History TroubledProduction / Music

26th Apr '16 1:42:32 AM aye_amber
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* Music/TheHumanLeague's third album ''Dare'' had a much more troublesome production than the band's previous two albums, which were flops. The band had to be split in half, with two members continuing on with the project and the other two forming a new band. Replacement auditions were long, though they did settle on a new keyboardist. To add insult to injury, they were already in crippling debt and Virgin Records was looking to drop them like flies. Even under pressure, they recorded using then-new technology, which was being boycotted by traditional musicians, further getting in the way of production. Virgin Records insisted on using "Don't You Want Me Baby" as the lead single, even though the band hated it. Ultimately, the album would be released to commercial and critical success. To this day it is considered the band's only masterpiece, though it opened the door to their future popularity.

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* Music/TheHumanLeague's ''The Human League'''s third album ''Dare'' had a much more troublesome production than the band's previous two albums, which were flops. The band had to be split in half, with two members continuing on with the project and the other two forming a new band. Replacement auditions were long, though they did settle on a new keyboardist. To add insult to injury, they were already in crippling debt and Virgin Records was looking to drop them like flies. Even under pressure, they recorded using then-new technology, which was being boycotted by traditional musicians, further getting in the way of production. Virgin Records insisted on using "Don't You Want Me Baby" as the lead single, even though the band hated it. Ultimately, the album would be released to commercial and critical success. To this day it is considered the band's only masterpiece, though it opened the door to their future popularity.
8th Apr '16 5:56:59 PM mlsmithca
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* While at least one member of Music/FleetwoodMac (see below) had an idea for what to do following a big mid-'70s success, none of the Eagles did. That's why it took them three years to record their followup to ''Hotel California''. Appropriately titled ''The Long Run'', it wound up [[CreatorKiller ending the band's classic years]].

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* While at least one member of Music/FleetwoodMac (see below) had an idea for what to do following a big mid-'70s success, none of the Eagles did. That's why it took them three years to record their followup to ''Hotel California''. Appropriately titled ''The Long Run'', it wound up [[CreatorKiller ending the band's classic years]].



** Filming went on for so long (almost a week, long for a video at the time (and even now)) that even Jackie, Marlon and Tito stopped showing up. The head of the wax dummy ended up in the salad bowl at lunch at one point. The production company went bankrupt as a result of the cost overruns, about the last thing they had expected would happen as a result of hitching their wagon to the Jacksons' star. (See also the Victory Tour below.)

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** Filming went on for so long (almost a week, long for a video at the time (and even now)) that even Jackie, Marlon and Tito stopped showing up. The head of the wax dummy ended up in the salad bowl at lunch at one point. The production company went bankrupt as a result of the cost overruns, about the last thing they had expected would happen as a result of hitching their wagon to the Jacksons' star. (See also the Victory Tour below.Tour.)
8th Apr '16 5:56:13 PM mlsmithca
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* Music/DeepPurple's 1972 album ''[[Music/MachineHeadAlbum Machine Head]]'' is one of the most famous musical examples of this trope, mainly because it included, as a last minute addition, the iconic song telling the story of how the band struggled to get the album together in time with a mobile recording studio in Montreux, Switzerland: "Smoke on the Water", a reference to the smoke over Lake Geneva after the first location they wanted to use, a casino, was destroyed in a horrible flaregun accident involving Frank Zappa. First of all, they wanted to use the local casino to record. The night before, Music/FrankZappa was playing there ("Music/FrankZappa and the Mothers/Were at the best place around"), but a drunken fan fired a flaregun into its roof, destroying it ("but some stupid with a flaregun/Burnt the place to the ground"). So, they "ended up at the Grand Hotel" with their "Rolling truck Stone thing just outside" (the mobile studio was rented from Music/TheRollingStones), hastily converted into a studio. The jury-rigged studio, the looming deadline ("Swiss time was running out/It seemed that we would lose the race") and the hit guitar riff it spawned ensured this particular TroubledProduction entered rock legend.

