I’m No Bigot

I can’t think of too many albums that I’ve paid for more than once. Pet Sounds is one. I suppose some Beatles albums qualify, but only because Capitol is a butcher. Extreme III is another, though I haven’t listened to the CD I bought to replace the cassette.

Now add to this short list George Michael’s Listen Without Prejudice (Vol. 1). It’s the one with “Freedom 90.” The one with the black and white pic of the crowd on the cover. The one that is so not George Michael before or since. He refused to be in his own videos (remember “Freedom 90″ featured only supermodels–some statement indeed). It was after the cross earring but before the glory hole scandal.

I listen to this album with a bit of cynicism now, if not prejudice. Bits are cheesy (I can do without “Mother’s Pride”, even without the Gulf War connections), but his voice is undeniably magnificent. The songs are sparsely produced pop or folky numbers punctuated by the voice of Wham!  I love it.

Be sure to check out “Waiting for that Day”, “Cowboys & Angels”, & “Soul Free” (which is Justin Timberlake while he was still doing the Mickey Mouse club).

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