From the Vault...



© The Right Stuff Records

Year of Release: 1968

track listing
  • Abraham Martin And
  • Purple Haze
  • Tomorrow Is A
    Long Time/
    Everybody's Talkin'
  • You Better Watch
    (Sonny Boy)
  • The Dolphins
  • He Looks A Lot
    Like Me
  • Sun Fun Song
  • From Both Sides Now
  • Sisters Of Mercy
  • Loving You Is
    Sweeter Than Ever
  • Daddy Rollin'
    (In Your Arms)

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    Dion related sites:
    Dion Website
    Previous Review: #829
    Phil Collins--Face Value
    Next Review: #831
    King's X--Manic Moonlight

    Dion DiMucci was a very popular singer with his group The Belmonts in the 1950s. Their biggest hit was "A Teenager In Love," and Dion pursued a very successful solo career, with the #1 hit "Runaround Sue," and "The Wanderer," an oldies classic. Later in his solo career, he would pursue an interest in Gospel/Christian music. In 1968, his original release Dion was released, as it features a different approach for him, compared to the early years of 1950s doo-wop.

    The standout tune is his popular hit, dedicated to Abraham Lincoln, Martin Luther King Jr., and John F. Kennedy. "Abraham, Martin and John" is a tribute to three leaders who would die tragically, all of assassinations. It would be a huge hit for Dion, as it was different compared to his early years' hits.

    "Purple Haze" has an early Bee Gees sound, likewise it is completely different than the original, by Jimi Hendrix. Bob Dylan's "Tomorrow Is A Long Time" and the popular hit "Everybody's Talkin'" is merged as a medley here, and it has a great folk sound, blending with Dion's pleasant voice.

    "You Better Watch Yourself (Sonny Boy)" has the blues touch, and a more adult sound for Dion. "The Dolphins" is another nice pleasant folkish tune, written by the author of "Everybody's Talkin'," Fred Neil.

    "He Looks A Lot Like Me" is written by Dion, as it has a very moody sound, and could be a good song for an Italian movie soundtrack. Another original tune written by Dion, "Sun Fun Song," has a more pop/adult contemporary sound.

    Joni Mitchell's "From Both Sides Now" is a very nice pop song, where Leonard Cohen's "Sisters Of Mercy" has a somewhat Classical/Folk sound, a very beautiful orchestration behind Dion's most pleasant voice. Another nice pop-sounding tune is "Loving You Is Sweeter Than Ever," co-written by Stevie Wonder. "Daddy Rollin' (In Your Arms)" was the B-side to "Abraham, Martin and John" (having the 45 rpm single as a kid), and is a mix of Rock and Blues.

    Dion was in a different direction. In 1968, he had recently kicked his heroin habit, and recording songs differently than his most popular hits became a new beginning, despite mixed reviews. My fondest memory of this album is having the 45 rpm single "Abraham, Martin and John"/"Daddy Rollin'" -- The tribute to the three former leaders was, and still is one of my favorite songs, and even so Dion may not have been highly acclaimed for this album, his voice is truly entertaining, and his styles of Pop, Rock and Blues showcases a gentleman who was willing to take his career in a different direction. For the folk fans, Dion will be a very entertaining album to listen to, may just be enjoyed more with repeated listening.

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    Previous Review: #829
    Phil Collins--Face Value
    Next Review: #831
    King's X--Manic Moonlight