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* Music/DeepPurple's most familiar song was inspired by a troubled production. And it wasn't their only experience with the trope:
** The
1972 album ''[[Music/MachineHeadAlbum Machine Head]]'' is one of the most famous musical examples of this trope, mainly because it included, as a last minute addition, the iconic song telling the story of how the band struggled to get the album together in time with a mobile recording studio in Montreux, Switzerland: "Smoke on the Water", a reference to the smoke over Lake Geneva after the first location they wanted to use, a casino, was destroyed in a horrible flaregun accident involving Frank Zappa. First of all, they wanted to use the local casino to record. The night before, Music/FrankZappa was playing there ("Music/FrankZappa and the Mothers/Were at the best place around"), but a drunken fan fired a flaregun into its roof, destroying it ("but some stupid with a flaregun/Burnt the place to the ground"). So, they "ended up at the Grand Hotel" with their "Rolling truck Stone thing just outside" (the mobile studio was rented from Music/TheRollingStones), hastily converted into a studio. The jury-rigged studio, the looming deadline ("Swiss time was running out/It seemed that we would lose the race") and the hit guitar riff it spawned ensured this particular TroubledProduction entered rock legend.



* Frey and Henley, barely talking to each other by this point, had to satisfy the band's remaining contractual obligations. They did this by editing tapes of the tour (and some older shows) into the two-disc ''Eagles Live''. However, they turned down an additional $2 million to record two new songs—they just didn't have it in them anymore.

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* ** Frey and Henley, barely talking to each other by this point, had to satisfy the band's remaining contractual obligations. They did this by editing tapes of the tour (and some older shows) into the two-disc ''Eagles Live''. However, they turned down an additional $2 million to record two new songs—they just didn't have it in them anymore.
28th Mar '16 5:34:00 PM Schroeder1174
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** ''The Long Run'' was nevertheless a commercial success, giving the band three hit singles. Critics were not as pleased, noting the heavy production gloss and wondering what songs the band had discarded during the process. The burnout and stress from the preceding years of almost incessant recording and touring (both involving plenty of cocaine and other drugs) was also catching up to them, much as it also was for Creator/TheDoobieBrothers on ''Minute by Minute'' at the same time. This, predictably led to interpersonal tensions that came out on the ensuing tour. The Eagles were invited to a benefit concert for Democratic California Senator Alan Cranston, whom Frey and Henley were supporting. Don Felder's skepticism with the band's ties with political campaigns came to a head, with Felder remarking to Cranston's wife, "You're welcome---I guess" as Cranston thanked the Eagles for their help with a speech. This served to anger the other Eagles, Glenn Frey in particular. At the last show in Long Beach, Frey turned to Felder near the end and said "Three more songs and I get to kick your ass," to which Felder rejoined "I can't wait." They then went back to performing, crooning through "The Best of My Love" in perfect harmony.

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** ''The Long Run'' was nevertheless a commercial success, giving the band three hit singles. Critics were not as pleased, noting the heavy production gloss and wondering what songs the band had discarded during the process. The burnout and stress from the preceding years of almost incessant recording and touring (both involving plenty of cocaine and other drugs) was also catching up to them, much as it also was for Creator/TheDoobieBrothers on ''Minute by Minute'' at the same time. This, predictably led to interpersonal tensions that came out on the ensuing tour. The Eagles were invited to a benefit concert for Democratic California Senator Alan Cranston, whom Frey and Henley were supporting. Don Felder's skepticism with the band's ties with political campaigns came to a head, with Felder remarking to Cranston's wife, "You're welcome---I guess" as Cranston thanked the Eagles for their help with a speech. This served to anger the other Eagles, Glenn Frey in particular. At the last show in Long Beach, Frey Felder turned to Felder Frey near the end and said "Three more songs and I get to kick your ass," to which Felder Frey rejoined "I can't wait." They then went back to performing, crooning through "The Best of My Love" in perfect harmony.
28th Mar '16 5:22:31 PM Schroeder1174
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** ''The Long Run'' was nevertheless a commercial success, giving the band three hit singles. Critics were not as pleased, noting the heavy production gloss and wondering what songs the band had discarded during the process. The burnout and stress from the preceding years of almost incessant recording and touring (both involving plenty of cocaine and other drugs) was also catching up to them, much as it also was for Creator/TheDoobieBrothers on ''Minute by Minute'' at the same time. This, predictably led to interpersonal tensions that came out on the ensuing tour. At the last show in Long Beach, Felder turned to Frey near the end and said "Three more songs and I get to kick your ass," to which Frey rejoined "I can't wait." They then went back to performing, crooning through "The Best of My Love" in perfect harmony.

