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  1. #1

    Swept Away lp - a discussion

    this is one of Diana's more commercially successful RCA albums and contains the highest charting singles. Missing You is regarding as a classic DR song. what are your thoughts on the other singles? on the album tracks? which is fav or least fav?

  2. #2
    SWEPT AWAY is one of my favorite Diana albums. As soon as I heard the opening track (MISSING YOU), I thought it was going to be special and much better than her previous album, ROSS.

    I think it is a very strong album, my favorites being MISSING YOU, RESCUE ME, SWEPT AWAY, TELEPHONE, ALL OF YOU, and FOREVER YOUNG. The only songs I can really do without are NOBODY MAKES ME CRAZY LIKE YOU DO and WE ARE THE CHILDREN OF THE WORLD.

    Diana was in very good voice and to me, seemed to be pushing herself in a way she had not done in a while. I agree with all of the decisions for singles. I wish TELEPHONE had done better but #13 r&B isn't bad. I was just surprised that it didn't chart pop at all. But that would be the way of the future with her remaining RCA singles.

  3. #3
    Quote Originally Posted by reese View Post
    SWEPT AWAY is one of my favorite Diana albums. As soon as I heard the opening track (MISSING YOU), I thought it was going to be special and much better than her previous album, ROSS.

    I think it is a very strong album, my favorites being MISSING YOU, RESCUE ME, SWEPT AWAY, TELEPHONE, ALL OF YOU, and FOREVER YOUNG. The only songs I can really do without are NOBODY MAKES ME CRAZY LIKE YOU DO and WE ARE THE CHILDREN OF THE WORLD.

    Diana was in very good voice and to me, seemed to be pushing herself in a way she had not done in a while. I agree with all of the decisions for singles. I wish TELEPHONE had done better but #13 r&B isn't bad. I was just surprised that it didn't chart pop at all. But that would be the way of the future with her remaining RCA singles.
    I pretty much agree with everything you say. Certainly her strongest rca effort. She sounded more committed on this album. Her vocals were on point and the songs were good aside from the pair of the clunkers you mentioned. One of those should have been binned in favour of that B side. Was it called Fight for it? It was a good tune that should have been included on the album.

  4. #4
    I actually like Nothing Makes Me Crazy. certainly not her best recording ever and it's definitely dated. but as a piece of synth-heavy mid-80s pop, i think its sort of good. definitely interesting

    We are the children would have done better without the annoying kids choir singing off key.

    in the US, i wish she had issued Touch By Touch. this is a far stronger song IMO than Telephone and would have been a pop hit i'm sure

  5. #5
    Swept Away imo was yet another one of those lets do a bit of everthing albums and hope we get a hit. At least the majority of ross and the complete Eaten Alive were cohesive sounding albums. My SA breakdown is

    Missing You. Great song which Diana performs to perfection.

    Touch By Touch. Ok pop song with some potential.

    Rescue Me. Weak, flat and uninspired. Sounds like it could have been on WDFFIL.

    It's Your Move. Ok album track. Nothing special

    Swept Away. A solid song and performance. Not one for Diana's r & b fans though.

    Telephone. Best song on the album. Diana surprised me with just how good her vocals are on this one. Had it been on WDFFIL would have been a major hit.

    Nobody Makes Me Crazy. Junk. Not worthy of her

    All Of You. Pretty song, but not particularly memorable

    We Are The Children. Simply dreadful. What on earth was she thinking of.

    Forever Young. Live vocals sound far better then the recorded version.

  6. #6
    Hands down best album of her RCA years. Seems like more thought went into song selection, what was contemporary at the time, and how to work that into the brand that was "Diana Ross". It was edgy in parts and it often worked.

    The highlights for me are "Missing You" and "Swept Away", two of the best songs she's ever released period. "Telephone" and "All of You" are obvious singles IMO. Both should have done better.

