Flashback: Boston’s Debut Album Goes Top Five
It was 46 years ago this week (December 4th to 10th, 1976), that Boston‘s self-titled debut album peaked at Number Three on the Billboard 200 albums chart, where it stayed for five weeks. Since then, nearly every song from the album continues to receive heavy airplay on classic rock radio — most notably the album’s lead single, “More Than A Feeling,” along with “Peace Of Mind,” “Foreplay/Long Time,” “Rock And Roll Band,” “Smokin’,” and “Hitch A Ride.” Since its August 25th, 1976 release, Boston has sold over 17 million copies.
Boston’s guitarist/songwriter/producer Tom Scholz credits the group’s late-lead singer Brad Delp as the key to their global success: “He and I were the ones, y’know, that put most of those tracks on the albums. Y’know, I did the instruments, mostly, and he did the singing. That was the key. That’s what we did in the demos — I mean, other than the drum track — and that’s what worked. We basically did that on the albums and we certainly had some contributions from people along the way. But in my mind, y’know, none of them would’ve been successful without Brad’s voice on them. I don’t think there would’ve been a Boston today if he hadn’t been the singer.”
30 years after Boston’s release, Tom Scholz finally got the chance to properly remaster the album and its 1978 followup, Don’t Look Back, for CD: “I’ve always wanted to fix the sound on these CD’s. I was really happy with the way those albums sounded back in the ’70s on vinyl and tape, but I never liked the way they sounded after they were transferred to 16-bit CD’s. This gave me the opportunity to, sort of, bring those mixes into the 21st Century.”
Tom Scholz was the main force behind the Boston album, writing the songs and recording most of the instrumental parts at his home studio. He told us creating the album doesn’t seem all that long ago to him: “The amazing thing to me is nothing seems to have changed with me — I still have the same equipment in the studio, the same guitars, (laughs) the same everything. I do feel like, sometimes, like I’m sort of in a time warp and I don’t change, but the rest of the world is sort of changing around me.”
Boston lead singer Brad Delp committed suicide on March 9th, 2007 at the age of 55.
Boston remains a busy touring act with the band’s sixth album, called, Love, Life, And Hope, having been released in 2013.