Editors’ Notes The story goes that record exec David Geffen brought John David Souther, Chris Hillman and Richie Furay together in a deliberate attempt to recreate the chemistry of Crosby, Stills and Nash. From the start, this alliance of three mismatched country-rock talents seemed a dubious proposition, and though The Souther-Hillman-Furay Band’s 1974 self-titled debut does have merit, it fails to cohere into a unified statement. The best way to appreciate the album is by sampling the individual contributions of its members. Souther’s tunes range from wry sketches of jaded gigolos (“The Heartbreaker”) to afterhours meditations on faithless love (“Pretty Goodbyes,””Deep, Dark and Dreamless”). Furay brings the same sort of genial energy he displayed as Poco’s leader to the galloping “Fallin’ in Love” and the tender-hearted “Believe Me.” Ex-Byrd Hillman’s offerings have a bluegrass-meets-Bakersfield quality — “Heavenly Fire” and “Rise and Fall” anticipate his subsequent (and stronger) work with the Desert Rose Band. The group’s support players — particularly keyboardist Paul Harris and drummer Jim Gordon — add sonic definition to these mostly guitar-centered songs. Though it flounders as a whole, the SHF Band’s first effort provides moments worth picking out and savoring.

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