City Slang: “W4 Homegrown” revisited

OK, so I was at Record Graveyard in Hamtramck a couple of weeks ago, and I came across this compilation LP, apparently from ’74.

The sleeve tells that the album was compiled by the 106FM radio station and mastered in Grosse Pointe, with art designed in Ferndale. It truly is a local undertaking, and the music doesn’t disappoint.

The only two bands on here I was familiar with in advance are the Romantics and the Rockets. Both contribute great songs, and a Google search reveals that the former’s appearance with “Tell it to Carrie” was their first vinyl outing. The Rockets pop up on side B with “Lookin’ For Love”, a great little rocker.

There are treats elsewhere though. I’d love to find out more about some of these bands, so please contact us with any info you have on the likes of the Buzz-Tones, whose “Coat Hanger” kicks the record off in fine, if very clean, style. >Guardian provide another highlight with “Waiting” while elsewhere, Northwind’s “Just Yesterday” is superb.

It’s not all perfect. Ted Strunck and the Stratton Nelson Band are alarmingly lightweight for a Detroit-area band. But even their “Someday Baby” has its Carpenters-esque charm.

Overall, this album provides an interesting look at where Detroit radio-rock was in the mid-70s.

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