Klaatu Celebration Week Continues: John, Dee and Terry Wax Poetic About Sir Army Suit

alan headshot from schoolBy Alan Haber – Pure Pop Radio

This week, we’re celebrating the 40th anniversary of Klaatu’s momentous third album, Sir Army Suit, because, as I often say, history is important. With each song, with each collection of songs that we treasure from our favorite artists, we strengthen the musical foundation that we build upon.

klaatu sir army suit coverIt is important to know where things come from. Klaatu’s Sir Army Suit came after the group’s eclectic first album, 3:47 E.S.T., and the follow-up, the orchestrated concept long player Hope. Sir Army Suit was an attempt to build on Klaatu’s strengths with shorter, radio-friendly songs sporting indelible melodies, clever chord progressions, picturesque lyrics, and creative production for the purpose of increasing the band’s marketplace footprint.

Shorter, radio-friendly songs. No problem! From the opening classic “A Routine Day” to “Perpetual Motion Machine,” a sprightly tune about acquiring the gift you didn’t know you needed, this is what Sir Army Suit delivered. Moreover, the album served up a diverse musical experience that continues to resonate with fans today.

Klaatu’s John Woloschuk, Dee Long and Terry Draper spoke to me recently about Sir Army Suit, an album they look back on fondly. Click on the photos below to hear what they have to say about one of the great melodic pop albums of our time (then right-click on the stream graphic to download each interview).

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John Woloschuk looks back at Sir Army Suit

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Dee Long looks back at Sir Army Suit and ahead to new music

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Terry Draper takes a look at Sir Army Suit

In the spirit of our ongoing celebration of Sir Army Suit, on the occasion of the album’s 40th anniversary, we return this Friday with John, Dee and Terry each talking about three of their favorite Klaatu songs. Don’t miss it.

radio1Alan Haber’s Pure Pop Radio is the premiere website covering the melodic pop scene with in-depth reviews of new and reissued recordings, and a wide variety of features. The 24-hour Pure Pop Radio stream ran from 2013 to August 25, 2018. Welcome to your number one home for coverage of the greatest melodic pop music in the universe from the ’60s to today.

I Love that Album! #3: Klaatu’s Sir Army Suit (1978)

alan headshot from schoolBy Alan Haber – Pure Pop Radio

klaatu sir army suit cover“We all rose to the challenge,” Terry Draper says about “Calling Occupants (Of Interplanetary Craft),” Klaatu’s momentous signature song that opened the band’s debut album, 3:47 E.S.T., but he might as well have been referring to Sir Army Suit, the Canadian trio’s triumphant third album, released in August 1978 and now celebrating its 40th anniversary.

klaatu juicy luicy 45 labelThe challenge Terry, John Woloschuk and Dee Long were faced with, as they gathered to work on Sir Army Suit–really no challenge at all–was to write and record relatively short radio-friendly songs that would increase Klaatu’s marketplace footprint. And with wonderful nuggets such as “Juicy Luicy,” a catchy disco parody; “Tokeymor Field,” a hummable soft-pop romantic romp inspired by the music of the Young Rascals; and “Older,” a rocker about making time count before it’s gone, success should have been a fait accompli. And it was, for fans who held 3:47 E.S.T. and Hope, Klaatu’s previous two albums, dear.

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(l to r) John Woloschuk, Dee Long, and Terry Draper

John, Dee and Terry’s mandate was always to write and record songs that were different from each other, and for Sir Army Suit, they came up with their most diverse set yet. Songs about long getaways (“Everybody Took a Holiday”), the gift you didn’t know you needed (“Perpetual Motion Machine”), falling in love from a berth on the high seas (“Dear Christine”), and leading a humdrum existence (“A Routine Day”) were brought to life with fanciful, creative arrangements. Working with producer Terry Brown, the band’s George Martin, Klaatu delivered exactly what was called for– an album stocked full of unique treasures that is as enjoyable today as it was 40 years ago.