to:

** ''The Long Run'' was nevertheless a commercial success, giving the band three hit singles. Critics were not as pleased, noting the heavy production gloss and wondering what songs the band had discarded during the process. The burnout and stress from the preceding years of almost incessant recording and touring (both involving plenty of cocaine and other drugs) was also catching up to them, much as it also was for Creator/TheDoobieBrothers on ''Minute by Minute'' at the same time. This, predictably led to interpersonal tensions that came out on the ensuing tour. The Eagles were invited to a benefit concert for Democratic California Senator Alan Cranston, whom Frey and Henley were supporting. Don Felder's skepticism with the band's ties with political campaigns came to a head, with Felder remarking to Cranston's wife, "You're welcome---I guess" as Cranston thanked the Eagles for their help with a speech. This served to anger the other Eagles, Glenn Frey in particular. At the last show in Long Beach, Felder Frey turned to Frey Felder near the end and said "Three more songs and I get to kick your ass," to which Frey Felder rejoined "I can't wait." They then went back to performing, crooning through "The Best of My Love" in perfect harmony.
6th Mar '16 4:24:04 PM AgProv
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* The Music/BlueOysterCult were originally formed with the intention of realising Sandy Perlman's dream of turning his imaginative myth-cycle ''Imaginos'' into a full-blown rock epic. While material and ideas from ''Imaginos'' found their way onto the band's first few recorded albums, (especially 1974's ''Music/SecretTreaties'') the whole idea was largely forgotten and sidelined at their peak of big-venue commercial success, and an attempt to revive the original conceit is thought to have contributed to the original line-up splitting in some acrimony. When an LP ''called'' ''Imaginos'' was finally released in 1988, only two memberws of the original lineup remained, and the LP was put together with 80% of the input made by disinterested session musicians. The track listing told no coherent story, the record company realised it had a turkey on its hands, and the LP is not considered to be the band's finest hour. Very little from this album makes it into live concerts and nothing has escaped as part of any "Greatest Hits" collections.
17th Feb '16 2:37:13 AM Pred3000
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** After Slash's departure, Music/NineInchNails guitar player Robin Finck was hired as the new lead guitarist. Tobias stayed on, but eventually drove drummer Matt Sorum and bassist Duff [=McKagan=] away. This left Axl and keyboardist Dizzy Reed as the last two members from the Use Your Illusion tour. Tommy Stinson, Chris Pitman, and Josh Freese joined the band around this time and officially started work on ''Chinese Democracy''. However, after cycling through many different producers and recording for a full year, the band only released one song in 1999. That song,"Oh My God," was only ever featured on the soundtrack to ''Film/EndOfDays'' and was not critically or commercially well received (eventually being left out of the finished album despite even some live performances).

