One of my biggest music heroes, Emitt Rhodes, just released a new album. His first in 43 years. This is a huge deal. He is a big part of the history of pop music. Ok, maybe not world famous in the grand scheme of things, but incredibly influential and definitely a huge part of the history of pop music that I’ve (and a lot of other people) experienced. First as the leader of the excellent 60s pop group The Merry-Go-Round and then releasing four perfect or near-perfect solo albums in the early seventies that gave him the nickname “The One Man Beatles”. I can monstrously recommend all of those. They are cornerstones of my music education. If you want a starting point, I would go with the self-titled solo album, but you really can’t go wrong with any of them.
But enough about the past. It has been a few years in the making, but finally we have a new Emitt Rhodes album called Rainbow Ends. It came out on Omnivore Recordings on the 26th of February. I’m just spinning it for the first time on Spotify (I will pick a physical copy from a record store later) and it’s safe to say that Emitt hasn’t lost his touch. This is sounding mighty fine to my ears even on first listen and it’s very clear that the man can still make heavenly good pop music. Even though Emitt himself of course takes the spotlight, the album also has a real all star cast. There’s appearances from people like Jason Falkner, Jon Brion, Roger Joseph Manning Jr, Aimee Mann, Susanna Hoffs etc. Oh my. It’s like two generations of pop geniuses working together and creating a little bit of magic. My 90s pop heroes backing Emitt Rhodes in 2016. I couldn’t possibly ask for much more. Great to have you back Emitt.