New York, NY (Top40 Charts)
More than just Dion's mythic unreleased album, Kickin' Child: The Lost Album 1965, out May 12 on Norton Records, places the Rock and Roll Hall of Famer squarely in the center of rock's key mid-'60s developments. The revelatory sessions, never released in their complete form until now, redefine a career already impressive enough to have earned Dion a place in the pantheon of rock 'n' roll's early giants.
From the first folk-rock strums and the way Dion slides up to the opening line of the album's title track, these 15 songs show Dion set in a remarkable, wholly unexpected artistic direction. His 10 ambitious originals retain the emotional urgency that propelled early hits like "The Wanderer" and "Runaround Sue"; they also find him embracing rock's evolution. The other five songs, which include three Dylan covers, reveal his forward-thinking taste in outside material. Taken as a whole, Kickin' Child: The Lost Album 1965 identifies Dion as someone who not only had influenced the rockers that arose in his wake but also could stand with them as a creative equal.
Kickin' Child: The Lost Album 1965 not only provides the missing link connecting Dion's early hits to his "comeback" 1968 protest smash "Abraham, Martin
and John," it forms the crux of an amazing tale tying together some of rock 'n' roll's most iconic artists and storied moments. Most of the album was recorded with the legendary Tom Wilson, who was producing classic sides on Bob Dylan
& Garfunkel even as he and Dion were working together.
Dion came to Columbia Records in 1962 as the label's first rock 'n' roll signing, having risen to stardom during the genre's initial boom as the lead voice on Dion & the Belmonts' hits like "I Wonder Why
" and "A Teenager in Love," then setting off on an even more successful solo path. Always looking ahead, Dion paid close attention to developing trends and artists — particularly Dylan, who had preceded him at Columbia by only a few months.
In December 1964, Dion convinced Wilson to overdub an electric band playing along with the solo acoustic version of "House of the Rising Sun" that Dylan had cut for his debut album. The next month, Dylan was in New York's Columbia Recording Studio with Wilson and a full band, cutting his breakthrough Bringing It All Back Home album. And Dion was there, soaking it in.
Soon, Dion would be in the same studio laying down recordings that would form the core of Kickin' Child: The Lost Album 1965. Most tracks were recorded with Dion's band The Wanderers — Belmonts bass singer Carlo Mastrangelo on drums, guitarist Johnny Falbo and bassist Pete Falsciglia. For some sessions, Wilson brought in Al Kooper, who had contributed the singular organ part on Dylan's "Like a Rolling Stone" and here uses the same keyboard to create distinctive licks on tracks like "Now" and "Time in My Heart
The package includes liner notes by Dion's friend, fellow Bronx native and Del Lords frontman Scott Kempner.
Norton Records is a New York City-based independent record label founded in 1986 by musicians Miriam Linna and the late Billy Miller. It maintains a focus on retro rock 'n' roll, rockabilly, primitive music, garage punk, garage rock, lounge music and early R&B. Most of its output, both new releases and reissues, is issued on vinyl.
Kickin' Child: The Lost Album 1965 tracklist:
Kickin' Child (Dion DiMucci-Buddy Lucas)
Now (DiMucci- Mastrangelo)
My Love (DiMucci)
I Can't Help But Wonder Where I'm Bound (Tom Paxton)
Wake Up Baby (DiMucci)
Time in My Heart
for You (DiMucci)
Tomorrow Won't Bring the Rain (DiMucci-Mastrangelo)
Baby, I'm in the Mood for You (Bob Dylan)
Two Ton Feather (DiMucci)
Knowing I Won't Go Back There (DiMucci)
All I Want to Do Is Live My Life (Mort Shuman)
You Move Me Babe (DiMucci)
It's All Over Now Baby Blue (Dylan)
So Much Younger (DiMucci)