In the summer of 1978, I was finishing my first year as a working man, plugging away as a stock clerk and cashier at Walgreen's and getting ready for my senior year of high school. I was also getting way in to music.
It was a great time to be getting into music. Punk and New Wave were actually finally getting some airplay, or at least were available in record stores.
I'd missed the first wave of punk. The early Ramones, Dickies, Dictators-- and New York Dolls-- had gotten little attention and airplay in Chicago. One little ray of post-punk shineshine managed to make it through the corporate dreck in 1978, right before radio stations finally relented and played some Talking Heads, Clash and Elvis Costello: David Johansen's self-titled first solo album.
Johansen had walked away from the glam-punk wreckage of the New York Dolls a couple of years before. He had continued to work with Dolls guitarist Sly Sylvain on and off, and co-wrote most of the songs on "David Johansen."
The album, in retrospect, stands more as an out and out rock album, almost a garage rock album, than a punk or new wave album. It's opening track, "Funky, But Chic" has become a classic. The closing track, "Frenchette" has as well.
"I get all the love I need in a luncheonette/I've been to France/So let's just dance."
There's not a dog track on this record. "Cool Metro,"' which is, as far as I can tell, about the Tokyo subway, "Girls" ("I like 'em hangin' around..."), "Donna," "Not That Much"-- the album begs to be played beginning to end.
Johansen has put out a couple more decent solo albums, and had some fun stuff as "Buster Poindexter" ("Hot, Hot, Hot"), but this album stands out by far as his best work since New York Dolls.
As your attorney, I advise you to get ahold of this record.