Sammy Hagar kept getting better and better in his early solo career. His first record wasn’t an overnight success after the classic Montrose album, but still made an impact in the rock world. This, his second solo album, is often seen as an improvement on what he delivered previously in his solo career. Let’s check out the music here and see if it is, indeed, an improvement on that.
The rifftastic Red begins the album, showcasing the official Red Rocker tune. No pun whatsoever intended here, it has a deep and important meaning in serving for Sammy Hagar and success in his life. If you read his autobiography, more information about this is present. It’s a great radio ready rock tune best played in the car for a drive out for fun. The drum solo in this is also spot on for the song, and absolutely precise. A great song to kick off the album with.
Next is Catch The Wind which is a beautiful ballad that is very 1970s, but that still sounds wonderful today. It has a quiet, muted riff and a beautiful set of melodies and arrangements. Some of the lyrics, combined with Sammy Hagar’s unique voice, really make this an emotional tune to listen to. Very moving, and another must hear for fans of Sammy Hagar. The string section in the background is gorgeous. True love conquers all, and this song seems to emulate that. Great piece of music.
Cruisin’ & Boozin’ is a feel good tune to hear. It is, once again, very catchy and has some awesome melodies and guitar playing in it. Sammy Hagar, although a fairly workaholic musician, knew how to have a great time as well. A fun and fresh sounding tune and a great statement and listen, just good and memorable fun.
Free Money is an oddity as it covers the desire and need for money in one’s life. A strange and melancholy sort of piece which sounds odd lyrically, but is still quite good to hear regardless. It goes into a faster section in the middle of the tune, where Sammy Hagar sings about the riches one could have. It’s difficult to take this statement seriously to be honest, as it sounds rather awkward in intent. Still, it is listenable.
Next is Rock ‘N’ Roll Weekend which is where it is at with Sammy Hagar. It’s a much better track than the last, and sounds precise and direct with the intentions of having a great time. It was the era of mammoth sized rock and roll bands in the late 1970s, and Sammy Hagar doesn’t fail here to impress. A straightforward and decent listen.
Following is Fillmore Shuffle which is an acoustic driven piece that sounds very good to this day. It talks about the power of love and dancing, which is a tradition that has been going since…well forever. Another up tempo, cheerful and fun listen to some upbeat music. A very enjoyable song, and very much worth hearing. Great and perfectly listenable rock music here.
Hungry comes next. It begins with some keyboard and guitars mixed together seamlessly and is another good song about desiring a great life and love in it as well. It really does sound like Sammy Hagar was (and is) a man on a real mission to conquer all. Our main man hungers for a perfect life, and hopefully he has achieved it through great music such as this song. Excellent work.
The Pits comes next, and as you may have guessed, it’s about a guy with bad luck who just can’t get by in life. It is an interesting tale to hear, as surely, we have all had bad experiences at various points. It’s good and a reminder to avoid negativity in life. Not a bad song here.
Following is Love Has Found Me which is a much more rock driven piece than other songs on the album with loud guitars and a sense of rock attitude here. Another great decent statement from Sammy Hagar is here. The guitar breaks here are great to hear. It’s a nice thing to listen to when considering a true love in one’s life, that is, if you have one. The loud guitar solo is majestic here as well. A fresh and inspired piece of music.
Last is Little Star-Eclipse which begins with beautiful piano, spacey sound effects and some great love based lyrics from the Red Rocker. It’s a beautiful, mellow and consistent piece to end the album on a high note. The drums and guitars then kick into the main part of the song. It’s an extended listen but never dull or boring whatsoever. Sammy Hagar does superbly here. The guitar solos are really fantastic. The second section of the song is a deep and meaningful sounding instrumental, a nice way to finish the album off.
This is definitely a great listening experience. From this point on, Sammy Hagar was no longer seen as simply the Montrose singer, he had established himself as a force that could not be denied. This album cemented him as the Red Rocker. He never looked back.