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High and Outside

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Album Review

As the singer/songwriter era waned in the late '70s, recording artists of the genre found themselves being presented by the major labels in more heavily orchestrated, rockish settings. High and Outside presents Steve Goodman in just such an aural situation, with electric keyboards, horns, and sha-la-la-ing backup singers. In this case it works very nicely — Goodman's distinctive voice glides above the arrangements, and his clever, always insightful, often humorous lyrics stand on their own. "The One That Got Away" ranks with the best of Goodman's compositions, and features a vocal duet with Nicolette Larson. Other highlights include the rollicking "Men Who Love Women Who Love Men," the N'Orleans-tinged "What Have You Done for Me Lately" (co-written with Shel Silverstein), and a tasty rendering of the Jackie Wilson hit "That's Why (I Love You So)." Although the commercial trappings found here failed to break Goodman to a wider audience, High and Outside still rates as one of his most enjoyable recordings.


Born: 25 July 1948 in Chicago, IL

Genre: Singer/Songwriter

Years Active: '60s, '70s, '80s

Growing up in what he called "a Midwestern middle-class Jewish family," Steve Goodman began playing the guitar as a teenager. He was influenced by the folk revival of the early '60s and by country performers such as Jimmie Rodgers and Hank Williams. After attending college in the mid-'60s, he turned to playing in Chicago clubs by night and writing commercial jingles by day. In 1971, he opened for Kris Kristofferson and was seen by Paul Anka, who financed demo recordings that led to a contract with...
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High and Outside, Steve Goodman
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