Buzzy Linhart

BuzzArt Publishing Catalog, Vol. 1

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Buzzy Linhart and attorney Arthur Berggren created BuzzArt Publishing and released this 15-song compilation in 1997 mainly to get a small portion of the major songwriter's music catalog to other artists and filmmakers. Originally released with a song called "Bomboys" which was written by a songwriting team from upstate New York (the only non-Linhart track, though he sings on it), in 2003 that title was removed and replaced with the moody and dramatic "Dreams of Sand," co-written by Mark "Moogy" Klingman and issued on The Buzzy/Moogy Sessions, 1983-1994 disc released in 2000 by Moogy Music. With the film Shrek's inclusion of the Bette Midler theme the duo wrote, "(You Gotta Have) Friends," this industry-insider disc became even more vital. "Don't Let Go" is co-written by Buzzy and Toni Stern, the fabulous songstress who co-wrote "It's Too Late" and "Where You Lead" with Carole King on the Tapestry album. Hearing this live take, with blues great Paul Geremiah on harp, gives further evidence that the BuzzArt label needs to consider making this collection available commercially to the general public. "Hole in My Life" is something that developed while Linhart was asleep. He dreamt he was writing a song for Linda Ronstadt during her semi-country phase, a story the songwriter related to AMG: "(When I awoke) I was able to remember every single word, the chords, the bridge..." he sang it into a portable recorder just to be safe and presented it to Ronstadt's management several days after composing it. She had changed her style to the rock/soft pop format that brought her even greater fame, but this gem remains a nice tortured ballad like "Love Is All That Really Counts," co-written by Jay & the Americans alum Marty Kupersmith.

"The "Cheap Show" was written shortly after the cancellation of Cos -- the Bill Cosby TV series that Buzzy appeared on -- it has a charm that would've worked well for another tune on this collection, "Twelve Black Cabs," which Linhart wrote with the TV series Sesame Street in mind. The diversity and innocent depth spread across these fifteen tracks is a rare and unusual look into the creative process of a truly underrated talent. The Doug Rodrigues/Buzzy Linhart collaboration that is "Love Is A Symphony" is special indeed, produced by Corky Abado for Nimbus 9 it features "The Deacon" -- Steve Hunter -- on guitar, drummer Whitey Glan, and bassist Prakash John, three members of Lou Reed's legendary Rock 'n' Roll Animal band. The song contains elements of Pink Floyd-meets-Klaatu in a pop context, very nicely put together with a stellar choir of voices embellishing the strong hook and heavy instrumentation. Ditto for "Free Soul Spirit Symphony" written by Peter Anders, Kupersmith, Linhart, and Danny Meehan, though the fun is lighter, relying more on a campfire type singalong than the intensity of the previous "symphonic" entry. Of this tune, Linhart said "It came together like a jigsaw puzzle on the table. I can't imagine (having written it) without two guys walking through the door and adding ideas and lyrics" (friends came over to visit while two of the songwriters had a third of this song started). The BuzzArt Publishing Catalog, Vol.1 is the first release from this venture, just a taste of the wealth of material in the Linhart library which this publishing collection gives a solid glimpse of. A good argument for the release of discs of this type from Toni Stern, Marty Kupersmith, and other major writers who have tons of melodies and words tucked away in their private collections.