Music Memories, Insights and Analysis

August 1, 2017
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Creedence Clearwater Revival: Cosmo's Factory (1970)

Cosmo's Factory Creedence Clearwater Revival was the quartet of John Fogerty, his older brother Tom Fogerty on rhythm guitar, Stu Cook on bass, and Doug Clifford on drums.

Between 1968 and 1970, Creedence Clearwater Revival released six albums and became on of the best loved and most successful bands in the U.S. Ironically, they were a northern California band that became famous by playing primarily roots and southern rock (a blend of rock and roll, country music, and blues -- think Allman Brothers and Lynyrd Skynyrd).

Cosmo's Factory was the fifth album by Creedence Clearwater Revival, released in July 1970. It was their second #1 album and fourth straight Top 10 album in the U.S. Seven of the eleven songs included on the album were written by John Fogerty, the band's lead vocalist, lead guitarist, and primary songwriter.

Cosmo's Factory produced three double A-sided singles, all of which reached the top five on the U.S. Pop Singles Chart, two of them peaking at #2: "Travelin' Band"/"Who'll Stop the Rain," "Lookin' Out My Back Door"/"Long as I Can See the Light" and "Run Through the Jungle"/"Up Around the Bend." Interestingly, Creedence Clearwater Revival hit #2 a total of five times on the Billboard Hot 100 chart without ever reaching #1. (Although they did reach #1 twice on the Record World magazine singles chart.)

Creedence Clearwater RevivalCosmo's Factory was the band's commercial and artistic peak, coming after the major success of their Willy and the Poor Boys album and their appearance at Woodstock the prior year. They had a couple of additional minor hits before breaking up only a couple of years later due to artistic differences.

Their eleven-minute extended version of the R&B hit "I Heard It Through The Grapevine" was strong enough that it eventually was released as a single as well . . . more than 5 years later! ("I Heard It Through The Grapevine" was written by Norman Whitfield and Barrett Strong for Motown Records in 1966. It was recorded by Smokey Robinson & the Miracles, Gladys Knight & the Pips and imortalized by Marvin Gaye in 1968.) CCR's version is a classic garage band blues jam unlike its Motown R&B predecessors.

All told, Cosmo's Factory is the most iconic of the legendary band's albums, with seven of the tracks eventually appearing on the band's "best of" release. Cosmo's Factory is an inspired collection of songs showcasing the quintisential American roots rock band of the day. A solid album from start to finish, there isn't a weak track in the bunch. John Fogerty's songwriting, guitar playing and singing present him as among the top tier of Rock and Roll performers at his very pinnacle.

Creedence Clearwater Revival was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1993.

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Past Blogs:

August 1, 2017 - CCR: Cosmo's Factory

July 1, 2017 - Crosby, Stills & Nash

June 1, 2017 - The Beatles: Sgt. Pepper

Complete Blog History

Recent and Related Releases:

Creedence Clearwater Revival
(Extra Tracks, Remastered, 6-CD Box Set)

Cosmo's Factory
(Extra Tracks, Remastered)

Ultimate Creedence Clearwater Revival: Greatest Hits & All-Time Classics (3CD)

Chronicle, Vol. 1: The 20 Greatest Hits

John Fogerty: Comin' Down the Road
The Concert at Royal Albert Hall (DVD)

Recommended Reading:

Best of Creedence Clearwater Revival by Creedence Clearwater Revival
Hal Leonard publication of Guitar Tabs.

Bad Moon Rising: The Unauthorized History of Creedence Clearwater Revival by Hank Bordowitz

Up around the Bend: The Oral History Of Creedence Clearwater Revival by Craig Werner

Recommended Blogs:

DATAMUSICATA by James Lee Stanley
Tips, hints, clues and info for the artist in us all

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