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** After Slash's departure, Music/NineInchNails guitar player Robin Finck was hired as the new lead guitarist. Tobias stayed on, but eventually drove drummer Matt Sorum and bassist Duff [=McKagan=] away. This left Axl and keyboardist Dizzy Reed as the last two members from the Use Your Illusion tour. Tommy Stinson, Chris Pitman, and Josh Freese joined the band around this time and officially started work on ''Chinese Democracy''. However, after cycling through many different producers and recording for a full year, the band only released one song in 1999. That song,"Oh My God," was only ever featured on the soundtrack to ''Film/EndOfDays'' and was not critically or commercially well received (eventually being left out of the finished album despite even some live performances).performances of the song).
16th Feb '16 5:22:46 PM SwimToTheMoon
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* Most fans of Music/CatPower (real name: Chan Marshall, first name pronounced "Shaun") agree that naming just ''one'' album of hers would be a tall order (especially considering her erratic nature due to struggles with addictions and mental health), most will agree that 2012's ''Sun'', to date her latest record, is the most notable example and also the most surprising example (given that it came ''after'' she cleaned up her act).
** In 2006, Marshall experienced tons of critical and commercial success with ''The Greatest'', and in an interiview stated that she was all ready to go to record the next album and even went so far as to say [[RealLifeWritesThePlot that "Sun" was going to be the title]]. She also claimed most of the album was already written and that after finally having gotten away with lengthy financial issues including house foreclosure and bakruptcy, she was going to finance the album herself.
** However, most of what was already written, which she had begun recording after spending eight months building a studio in her Malibu home, was junked after a friend told her that the music was too depressing, and Marshall clearly didn't disagree, going so far as to call it "too painful and personal to put out".
** Then she faced pressure from her label Matador, and even lawsuits due to the fact that she was so inactive. So to release ''something'', she gathered her band The Delta Blues and recorded and released a covers album in 2008 called ''Jukebox'' (which even had a reworking of one of her old songs "Metal Heart").
** After the tour for ''Jukebox'', she resumed work on ''Sun'' on what was more electronic tinged material. Problem was, not only was she working with a producer for the first time in fifteen years, but she couldn't play a piano, let alone compose on a keyboard. Furthermore, her focus on building a relationship with her boyfriend Giovanni Ribisi only complicated the creative process.
** Then in 2011, she finally regrouped the Delta Blues for a tour where she'd perform ten tracks of unreleased material (four of which would end up on the album). Unfortunately, she only had skeletons of songs to work with and only one song ("Ruin") would end up having contributions from the Delta Blues.
** She then broke up with Giovanni Ribisi, flew to Paris and worked with Philippe Zdar (former Music/BeastieBoys engineer) to finish the album. Zdar had to work pro bono, but thankfully this ended up being mended.
** And post-release was certainly no cake walk either. Health issues struck Marshall again (severe ones too) and Marshall would end up having to cancel the European tour supporting the album.
6th Feb '16 12:36:56 PM Freshmeat
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* Music/CaptainBeefheart (Don Glenn [Van] Vliet). Hoo, boy... The recording of his MagnumOpus ''Music/TroutMaskReplica'' is close to being an ultimate example of the trope.

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* Music/CaptainBeefheart (Don Glenn [Van] Vliet). Hoo, boy... The recording of his MagnumOpus ''Music/TroutMaskReplica'' is close to being an ultimate example of the trope.



* Perhaps the most morbid example was Music/{{Mayhem}}'s Magnum Opus, ''De Mysteriis Dom Sathanas''. Back in 1991, before most of the songs were fully written (initial songwriting began in 1987), lead singer [[MeaningfulName Dead]] offed himself [[NoKillLikeOverkill by hacking his wrists up multiple times before blowing his brains out with a shotgun.]] Almost immediately after Dead's suicide, stories about guitarist Euronymous taking pictures of the body and even making a stew out of the brain (along with Euronymous's generally poor treatment of Dead when he was alive) had prompted bassist Necrobutcher to leave the band. Mayhem, lacking both a vocalist and a bassist, brought on Attila Csihar and Euronymous's then-friend Varg Vikernes to help finish recording. From the start there were issues with finishing what Dead started. Meanwhile in 1992 Varg and Euronymous were out burning churches along with the rest of the "Black Circle" started by Euronymous. However, tensions soon rose between the duo over both priorities (Euronymous feared Varg was using Mayhem and the Black Circle's crimes to boost Burzum record sales) and politics (Euronymous leaned [[DirtyCommunists far to the left,]] and Varg was [[ThoseWackyNazis even farther to the right]]). [[RuleOfCautiousEditingJudgement The details of what eventually happened are still disputed]] but by the end of it Varg had stabbed Euronymous to death in 1993, with recording just finished. He was arrested and sentenced to 21 years in prison for both the murder and the arsons. Drummer Hellhammer was asked by Euronymous's family to remove Varg's bass and redo the parts, but eventually he simply left it in, most likely because he had no idea how to play bass. The album would not be released until 1994 due to the controversy surrounding the murder. (Oh, and their next album? 1995's ''Dawn of the Black Hearts'', an LP with one of Euronymous's postmortem photos of Dead as the cover.)

