1976, Music

Night Moves (1976) by Bob Seger and the Silver Bullet Band

For much of my life I have had a hatred for “boomer nostalgia” – movies and music that lionize growing up in the ’50s and ’60s as if it was just the bees knees. I am getting to an age where I am finally able to better understand the appeal of such nostalgia – I’m likely a sucker for some nostalgia for growing up in the ’80s and the ’90s – but I still think that art that relies on a such a strong emotional pull to a particular generation probably can never be truly great art. Truly great art transcends time and place, and art that is purposively nostalgic above all else can never transcend (unless it connects to a universal nostalgic experience contained in childhood or adolescence).

Seger strikes me as a nostalgic songwriter, at least on this record. And the tug of these songs (even the cover!) is felt by those who lived through the era Seger is nostalgic for and not so much by someone like me who didn’t live through it.

Add to it that I don’t like Heartland Rock, and I’m destined to dislike this.
But Seger is an energetic and passionate performer. This music is not over-produced like so much of The Boss’s music, and Seger is a good nostalgist, even if he’s still a nostalgist.

So I don’t hate it. But I’ll never listen to it again. Wrong generation.


PS This is somehow Seger’s 9th record. That blows my mind.

PPS Note that this is hardly all performed by the Silver Bullet Band. Ah well.

All tracks written by Bob Seger, except where noted.

  1. “Rock and Roll Never Forgets” 3:52
  2. “Night Moves” 5:25
  3. “The Fire Down Below” 4:28
  4. “Sunburst” 5:13
  5. “Sunspot Baby” 4:38
  6. “Mainstreet” 3:43
  7. “Come to Poppa” (Earl Randle, Willie Mitchell) 3:11
  8. “Ship of Fools” 3:24
  9. “Mary Lou” (Young Jessie, Sam Ling) 2:56
  • Bob Seger – vocals, guitar
  • The Silver Bullet Band:
    • Drew Abbott – guitar (tracks 1, 2, 3, 4, 8, 9); background vocals on “Mary Lou” (track 9)
    • Robyn Robbins – piano, organ (tracks 1, 3, 4, 9)
    • Alto Reed – tenor saxophone, alto saxophone, baritone saxophone, flute (tracks 1, 2, 3, 4, 9)
    • Chris Campbell – bass (tracks 1, 2, 3, 4, 9); background vocals on “Mary Lou” (track 9)
    • Charlie Allen Martin – drums, tambourine, maracas (tracks 1, 2, 3, 4, 9); background vocals on “Mary Lou” (track 9)
  • Muscle Shoals Rhythm Section:
    • Pete Carr – lead guitar, rhythm guitar, acoustic guitar (tracks 5, 6, 7, 8)
    • Jimmy Johnson – rhythm guitar (tracks 5, 6, 7, 8)
      Barry Beckett – piano, organ, ARP synthesizer, clavinet, melodica (tracks 5, 6, 7, 8)
      David Hood – bass (tracks 5, 6, 7, 8)
      Roger Hawkins – drums, tambourine, maracas, congas, tympani drums (tracks 5, 6, 7, 8)
  • Additional Musicians:
    • Jerry Luck – accordion on “Ship of Fools” (track 8)
    • Joe Miquelon – guitar on “Night Moves” (track 2)
    • Doug Riley – piano, organ on “Night Moves” (track 2)
    • Sharon Lee Williams – backing vocals on “Night Moves” (track 2)
    • Rhonda Silver – backing vocals on “Night Moves” (track 2)
    • Laurel Ward – backing vocals on “Night Moves” (track 2)

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