Monday, April 29, 2013


The Replacements expanded on their sloppy punk hardcore with this jokey hodgepodge of corny country, artsy angst rock, ski ska, and bluesy balderdash.  The group had created a buzz with their irreverent albums and loud, drunken live shows.  Tommy Stinson remembers:    “A lot of people came out of curiosity and responded to what they’d heard. There definitely was a certain element of curiosity in watching four guys making fools of themselves!”

The sessions for 'Hootenanny' took place at Blackberry Way Studios, and at Stark/Mudge Mobile Unit warehouse in Roseville, Minnesota; which the liner notes describe as "a warehouse in some godawful suburb north of Mpls."  The band played practical jokes on engineer and Twin/Tone owner Paul Stark, switching instruments, improvising songs, and goofing around with Beatles tunes.  Bob Stinson played lead guitar (and bass on "Hootenanny"); Tommy Stinson played bass guitar (and second guitar on "Hootenanny"); Paul Westerberg handled vocals and guitar (and drums on "Hootenanny" and all instruments on "Within Your Reach"); and Chris Mars beat the drums (plus lead guitar on "Hootenanny").  When they were ready to get serious, they were told the album was done.  

Bob Stinson considered the title track “just a raucous mess.  It sounds more like Paul just went in the bathroom came up with some chords and came out, and we played em’.”  Producer Peter Jesperson remembers:  “We’re just kidding, and he [Stark] ended up thinking that was a real track, and so then Westerberg just went, ‘First song, side one.  We just left it on and it was really not even supposed to be a thing at that time.” 

'Hootenanny' never charted but went on to sell almost seventy thousand copies.   Westerberg considers:   "It's the first record that really defines our-- everybody stands up, we're going to sit down. Everybody goes left, we're going to go right. There's an obstinacy to us. But also it was back to the influences that were more than just straight punk rock. Punk rock was the key that opened the door, but we played our little white blues and stuff. We liked all kinds of stuff... 'Hootenanny' was very hurry up and get it done ...  The bands who played punk rock didn’t see us as a punk band, but we embodied punk more than they did. Lenny Kaye’s Nuggets helped us to understand punk. When people started to realize that the Rolling Stones were a punk band, they started to see us as a punk band.”


full album:

All tracks written by Paul Westerberg, except where noted.

Side one
1. "Hootenanny" B. Stinson, C. Mars, P. Westerberg, T. Stinson 1:52
2. "Run It" C. Mars, P. Westerberg 1:11
3. "Color Me Impressed" 2:25
4. "Willpower" 4:22
5. "Take Me Down to the Hospital" 3:47
6. "Mr. Whirly" "mostly stolen" 1:53
Side two
1. "Within Your Reach" 4:24
2. "Buck Hill" C. Mars, P. Westerberg, T. Stinson 2:09
3. "Lovelines" B. Stinson, C. Mars, P. Westerberg, T. Stinson, "C.P. Readers" 2:01
4. "You Lose" B. Stinson, C. Mars, P. Westerberg, T. Stinson 1:41
5. "Hayday" 2:06
6. "Treatment Bound" 3:16

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