THE GUESS WHO Rockin’ (1972)

Rockin (1972)
It is!

REUPPED A commenter nominated this 1972 Guess Who LP, Rockin‘, as their masterpiece. I wouldn’t go quite that far, but I can’t muster many arguments against it, either. After the hit-less So Long, Bannatyne [hitless in the States, that is], the guys seemed intent on tightening up their act, even though they left plenty of room for a few rollicking 50s piano stompers and more ongoing in-jokes. But, Burton Cummings never sang better than he did in 1972 and the duel-guitar rocker, “Heartbroken Bopper,” is a perfect showcase for Burt’s shoulda-been-iconic vocals. Like “Share The Land” before it, “Smoke Big Factory” features elegant, three-part harmonies, also echoed in “Heaven Only Moved Once Yesterday” – a vocal style that would be the selling point of 1974’s Road Food (HERE). “Smoke Big Factory” also highlights a semi-serious attribute GW was well-known for… environmental themes (go ahead, take an interpretational swipe at “Guns, Guns, Guns,” too). There are, of course, goofball antics (most of side 2, actually), but when GW focused itself they were capable of some serious rock and pop excellence… or, at the very least, some good times. “Heartbroken Bopper” is a great example of both. This is the 2004 reissue, which sounds better than the version we had previously posted. The 2010 version is at Amazon, HERE, and has two bonus tracks – both of which are connected to the album’s closer, “Hi Rockers.” “Sea Of Love” is the Guess Who’s cover, which is heard playing on the jukebox in the background behind the “high rockers,” while “Lost Sheep” is a variant of the composition, “Heaven Only Moved Once Yesterday,” with totally re-written sections. Both tracks are included here separately.

Heartbroken Bopper (4:57)
Get Your Ribbons On (2:38)
Smoke Big Factory (4:00)
Arrivederci Girl (2:32)
Guns, Guns, Guns (5:01)
Running Bear (2:23)
Back To The City (3:39)
Your Nashville Sneakers (2:56)
Herbert’s A Loser (3:34)
Hi, Rockers! (6:49)
w/ Sea Of Love/Heaven Only Moved Once Yesterday/Don’t You Want Me

Sea Of Love (1:58)
Lost Sheep (6:24)


  • Anonymous
    August 7, 2009 - 01:45 | Permalink

    Bless you! Along with Canned Wheat, the Guess Who all time classic!!!


  • Art Ducko
    August 7, 2009 - 04:25 | Permalink

    Thanks, Willard! I'm having flashbacks to my junior high years when this helped me through some lame times. A lot of wit & some damn good rockin'!

  • steve simels
    August 7, 2009 - 17:46 | Permalink

    On the one hand, i am delighted that you posted this, because I believe every home should have one.

    On the other, I am a tad irked in that I recently spent a pretty penny ordering a Canadian import of this via Amazon

  • matt_the_cat
    August 7, 2009 - 21:09 | Permalink

    Excellent excellent album and to think I found it years ago in the cutout bin.Along with Live At The Paramount one of my favorites

  • drfeelgoed
    August 9, 2009 - 01:52 | Permalink

    I bought this in a vinyl discount sale in the pre CD days & was pleasantly surprised. The last track is a great medley with some hilarious dialogue. Thanks for upping this, haven't heard it in years.

  • Don from Oregon
    August 9, 2009 - 16:09 | Permalink

    Man this was a great album. My cousins used to play this and the Parmaount album all the time. The guess who bring back such good memories everty time I hear them. I have been broke so much recently (I have gone back to college to finish my masters in a small town college with no radio and no record store) and I have truly been missing access to the music I love. I appreciate, and cherish every one of these recordings, and hope some day I can return the favor to you, or someone else in need of great music.

  • sluggo
    September 3, 2009 - 00:55 | Permalink

    your nashville sneakers is my favourite GW least Burton has let go of the jim morrison wannbe act for this chestnut..
    I saw GW when american woman had even been released..burton was trying harder than marilyn chambers to swallow the mic and on top of that writhing on the floor in a red military jacket..pure unadulterated drama…LOL

  • Capt. Willard
    November 6, 2009 - 14:17 | Permalink

    Search HERE

  • October 27, 2011 - 11:03 | Permalink

    Glad to see this re-upped (and So Long B, too), and all the positive comments. Thanks. As you know, I am a big GW fan, and I believe I was the one who originally commented that this was their masterpiece, back when you posted this a couple years ago. Anyway, it is certainly my favorite. Of course, their commercial and popular high-water mark came with the Share the Land album, which is also classic, but I much prefer this one. For those interested in some Live GW shows, come drop by my blog, I have several good shows available. There you’ll also see that I have gone on record stating that Burton Cummings was the greatest rock vocalist of all-time, IMHO. Check it Out.

    BB Chronicles

  • fiscus1
    November 6, 2011 - 22:35 | Permalink

    I’d like to supplement your offering of the Guess Who’s Rockin’ with the two bonus tracks which were included with the 2010 reissue: “Sea Of Love”‘ and “Lost Sheep”.

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