One of my favorite bands on record… one of the worst bands live. I remember seeing The Cars at the Brendan Byrne Arena in the Meadowlands… Wang Chung opened. The crowd wanted Wang Chung back. The Cars just did not interact with the crowd. It was odd.
I remember being in a department store with my Dad. It was on Route 4 in Paramus… Completely blanking on the name now… Wow. It was not K-Mart, but something like that and they had a record department. I want to say Caldor or Korvets… Hmmm … Mom???!!!
We were there for something else, when I noticed a table and five guys signing vinyl. I asked my Dad if we could go get one… He asked me if I knew who they were… At that moment, I did not… It was before the release of their debut, and I was an honest boy… So we did not wait on line, we did not buy the album that day (Though I would buy it soon thereafter)… and yes, it was The Cars.
The Cars – Candy-O
Okay, yes the album cover is pretty hot… Okay, really hot… and for a young man probably in the throes of puberty… Damn!!!
According to Wikipedia: “The album cover was painted by artist Alberto Vargas, who was known for his paintings of pin-up girls that appeared in Esquire and Playboy magazines in the 1940s and 1960s. The idea to hire Vargas came from drummer David Robinson, the band’s artistic director and a collector of pin-ups. The 83-year-old Vargas had retired several years earlier but was persuaded to take the assignment by his niece, who was a fan of The Cars. The painting, depicting a woman sprawled across the hood of a car, was based on a photo shoot directed by Robinson at a Ferrari dealership. The model, coincidentally named Candy Moore (famous for having played Lucille Ball’s onscreen daughter on The Lucy Show), briefly dated Robinson afterward.”
Man I love Rock n’ Roll… Every boy’s dream!!!
What’s on the vinyl is pretty hot, too. This would mark two albums in a row where I really liked every song… Did not feel the need to skip anything.
This record came out in 1979… the year I became a man. Ha!
My favorite is “It’s All I Can Do”, but like I said, the whole album is a joy. “Let’s Go” is the radio hit that opens The Cars’ second record. That moves into the ballad-esque “Since I Held You.” Well… a ballad in the New Wave world, like “You Can’t Hold On Too Long.” Their most ballady-ballads would come later in the guise of “Since You’re Gone” from 1981’s Shake It Up (“You’re so treacherous, when it comes to tenderness.”) and “I’m Not The One”, a song I am sure I made out, too… More than once… Yeah, I rolled like that… So not…
Their most successful single and biggest ballad was “Drive” from 1984’s Heartbeat City. According to my Wikipedia info., Timothy Hutton directed the video.
(“You can’t go on, thinking nothing’s wrong…”) Yup, yup, yup… That was my go to, feel sorry for myself, I just got dumped tune that year… Yes, I am a sucker for a good ballad.
But circling back to Candy-O… like some vinyl on a turntable… This just an album filled with great tunes, and two kick ass closers, “Got A Lot On My Head” and “Dangerous Type”. A nice end to this impressive sophomore release… and hell, I do have a lot on my head and I do wish I was the dangerous type. So there you go! No, I mean get in your car and go… drive… Enjoy.