (released in 1974) makes a sudden departure in mood. Many of the songs deal with moving and with restlessness. And yet, it's not the idea of going out and searching for something; rather it's the sort of restlessness you feel when you simply want to get away and get out on the road without any sort of specific game plan. It's this notion that makes the album so compelling.
A couple of Lightfoot's big hits can be found here; the title track, of course (with Red Shea's classic guitar solo, and Terry Clements' beautiful acoustic licks); and "Carefree Highway." But there are many, many other gems here as well: the chance-encounter scenario played out in "Somewhere USA"; the social commentary of "Circle of Steel" (with some beautiful recorder work by Jack Zaza); the stunning epic "Seven Island Suite"; fan favorite "The Watchman's Gone" (with, again, some beautiful acoustic work by Clements); and the evocative "Too Late For Praying" (a song which, after the events of 9/11, has taken on yet another shade of meaning). Additionally, the album is beautifully produced by Lenny Waronker: it's a clinic on how to record acoustic guitars. Lightfoot's trademark Gibson B45 12-string rings bright and clear on this recording, as do all the guitars. For the songs that utilize strings, the arrangements by Nick DeCaro are elegant and understated, never becoming obtrusive.
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Format: Audio CD
Sundown the album and the song propelled Gordon Lightfoot to the top of the charts. Both reached number one in the summer of 1974 and represented the peak of Mr. Lightfoot's chart success. On the album, Mr. Lightfoot kept true to his troubadour roots, with expressive and vivid lyrics, but spiced up his basic folk sound with a more mainstream rock sound. The title track is a perfect AM radio classic with its catchy guitar riff and sing along chorus. The rest of the album is strong as well. "Carefree Highway" was a second top ten hit and is a great road song while "Circle Of Steel", "Somewhere U.S.A.", "Seven Island Suite" and "The Watchman's Gone" are all strong.
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Format: Audio CD
This album and Cold on the Shoulder are Lightfoot's best ever--and that's saying alot considering that he's one of the best songwriters in any style of music. As has been stated in other reviews, not only are the hits on this album great, but the "lesser" tunes, such as Is There Anyone Home and Too late for Prayin' are remarkable as well. Lightfoot is a folk singer with an ear for harmony--not nearly outside enough to be jazzy, but enough to give your ear a field day; and his melodies (check out Circle of Steel) are unbelievable. There is a good reason that monster guitar players such as Tony Rice cite Mr. Lightfoot as their favorite songwriter. Buy this disc--you won't be disappointed.
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