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Son of Schmilsson

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iTunes Review

Following the massive success of Nilsson Schmilsson Harry Nilsson took full advantage of the creative freedom awarded to him by RCA and recorded the thorny, contrarian rock ‘n’ roll celebration that is Son of Schmilsson. The label was horrified that the album didn’t contain a conventional ballad along the lines of “Without You,” and instead pursued a wild, feverish and highly schizophrenic vision of rock rambunctiousness. Despite the album’s reputation, it is in fact a joyous romp, and probably more fun to listen to than anything else Nilsson ever recorded. “Take 54,” “At My Front Door” and the Bowie-aping “Spaceman” rock harder than anything else in his catalog, but the album also offers some of Nilsson’s most poignant songs with “Remember (Christmas)” and “The Lottery.” At the time, the public couldn’t decide whether to appoint Nilsson a songwriting genius, or brand him a pop terrorist. Now it’s easy to appreciate him as a combination of the two, with Son of Schmilsson functioning as his testimony.

Customer Reviews

A bittersweet trip down the bayou.

Once upon a time in a small town in Louisiana, an unpopular, awkward boy sat huddled in his room near a cheap record player with the headphones on. He escaped from the outside world listening to an obscure, unique album by an incredible artist. From it's most famous song, "Spaceman" to the most beautiful song, "The Most Beautiful World in the World," this album had the unique ability to bring joy, laughter, and nostalgic sadness. That boy was me, and this album's joy is bittersweet. One song, "You're Breaking My Heart," brings back the childhood memory of a day when I forgot to put the headphones on and the song was playing out loud. As the chorus refrain passed by, my redneck, high-school football coach, father burst through the door, ripping the record off the player. "How could you bring this filth into my house, under my roof," he snarled as he tried to break the record in half. But being a vinyl record, it just bent, and warped. Frustrated, he took it out in the backyard and burned it. All this drama of course was due to the use of the f-word (which he had used many times). I rushed out the next day and bought another copy, and have since bought every incarnation it has been release on since. The verbal and physical abuse from my father continued through the years, but this album has always brought joy to me, with an occasional tear. Even morbid, sad topics are approached with fun and laughter by the artist and the producer, Richard Perry. A good example is. "I'd Rather be Dead." It deals with the subject matter of getting old, and being useless, and wanted to be dead when that time arrives. What joy. What fun! LOL. Thanks so much Harry Nilsson. I will love you forever for allowing me to feel like I had a place in this world. You're music will live on forever.

Harry gives you all he's got on the LP.

If you like Harry Nilsson, buy the LP. If you don’t know if you like Harry Nilsson, buy the LP, you will. He rocks out, sing songs so beautiful you fell it was about someone in your own life. Then he breaks off a lovely ballad with a belch of biblical proportions. The Ultra (un-radio played classic) “Your breaking my heart” makes you thinks of anybody that ever left you feeling less than loved. He even has a choir from a retirement home fill in on “I’d rather be dead , than wet my bed”. His voice is soulful, rocking, hauntingly beautiful, and even manages a bit of Country & Western. The LP opens with Harry letting a gal know the he “Sang a “certain” part of his anatomy off, for you baby”, He even broke the microphone. I would paid $1.00 for sure to have been able to hang out with him and John Lennon, on a night the drink wasn’t out of control. I do wish he was still with us, more than on vinyl, or megabytes! He makes music real! real touching, and real fun!


I would say this IS a musical monument. Harry proves that you can make lighthearted music that's still deep; songs like You're Breaking My Heart will make you laugh, but other tracks you can feel an amazing amount of emotion. Perfect.


Born: June 15, 1941 in Brooklyn, NY

Genre: Pop

Years Active: '50s, '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s

Although he synthesized disparate elements of both rock and pop traditions, singer/songwriter Harry Nilsson was at heart a maverick whose allegiance belonged to neither. His initial series of albums in the late '60s made him a personal favorite of the Beatles, who found a natural affinity with his knack for catchy melodies, witty lyrics, and extraordinary vocal range. Thought of as a songwriter first and a performer second, he became a pop star himself in the late '60s and early '70s with "Everybody's...
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