One of Sir Army Suit’s most engaging slices of songcraft is the cinematic number that opens the album. John’s majestic “A Routine Day,” about a man living possibly the most humdrum existence imaginable, offers up exquisite and complex chord progressions, one of the loveliest, most seductive melodies in Klaatu’s catalog, and a surprising Twilight Zone-esque ending, in which the hapless narrator waits on the pier, as one does, for Charon, the ferryman of Hades.

Then, there are the tremendous songs written by Dee Long, charming, melodic wonders all: the aforementioned “Everybody Took a Holiday” and “Perpetual Motion Machine,” and “Older,” “Mr. Manson,” and “Cherie” (Dee also cowrote the wild sci-fi closer, “Silly Boys,” with John). “Cherie” may well be the loveliest of all of Dee’s creatures on this album:

Of course, a band is more than just one member’s vision; Sir Army Suit wouldn’t be the creative triumph it is without John Woloschuk, Dee Long and Terry Draper working together to fuse their ideas into a successful whole. And, it cannot be said often enough that the trio, working together with Terry Brown, were collectively a tremendous close-knit, creative force.

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Sir Army Suit’s Back Cover

All of this sterling work came wrapped inside Hugh Syme’s beautiful, imaginative cover art that finally provided visual proof that the members of Klaatu had never been Beatles, even if the band members and fellow travelers depicted didn’t come with names attached. That would have to wait until Klaatu’s next album, Endangered Species.

Klaatu produced five albums in their relatively brief lifetime; all of them offer slices of hope and a little courage, but Sir Army Suit is perhaps the most courageous of all.

radio1Alan Haber’s Pure Pop Radio is the premiere website covering the melodic pop scene with in-depth reviews of new and reissued recordings, and a wide variety of features. The 24-hour Pure Pop Radio stream ran from 2013 to August 25, 2018. Welcome to your number one home for coverage of the greatest melodic pop music in the universe from the ’60s to today.

Klaatu’s Sir Army Suit Turns 40: A Pure Pop Radio Celebration

Pure Pop Radio celebrates the 40th anniversary of Klaatu’s Sir Army Suit with a weeklong celebration

alan headshot from schoolBy Alan Haber – Pure Pop Radio

You could pretty much claim that every year–go on, pick one!–was a good year for music, and regardless of your preferred genres, you would be right.

klaatu sir army suit coverWelcome, then, the year 1978, in which a number of influential, or simply beloved, albums were released, from the Who’s Who Are You, Warren Zevon’s Excitable Boy, and the Police’s Outlandos d’Amour to the Talking Heads’ More Songs About Buildings and Food, the Cars’ self-titled debut, and Bruce Springsteen’s Darkness on the Edge of Town. For melodic pop fans, and especially for fans for whom the Beatles are dearest, Klaatu’s diverse, thoroughly enjoyable third album, Sir Army Suit, was also king upon its release in August.

Sir Army Suit, which, on its cover, depicted Klaatu’s mysterious members as they walked with fellow travelers toward an equally mysterious destination, was the band’s third and perhaps best album, and one that came with a specific remit: increase Klaatu’s marketplace footprint with more radio-friendly songs. Different, in other words, from the band’s second album, the orchestrated conceptual collection, Hope (although the beautiful title song would have made a great single).

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(l to r) John Woloschuk, Terry Draper, and Dee Long

Tomorrow, as part of Pure Pop Radio’s very special weeklong celebration of Sir Army Suit on the occasion of the album’s 40th anniversary, I will take an in-depth look at Klaatu’s timeless third release in the latest edition of our popular feature, I Love that Album! On Wednesday, you will hear Klaatu’s John Woloschuk, Dee Long and Terry Draper talk about Sir Army Suit in all-new audio interviews. On Thursday, the trio will talk about three of their favorite Klaatu songs. And on Friday, I will return with my list of Klaatu favorites.

I leave you now with Sir Army Suit’s brilliantly-written and performed opening salvo, “A Routine Day,” John Woloschuk’s story of a man who leads a humdrum life and is rewarded with a visit from none other than the ferryman of Hades. A neighborly tale, in other words.

