Quarterflash - 1981 Quarterflash
SERIAL: GHS 2003
CD REISSUE: 1990, Geffen, GED02003 * 1996, Geffen, 2003-2
COUNTRY OF ORIGIN:
LINEUP: Rindy Ross - vocals, saxophone, woodwinds, reeds * Marv Ross - guitars, vocals * Jack Charles - guitars * Rick DiGiallonardo - keyboards * Rick Gooch - bass * Brian David Willis - drums
TRACK LISTING: 01 Harden My Heart * 02 Find Another Fool * 03 Critical Times * 04 Valerie * 05 Try To Make It True * 06 Right Kind Of Love * 07 Crusin' With The Deuce * 08 Love Should Be So Kind * 09 Williams Avenue
Cool name for a band dont'cha think? Better than their previous handle of Seafood Mama! Haha. Husband and wife pairing of Marv and Rindy Ross were originally school teachers. They threw in the chalk and blackboards for a dash of guitars and saxophone, and whatever musical device they could fill the house up with.
As Seafood Mama, the band eeked out an early version of 'Harden My Heart' for a local Portland Oregon radio station. This track was heard by renowned producer John Boylan, who decided to bring the duo (and band) into the Geffen Records fold.
At the time, Geffen was a new label, Quarterflash being one of their first signing's. Dropping the other musical genres in favour of rock, the Ross duo bought in new players, the album eventually finding the market in later 1981, but faring better in 1982, as history would show.
Anyone who hasn't heard their hit 'Harden My Heart' has probably lived in a cave for the last thirty years. The track reached No 3 on the Billboard charts.
Follow-up single 'Find Another Fool' also did well, getting to No 16. The other singles offering 'Right Kind Of Love' was less successful, reaching no 56 instead. Not that the album was a three-song wonder. Far from it.
I do like guitarist Jack Charles' ballad 'Critical Times' - a melancholy soaked affair that has often been played late at night by yours truly, plus the new-wave workout of love-starved protagonist 'Valerie'.
The closer 'Williams Avenue' is an eight minute licorice all-sorts tune, with every musical style under the rainy Oregon sky being played. One feels this is what Seafood Mama would've sounded like had they continued in their original direction.
The band left two more albums on Geffen: 1983's 'Take Another Picture' and 1985's 'Back Into Blue'. Quarterflash has run its course by 1986 and disbanded.
Not that anything is permanent these days, but a disbanding usually segues into a reunion, if the rock music industry is anything to go by. And so Quarterflash kept this reunion tradition alive by returning in 1990 and 'Girl In The Wind' - released on Epic Records a year later.
As a staple of the 80's era, and with 'Harden My Heart' often heard on classic rock radio, it seems appropriate to give the band some kudos here at GDM. All their albums are worth acquiring, and contain good moments within.
These days, Rindy and Marv Ross are still involved with music, now connected to the Trail Band, based out of Oregon.
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