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February 25, 2024

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Thirty Years of Andy Cahan (Hamana Records)

By: Alex Steininger

Self-describing himself as "the most famous musician you never heard of," Andy Cahan has quite a history. Producing and playing with many artists such as Ringo Starr, Harry Nilsson, The Turtles, and The Monkees, he has grown up in the age of rock 'n roll, and watched as the genre meant something else each decade. He has recently compiled a compilation of some of his best material throughout his thirty year career. Divided in decades, this CD contains twenty five tracks total.

The first three tracks are the only tracks I could get into on this CD. "My Little Angel" is soft and pure pop, full of hooks that will drag you in and get you listening and listening again. The first time I heard this track, however, I really didn't like it. But for some reason I felt the urge to listen to it again one day, and from then on I kept listening to it. A very soft, relaxing song that deserves some attention. "Late Bloomer" has a bouncy feeling to it. It sounds like American pop in the 80's trying to duplicate a Jamaican sound using their own style. For some reason it works with Andy Cahan. I find myself enjoying this track, for some weird reason. Very poppy and bouncy, you'll find yourself listening to this one and getting your body into the music. "Itchie Lover" is another bouncy pop number, this time in a late 80's style. A little nostalgic feeling accompanies it, but it's too bouncy and hook filled to pass on. "Karen" starts the downward spiral for this album. It's dull and boring, and starts a chain reaction with the rest of the material. The other twenty two songs on this album either sound heavily out dated (and they are), or they are dull and boring, with nothing memorable happening during the song.

Andy Cahan is a master producer, there is no question about that. Also known as the "Demo Doctor," I'm sure he's done a lot of good for a lot of musicians. But for himself, he fails at keeping his producing and musician skills separated. He tries to intertwine the two, and it comes out a failed attempt. My recommendation is that he should stay behind the system and help shape bands for the future, rather than trying to prove something with his own music. I'll give this album a D+. The first three tracks are really nice, poppy, and full of hooks, but after that everything just goes down hill.

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