- Album name: Joy to the World: Their Greatest Hits
- Group name: Three Dog Night
- Year: 1974
- Number of discs: one
- Label: Dunhill Records
- Collection: Selman
- Distinguishing characteristics:
- Sticker: PROMOTIONAL RECORD FOR / BROADCAST & REVIEW / NOT FOR SALE
- Buy it on Amazon: $62.99
Level of familiarity before listening
I definitely know the song Joy to the World and consider it one of the most obnoxious songs ever recorded, and if I’m not mistaken, Three Dog Night may have been one of the washed up has-been bands that performed at my hometown Rockville, Maryland’s “Hometown Holidays” when I was a teenager.
What I expected
It’s a record with Joy to the World, so my expectations aren’t exactly high, but I do think it’s likely that Three Dog Night had some better songs and that I’ll be pleasantly surprised.
What it was actually like
With the exception of the first and last songs, this record wasn’t that bad at all. The first was the aforementioned Joy to the World, and the last was an awful Oompa-Loompa song called The Show Must Go On, with an actual carnival music intro and outro.
Besides that, I thought the arrangements of most of the songs were quite strong, with multiple guitars, lively percussion and various vocalists doing harmonies that were solid, but not too ambitious.
One was a song that I recognized and I had no idea that it was a Three Dog Night. It was kind of gimmicky, but it’s unique and memorable. I also recognized An Old Fashioned Love Song and felt similarly about it, but pondered how to described its style: it was kind of R&B, but hardly sounded like 1971.
A bunch of their songs could be described as rock with a strong soul influence, like Shambala, The Family of Man and Never Been to Spain, the latter of which I thought was the best on the record.
Black and White was a cover of a bad Pete Seeger song that they somehow made far worse by recording it in a reggae style. I was almost embarrassed to be listening to it.
3/5: interesting, but not for me