2007   NOVEMBER 18   #322

Various Artists - Make It In Rockford

01 Say Hello To Rockford (1:24)
02 Rockford On My Mind (2:41)
03 Making It In Rockford (1:43)
04 Team Up With Rockford (1:41)
05 Make It In Rockford... Weigh The Difference (2:19)
06 Weve Got It All In Rockford (2:19)
07 Its All In Rockford (4:16)
08 Look Into Rockford (2:30)
09 Rollin Home To Rockford (3:22)
10 Make It In Rockford (3:31)

In the late 70s (or early 80s?), the Rockford, Illinois Area Chamber of Commerce sponsored a songwriting contest for the locals. An LP was produced, funded by Pepsi. One of the judges of the contest was Rick Nielsen (spelled "Neilson" on the back) from Cheap Trick.

It's been one of my favorite "civic pride" records since I came across it. My favorite moments are the new-wave-ish "Making It In Rockford" and the sermon breakdown on "Make It In RockfordÂ…Weigh the Difference." And the oppressive nature of the final, disco track... and the front cover photo collage... and the line "Catch a smile on Whitman Bridge" from the first song...

"The Rockford Area Chamber of Commerce would like to express a special thanks to all those Rockford artists who's talents and dedication made this record album possible. The songwriting contest, which started with hopes of finding some musical interest in the Rockford area, has ended with the production of this professional record album showing the world what Rockford has to offer."

- Contributed by: Jonathan Ward

Images: Front Cover, Back Cover