The John Prine Album Poll

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Every album I buy convinces me he's one of the greats.

Poll Results

OptionVotes
John Prine (1971), 7
Sweet Revenge (1973) 4
Great Days: The John Prine Anthology (1993), Rhino 2
In Spite of Ourselves (1999), Oh Boy 2
John Prine Live (1988), Oh Boy 1
Live on Tour (1997), Oh Boy 1
Bruised Orange (1978), Asylum 1
Diamonds in the Rough (1972) 1
The Missing Years (1991), Oh Boy 1
Lost Dogs and Mixed Blessings (1995), Oh Boy 0
A John Prine Christmas (1993), Oh Boy 0
Souvenirs (2000), Oh Boy 0
German Afternoons (1986), Oh Boy 0
Aimless Love (1984), Oh Boy 0
Storm Windows (1980), Asylum 0
Pink Cadillac (1979), Asylum 0
Prime Prine: The Best Of John Prine (1976) 0
Common Sense (1975) 0
Fair & Square (2005), Oh Boy 0


Alfred, Lord Sotosyn, Friday, 7 November 2008 03:06 (twelve years ago) link

You can't put Great Days on the poll! That's like "do you like vanilla, or chocolate, or A BIG FUCKING SMORGASBORD STUFFED WITH TREATS?"

V. sorry I killed Jimmy Carl Black (the Indian of the group) (staggerlee), Friday, 7 November 2008 05:35 (twelve years ago) link

So, the anthology, natch. But The Missing Years for best single album.

V. sorry I killed Jimmy Carl Black (the Indian of the group) (staggerlee), Friday, 7 November 2008 05:36 (twelve years ago) link

Sweet Revenge. "Will prevail without fail."

If Timi Yuro would be still alive, most other singers could shut up, Friday, 7 November 2008 06:48 (twelve years ago) link

I'm leaning towards Sweet Revenge meself, but listening to "Fish and Chips" off Bruised Orange as I write, I almost beg to differ.

Alfred, Lord Sotosyn, Friday, 7 November 2008 15:11 (twelve years ago) link

*"Fish and Whistle," that is.

Alfred, Lord Sotosyn, Friday, 7 November 2008 15:17 (twelve years ago) link

i only know (well) up through bruised orange, so i'm a bit torn between s/t & Sweet Revenge. I probably listen to SR more.

flyover statesman (will), Friday, 7 November 2008 20:25 (twelve years ago) link

"Mexican Home" probably tips it for me

flyover statesman (will), Friday, 7 November 2008 20:27 (twelve years ago) link

In Spite of Ourselves is my fave of the ones i've heard.

Ioannis, Saturday, 8 November 2008 08:37 (twelve years ago) link

Automatic thread bump. This poll is closing tomorrow.

System, Wednesday, 19 November 2008 00:01 (twelve years ago) link

VOTE YOU FUCKERS

Alfred, Lord Sotosyn, Wednesday, 19 November 2008 00:03 (twelve years ago) link

Automatic thread bump. This poll's results are now in.

System, Thursday, 20 November 2008 00:01 (twelve years ago) link

two years pass...

Pathetic results, especially as I listen to The Missing Years.

look at it, pwn3d, made u look at my peen/vadge (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Friday, 26 November 2010 14:07 (ten years ago) link

Common Sense (1975) 0

ILM sucks

If Assholes Could Fly This Place Would Be An Airport, Friday, 26 November 2010 19:01 (ten years ago) link

If I'd have been around for this poll, I'd have voted for The Missing Years.

John Prine OPO is "Lake Marie", though.

a confident, off-duty spy (staggerlee), Saturday, 27 November 2010 02:23 (ten years ago) link

The first album is stiff, overrated folk with a couple real masterpieces of songwriting. "Sweet Revenge" is clearly the best, although "Common Sense" is a masterpiece in its own right. Here's a good article about it if anyone's interested:

http://theanvilreview.org/music/common_sense/

bzfgt, Sunday, 28 November 2010 19:35 (ten years ago) link

I do prefer SR over the debut.

look at it, pwn3d, made u look at my peen/vadge (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Sunday, 28 November 2010 19:41 (ten years ago) link

nine months pass...

huh i've been listening to the first three albums and i vastly prefer the s/t to diamonds in the rough and sweet revenge. not crazy about the arrangements and production on the latter two, combined with changes in prine's singing it makes it a lot harder to hear his lyrics.

congratulations (n/a), Monday, 26 September 2011 16:42 (nine years ago) link

Diamonds is the only one of the three that for some reason is impenetrable. I love the s/t and Sweet Revenge equally.

Anakin Ska Walker (AKA Skarth Vader) (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Monday, 26 September 2011 16:45 (nine years ago) link

I do prefer SR over the debut.

― look at it, pwn3d, made u look at my peen/vadge (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Sunday, November 28, 2010 1:41 PM (9 months ago) Bookmark

congratulations (n/a), Monday, 26 September 2011 16:49 (nine years ago) link

I changed my mind.

Anakin Ska Walker (AKA Skarth Vader) (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Monday, 26 September 2011 16:50 (nine years ago) link

"The Great Compromise" and "Clocks and Spoons" are good but the rest of the album....something's wrong: the songs and performances are hazy.

Anakin Ska Walker (AKA Skarth Vader) (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Monday, 26 September 2011 16:52 (nine years ago) link

Common Sense (1975) 0

Madness.

If Assholes Could Fly This Place Would Be An Airport, Monday, 26 September 2011 17:01 (nine years ago) link

i like "sour grapes" a lot off of diamonds in the rough. short, simple, depressing.

congratulations (n/a), Monday, 26 September 2011 17:15 (nine years ago) link

At a family reunion once the guitar was being passed around and somebody said to me "play some John Prine" so I started in with "Far From Me" and my dad gave a big sigh and said "Oh jesus" so I stopped playing it. I love that song but he was right.

