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03.01.24A Serious Problem We're Trying to Address
02.29.24How to Donate Online or by Mail
02.29.24How to Get the ApX Library, USBs, Multiple Downloads
02.29.24All About Our Next CD
02.29.24Influential Albums: 1388-1394
02.29.24This Week's Bible-Reading and Rock Thru the Bible
02.29.24Easter Season Playlist 2024
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02.22.24Get Ready for Our Next CD
02.22.24Influential Albums: 1381-1387
02.22.24This Week's Bible Reading and Rock Thru the Bible
02.22.24Wayne Is Retiring, What's Next for Him and Us?
02.22.24The Stories Behind the Songs on This Single
02.19.24This Week's News Bulletin
02.19.24Get Multiple Downloads for One Donation
02.19.24New Single: Billy & The Beach
02.16.24Influential Albums: 1374-1380
02.16.24This Week's Bible Reading and Rock Thru the Bible
02.16.24Remembering ApX Friend Paul "Doc" Nigh (1956-2024)
02.16.24Clues for 2024 Single #4
02.10.24Influential Albums: 1367-1373
02.10.24Fans Making Plans to Attend Our Big Show September 1
02.10.24This Week's Bible Reading and Rock Thru the Bible
02.10.24The Stories Behind the Songs on This Single
02.06.24This Week's News Bulletin
02.06.24New Single: '74 & '83
02.03.24ApX Lead Singer/Lyricist Shares His Testimony 36 Years Later
02.03.24Influential Albums: 1360-1366
02.03.24This Week's Bible Reading and Rock Thru the Bible
02.03.24Latest CD Added to iTunes, Spotify, Pandora, Etc.
02.02.24Clues for 2024 Single #3
01.29.24This Week's News Bulletin
01.26.24Influential Albums: 1353-1359
01.26.24How to Get the ApX Library, USBs, Multiple Downloads
01.26.24This Week's Bible-Reading and Rock Thru the Bible
01.26.24Flashback: J.'s Vision for ApologetiX in 2014
01.26.24J.'s Vision for ApologetiX in 2024
01.26.24The Stories Behind the Songs on This Single
01.24.24Checking in With ApX Alum Drummer Fred Behanna
01.22.24This Week's News Bulletin
01.22.24New Single: '70s #1 Hits That Remade '60s Top 10 Hits
01.19.24Influential Albums: 1346-1352
01.19.24Encouraging Message from Longtime Fan in Oklahoma
01.19.24This Week's Bible-Reading & Rock Thru the Bible
01.15.24This Week's News Bulletin
01.12.24Influential Albums: 1339-1346
01.12.24The Stories Behind the Songs on This Single
01.12.24Rock Thru the Bible with ApX This Week
01.12.24New Testament Reading Started Wednesday
01.11.24New Worship Songs Available from ApX Alum Bill Rieger
01.08.24New Single: '81 & '83
01.08.24New CD BOGO Ends Sunday
01.08.24New USB Thumb Drives on the Way
01.05.24Clues for 2024 Single #1
01.05.24Influential Albums: 1332-1338
01.05.24Have You Heard About the Other Music City Miracle?
01.05.24This Week's Bible Reading & Rock Thru the Bible
12.29.23Influential Albums: 1325-1331
12.29.23Rock Thru the Bible with ApX This Week
12.28.232023: A Record-Breaking Record-Making Year
12.28.23The Stories Behind the Songs on This Single
12.26.23This Week's News Bulletin
12.26.23New Single: 1974 & 2008
12.23.23Influential Albums: 1318-1324
12.23.23Rock Thru the Bible with ApX This Week
12.23.23ApologetiX Updated Christmas Playlist
12.18.23This Week's News Bulletin
12.18.23New Samson CD Mailed to Fans, New Orders Sent as They Come In
12.16.23Influential Albums: 1311-1317
12.16.23Rock Thru the Bible with ApX This Week
12.16.23New Story
12.16.23The Stories Behind the Songs on This Single
12.11.23This Week's News Bulletin
12.11.23New Single: '83 & '84
12.11.23ApX Apparel: Order by Tuesday with Express Shipping
12.07.23New ApX Apparel and More: Order Soon for Christmas
12.07.23Influential Albums: 1304-1310
12.07.23Just Reword CD Added to iTunes, Spotify, Pandora, Etc.
12.07.23Clues for 2023 Single #25
12.04.23This Week's News Bulletin
12.02.23Influential Albums: 1297-1303
12.02.23This Week's Bible Reading & Rock Thru the Bible
12.02.23The Stories Behind the Songs on This Single
12.02.23New Shirts & Other ApX Merch Coming Soon
12.02.23Rock Thru the Bible with ApX This Week
11.28.23This Week's News Bulletin
11.28.23New Christmas Single: All '80s
11.24.23Influential Albums: 1290-1296
11.24.23Rock Thru the Bible with ApX This Week
11.24.23Clues for 2023 Single #24
11.16.23All 71 ApX CDs Available as Downloads for $9.99 Each
11.16.23Influential Albums: 1283-1289
11.16.23The Stories Behind the Songs on This Single
11.16.23Rock Thru the Bible with ApX This Week
11.12.23This Week's News Bulletin
11.12.23New Single: #1 Hits from '81 & '86
11.09.23Rock Thru the Bible with ApX This Week