Join us all this week, won’t you?

radio1Alan Haber’s Pure Pop Radio is the premiere website covering the melodic pop scene with in-depth reviews of new and reissued recordings, and a wide variety of features. The 24-hour Pure Pop Radio stream ran from 2013 to August 25, 2018. Welcome to your number one home for coverage of the greatest melodic pop music in the universe from the ’60s to today.

John Woloschuk and Kenny Herbert In Conversation Interviews Now Available for Listening and Downloading

Pure Pop Radio: In Conversation on PodOMatic!

Last week’s interviews with Klaatu’s John Woloschuk and singer-songwriter Kenny Herbert on Pure Pop Radio: In Conversation are now available for listening and downloading on our PodOmatic podcast page.

kenny herbert 2kenny herbert forever and beyondKenny Herbert, one of our most favorite singer-songwriters, spoke to Alan Haber last Monday night about his phenomenal concept album, Forever and Beyond, a gorgeous, romantic song cycle inspired by Caroline, the love of his life. The Edinburgh, Scotland native talks about Forever and Beyond’s origins, the involvement of Pilot’s David Paton, and offers up a tour of his musical life. You won’t be surprised to find that the Beatles figure rather prominently in his thinking.

john woloschuk with bassKlaatu’s John Woloschuk returned to Pure Pop Radio: In Conversation last Tuesday night to talk about and play some of his favorite pop songs from years gone by. This is a rare chance to hear what one of pop music’s greatest songwriters and performers thinks about such songs as the Hollies’ “Bus Stop,” the Kinks’ “A Well Respected Man,” Donovan’s “Hurdy Gurdy Man,” and a pair of Beatles classics. John played 14 songs in all; you won’t want to miss a revolution of this classic interview.

Spotify playlists are included with each interview, so you can hear the tunes discussed.

Head on over to Pure Pop Radio: In Conversation’s PodOmatic podcast page to listen to and download Alan’s extensive, in-depth interviews with Klaatu’s John Woloschuk and singer-songwriter Kenny Herbert. You’ll love both of them.

Pure Pop Radio: In Conversation, the premiere melodic pop interview program hosted by Alan Haber, airs Tuesday nights at 8 pm ET. Archived, podcast versions of interviews are posted on the In Conversation PodOmatic podcast page; click here to listen to other shows previously broadcast on Pure Pop Radio.

alan-mic-zeeAlan Haber’s Pure Pop Radio is the original 24-hour Internet radio station playing the greatest melodic pop music from the ’60s to today. From the Beatles to the Monkees, the Posies, McPherson Grant, the Connection and the New Trocaderos, we play the hits and a whole lot more. Tune in by clicking on one of the listen links below.

Listen to Pure Pop Radio on the go using your Android and iOS devices! Download Our Mobile App.

Click on the image to listen to Alan Haber's Pure Pop Radio through players like iTunes

Click on the image to listen to Alan Haber’s Pure Pop Radio through players like iTunes

Big Week Ahead for Pure Pop Radio’s Specialty Shows

alan-mic-zPure Pop Radio’s got you covered this week; our specialty shows are sizzling with melodic pop power! What’s in store? We’ve got two major Pure Pop Radio: In Conversation shows, a classic spin of treasured vinyl on Brian Bringelson’s Needle Meets Vinyl, and a hot-button edition of the Beatles roundtable, Things We Said Today.

kenny herbert forever and beyondkenny herbert 2Tonight at 8 pm ET on Pure Pop Radio: In Conversation, Scottish popster Kenny Herbert stops by to talk about his phenomenal concept album, Forever and Beyond, a gorgeous, romantic song cycle inspired by Caroline, the love of Kenny’s life. The 14 songs on offer, encompassing 1950s, 1930s and modern melodic pop vibes, are tremendously affecting, beautifully drawn snapshots of a happy existence.

