Tidal Catalog #14: Rick James

Introduction: For those of you that have stumbled across this website and are interested in reading about my trek through the universe of the Tidal streaming service, let me tell you a bit about what I did. Back in 2016 I thought it would be kind of cool to listen to artist’s catalog from start to finish and rank them from best to worst. After all, who doesn’t like a good list? I thought I might do a few of them and see what happened, hoping it would introduce me to records that were foreign to me in the arsenal of an artist I was familiar with. I also though that it would be pretty cool to get out of the “one off” mode of listening to a new record, years after the previous one, in order to get a true sense of how the artist matured over time. Flash forward to June of 2019 and 250 catalogs later, I have ended the trek. I posted these all on Facebook over the years as they were completed but I’m going to move them all over here, starting with #1, in order to expand them out a bit more.

As with all my catalogs, to be considered in the ranking, an album has to meet certain criteria:

  • The artist must actually perform on 80% of the tracks (soundtrack and rap provision)
  • No compilations of previous released material will be included.
  • The album must have been released officially and within the realm of the label that the artist would have been on at the time or official releases posthumously (normally applies to a slew of live records)
  • Any EPs must contain new new music and be relevant to the catalog, not be more like a single with a b-side or two.
  • Compilations of previously recorded material will be included if they are remixes, bonus tracks, outtakes… mostly music that hasn’t been part of a main release before)

Entrance Point: I had heard all of Rick’s 80s records and a few tracks from the 70s albums and I definitely was a fan.

Editor’s Note: Part of my trek through the catalogs was for my own enjoyment of listening to an artist that I wanted to get to know better. Rick James was one of them. But as I quickly found out that sometimes I just don’t want to write about those artists. If I was doing this professionally and getting paid, I would scrape together words for this one (or I would have never posted it to begin with) but Rick James was one of those catalogs that the words aren’t coming together for. Since this is all in silly fun, I’m at least posting the ranking just to have the complete set archived.

All albums ranked on a 10 star scale.

  • Street Songs (9.5)
  • Bustin’ Out of L Seven (9)
  • Throwing Down (8.5)
  • Cold Blooded (8.5)
  • Wonderful (7.5)
  • Come Get It (7)
  • Fire It Up (7)
  • Garden of Love (6.5)
  • Deeper Still (6)
  • Kickin’ (4)
  • The Flag (3)
  • Urban Rapsody (3)
  • Glow (2)

Summary: 13 albums. Average 6.1

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