Charles Earland and Oddysey
Sound Ideas Studio; New York, New York: August 1976
Jon Faddis, Randy Brecker (tp,flhrn); Chris Brubeck (tb); Arthur Grant (ts,vcl); Charles Earland (p,el-p,synth,arr); Gabor Szabo (g); Butch Campbell, Jackie Turner (el-g); David Clarke (b); Abe Speller (d); Lawrence Killian (cga); Jose Cheo Santos (perc); The Jernigan Singers (James Bason Jr., Fred Lyes, Idolene Rankine, Wanda Hamlett, Gloria Bason, Hope Dancy) (vcl); and The Spice Strings )Irving Spice, Louis Stone, Bruce Haber, Elliot Rosoff, Deborah Idol, Louis Gabowitz (vln); Seymour Berman, David Sackson (viola); Seymour Barb, Sally Rosoff (cello)).
Perhaps one of Szabo's oddest associations is with Charles Earland for this ill-conceived disco ballad. Gabor pointlessly strums his acoustic guitar in over dubbed accompaniment while Charles Earland grumbles some truly silly lyrics. Earland, formerly an exciting organ grinder who made meaty music during his Prestige heyday, seems genuinely excited about Szabo's involvement; offering special thanks to the guitarist on the record sleeve. However, Szabo's contribution is negligible here. What's more, any individuality to his performance (strikingly, there is none) is buried beneath overbearing cushions of synthesizer washes and string embellishments.
One notable item here, however, is that in addition to sharing the services of the same management company (Forest Hamilton, Chico's son), Szabo was recording for the Mercury label at the same time as Chico Hamilton -- who, in March 1977, recorded CATWALK (Mercury SRM1-1163), a much nobler co-production bearing Robin McBride's name.