Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Savannah - Savannah (1977)


Hollister (California) was the home of this obscure polyethnic hard rock act, comprised of Robert Fowler (Lead Vocals/Guitar), Gordon Kusayanagi (Guitar/Vocals), Sammy Garcia (Bass/Vocals) & George Collins (Drums/Percussion).  Sadly, their story is almost completely wrapped in mystery.  What we do know is that the band first released a single, "Livin' High" b/w "Night Life" on their own label, Savannah Records, in 1976.  The following year they released the "Crank It Up" full-length on their newly dubbed Chrome Thigh Records.  What happened after that is anybody's guess, though Kusayanagi was tragically killed in a high profile rampage that took place on the Vegas strip in late 2005, when Stephen Ressa plowed through crowds of people in his Buick sedan.

As for the record, well, this one pulls ridiculous prices in collectors circles.  Fortunately, the music is much better than what is typical with these homegrown private pressings.  All in all, the album is mostly very typical hard rock of the era.  Perhaps calling it hard rock is a stretch but there's a definite edge that makes it difficult to call anything else.  Fowler's vocals are all competent and the performances are solid.  The production is clear and better than what is common with self-released budget recordings.

As  expected, the punchier material really stands out.  Tracks like "Turn It Around", "No Life Of My Own", "Looking For A Woman" and the great interpretation of Crabby Appleton's sole hit, "Go Back" all rock.  The only song that really detracts from the proceedings is the west-coast influenced "Song And Dance" which seems at odds with the overall musical vibe in the grooves.

I would definitely consider this to be one of the better private pressings of the era and it's truly a shame no niche label has taken steps to reissue this on CD.  So, to remedy that issue for now, I present "Crank It Up" for your discerning ears.  I recommend you crank this one up and enjoy!

7 comments:

JC_AOR said...

Hey nice to see RFR still going strong - this has always been one of the my favourite music blogs, especially because your posts are always original and exciting. As for Savannah I'm going to be checking this one out very soon.
Cheers,
JC

Rob Rob said...

hey Ronnie good to see you back again !bring on the rarities !!
cheers from England
Rob Rob...

Argenis Vázquez said...

Nice post as always!!!

pow.r.rock said...

What happened? I Miss your posts

Anonymous said...

Hi

Thanks for all thwe fine albums!

Best

Robert

Sarah Mosunic said...

This is so random - my Dad's band.

JKR said...

Hi Sarah, good to hear from you. I'm sure you're proud of your father. I would love to hear from you, as I have some questions about Savannah that you might be able to help answer. I reached out to your brother a few years ago but never heard back from him. If you feel inclined to help, please email me at muzik_guy2@yahoo.com. Thanks for dropping in :)

J Richter (Robots For Ronnie)