Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Tom Caufield Long Distance Calling 1987

Tom Caufield's debut is one of those perfect records. To me. You might like it, too. You'll have to shop used, but it is available.

The record opens with Recovery Room, all spit and pop. "Get me out of the recovery room, 'cause other girls are looking good again". All this to a Tom Petty-like hook-filled chorus. My Discovery is a jangle-pop gem, and again the great chorus. Long Distance Calling is a classic rocker, and Caufield's lyrics are perfect pop, full of teen angst and metaphor.

After the three song opening barrage, Long After Summer sounds just like the summer memories it should. Precious Town rocks fast and furious, with a horn section adding to the mostly guitar, bass, drums, and keys of the rest of the record. We See As One and Another Time, Another Place keep the quality of the rockers high, while I should Work For This and For Her Intimate Self are particularly fine ballads.

The consistency of songwriting, the frequency and quality of the memorable choruses and catchy hooks, the lyrical turns of phrase, and Caufield's above average voice. It's killer stuff.

What sounds like it? Nothing really, but Del Amitri, Tom Petty (early), Bill Lloyd, and the Hang-Ups come close. This is a rock and roll record that could have, and should have, had at least four hit singles, and there's nothing wrong with listening to the whole thing. Great for a road trip, too.


  1. I produced that record - was my 3rd production - i was very lucky to have worked with Tom - he was a pure songwriter/singer and to me all the songs were hits! The record was released on Paradox/Polygram v(run by ex-Camp Paradox camper and GEM records president Marty Scott). Marty gave me a shot, Tom gave me a great record of songs, and my career took off from there. I wish the album had done better but thats the record business! Howard Benson

  2. Thanks for finding my blog, and taking time to comment. You did a fine job with that record- it should have been a huge hit.

  3. Polygram really dropped the ball on this one! One wonders if any effort was put into promoting this brilliant album, because these songs sell themselves. Is polygram even in business anymore? Thank you Clevelend Jeff, for bringing attention to this important album, that could have been huge if it had been competently promoted.

  4. Still one of my favorite albums. I have a tape recorded off the radio (WRAS-FM Atlanta) from 1987.