34:Green River (Creedence Clearwater Revival)

Album: Green River
Artist: Creedence Clearwater Revival
Year: 1969

1. Green River
2. Commotion
3. Tombstone Shadow
4. Wrote a Song for Everyone
5. Bad Moon Rising
6. Lodi
7. Cross-Tie Walker
8. Sinister Purpose
9. The Night Time Is the Right 

Creedence released three albums in 1969 (!!!)  Their first album of the year, Bayou Country, helped the band become popular on the heels of Proud MaryGreen River was their second and also their best.

One amazing thing about John Fogerty is that he was able to write songs about places he had never lived and make you think he had been there his whole life, when in fact he was from San Francisco. Green River is one of those songs that harkens back to children growing up in the 50’s in bayou country.

Commotion is a frenetic rocker and one of their best up-tempo songs. Tombstone Shadow is an autobiographical about John’s visit with a fortune teller that didn’t go so well. It sounds like something Screamin’ Jay Hawkins would have done. Wrote a Song for Everyone is a great ballad about insecurity. Bad Moon Rising is probably the most famous song from the album and one I’m rather tired of, but it’s still a good sing-a-long.

Ever since I started keeping track, Lodi has been in my top five songs of all-time. Fogerty has said it’s a “sad, sad song about a bad, bad photographer.”  It’s also about a bad, bad musician.

After this the album kind of sputters. Cross-Tie Walker has an incredibly boring rhythm. Sinister Purpose is pretty heavy-handed on the lyrics, but it’s got a pretty sinister sounding guitar going on, so it’s a good listen. And then we get to the song that knocks Green River out of the top 20. The Night Time is the Right Time is uninteresting, too slow, and has the backups all singing “Wah-Doo-Day” between every single line. It’s obnoxious and I can’t stomach it very often.

5 thoughts on “34:Green River (Creedence Clearwater Revival)”

  1. Damn fine album, and Lodi is indeed a damn fine song! Bad Moon Rising is a bit played-out, but it still makes a mandatory appearance on my stereo every Halloween.

  2. I’ll pile on for “Lodi” as well, either my favorite CCR song or second favorite after “Have You Ever Seen the Rain?” I doubt I’ve ever heard more than a few non-singles from these guys, as everyone I knew had their twenty-track “Best of” CD and nothing else.

    1. I had Chronicle 1 and Chronicle 2 (40 songs) before I got the individual albums as well. I still have them because they’re the 24K gold versions!

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