Home Read Classic Album Review: Harry Nilsson | Son Of Schmilsson

Classic Album Review: Harry Nilsson | Son Of Schmilsson

The singer's eight studio release is a worthy followup to his hit album Schmilsson.

This came out in 2003 – or at least that’s when I got it. Here’s what I said about it back then (with some minor editing):


Much of ’70s singer-songwriter Harry Nilsson’s fame seemed to come secondhand. As a singer, the golden-voiced New Yorker is perhaps best known for the Midnight Cowboy theme Everybody’s Talkin’ — which he didn’t write — and the novelty number Coconut. As a composer, his most enduring song might be One — though Three Dog Night had a bigger hit with the tune. And as a pop culture icon, he’s known mainly as John Lennon’s sidekick during the Beatle’s 1974 ‘lost weekend’ in L.A. Still, Nilsson’s influence on contemporary music — particularly the quirky, literate pop of artists like Ben Folds, XTC, Rufus Wainwright and Hawksley Workman — is undeniable. To give credit where it’s due, BMG has reissued virtually the entire Nilsson catalog, some 15 albums spread across 10 CDs. I sifted through them all so you don’t have to.


Harry Nilsson
Son of Schmilsson


HIGHLIGHTS: Like the title says, this is the sequel to Nilsson Schmilsson — and it’s a worthy followup, with a similar roster of blackly humourous fare like the scatological Take 54, the tinkly C&W parody Joy, the cheery accodion singalong I’d Rather Be Dead and the spleen-vent You’re Breaking My Heart (“so f— you!”).

EXTRAS! EXTRAS! Two demo versions of Joy — one on piano and one on guitar.