Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
Que Sera Sera
Genres: Alternative Rock, Pop, Rock, Metal
UK edition of the late punk legend's 1985 studio album, pressed onto an enhanced CD with the CD-ROM video for 'Little Bit Of Whore' (live at the Marquee 1984), 'Sad Vacation' and 'Pipeline'. Standard jewel case. 2001 r... more »
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UK edition of the late punk legend's 1985 studio album, pressed onto an enhanced CD with the CD-ROM video for 'Little Bit Of Whore' (live at the Marquee 1984), 'Sad Vacation' and 'Pipeline'. Standard jewel case. 2001 release.
Studio Recordings, Original Material...Plus Live Video
efa | Chicago, IL | 04/19/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Who else but Johnny Thunders would cover Doris Day's signature tune, "Que Sera Sera," changing the lyrics to:When I was just a little brat,
I asked my teacher what will I be?
Will I be a mess?
Will I have success?
Here's what she said to me!In the entire catalog of Johnny Thunders material, there are few studio albums of mostly original material. "Que Sera Sera," is one of them; the music alone warrants four stars. The studio versions of songs frequently heard on Johnny's live releases are here ("M.I.A.," "Little Bit of Whore," "Blame It On Mom," "Alone in a Crowd"). "I Only Wrote This Song for You" remains one of Johnny's most vulnerable moments. It's probably not the place to start your Thunders collection, but if you already have a taste for Johnny, you will want this. Another couple of reasons to acquire this CD, and why it gets the extra star: It contains video from a 1984 performance at London's legendary Marquee featuring Johnny, fellow New York Doll/Heartbreaker Jerry Nolan on drums, and Heartbreaker Billy Rath on bass. Seeing Johnny perform "Sad Vacation" (his ode to Sid Vicious) and "Pipeline" are worth the price of a CD. Plus, liner notes are by Nina Antonia, Johnny's offical biographer."
A Suprisingly Cohesive Effort From Thunders
Daniel Ahern | Berkeley Heights, New Jersey USA | 01/06/2001
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Que Sera Sera, along with L.A.M.F. and So Alone, ranks among Johnny Thunders' most cohesive efforts. He sounds "with it" throughout, and actually manages some strong contributions. The acoustic, "I Only Worte This Song For You," and the rocking "A Little Bit Of Whore," rank as true Thunders classics. A comeback album of sorts, Que Sera Sera could have marked the beginning of mainstream acceptance, but then that just wouldn't really be Johnny now...would it?"
I'm Sorry, I'm Sorry....
J P Ryan | Waltham, Massachusetts United States | 01/21/2008
(3 out of 5 stars)
"I loved Johnny Thunders, from the first time I ever heard the news about the New York Dolls, which happened to be in "Creem" Magazine, 1973, shortly before their debut album "The New York Dolls" was released by the Mercury label. The Dolls were smart, smarter than the radio programmers and hard rock fans who dismissed them, not to mention arty, bursting with life, soul and talent. They had a lot in common with the young Stones (a lot more than, say, Aerosmith, who also debuted that year) but a decade later, and from Manhattan rather than London. Like the Stones their passion was tempered with irony, and the Dolls offered a vision smeared by the glitz and grime of NYC and pop culture from The Shangra-La's to Dianna Barrymore. Johnny Thunders was the Subway Train screeching to a halt at the end of 'Jet Boy'. After the equally classic followup, 1974's "In Too Much Too Soon" the Dolls were gone - Thunders and drummer Jerry Nolan, dope sick in Florida, split, forming the Heartbreakers in 1975 (with Richard Hell). "L.A.M.F." (1977) doesn't capture the group's enormous potential, famously sabotaged as it was by months of inept remixing prior to its release. Thunders mixed it in '84, but it didn't help much, and more recently a definitive edition has been released with 'lost mixes', outtakes and alternates spread across two CDs, and that's the one to get. Still, the album's undeniable power can't disguise the fact that two or three of its songs are filler, albeit filler with attitude. "D.T.K.", "Live At Max's", and the underrated "Live at the Lyceum" (the last a reunion effort from 1984) are all worth hearing, and the Lyceum set has the definitive version of 'So Alone'. "L.A.M.F" didn't prepare me for the subversive classicism of Thuders' essential solo debut, "So Alone" (1978), deceptively slight on first impression - 10 songs in 30 minutes, including two Dolls remakes, several covers, and lots of guitar help - but with expectations out of the way, and hearing it now, it's both Thunders' masterpiece and a tour-de-force, effortlessly adapting his roots - i.e. the Shangra Las, surf music, '50s r & b, and more - into his own original sensibility. The originals are uncompromising "punk" and deeply rooted in rock 'n' roll's glorious past, from the snarling urban blues 'Downtown' to the vulnerability and feline delicacy of 'You Can't Put Your Arms Round A Memory' and 'Untouchable'.
