Jesse Colin Young

Love on the Wing

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Despite earning respectable sales, Jesse Colin Young's solo albums had failed to generate the kind of hits that could have consolidated his career. Love on the Wing, his first studio album in two years, was co-produced by Felix Pappalardi, with whom Young had worked on some of the Youngbloods albums. Warner released the title track, a lovely ballad written by Blue Hazelhurst, and "Higher Higher," the leadoff track, another of Young's I-want-to-stay-home-with-my-family- and-not-go-on-the-road songs, as singles, but only the latter saw any radio or sales response, and even that wasn't enough to make the Top 100. Used to be, singles wouldn't have mattered to an artist like Young, but with record companies cooling to singer/songwriters, radio tightening up, and musical trends tending toward punk and disco, it was harder for a thoughtful artist like him to gain exposure for his new music. Love on the Wing was a low-key effort with an undercurrent of sadness -- the singer seemed disappointed with the domestic life that had given him satisfaction before, and he certainly hadn't warmed to the music business. Unfortunately, short of a career breakthrough, "Workin"' on the road was the only way he had of getting his music out. At the same time, working with the same group of musicians he had been using for years, he seemed to have reached the end of their musical development, even with the added horn and string arrangements on some tracks. Love on the Wing delivered more of the same at a time when Young needed to try something different, and that was reflected in a slight fall-off in sales, after which he parted ways with Warner Brothers. (Originally released as Warner Brothers 3033 in March 1976, Love on the Wing has been reissued by Ridgetop Music.)

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