The Edinburgh, Scotland native talks to Alan Haber about Forever and Beyond’s origins, the involvement of Pilot’s David Paton, and offers up a tour of his musical life. You won’t be surprised to find that the Beatles figure rather prominently in his thinking. Tune in at 8 p ET tonight, and prepare to be charmed.

john woloschuk with bassTomorrow night at 8 pm ET, round two of this week’s Pure Pop Radio: In Conversation twofer rolls out with a return appearance by Klaatu’s John Woloschuk, who sits behind the Pure Pop Radio microphones to talk about and play some of his favorite pop songs from years gone by. This is a rare chance to hear what one of pop music’s greatest songwriters and performers thinks about such songs as the Hollies’ “Bus Stop,” the Kinks’ “A Well Respected Man,” Donovan’s “Hurdy Gurdy Man,” and a pair of Beatles classics. John spins 14 songs in all; you won’t want to miss a revolution!

Pure Pop Radio: In Conversation, the premiere melodic pop interview program hosted by Alan Haber, airs Tuesday nights at 8 pm ET. Archived, podcast versions of interviews are posted on the In Conversation PodOmatic podcast page; click here to listen to shows previously broadcast on Pure Pop Radio.

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needle meets vinyl

brian bringelson

Brian Bringelson mans the turntables on this week’s classic edition of Needle Meets Vinyl, during which all of the music is played from 12-inch slabs of wax. You’ll hear sumptuous musical specimens from Harry Nilsson, Ricky Nelson, Lindsey Buckingham, Joan Baez, the Beach Boys and, of course, the Beatles. This is a Christmas show, recorded last December; we think it’s a perfect aural antidote to the increasingly warm temperatures we’ve been enduring rather gamely these past few weeks! Tune in this Wednesday night at 8 pm ET and dig the sounds.

Needle Meets Vinyl is the weekly show during which all songs are played from vinyl records. The music spans the decades during which popular music has flourished. Curated and presented by Brian Bringelson, a member of the band Anchor and Bear and a solo artist under the name Paul Starling, the show airs every Wednesday night at 8 pm ET.

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the-beatles-things-we-said-todayWrapping up this week’s run of Pure Pop Radio specialty shows, our panel of Beatles experts–Ken Michaels, Steve Marinucci, Al Sussman and Allan Kozinn–juggles a trio of timely topics on an all-new Things We Said Today this Thursday night at 8 pm ET. The learned quartet discusses the interplay of influences between the Beatles, the Beach Boys and Bob Dylan; the in-depth discussion, available online, about all things Fab with author Mark Lewisohn and TV personality and talk show host Conan O’Brien; and Philip Norman’s book Paul McCartney: The Life. The book is viewed by Ken and his cohorts as a mixed bag as far as quality is concerned; this is sure to be a controversial program.

Things We Said Today is the weekly survey of all things Beatles that’s hosted by a quartet of Beatles experts–today’s Fab Four, if you will. Ken Michaels, host of Every Little Thing, is joined by Beatlefan Executive Editor Al Sussman, Steve Marinucci (Beatles Examiner), and Allan Kozinn, longtime music critic. Things We Said Today airs every Thursday night at 8 pm ET on Pure Pop Radio.

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Set your alarm clocks and digital date books for 8 pm ET tonight through Thursday so you don’t miss a moment of this week’s spate of specialty programming. Pure Pop Radio has your evenings covered!

alan-mic-zeeAlan Haber’s Pure Pop Radio is the original 24-hour Internet radio station playing the greatest melodic pop music from the ’60s to today. From the Beatles to the Monkees, the Posies, McPherson Grant, the Connection and the New Trocaderos, we play the hits and a whole lot more. Tune in by clicking on one of the listen links below.

Listen to Pure Pop Radio on the go using your Android and iOS devices! Download Our Mobile App.

Click on the image to listen to Alan Haber's Pure Pop Radio through players like iTunes

Click on the image to listen to Alan Haber’s Pure Pop Radio through players like iTunes

John Woloschuk and Maxi Dunn Interviews Now Posted to Pure Pop Radio: In Conversation’s PodOmatic Podcast Page

maxi dunn operation bubblejohn woloschuk with bassAlan Haber’s in-depth interviews with Klaatu’s John Woloschuk and Liverpool-based singer/songwriter Maxi Dunn are now available for downloading and listening on Pure Pop Radio: In Conversation’s PodOmatic podcast page.

