Classic Vinyl: Moxy – Debut Album
Moxy, also informally known as The Black Album or Moxy I, is the self titled debut album by the Canadian hard rock and heavy metal band Moxy. Their independently produced album was originally released in 1975 by Polydor Records in Canada, then under Mercury Records label was reissued in 1976 for worldwide distribution, both labels were owned by PolyGram at the time (they are now owned by Universal Music Group).
Tommy Bolin was a guest musician on the album, who had previously been the lead guitarist for the James Gang and would go on to replace Ritchie Blackmore in Deep Purple. Tommy Bolin does all but two guitar solos, all rhythm guitar and the solos on “Sail On Sail Away”, “Can’t You See I’m A Star” and the ending of “Train” were performed by Earl Johnson.Earl was actually supposed to have done all the guitar parts, but got into a disagreement with the producer and was consequently tossed out of the studio. Tommy Bolin, being nearby, was asked by Moxy’s manager Roland Paquin to fill in for Earl Johnson. Roland Paquin knew Bolin from when he was road manager for the James Gang. The debut album originally released in 1975 by Polydor for distributing in Canada was picked up by many radio stations in the USA and was one of the most requested albums in Texas and as consequence Moxy was picked-up by the larger Mercury Records label in the US and a national distribution deal was made and the album was reissued in 1976. Bolin was only in the studio for this album, contrary to popular belief that he appears on Moxy II. Though Tommy’s time with Moxy was short, the album is tremendously popular with Tommy’s fans. Tommy’s tone and phrasing were very similar to his classic James Gang sound. The album produced the hit songs “Can’t You See I’m a Star”, “Train”, “Out of the Darkness” and with “Sail On Sail Away” and “Moon Rider” that are still in the 2000′s (decade) on the regular rotation on several Rock radio stations in Texas. The album sold well because of heavy promotion by the label who released the album on 8 Track in large numbers. Buddy Caine, who is listed on the album cover, did not join the band until after the album was finished. Buddy was initially brought on board by the band as a rhythm guitarist to free up Earl Johnson so he could play the solos on stage that Tommy Bolin had played in the studio.
Sam Talkington talks Moxy:
Moxy: Sail on. Sail Away