From the Vault...


Dr. Hook
"Doctor Hook And The Medicine Show"

© Columbia Records

Year of Release: 1972

track listing
  • Sylvia's Mother
  • Marie Lavaux
  • Sing Me A Rainbow
  • Hey Lady Godiva
  • Four Years Older Than Me
  • Kiss It Away
  • Makin' It Natural
  • I Call That True Love
  • When She Cries
  • Judy
  • Mama
    I'll Sing One Song
    For You

  • WSVNRadio Archives
    A B C D E F G H I J K L M
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    Dr. Hook related sites:
    Dr. Hook Website
    Previous Review: #1107
    Beavis & Butt-Head--The Beavis And Butt-Head Experience
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    Dr. Hook
    "Doctor Hook And The Medicine Show"

    Dr. Hook's most popular hit was "Cover Of The Rolling Stone," a more novelty-sounding song, with Dr. Hook's (Ray Sawyer) "Wolfman Jack" vocals. Their 1972 release, Doctor Hook And The Medicine Show, features another "Wolfman Jack" vocal tune, "I Call That True Love," a song that I discovered on a Various Artists 3-LP vinyl album, The Music People from Columbia Records. (Unfortunately, when I found this 3-LP record at a garage sale, only 2 of the 3 LPs were in the record sleeves. Luckily, I was able to find another copy of the complete 3 records from an internet store.)

    Of course, trying to find the original albums from the songs on Music People was virtually impossible, I was able to find the self-titled Dr. Hook album, which contained "I Call That True Love." There are some other "Wolfman Jack" sounding tunes on this album, and some songs that would be considered Pop or even Soft Rock. One song that would be another hit for Dr. Hook is on this release, "Sylvia's Mother." Although a huge hit for the band, I thought it was boring, a hit-or-miss.

    The "Wolfman Jack" novelty tunes are quite entertaining, such as "Marie Lavaux," a song that Country's Bobby Bare would reach #1 with. Although Bare's version is much better, (and also novelty sounding), Dr. Hook's "Wolfman Jack" vocals is the highlight.

    The two songs just mentioned also has a hillbilly style, and there are other songs having that same quality: Both "Hey, Lady Godiva" and "Four Years Older Than Me" have a comedic quality as well. Even "Makin' It Natural" has those same features, as these songs can bring a chuckle a two, while listening.

    Then there's the Pop-sounding songs, like "Sylvia's Mother": Sing Me A Rainbow," and "When She Cries" could easily fit the Pop/Lite Rock formats; even the last track, "Mama, I'll Sing One Song For You" also has the Lite Rock style, with a bit of a Rock hook towards the end. "Judy" has a traditional Rock sound, identifying Dr. Hook, and "Kiss It Away" has a soulful, Van Morrison-ish style.

    As you listen to Doctor Hook And The Medicine Show you're trying to determine if Dr. Hook is a Country Rock band (which is obvious), or a Pop Rock band, in the case of songs such as "Sylvia's Mother" Both of these styles can easily define Dr. Hook's music, yet his Pop sounding songs are what made his career popular. Yet his novelty-sounding songs are the standouts on this release, both styles are a good mix.

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    Previous Review: #1107
    Beavis & Butt-Head--The Beavis And Butt-Head Experience
    Next Review: #1109
    Alan Parsons Project--Vulture Culture