Influential Albums: 1276-1282
Thu., Nov. 9. 2023 12:30am EST

J. Jackson, lead singer and lyricist for ApologetiX here again.

Here are the latest entries in the "albums that influenced me" series I started writing in May 2020.

Note: Just because an album appears on this list doesn't mean I give it a blanket endorsement. Many of the secular albums on this list are mainly there because they wound up being spoofed by ApologetiX.

1276. Once Upon a Song - Various Artists
Released on November 20, 2001, Once Upon a Song was one heck of a collection. This two CD-set featured 34 songs from 1968-79, including 23 #1 hits. When I first started memorizing the lyrics to songs as a kid and singing them for other kids in the neighborhood, there were about six songs in my repertoire ... amazingly, every single one of them wound up on this album: "Bad, Bad Leroy Brown" by Jim Croce; "One Tin Soldier (The Legend of Billy Jack)" by Coven; "Seasons in the Sun" by Terry Jacks; "Billy, Don't Be a Hero" by Bo Donaldson & The Haywoods; "The Night Chicago Died" by Paper Lace; and "Cat's in the Cradle" by Harry Chapin. I just noticed as I was writing this that five of those songs had a lyrical twist at the end; maybe that's why they were such a revelation to me. ApologetiX spoofed "Cat's in the Cradle" in 2013. We've also released parodies of the first three tracks on Once Upon a Song — "American Pie" by Don McLean; "A Horse with No Name" by America; and "Maggie May" by Rod Stewart — plus two others on the compilation, "Mama Told Me (Not to Come)" by Three Dog Night and "The Devil Went Down to Georgia" by The Charlie Daniels Band. There are so many tremendous tunes on Once Upon a Song that it's a shame not to list them all, but some of my favorites I haven't already mentioned include: "Ode to Billy Joe" by Bobbie Gentry; "Mr. Bojangles" by The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band; "Spill the Wine" by Eric Burdon & War; "Polk Salad Annie" by Tony Joe White; "Take a Letter, Maria" by R.B. Greaves; and "Atlantis" by Donovan. For a complete track listing, go to https://www.discogs.com/release/16169294-Various-Once-Upon-A-Song

1277. Soul Train: 1970 - Various Artists
To celebrate the 30th anniversary of the Soul Train television program in 2000, Rhino Records released a series of 10 LPs (one volume for each year of the '70s) of R&B hits — 14 per album. I purchased a few of them, including this one. Soul Train: 1970 featured three #1 hits: "ABC" (The Jackson 5), "Tears of a Clown" (Smokey Robinson & The Miracles), "War" (Edwin Starr). ApologetiX fan Patrick Weber, who was born in the United Kingdom but met up with us in the Pacific Northwest, informed me that he used to be Edwin Starr's chauffeur. Six of the songs on Soul Train 1970 peaked at #3 on the pop charts: "Turn Back the Hands of Time" (Tyrone Davis), "Give Me Just a Little More Time" (Chairmen of the Board), "Band of Gold" (Freda Payne), "Ball of Confusion" (The Temptations); "Spill the Wine" (Eric Burdon & War), and "Love On a Two-Way Street" (The Moments). The other five tracks were: "Rainy Night in Georgia" by Brook Benton (#4), "O-o-h Child" by The Five Stairsteps (#8), "Somebody's Been Sleeping" by 100 Proof Aged in Soul (#8), "Super Bad Part 1 & 2" by James Brown (#13), and "Westbound #9" by Flaming Ember (#24). Six tracks on Soul Train: 1970 topped the R&B chart: "Rainy Night in Georgia," "ABC," "Turn Back the Hands of Time," "Love on a Two-Way Street," "Super Bad," and "The Tears of a Clown." I love this stuff!