    I agree with those who think "Touch By Touch" might have made some noise. It was contemporary and cute. "It's Your Move" was also very contemporary, but the track needed something extra. It almost sounds like a demo. "We Are the Children" suffers because of the chorus. The verses and the track are good, but that chorus was a bad idea. It makes the song sound a bit stupid. "Forever Young" is good.

    The lowlights are definitely "Rescue Me" and "Nobody Makes Me Crazy". The former has Diana doing a disservice to herself. It's vocal performances like that which give credence to the unpopular opinion that Diana Ross can't sing. You can't take a classic song like "Rescue Me" and not put some stank on it after what Fontella Bass did with it. It sounds like, once again, Diana Does Karaoke. Had a competent producer, like a Luther Vandross, taken the reins, putting a spin on the song, it might have turned out better. But as recorded, Diana sounds a hot mess. "Nobody Makes Me Crazy" is surprisingly a nice Diana vocal, but that track does not suit her in any way. Diana Ross is not that nu wave type of artist. Why she kept looking in that direction doesn't make sense. She really had no clue what her strengths were.

    Ultimately, with "Missing You" and "Swept Away" as A+ type songs, and the majority of the other songs falling on some scale of good, I give the album a B-. But if you pay attention to which tracks were produced by Diana and which were produced by others, you should notice how unqualified she was for a producing job. I don't feel sorry one bit for RCA and the money they ultimately wasted on Ross. A competent record label would've put the squash on this kind of inept producing ability as soon as they figured out producing was not going to be her strong suit.

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by Ollie9 View Post
    Swept Away. A solid song and performance. Not one for Diana's r & b fans though.
    Huh? It was a major r&b hit. R&B fans were into it. This is an example of Diana being edgy without losing herself. It has an r&b/rock vibe to it.

  8. #8
    Aside from the album itself, I loved each of the videos as well, especially the expanded SWEPT AWAY.

  9. #9
    I loved the album except the snore it’s your move and the banal, phoned in rescue me - the worst cover of any song ever. I think Touch by Touch should have followed missing you and then nobody makes me crazy. Telephone? Meh. Should have gone higher than 13 R&B if it was good. It followed two number ones.

  10. #10
    This was a very good solid album. However I would have never put ďRescue MeĒ on it. It is such a weak cover. I would have had ďFight for ItĒ as its replacement. A song I like very much.
    Last edited by vgalindo; 05-30-2019 at 02:35 AM.

  11. #11
    Quote Originally Posted by RanRan79 View Post
    Huh? It was a major r&b hit. R&B fans were into it. This is an example of Diana being edgy without losing herself. It has an r&b/rock vibe to it.
    So it was. It's funny but i always considered it a pop/rock song. I never realised it charted so well on the R & B chart. I quite like it and consider it one of the better songs from the album.

  12. #12
    Quote Originally Posted by RanRan79 View Post
    Hands down best album of her RCA years. Seems like more thought went into song selection, what was contemporary at the time, and how to work that into the brand that was "Diana Ross". It was edgy in parts and it often worked.

    The highlights for me are "Missing You" and "Swept Away", two of the best songs she's ever released period. "Telephone" and "All of You" are obvious singles IMO. Both should have done better.

    I agree with those who think "Touch By Touch" might have made some noise. It was contemporary and cute. "It's Your Move" was also very contemporary, but the track needed something extra. It almost sounds like a demo. "We Are the Children" suffers because of the chorus. The verses and the track are good, but that chorus was a bad idea. It makes the song sound a bit stupid. "Forever Young" is good.

    The lowlights are definitely "Rescue Me" and "Nobody Makes Me Crazy". The former has Diana doing a disservice to herself. It's vocal performances like that which give credence to the unpopular opinion that Diana Ross can't sing. You can't take a classic song like "Rescue Me" and not put some stank on it after what Fontella Bass did with it. It sounds like, once again, Diana Does Karaoke. Had a competent producer, like a Luther Vandross, taken the reins, putting a spin on the song, it might have turned out better. But as recorded, Diana sounds a hot mess. "Nobody Makes Me Crazy" is surprisingly a nice Diana vocal, but that track does not suit her in any way. Diana Ross is not that nu wave type of artist. Why she kept looking in that direction doesn't make sense. She really had no clue what her strengths were.

