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So What

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iTunes Review

So What is Joe Walsh’s first solo effort without the aid of his band Barnstorm. While he parted ways with Kenny Passarelli and Rocke Grace, Walsh retained the services of Barnstorm’s virtuosic drummer Joe Vitale, who had become the guitarist’s main musical foil. Anchored by the pile-driving grooves of “Welcome to the Club,” “Time Out” and “Turn To Stone” So What is Walsh’s hardest rocking album since James Gang’s Rides Again. “Pavanne” is a ramble through a tangle of alien synths, while “All Night Laundry Mat Blues” is a druggy hootenanny. These tongue-in-cheek sonic detours are partially inspired by Todd Rundgren’s work from the same period. Rundgren was an obviously model for Walsh’s music, and like Rundgren, Walsh is a fanatic for sonic detail. Thus So What is a work of masterful engineering, representing an entire range of tonal color with total clarity. This is an ambitious work, with moments of grandiosity (“Song for Emma”), raw rock (“Time Out”) and poignancy (“Help Me Thru the Night”). For maximum enjoyment, find the perfect pair of vintage headphones, get a little tipsy, and lose yourself.

Customer Reviews

Emma's Song

If anyone knows what the song "Song for Emma" is about, then you probably know how hard it was for Joe to record it. This is a song that will make you cry but it is a beautiful song and beautifully written. Rest in peace Emma

Joe's 2nd Best Album

Consider this one, Smoker You Drink, Part II. Most of the songs on this album could easily have been placed on the Smoker You Drink LP. In fact, I wouldn't be surprised if these songs were recorded in the same sessions. Falling Down, Time Out, and County Fair were all mid-70's staples on pre-playlist FM stations, AOR stations, college stations, etc. Great album. Walsh's work with the Eagles never came close to the quality of songwriting presented here.

So What

Favorite Joe Walsh album, no superhits but solid from beginning to end.


Born: November 20, 1947 in Wichita, KS

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

From his early hits with the James Gang through to his tenure with the Eagles -- as well as a successful solo career -- Joe Walsh remained one of the most colorful characters in rock & roll, lending his distinctively reedy vocals, off-the-wall lyrics, and expansive guitar leads to a series of AOR staples including "Funk #49," "Rocky Mountain Way," and "Life's Been Good." Born November 20, 1947 in Wichita, Kansas, Walsh initially studied the oboe and clarinet, later playing bass in local bands the...
Full Bio