1278. Soul Train: 1972 - Various Artists
Here's another one of the Rhino Records Soul Train compilations I purchased. Thirteen of the 14 tracks on Soul Train: 1972 hit the Top Six, and four them reached #1: "I'll Take You There" (Staple Singers), "Oh Girl" (The Chi-Lites), "Me and Mrs. Jones' (Billy Paul), and "Ben" (Michael Jackson). There were also two #2 hits — "Too Late to Turn Back Now" (Cornelius Brothers & Sister Rose) and "I Gotcha" by Joe Tex — plus four #3 hits: "Everybody Plays the Fool" (The Main Ingredient), "I'll Be Around" (The Spinners), "Betcha By Golly Wow (The Stylistics), and "(If Loving You Is Wrong) I Don't Want to Be Right (Luther Ingram). The other four tracks were "Freddie's Dead (Theme from Superfly)" by Curtis Mayfield (#4), "In the Rain" by Dramatics (#5), "Clean Up Woman" by Betty Wright (#6), and "One Monkey (Don't Stop No Show) by The Honey Cone (#15). Six tracks on Soul Train: 1972 also made it to the top of the R&B chart: "I Gotcha," "In the Rain," "I'll Take You There," "Oh Girl," "(If Loving You Is Wrong) I Don't Want to Be Right," "I'll Be Around," and "Me and Mrs. Jones." My favorites from this album are "I'll Take You There," "I Gotcha," "Everybody Plays the Fool," and "I'll Be Around," although there's not a bad song on here ... musically speaking. From a lyrical and moral standpoint, however, I'm not going to sing along with "Me and Mrs. Jones" and "(If Loving You Is Wrong) I Don't Want to Be Right." To paraphrase something I heard Goldie Hawn say on Laugh-In when I was a kid, it seems some songs are for children and some are for adultery.

1279. Soul Train: 1973 - Various Artists
I picked up this Rhino Records' Soul Train compilation when I got the others I mentioned previously. All 14 tracks on Soul Train: 1973 reached the pop Top 10, including three that went to #1: "Let's Get It On" (Marvin Gaye), "Keep On Truckin' (Pt. 1) (Eddie Kendicks), and "Midnight Train to Georgia" (Gladys Knight & The Pips). Seven others hit the Top 5: "The Cisco Kid" by War (#2), "Pillow Talk" by Sylvia (#3), "Why Can't We Live Together" by Timmy Thomas (#3), "I'm Gonna Love You Just a Little More Baby" by Barry White (#3), "Until You Come Back to Me (That's What I'm Gonna Do) by Aretha Franklin (#3), "Could It Be I'm Fallin' in Love" by The Spinners (4), and "Break Up to Make Up" by The Stylistics (#5). Rounding out the record were "Superfly" by Curtis Mayfield (#8), "Right Place Wrong Time" by Dr. John (#9), "If You're Ready (Come Go With Me)" by The Staple Singers (#9), and "Natural High" by Bloodstone (#10). Eight tracks on Soul Train: 1973 went to #1 on the R&B chart: "Why Can't We Live Together," "Could It Be I'm Falling in Love," "Pillow Talk," "I'm Gonna Love Just a Little More Baby,"Let's Get It On," "Keep On Truckin'," "If You're Ready (Come Go With Me)," and "Until You Come Back to Me (That's What I'm Gonna Do)." At some point in the early 2000s, I also purchased a used copy of The Billboard Book of Number One Rhythm & Blues Hits by Adam White and Fred Bronson, which originally came out in 1993. It has the stories behind each chart-topping R&B hit from 1965-90, and I really enjoyed it.