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* Perhaps the most morbid example was Music/{{Mayhem}}'s Magnum Opus, ''De Mysteriis Dom Sathanas''. Back in 1991, before most of the songs were fully written (initial songwriting began in 1987), lead singer [[MeaningfulName Dead]] offed himself [[NoKillLikeOverkill by hacking his wrists up multiple times before blowing his brains out with a shotgun.]] Almost immediately after Dead's suicide, stories about guitarist Euronymous taking pictures of the body and even making a stew out of the brain (along with Euronymous's generally poor treatment of Dead when he was alive) had prompted bassist Necrobutcher to leave the band. Mayhem, lacking both a vocalist and a bassist, brought on Attila Csihar and Euronymous's then-friend Varg Vikernes to help finish recording. From the start there were issues with finishing what Dead started. Meanwhile in 1992 Varg and Euronymous were out burning churches along with the rest of the "Black Circle" started by Euronymous. However, tensions soon rose between the duo over both priorities (Euronymous feared Varg was using Mayhem and the Black Circle's crimes to boost Burzum record sales) and politics (Euronymous leaned [[DirtyCommunists far to the left,]] and Varg was [[ThoseWackyNazis even farther to the right]]). [[RuleOfCautiousEditingJudgement The details of what eventually happened are still disputed]] but by the end of it Varg had stabbed Euronymous to death in 1993, with recording just finished. He was arrested and sentenced to 21 years in prison for both the murder and the arsons. Drummer Hellhammer was asked by Euronymous's family to remove Varg's bass and redo the parts, but eventually he simply left it in, most likely because he had no idea how to play bass. The album would not be released until 1994 due to the controversy surrounding the murder. (Oh, and their next album? 1995's ''Dawn of the Black Hearts'', an LP with one of Euronymous's postmortem photos of Dead as the cover.)



* Music/MyBloodyValentine's MagnumOpus, ''Loveless''. You can probably get the whole lowdown on TheOtherWiki or the band's own page, but just to recap: main vocalist/guitarist/songwriter Kevin Shields is perfectionist to the point of James-Cameron-ness, 19 recording studios were used, 16 engineers were credited (most of them just ended up bringing Shields tea; only Anjali Dutt and Alan Moulder actually ''engineered'' anything), Shields and vocalist/guitarist Bilinda Butcher didn't allow the engineers to actually ''listen'' to them while recording vocals, drummer Colm Ó Cíosóig couldn't take part due to illness and homelessness (his drumming was {{sampl|ing}}ed, and he only played live on two tracks), they took two weeks to master the whole thing and it was almost all ruined when the computer they were using threw the entire album out of order and Shields had to piece it back together from memory. For years their label head Alan [=McGee=] claimed they spent £250.000 and almost bankrupted Creation Records, a claim Shields always disputed as exaggerated - his most recent explanation was that only "a few thousand" were actually used to record while the rest was "money to live on". However, it is true that the production of ''Loveless'' ended up terrorizing Creation's staff and draining their finances, with the label's second-in-command Dick Green having a nervous breakdown and tearfully begging Shields to just get it over with already - one publicist even commented that Green's hair turned grey from all the stress.

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* Music/MyBloodyValentine's MagnumOpus, ''Loveless''. You can probably get the whole lowdown on TheOtherWiki or the band's own page, but just to recap: main vocalist/guitarist/songwriter Kevin Shields is perfectionist to the point of James-Cameron-ness, 19 recording studios were used, 16 engineers were credited (most of them just ended up bringing Shields tea; only Anjali Dutt and Alan Moulder actually ''engineered'' anything), Shields and vocalist/guitarist Bilinda Butcher didn't allow the engineers to actually ''listen'' to them while recording vocals, drummer Colm Ó Cíosóig couldn't take part due to illness and homelessness (his drumming was {{sampl|ing}}ed, and he only played live on two tracks), they took two weeks to master the whole thing and it was almost all ruined when the computer they were using threw the entire album out of order and Shields had to piece it back together from memory. For years their label head Alan [=McGee=] claimed they spent £250.000 and almost bankrupted Creation Records, a claim Shields always disputed as exaggerated - his most recent explanation was that only "a few thousand" were actually used to record while the rest was "money to live on". However, it is true that the production of ''Loveless'' ended up terrorizing Creation's staff and draining their finances, with the label's second-in-command Dick Green having a nervous breakdown and tearfully begging Shields to just get it over with already - one publicist even commented that Green's hair turned grey from all the stress.



