On an otherwise dull day at work, this sweet little item came across the wire: Bob Seger is coming out with a new CD chock full of some of his earliest songs.
That’s great news for those of us who have long preferred the young, spirited, in-your-face Seger of the late ’60s and early ’70s to the more familiar, more mainstream latter-day Seger.
Brian McCollum, writing in the Detroit Free Press, says it’s “a lineup of hard-to-find album cuts.” For most folks, probably. But not for those of us who are crate diggers, nor for those of us who grew up in the upper Midwest and heard Seger on the radio in those early days. He was well known regionally but hadn’t made it big nationally.
I have two of the three “long unavailable” LPs from which the new “Early Seger, Vol. 1” is drawn. I’ve seen both at Amazing Records, my local vinyl record shop, in the last month.
The 10 cuts on the CD are a mix of tunes from “Smokin’ O.P.’s,” “Back In ’72” and “Seven,” all fine Detroit rockers released from 1972 to 1974. “Smokin’ O.P.’s” is mostly covers, the others mostly original material. There also are four unreleased tunes, one from 1977 and the others from 1985.
Seger also is apparently reviving a vintage Detroit label. “Early Seger, Vol. 1” is being released on Hideout Records, once the home of crunchy Detroit rock, some it put out by Seger.
Seger remains loyal to his roots. At first, “Early Seger, Vol. 1” was sold only at Meijer’s stores. (That’s a big grocer and retailer in Michigan, Illinois, Indiana, Ohio and Kentucky.) Now it’s available at Seger’s Web site. There might be a wider release early next year.
So here’s a sampler of early Seger … but not from the new CD. Perhaps from future volumes of “Early Seger,” which certainly seem possible.
“Vol. 1” has a re-recorded version of this tune: “Long Song Comin’,” Bob Seger, from “Seven,” 1974. It’s out of print.
“Vol. 1” also has Seger’s ever-so-slightly superior original version of this tune: “Get Out of Denver,” Dave Edmunds, from “Get It,” 1977.
But “Vol. 1” doesn’t have this tune: “Love The One You’re With,” Bob Seger, from “Smokin’ O.P.’s,” 1972. On which Seger steps aside and leaves the lead vocals to Pam Todd and Crystal Jenkins.