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Starsky & Hutch Soundtrack
Label: TVT

Review By: samdamonkey
1. Old Days - Chicago
2. Dazz – Brick
3. Folsom Prison Blues – Johnny Cash
4. Right Back Where We Started From – Maxine
5. Use Me – Bill Withers
6. Feel Like Makin’ Love – Dan Finnerty
7. Dancing Machine – Jackson 5
8. The Weight – The Band
9. That’s The Way I Like It – KC & The Sunshine Band
10. Don’t Give Up On Us – Owen Wilson
11. I Want’s Do Something Freaky To You – Leon Haywood
12. Love Will Keep Us Together – Brigette Romanek
13. I’m A Ramblin’ Man – Waylon Jennings
14. Afternoon Delight – Starland Vocal Band
15. Two Dragons – Theodore Shapiro

Unlike the played out buddy flick formula that it supports, the Starsky & Hutch soundtrack recalls the days when corporate radio didn’t ruled the airwaves. The mellow vibe of AM gold didn’t label, slot and sort artists accordingly and the two words “crossover hit” hadn’t been mentioned in the same sentence. Chicago could easily exist on the same dial as a Jackson 5 twin-spin.

The collection of songs heard here do sample some of the best of the hazy 70s different genres from disco to pop, from country to funk. In fact, the only thing this CD doesn’t come with is feathered hair and a butterfly collar.

Starsky & Hutch, the movie, is a light-hearted and light-headed comedy and the Ben Stiller/Owen Wilson comedic chemistry does hold-up. But the overall look of the flick recalls a slick, Hollywood version of the Beastie Boys “Sabotage” video. 

However you feel about the movie, the soundtrack does not disappoint and with a different cover, could be sold as a Time/Life collection of sounds sandwiched between the late 60s flower power pacifist ponderings and early-80s pop and new wave.

Sounding as strong as ever is Maxine Nightingale’s “Right Back Where We Started From.” A sugary pop classic every bit as delicious as cotton candy. A true blast from the past is the “nooner quickie” anthem, “Afternoon Delight” by the Starland Vocal Band. This song and sound defies a label and that’s what makes it so great...Clear Channel wouldn’t have a clue what to do with this song in today’s cookie-cutter world.

Funking it up are the “Gin and Juice” inflected “I Want’a Do Something Freaky To You” which would sound perfect whether you’re rollin’ in your Gran Torino or a ‘76 lime-green Lincoln. The Jackson 5’s mature R&B  of “Dancing Machine” bears special mention as that song usually gets lost in the sea of “A,B,C’s & 1,2,3’s.”

Owen Wilson, the film’s Hutch, weighs in with a dead-on version of the David Soul (TV’s Hutch) hit, “Don’t Give Up On Us.” While the song hasn’t weathered well and comes of sounding a bit like a “Lion King” throwaway, Wilson plays it true and doesn’t camp it up.

One disappointment is that the producers didn’t use the Captain and Tennille version of “Love Will Keep Us Together.” Brigette Romanek does an admirable job covering it, but with all this authenticity in one setting...why not the original?

For the obligatory biker bar scene, there is the dark “Folsom Prison Blues.” Full of an understated angst and self-loathing belied by that 50’s clean guitar country twang, this is a Cash anthem that fully overshadows fellow Highwayman, Waylon Jenning’s, “I’m 
A Ramblin’ Man.” 

Starsky & Hutch has a fantastic grouping of artists that shared positions on the same 70’s radio playlist, but little else. As varied and eclectic as a soundtrack could be, it harkens back to a time when halter tops and bell bottoms were a staple for every wardrobe.

Hey, wait minute?

More on the Soundtrack

Listen to samples and Purchase this CD online

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