* Music/TheRollingStones' beloved MagnumOpus ''Music/ExileOnMainSt.'' Much like Pink Floyd, the Stones left the UK in 1971 for tax reasons and settled in France. Most of the backing tracks were recorded in the basement of Richards' villa at Nellcôte, a poorly-ventilated environment where the heat would cause the guitars to go out of tune. Recording took place all night but none of the Stones ever showed up all at the same time - Wyman sat out most of the sessions, Jagger was frequently AWOL and Richards was just getting started on his infamous substance abuse. He was joined in said substance abuse by Taylor, producer Music/JimmyMiller, session musician Bobby Keys and engineer Andy Johns - Wyman claimed in his autobiography that he, Watts and Jagger were the only people in the villa who abstained to some degree. The band then took the piecemeal recordings and backing tracks to UsefulNotes/LosAngeles, added all the overdubs and assembled them into ''Exile''.

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* Music/TheRollingStones' beloved MagnumOpus ''Music/ExileOnMainSt.'' Much like Pink Floyd, the Stones left the UK in 1971 for tax reasons and settled in France. Most of the backing tracks were recorded in the basement of Richards' villa at Nellcôte, a poorly-ventilated environment where the heat would cause the guitars to go out of tune. Recording took place all night but none of the Stones ever showed up all at the same time - Wyman sat out most of the sessions, Jagger was frequently AWOL and Richards was just getting started on his infamous substance abuse. He was joined in said substance abuse by Taylor, producer Music/JimmyMiller, session musician Bobby Keys and engineer Andy Johns - Wyman claimed in his autobiography that he, Watts and Jagger were the only people in the villa who abstained to some degree. The band then took the piecemeal recordings and backing tracks to UsefulNotes/LosAngeles, added all the overdubs and assembled them into ''Exile''.



* Music/BruceSpringsteen's MagnumOpus ''Music/BornToRun'' is another legendary story. After 3 financially unsuccessful though critically acclaimed albums, The Boss' career almost came to an end when Columbia Records almost dropped him entirely. Springsteen promised a smash hit and Columbia gave him a deadline of 6 months to finish the album. At this point, Springsteen was running out of funds to pay The E Street Band, with many of its members thinking of walking out of the recording process. Recording ultimately took a year and a half, triple the time Columbia originally wanted. Springsteen got into dozens of arguments with his fellow musicians, as his musical ideas that were in his head were difficult to bring to fruition. The album ended up ''drastically'' over-budget, causing Columbia to almost consider dropping the album altogether. Song selection was so great that 7 tracks were left on the cutting room floor just to keep the album from being overlong. Ultimately ''Born to Run'' turned into the Boss' greatest musical achievement, selling far more copies than Columbia was demanding. It thrusted Springsteen into the limelight and even attracted attention to his prior albums, which are all also looked at as classics now.

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* Music/BruceSpringsteen's MagnumOpus ''Music/BornToRun'' is another legendary story. After 3 financially unsuccessful though critically acclaimed albums, The Boss' career almost came to an end when Columbia Records almost dropped him entirely. Springsteen promised a smash hit and Columbia gave him a deadline of 6 months to finish the album. At this point, Springsteen was running out of funds to pay The E Street Band, with many of its members thinking of walking out of the recording process. Recording ultimately took a year and a half, triple the time Columbia originally wanted. Springsteen got into dozens of arguments with his fellow musicians, as his musical ideas that were in his head were difficult to bring to fruition. The album ended up ''drastically'' over-budget, causing Columbia to almost consider dropping the album altogether. Song selection was so great that 7 tracks were left on the cutting room floor just to keep the album from being overlong. Ultimately ''Born to Run'' turned into the Boss' greatest musical achievement, selling far more copies than Columbia was demanding. It thrusted Springsteen into the limelight and even attracted attention to his prior albums, which are all also looked at as classics now.
4th Feb '16 7:56:54 PM DanielCase
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**While that entry is really just about one ''song'', the band's next album, ''Who Do We Think We Are'', more genuinely fits the mold. There were no technical problems, but the band was literally sick and tired by this point. Literally, in that they'd been touring and recording for several years nonstop; they were all terribly burned out and several members' health had suffered as a result (Ian Gillan said that the band's management should really have made them all take three months off, but was worried they couldn't finish the next album by the contractually obligated deadline). That sick and tired, inevitably, spilled over into being sick and tired of each other, and they stopped talking. Studio time had to be carefully budgeted and planned so that members could record their parts without accidentally running into each other. While the ensuing album yielded one of their classics, "Woman from Tokyo," Gillan left after it was finished and that classic lineup of the band would not record and tour together again for a decade.
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http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/article_history.php?article=TroubledProduction.Music