The Album: Bryan Ferry, These Foolish Things (1973)
Bryan Ferry first came to notice in the early 1970s thanks to the art rock group, Roxy Music, that he helped form. Most other artists would have focused their energies on their budding, hit band but Ferry, throughout his career, has never been one to be like “most other artists.” Even as Roxy Music was blowing up, Ferry used time between those albums to record his own solo works and though his voice might bridge the two, his solo debut album, These Foolish Things was unlikely to be confused for a Roxy Music project.
Ferry, at heart, is a crooner and so it’s only fitting that this album would inspired by his eclectic interpretations of different rock, pop and soul standards, including everything from Erma Franklin’s “Piece of My Heart,” to The Rolling Stones’ “Sympathy for the Devil” to the Beach Boys’ “Don’t Worry Baby.” We talk about an artist trying to “make a song their own” whenever we discuss covers and it’s hard to argue that when it comes to Ferry here, he’s putting his own, distinct stamp on these hits.
These Foolish Things came to us by way of our guest, music critic Lindsay Zoladz, who’s spent the last ten years stocking up clips for everyone from Pitchfork to New York Magazine to The Ringer, where she’s been a staff writer for the last several years (alongside the likes of previous Heat Rocks’ guests, Shea Serrano and Chris Ryan). Zoladz shared with us how she discovered this particular album (especially as someone who wasn’t even born in the 1970s), what she hears in Ferry’s interpretations and whether or not he lives up to the title of being a “bobby dazzler.”
More on Lindsay Zoladz
More on These Foolish Things
- Album “Revisit” (Spectrum Culture)
- Album review (Real Gone)
- “These Foolish Things at 45” (Rock & Roll Globe)
Show Tracklisting (all songs from These Foolish Things unless indicated otherwise):
- These Foolish Things
- A Hard Rain’s A-Gonna Fall
- Baby I Don’t Care
- It’s My Party
- Piece of My Heart
- The Tracks of My Tears
- Sam Cooke: These Foolish Things
- James Brown: These Foolish Things
- River of Salt
- Lesley Gore: It’s My Party
- It’s My Party
- Loving You Is Sweeter Than Ever
- Don’t Worry Baby
About the show
Hosted by Oliver Wang and Morgan Rhodes, every episode of Heat Rocks invites a special guest to talk about a heat rock – a hot album, a scorching record. These are in-depth conversations about the albums that shape our lives.
Our guests include musicians, writers, and scholars and though we don’t exclusively focus on any one genre, expect to hear about albums from the worlds of soul, hip-hop, funk, jazz, Latin, and more.
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