TracerHandVEVO (Tracer Hand), Monday, 26 September 2011 22:57 (nine years ago) link

seven years pass...

and Bruised Orange is such a morning alum.

I like queer. You like queer, senator? (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Saturday, 3 November 2018 14:47 (two years ago) link

album even

I like queer. You like queer, senator? (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Saturday, 3 November 2018 14:47 (two years ago) link

this guy would make for a fantastic listening thread

rip van wanko, Saturday, 3 November 2018 20:22 (two years ago) link

YES

I like queer. You like queer, senator? (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Saturday, 3 November 2018 20:22 (two years ago) link

I’m in.

bumbling my way toward the light or wahtever (hardcore dilettante), Sunday, 4 November 2018 03:02 (two years ago) link

Likewise.

Timothée Charalambides (cryptosicko), Sunday, 4 November 2018 03:11 (two years ago) link

^^

niels, Sunday, 4 November 2018 11:24 (two years ago) link

If I'd have been around for this poll, I'd have voted for The Missing Years.
John Prine OPO is "Lake Marie", though.

THIS.

Jazzbo, Tuesday, 6 November 2018 18:07 (two years ago) link

one year passes...

there is something so frank, so bleakly honest, but not cruelly so, jut necessarily so, about that first album and what it says about vietnam-era america. this is still our country. rip.

treeship., Sunday, 25 October 2020 22:13 (one month ago) link

Indeed. Common Sense is my favorite JP album, though. I don't understand why it gets so little love, not only on ILM but in general.

Lily Dale, Sunday, 25 October 2020 22:56 (one month ago) link

Common Sense is not only my favourite Prine LP, it's the only one I like more than a couple of songs from. From what I've heard of his subsequent records, he soon got really cutesy, but the near-cynicism of Common Sense gives me a strong Robert Altman Nashville feeling.

Halfway there but for you, Sunday, 25 October 2020 23:15 (one month ago) link

Yeah, it is a dark album. Underneath Prine's usual empathy and humor, there's such sweeping bleakness, and a deep sense of outrage at what the world asks of people. I don't think of his later stuff as cutesy, for the most part, but I do see what you mean. Common Sense just has such an edge to it, and the arc of the album is so strong that even the lighter songs don't fully lighten the mood.

I think he could have made "Wedding Day in Funeralville" the title track, because that's essentially what the album is - a celebration of life, of human connection, against a backdrop of darkness and loss. And all tied together at the end by that joyous cover of "You Never Can Tell," as if to say: this is what life is, things slam up against each other, it's never the right time for anything, and we never have enough time to process all the loss, but that's just life, and you've got to do it all at once, because you never can tell.

Lily Dale, Monday, 26 October 2020 00:35 (one month ago) link

Looking back at that, I don't think I got it quite right. "Celebration" was putting it too strongly, for an album that's overall as bleak as this one. I love this album but have never quite found the right words to sum up what I love about it.

Lily Dale, Monday, 26 October 2020 01:28 (one month ago) link

There's a real sense of Prine piling up all of these lyrics almost as a defence against the confusion and hostility he sees in the world around him. There's a desperation about it. On a more mundane level, the band and Steve Cropper just provide more kick to his sound than on the three earlier records.

I most recently heard Pink Cadillac. I'm not particularly a rockabilly fan, and the songs weren't all that notable, but he and the band were clearly having fun and that was infectious. By "cutesy" I'm thinking of something like Linda Goes to Mars, which was typical of the later period songs on Great Days.

Halfway there but for you, Monday, 26 October 2020 02:29 (one month ago) link

Yes! Such a sense of the absurdity of the world, and then so much life and energy in the way the lyrics fit together, even if that energy comes from bitterness or agitation. And the anger at what other people have to go through is balanced by his willingness to gently poke fun at himself, call himself out for being irrational or self-pitying. "My car is stuck in Washington, and I cannot find out why/ come sit beside me on the swing and watch the angels cry." "Thought I saw a neon sign /flash my name with the time/ prob'ly didn't see a thing/ crazy dreams and a broken wing."

I don't know Pink Cadillac well, but "How Lucky" is on it, right? I like that one a lot.

Lily Dale, Monday, 26 October 2020 03:26 (one month ago) link

three weeks pass...

i don't actually have the debut album on vinyl and i thought i'd get it.. but discogs lists them all for silly money! wtf! has it never been reissued??

Li'l Brexit (Tracer Hand), Saturday, 21 November 2020 21:52 (one week ago) link

It was re-released earlier this year. Available for $22 on *m*z*n. Discogs prices are DUUUUUUMB

the thing that the angry Left forbids (hardcore dilettante), Sunday, 22 November 2020 14:42 (six days ago) link

That’d be Amazon. I tried to get cute with asterisks & got pwned by zing markup surprise.

the thing that the angry Left forbids (hardcore dilettante), Sunday, 22 November 2020 14:43 (six days ago) link

thanks! i don’t have an amazongg account tho. hmph

Li'l Brexit (Tracer Hand), Sunday, 22 November 2020 16:00 (six days ago) link

Yeah, I really try to avoid buying anything from Amazon unless I literally can’t find it for a comparable price anywhere else. (e.g. I bought the Dylan mono box set there recently cuz it was hundreds! of dollars cheaper.)

What this does point to, tho, is that it’s still in print & should be available/orderable at local stores, I’d think.

the thing that the angry Left forbids (hardcore dilettante), Sunday, 22 November 2020 16:19 (six days ago) link


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