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Champagne Jam

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Album Review

Once part of Roy Orbison's backing band and contributors to Georgia's thriving studio scene, the members of the Atlanta Rhythm Section married their polished chops to the rough-and-tumble blues and Southern-fried rock of the Allman Brothers and Lynyrd Skynyrd. And while the Allmans themselves espoused a jazz-tinged style, the Atlanta Rhythm Section took their boogie swing to almost MOR levels. Their slick style finally turned to gold with the 1976 hit "So Into You." 1978's Champagne Jam kept up the pace to an extent with minor successes like the Beatlesque pop side "I'm Not Going to Let It Bother Me Tonight." Chart concerns aside, Champagne Jam is one of the group's strongest releases: a seamless marriage of Southern rock muscle and uptown blues dress. Standouts include the almost nouveau Confederate rocker "Large Time" (Molly Hatchet anyone?) and the peak bluesy pop blend of the title track. Things do turn a bit awry on the Steely Dan ripoff "Evileen" and the cloying ballad "Normal Love," but even these tracks have enough in the way of classy arrangements to keep them afloat. Beyond the few best-of discs available, fans will definitely want to make this the first title they consider from the band's regular album catalog.

Customer Reviews

Champagne Jam

Old time ARS fans - BEWARE-.Today I upgraded my entire iTunes library to 256kbps using the newly available iTunes Match. The track ``Large Time`` with founding member Ronnie Hammond on lead vocals was `Matched` with another version having one of the many `non original` ARS band members on vocals. Apparently the 256kbps version the Cloud matched this song to was from the later `Champagne Jam Live` album which is also available here so that was the version suggested for download. Clearly, ARS officionados will recognize this on the first playback as I did and go back & purchase the desired version. But after laying out the $25 required to do the upgrade then having to re purchase the same song I already had (at the old 128k bit rate), I feel compelled to warn others of this rare miscue by Apple. As far as the original album goes though, it has always been one of my favs.

This is definitely their best album!

Here are the tracks that put Atlanta Rhythm Section on the Map! Tight playing, tasty licks.

Geat Band

A nice clean sound from the 70s


Formed: 1970 in Doraville, GA

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

Often described as a more radio-friendly version of Lynyrd Skynyrd or the Allman Brothers, the Atlanta Rhythm Section was one of many Southern rock bands to hit the upper reaches of the charts during the late '70s. Hailing from the small town of Doraville, Georgia, the beginning of the Atlanta Rhythm Section can be traced back to 1970. It was then that a local recording studio was opened, Studio One, and the remnants of two groups (the Candymen and the Classics Four), became the studio's house band....
Full Bio

Top Albums and Songs by Atlanta Rhythm Section

Champagne Jam, Atlanta Rhythm Section
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Customer Ratings


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