1280. Pure Disco - Various Artists
Pure Disco ... I'm sure some people would argue that those two words don't belong together. Released in 1996, this album featured 20 classics plus a "new" bonus track, "The Grease Megamix," which included bits of "You're the One That I Want," "Greased Lightnin'," and "Summer Nights." That mini-medley had hit #1 in Australia in '91. After being included on Pure Disco, it hit #25 in the United States. Eleven of the other tracks had been #1 U.S. pop hits back in the day: "Celebration" by Kool & The Gang, "Dancing Queen" by ABBA, "Hot Stuff" by Donna Summer, "I Will Survive" by Gloria Gaynor, "Knock on Wood" by Amii Stewart, "That's the Way (I Like It)" by K.C. & The Sunshine Band, "If I Can't Have You" by Yvonne Ellman, "Love Hangover" by Diana Ross, "Funkytown" by Lipps, Inc., "Got to Give It Up (Part One)" by Marvin Gaye, and "Don't Leave Me This Way" by Thelma Houston. Pure Disco also included a sequined standard most people assume was a #1 hit, "YMCA" by The Village People. That song and another track — "You're the First, the Last, My Everything" by Barry White — both stalled at #2. As if all those weren't enough, there was a remix of one of my favorite '70s singles, "I Feel Love" by Donna Summer (#6), and another old tune that brought back pleasant memories, "I Love the Nightlife (Disco Round)" by Alicia Bridges) (#5). One track I was unfamiliar with that amused me was "Oops Upside Your Head (I Don't Believe You Want to Get Up and Dance)" by The Gap Band (#102 pop, #4 R&B, #6 U.K.). It really left an impression, if you'll pardon the pun. ApologetiX went on to spoof "Dancing Queen," "Hot Stuff," and "YMCA," plus a snippet of "That's the Way (I Like It)" and Pseudo Echo's remake of "Funkytown." Although we'll probably never attempt them, I especially liked "Knock on Wood," "If I Can't Have You," and "Don't Leave Me This Way." Pure Disco made it to #83 on the Billboard 200 and sold a million copies. For a complete track listing, go to https://www.discogs.com/release/499724-Various-Pure-Disco

1281. Pure Funk - Various Artists
I got the Pure Funk LP at the same time as Pure Disco, although it was released two years later. Meanwhile, there was also Pure Disco 2 in 1997 and Pure Disco 3 in 1998, although I didn't own them. Eight of the 18 tracks on Pure Funk had topped the Hot 100: "Car Wash" by Rose Royce, "Good Times" by Chic, "Fire" by Ohio Players, "Pick Up the Pieces" by Average White Band, "Lady Marmalade" by LaBelle, "Kung Fu Fighting" by Carl Douglas, "Theme from Shaft" by Isaac Hayes, and "Shining Star" by Earth, Wind & Fire. Some of those songs (like "Lady Marmalade") are a lot funkier than others (like "Kung Fu Fighting"), but there was a place on my playlist for each and every one. I'd liked all of them at one point or another in my lifetime. ApologetiX spoofed "Shining Star," plus an additional selection on Pure Funk, "Word Up" by Cameo (#6 pop, #1 R&B). Among the other tracks on Pure Funk that didn't go to #1, my favorites are "Tell Me Something Good" by Rufus (#3 pop), "Jungle Boogie" by Kool & The Gang (#4 pop), and "Flashlight" by Parliament (#16 pop, #1 R&B) — three very funky tunes that are also very fun. Other notable numbers included "Mr. Big Stuff" by Jean Knight (#2 pop, #1 R&B) and "Brick House" (#5 pop) by The Commodores. For the complete Pure Funk track listing, go to https://www.discogs.com/master/154224-Various-Pure-Funk

1282. Pure 70s - Various Artists
Released in 1999, Pure 70s followed on the platform heels of Pure Disco ('96) and Pure Funk ('98) and found its way into my clutches shortly after they did. ApologetiX has spoofed 12 of the 18 tracks (including the first seven that led off the album): "All Right Now" by Free, "More Than a Feeling" by Boston, "Long Train Runnin'" by The Doobie Brothers, "Ramblin' Man" by The Allman Brothers, "Sweet Home Alabama" by Lynyrd Skynyrd, "American Woman" by The Guess Who, "Cocaine" by Eric Clapton, "Maggie May" by Rod Stewart, "Mama Told Me (Not to Come) by Three Dog Night, "Don't Bring Me Down" by ELO, "Rocky Mountain Way" by Joe Walsh, and "You're So Vain" by Carly Simon. Other highlights on Pure 70s included "Hooked On a Feeling" by Blue Swede, "Stuck in the Middle with You" by Stealers Wheel, "The Things We Do for Love" by 10cc, and "Whiskey in the Jar" by Thin Lizzy (their first Top 10 hit in Europe, over three years before "The Boys Are Back in Town"). For the complete Pure 70s track listing, go to https://www.discogs.com/master/729432-Various-Pure-70s