Chicago, “Together Again” from Chicago X (1976): Saturdays in the Park

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“Together Again” is one of the better songs on 1976’s sometimes-wretched Chicago X. It has a very nice horn arrangement and melody, accompanied by some pleasant flute fills served up by reedman Walt Parazaider. Robert Lamm’s synth work in support of him is interesting, too. The percussion work contributed by drummer Danny Seraphine and conga player Laudir DeOliveira are rock solid. It’s a great start to this Lee Loughnane composition.

However, as most of the trumpeter’s songs prove, Loughnane is not a lyricist. His words aren’t terrible, but they are nothing more than ordinary. They would make “Together Again” filler on many better albums. On this mess with the chocolate bar cover, it’s almost a gem.

The other problem, which my friends contributing to this series have written about in the past, is that Lee Loughnane simply can not sing. I wish he wouldn’t have let his ego get in the way and instead given the vocal to Lamm, who has a bit of lounge singer in him. He would have been perfect on “Together Again.”

The music on this song rates a seven, the lyrics earned a four, and the vocals are no better than a three: overall rating is 4.666.

This is the worst album of the Terry Kath-James William Guercio years, but Chicago X was inexplicably nominated for a Grammy for album of the year, proving the Grammys have no credibility and is the worst of the awards shows. However, maybe we should hold back the criticism for now, because it’s going to get a lot worse in a few years. You’ve been warned.

‘Saturdays in the Park’ is a multi-writer, song-by-song examination of the music of Chicago. Find it here at Something Else! each weekend.

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