Johnny never really followed it up, though he lived another 13 years. During 1983-84 he issued a series of eps and cassettes, including material produced by Stones' producer Jimmy Miller, that all have terrific moments. Thunders' addictions, lack of discipline, poverty, and so forth meant patching together four or five new songs with some uneven live tracks on "Junkie Business", re-recording some of those same songs, with a new one, for "In Cold Blood" - half five-song ep, the second disc the sort of live set that led me to stop seeing him whenever he played Boston around 1985. These were followed by "Diary Of A Lover", another ep, featuring the very same recrdings used for "In Cold Blood" in different mixes, and with one (!) new song as bait. Yet he did come back with another gem, 1984's solo acoustic "Hurt Me", an album for late nights and loners, Johnny's songs and singing more androgynous, haunting, emotionally raw, and revealing than ever - Thunders' "Plastic Ono Band", or "Big Star Third".
Nina Antonia describes the making of 1985's "Que Sera, Sera" as a series of false starts, the artist alternating enthusiasm with distraction and seeming indifference. (This edition is the same as the Japanes one, which has the original album art replicated in miniature cardboard, but not the visual material). As his first full length 'electric' album of new material (well, mostly) in seven years, it was and remains uneven, another missed opportunity. Thunders' guitar playing lacks the authority of his Dolls' classics, and is frequently part of a murky mix that's cluttered with several other guitarists, backing vocals, and saxophnes. The lethargic quality of the performances sometimes pervades the material: really, would you give 'Little Bit Of Whore' a glance if it appeared on an AC/DC or Guns 'n' Roses record? 'Endless Party' is a great song, but this cluttered take is inferior to the Miller produced version that closed "Diary Of A Lover". 'M.I.A." was another remake, and 'I Only Wrote This Song For You' is honest and affecting, but lyrically slight, and can't touch 'Diary Of A Lover' or 'Can't Put Your Arms Round A Memory'. That leaves the good stuff: 'Short Lives' (with Patti Palladin's co-lead) is a more laconic 'Sad Vacation', and a fine opener. (The CD includes an alternate mix as a bonus cut). 'Cool Operator,' six minutes of dub-drenched reggae by Johnny and his rhythm section, its groove deep and funky and featuring Johnny's hilarious lyrics. 'Billy Boy' is a irresistable, rocking little instrumental, with Thunders' guitar up front and center, and 'Tie Me Up' (not the Stones song from "Undercover"), another duet with Palladin, is warm and playful - Johnny sounds like he's having a good time. As for the remaining bonus cuts, the title cut was not actually included on the original album, but recorded and released a year later. It's Johnny all the way, just as another sad casualty, Sly Stone, made the song HIS own on "Fresh", a few years before Sly evidently lost the war with his own demons, and disappeared from the public gaze.
Perhaps we need "Que Sera Sera" to be a good album, Johnny left so few finished studio records that are worthy of his utterly undomesticated genius. And after an album of covers, "Copy Cats" (1987) on which he plays no guitar, Thunders, who could never really escape the chaos, wrote a handful of remarkable new songs - scattered like scraps of paper, on a series of live albums issued before (and after) his death. "Society Makes Me Sad" is one, and thinking of the trajectory of Johnny's life and career makes me sad."