RATINGS: A = must own B = buy it C= average D = yawn F = puke

Joe Lynn Turner – Street of Dreams – Boston 1985 
Cleopatra Records

Rating: B

Cleopatra Records has reached deep into the rock and roll archives and found a rare live concert by ex-Rainbow vocalist Joe Lynn Turner from 1985. 

JLT was fresh out of Rainbow as Deep Purple was reuniting.  The charming front man with a voice of gold was now out on his own.  Things were looking up for a solo career.  He enlisted the famous producer Roy Thomas Baker and recorded and released the album Rescue You.  Once the album was on the shelves, it was back to the stages for Turner to promote the release.

Joe Lynn recalls the concert that makes up this live effort in the press release for the album, “That night at the Boston Paradise, it was outstanding. I can remember seeing the audience and I remember there was an awkward pillar – I guess it was a support column in front – not directly in front, but enough to block some of the view. But the stage was an actual concert stage. Aerosmith and all those guys used to always play there, the Paradise. I can remember actually going on and playing the set, how it felt because it was absolutely exhilarating, and the audience was just crazy.”

The set list mainly consisted of tunes from the new release, as the band was pushing that disc hard and heavy, but there are two classic Rainbow tunes included here.  “Street of Dreams” gets the biggest applause, and it is the better performed of the two.  “Stone Cold” is a killer song and this is a solid version, but the guitar just sounds too ‘non-Blackmore’ to make the song as good as it could be.  Still, these tracks are very welcome to the set that features eight tracks from his new solo effort.  Rescue You was a solid recording, but it can sound dated and very tied to the time period.  The keyboard tones make these live songs a time machine back to 1985.  Still, it is nice to hear songs that sound so damn happy and rock at the same time. 

Vocally, Turner proves on every track that he is just a monster of a vocalist. This is never more evident than the song that had the most potential, titled “Good Girls Gone Bad.”  This is a monster of tune that shows JLT in that special rocker meets Motown zone! 

At the end of the day, this is a pretty cool peek back in time.  Joe Lynn never made it as a solo artist but this live ensemble demonstrates he had the chops.  Hell, he still has the chops.  Love him or hate him, this guy can flat out sing and he has a cool rock and roll attitude—mixed with pop star—which makes you either wanna party with him or make fun of him… such has been his life the last 30 plus years. 

Hold your head high, Joe... you done good as this live album proves.  This was an attempt to make Turner more of pop star than a hard rocker, but at the end of the day, it’s only rock and roll... and this one, warts and all, is pretty fun.

Joe has the last word: “This was our first tour out, and I’m not sure if we were opening for someone at the Paradise, but if we were, then they had a pretty difficult time because the crowd was absolutely bananas for us, and we were hot. We were really on top of our game, the whole band and it sounds it, you can hear it, everyone is playing with incredible energy and enthusiasm and very precise.”

Track Listing
1. I Found Love
2. Losing You
3. Soul Searcher
4. Young Hearts
5. Endlessly
6. Rescue You
7. Stone Cold
8. Street Of Dreams
9. Feel The Fire
10. Guitar Solo / Good Girls Gone Bad
11. Get Tough
12. On The Run
13. Them Changes

Joe’s band consisted of Bobby Messano – (guitar, background vocals), Alan Greenwood (keyboards), Chuck Burgi (drums) plus one newcomer, Barry Dunaway (bass).

By Jeb “Stone Cold” Wright