    Ultimately, with "Missing You" and "Swept Away" as A+ type songs, and the majority of the other songs falling on some scale of good, I give the album a B-. But if you pay attention to which tracks were produced by Diana and which were produced by others, you should notice how unqualified she was for a producing job. I don't feel sorry one bit for RCA and the money they ultimately wasted on Ross. A competent record label would've put the squash on this kind of inept producing ability as soon as they figured out producing was not going to be her strong suit.
    I agree that "Missing You", "Swept Away" and for me "Telephone are A class songs. Sadly the rest of the songs for me are C, D and in the case of "Rescue Me" E.
    I can only assume that it was written into Diana's RCA contract that she be allowed to produce herself. I can't imagine any label would have let her continue otherwise.
    The album received a terrible review from motown author/historian Sharon Davis in Blues & Soul. She liked "MY" and TBT, but could not understand why someone in Diana's position continued to choose such terrible songs to record.
    I think "Fight For It" could have done quite well had it been included and released as a single. It's not a great song, but one that stays in your head.

  13. #13
    one of her best but the last track We Are The Children. cheesy
    should have included Fight Fot It.other wise good album

  14. #14
    I think "Touch By Touch" sounds a bit like an 80s classic! Definitely had pop potential!!!
    Last edited by TomatoTom123; 05-31-2019 at 10:41 AM.

  15. #15
    Quote Originally Posted by TomatoTom123 View Post
    I think "Touch Bu Touch" sounds a bit like an 80s classic! Definitely had pop potential!!!
    Swept Away was my favorite of the RCA years. Rescue Me is the only track I donít like; it didnít fit with this mostly modern pop/r&b album. Fight For It should have been included instead.

    We Are The Children Of The World - This one makes me doubt my own taste, lol. Iíve always enjoyed the track, it wasnít my favorite, but I didnít dislike it; it was fun and cute. I remember Diana promoting the song with the kids group in Central Park. Only recently, from this and other Diana Ross forums, have I discovered that EVERYONE seems to despise it. It appears on almost every list Iíve seen of least favorite Diana songs. Different strokes... lol

  16. #16
    ^i think using the kids chorus in C Park was fine. but for the recording, i think it would have been better not to use them. too cheesy, they're out of tune, etc. but the rest of the song is pretty decent. not a masterpiece but certainly of the time. could almost see it being used as background music to a typical 80s montage sequence. the underdog nerd fraternity is working on redoing their old beatup house to take on the evil jocks and cheerleaders lolol

  17. #17
    I think my favourite song on the album was It's Your Move, always was and still is.

    It's a good album of good songs; Nobody Makes Me Crazy Like You Do hasn't aged well but it is an 80's song.

    The weakest is We Are The Children of the World.

    I always thought Swept Away is missing something - maybe a real hook and if it had that hook, it would have been a massive hit rather than a hit. It is missing what songs like Private Eyes had; I always thought Daryl Hall kept the best for himself.

  18. #18
    Quote Originally Posted by JohnnyB View Post
    Swept Away was my favorite of the RCA years. Rescue Me is the only track I donít like; it didnít fit with this mostly modern pop/r&b album. Fight For It should have been included instead.

    We Are The Children Of The World - This one makes me doubt my own taste, lol. Iíve always enjoyed the track, it wasnít my favorite, but I didnít dislike it; it was fun and cute. I remember Diana promoting the song with the kids group in Central Park. Only recently, from this and other Diana Ross forums, have I discovered that EVERYONE seems to despise it. It appears on almost every list Iíve seen of least favorite Diana songs. Different strokes... lol
    I always enjoyed it too! I also didnít realize so many fans didnít like it. Lol

  19. #19
    I have never been fond of We Are The Children. I always thought it needed a little push going into the last third of the song - maybe a key change would have helped it. It just doesn't ever seem to fly, rather it just sits there waiting to end.