John Woloschuk wrote many classic and creative songs that Klaatu brought to three-dimensional life on their five studio albums. During this special program, John spoke in-depth to Alan Haber about songwriting in general and about four of his most treasured creations, in particular: “Sub-Rosa Subway,” “A Routine Day,” “All Good Things,” and “Hope.” Along the way, John offered tremendous insight into his creative process. Klaatu fans and fans of melodic pop music will delight in this one-of-a-kind chance to hear from one of the great writers and performers of melodic pop music.

During a most charming interview, Maxi Dunn talked to Alan about her forthcoming album’s title song, “Operation Bubble.” The happy, poppy music is matched against some more serious lyrics for a wonderful listening experience. Maxi also spoke about her delightful duet with Vegas With Randolph, “A Lesser Fool,” which was included on the group’s 2011 album, Above the Blue. Maxi spoke about how she came to record this classic track. Additionally, you’ll hear about the first songs Maxi wrote!

Listen to Alan Haber’s Pure Pop Radio, 24 hours a day: http://www.streamlicensing.com/directory/index.cgi?sid=1771&start=1&g=&e=0&s=pure%20pop

purepoplogoPure Pop Radio: In Conversation, the premiere melodic pop interview program hosted by Alan Haber, airs Tuesday nights at 7 pm ET (4 pm PT) and repeats on Sunday afternoons at 5 pm ET (2 pm PT). Archived, podcast versions of interviews are posted on the In Conversation PodOmatic podcast page; click here to listen to more than 60 shows previously broadcast on Pure Pop Radio.

Listen to Pure Pop Radio on the go using your Android or iOS devices! Download Our Mobile App.

Click on the image to listen to Alan Haber's Pure Pop Radio through players like iTunes

Click on the image to listen to Alan Haber’s Pure Pop Radio through players like iTunes

Klaatu’s John Woloschuk Guests Tonight on Pure Pop Radio: In Conversation

john woloschuk with bassKlaatu’s John Woloschuk talks to Alan Haber on tonight’s exclusive, all-new edition of Pure Pop Radio: In Conversation. Make a note: This very special program airs tonight, Wednesday, November 18 at a very special time: 9 pm ET (6 pm PT), after Brian Bringelson’s Needle Meets Vinyl, which will also air at a special time: 7:30 pm ET (4:30 pm PT).

John Woloschuk, one of the great writers and performers of melodic pop music, is making the first of what we hope will be many appearances on the showklaatu klaatuJohn wrote many classic and creative songs that Klaatu brought to three-dimensional life on their five studio albums. During this special program, he will go in-depth about songwriting in general and about four of his most treasured creations, in particular: “Sub-Rosa Subway,” “A Routine Day,” “All Good Things,” and “Hope.”Along the way, John will offer tremendous insight. Klaatu fans and fans of melodic pop music will delight in this one-of-a-kind chance to hear from one of the great writers and performers of melodic pop music.

Don’t miss John Woloschuk’s in-depth talk with Alan Haber tonight at 9 pm ET (6 pm PT) on Pure Pop Radio: In Conversation. The show will repeat this Saturday, November 21 at noon ET (9 am PT); and Sunday, November 22 at 5 pm ET (2 pm PT).

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Pure Pop Radio: In Conversation, the premiere melodic pop interview program hosted by Alan Haber, airs Tuesday nights at 7 pm ET (4 pm PT) and repeats on Sunday afternoons at 5 pm ET (2 pm PT). Archived, podcast versions of interviews are posted on the In Conversation PodOmatic podcast page; click here to listen to more than 60 shows previously broadcast on Pure Pop Radio.

Listen to Pure Pop Radio on the go using your Android or iOS devices! Download Our Mobile App.

Click on the image to listen to Alan Haber's Pure Pop Radio through players like iTunes

Click on the image to listen to Alan Haber’s Pure Pop Radio through players like iTunes