Three Dog Night

Harmony

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The release of Harmony in the fall of 1971 gave Three Dog Night their seventh gold record in less than three years, yielding two Top Ten singles with Paul William's "Old Fashioned Love Song" (number four) and Hoyt Axton's "Never Been to Spain" (number five). In addition, William's "Family of Man" would just fail to crack the top of the charts, rising as high as number 12 by March of 1972. This continued commercial brilliance would, unfortunately, have negative repercussions on vocalist Chuck Negron's personal life with a car accident, following a substance-fuelled mixing session, signaling the beginning of his protracted slide into drug addiction and eventual transience. Nevertheless, Harmony remains a showpiece for the group's interpretive talents, the album dividing itself between good-natured communal recklessness (the William compositions, the organ-drenched funk of the group's own "Jam") and more reserved, minor-keyed tradings on the last vestiges of flower-powered earnestness (the melancholic "Peace of Mind," and a dubious cover of Stevie Wonder's "Never Dreamed You'd Leave Me in Summer"). In addition to its continued testament to Three Dog Night's musical versatility, Harmony is historically notable for the fact that the decision to play large venues, like Pittsburgh's Three Rivers Stadium, during the stateside tour to support the release played a large part in ushering in the era of so-called stadium rock.

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