  20. #20
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    Pop-rock was not Diana's thing. She is a pop-soul singer, and a great one. The RCA years tended to be pop-rock influenced, and it was disastrous. Even more disastrous was her absolute persistence to stay that course. Most people tend to learn from mistakes.

  21. #21
    Quote Originally Posted by Circa 1824 View Post
    Pop-rock was not Diana's thing. She is a pop-soul singer, and a great one. The RCA years tended to be pop-rock influenced, and it was disastrous. Even more disastrous was her absolute persistence to stay that course. Most people tend to learn from mistakes.
    agree. all of a sudden we are treated to Diana singing oldies Mr Lee, terrible version. ok for a B side but I expect more from someone of her caliber, yet she does the same thing over n over.
    but to be fair, for 20 years she was over controlled by a man, now she wanted to spread her wings, but as you said learn from you mistakes.her last lp I Love You . sad. I cant believe she released it. a few good songs but mostly forgettable.
    I did like Swept Away and had she changed a few songs out,it would be an A. I give it a B +

  22. #22
    Quote Originally Posted by daviddh View Post
    agree. all of a sudden we are treated to Diana singing oldies Mr Lee, terrible version. ok for a B side but I expect more from someone of her caliber, yet she does the same thing over n over.
    but to be fair, for 20 years she was over controlled by a man, now she wanted to spread her wings, but as you said learn from you mistakes.her last lp I Love You . sad. I cant believe she released it. a few good songs but mostly forgettable.
    I did like Swept Away and had she changed a few songs out,it would be an A. I give it a B +
    I've said before that I thought some of Diana's desire to be in control in the studio at RCA was because of how tight Gordy controlled her every move at Motown. So it's understandable that she might try producing out of the gate. But my goodness, someone should have sat her down and explained that of all her strengths, producing isn't one of them. And sadly the RCA period, musically, diminished her legacy, mostly. I get that she had been in the business for a long time and really had a long rein at the top when you factor in the Supremes, and most artists- if not all- have a dropping off period. But Ross still had a lot left in the tank and a lot left to offer. Had she left the producing up to more competent contemporary producers, she could've continued to compete with the best of them.

  23. #23
    all in all, people say motown or BG failed the 70s Supremes but i say BG failed everyone at motown. he closed down detroit to move to LA ,leaving a lot of talent behind. maybe LA is a nice place to vacation for some but not everyone wanted to move there.
    the detroit location should have remained open for the rest and LA be for tv specials and movies.
    in the 70s i feel BG was mostly concentrating on movies and lost his vision for motown.
    as a result he lost sight of everyone except Smokey and Steve who wrote and produced their own material.
    imo, he lost control of Dianas career with projects like Everything is Everything, Last Time I Saw Him, and the fact that gems like Surrender and Baby Its Me bombed here is ridiculous. yet Blue would remain in the vaults for 30 years, while we got no new product in 1975 and then had to wait while Diana Ross black lp was released in feb 76 and Baby Its Me didn't get a release until sept 77, well over a year and half later.
    as usual we get everything or nothing.
    I am glad Diana took control by 1979 and things were looking up. not sure what exactly happened at RCA,geez. what a let down. cant believe she thought Why Do Fools was a good album.i would have never released it. but at least she started to redeem herself with Ross 83, although I only like about half the lp,but at least she was working with other producers again

  24. #24
    Quote Originally Posted by daviddh View Post
    all in all, people say motown or BG failed the 70s Supremes but i say BG failed everyone at motown. he closed down detroit to move to LA ,leaving a lot of talent behind. maybe LA is a nice place to vacation for some but not everyone wanted to move there.
    the detroit location should have remained open for the rest and LA be for tv specials and movies.
    in the 70s i feel BG was mostly concentrating on movies and lost his vision for motown.
    as a result he lost sight of everyone except Smokey and Steve who wrote and produced their own material.
    imo, he lost control of Dianas career with projects like Everything is Everything, Last Time I Saw Him, and the fact that gems like Surrender and Baby Its Me bombed here is ridiculous. yet Blue would remain in the vaults for 30 years, while we got no new product in 1975 and then had to wait while Diana Ross black lp was released in feb 76 and Baby Its Me didn't get a release until sept 77, well over a year and half later.
    as usual we get everything or nothing.
    I am glad Diana took control by 1979 and things were looking up. not sure what exactly happened at RCA,geez. what a let down. cant believe she thought Why Do Fools was a good album.i would have never released it. but at least she started to redeem herself with Ross 83, although I only like about half the lp,but at least she was working with other producers again
    Good post David. Full of interesting observations of which i am in almost total agreement.

  25. #25
    Quote Originally Posted by daviddh View Post
    agree. all of a sudden we are treated to Diana singing oldies Mr Lee, terrible version. ok for a B side but I expect more from someone of her caliber, yet she does the same thing over n over.
    but to be fair, for 20 years she was over controlled by a man, now she wanted to spread her wings, but as you said learn from you mistakes.her last lp I Love You . sad. I cant believe she released it. a few good songs but mostly forgettable.
    I did like Swept Away and had she changed a few songs out,it would be an A. I give it a B +
    As it happens I love Diana's 'Mr. Lee'. To each their own.

  26. #26
    I loved then and still love the SA album. I do find the track list and production style discrepancies not to my liking (I prefer lps to have a cohesive sound) but without boring the shite out of everyone I found there more to like than dislike. Of course I have my favorite cuts (who doesn't on any lp?) but still think, 'Good work, Diana & all involved'. I'm a Dylan fanatic and though the arrangement/production is a tad 'whatever' I applaud Diana's vocal on 'Forever Young'. Addendum: I recall Lena Horne's 'comeback' lp 'A New Album' containing liner notes pointing out that many did not think Horne was a good singer. Hmmm ... ring any bells? Would any sane human being in 2019 state that Horne was not an extraordinary singer?

  27. #27
    Quote Originally Posted by daviddh View Post
    all in all, people say motown or BG failed the 70s Supremes but i say BG failed everyone at motown. he closed down detroit to move to LA ,leaving a lot of talent behind. maybe LA is a nice place to vacation for some but not everyone wanted to move there.
    the detroit location should have remained open for the rest and LA be for tv specials and movies.
    in the 70s i feel BG was mostly concentrating on movies and lost his vision for motown.
    as a result he lost sight of everyone except Smokey and Steve who wrote and produced their own material.
    imo, he lost control of Dianas career with projects like Everything is Everything, Last Time I Saw Him, and the fact that gems like Surrender and Baby Its Me bombed here is ridiculous. yet Blue would remain in the vaults for 30 years, while we got no new product in 1975 and then had to wait while Diana Ross black lp was released in feb 76 and Baby Its Me didn't get a release until sept 77, well over a year and half later.
    as usual we get everything or nothing.
    I am glad Diana took control by 1979 and things were looking up. not sure what exactly happened at RCA,geez. what a let down. cant believe she thought Why Do Fools was a good album.i would have never released it. but at least she started to redeem herself with Ross 83, although I only like about half the lp,but at least she was working with other producers again
    very valid point - when a company attempts to branch out from their core product(s) they run major risks. they don't have the competencies or business acumen to handle these other ventures and often their core line suffers. making and selling great records is very different from making and selling great tv or movies or clothing lines or products. In trying to make it into movies, they were venturing into areas where they just didn't have the background or connections. and the proof is in the results - Lady did great. pretty much everything else was a flop, either critically, financially or both.

    and in the meantime, with the corporate focus off of music and with the rise of other influential producers and sounds, motown lost it's way

  28. #28
    "Missing You" and "Touch By Touch" have really grown on me recently. Diana is in fantastic voice on both.

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