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Strictly Personal is a 1968 album by Captain Beefheart and the Magic Band. It was originally going to be called: "It Comes To You In A Plain Brown Wrapper" and the album art work still reminds of that concept. Because Beefheart's label Buddah Records didn't like the album Beefheart was forced to sign a contract with another label, Blue Thumb. He and his band re-recorded their songs, while producer Bob Krasnow added a Psychedelic Rock sound.

After the album failed to sell well Beefheart blamed it on Executive Meddling on behalf of Krasnow. Beefheart felt so disillusioned that he wanted to quit the music industry for good, but as history would have it Zappa who produce his next album Trout Mask Replica (1969), which gave Beefheart total creative freedom and made him a household name in alternative rock circles. As a result Buddah Records did release the initially rejected recordings in 1971 as the album "Mirror Man". In 1999 they brought out an expanded version named "The Mirror Man" Sessions", with five additional tracks. A CompilationAlbum, "I May Be Hungry But I Sure Ain't Weird" (1992) contained eleven of the original cuts taken from master tapes.

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Tracklist

Side One

  1. "Ah Feel Like Ahcid" (3:05)
  2. "Safe As Milk" (5:27)
  3. "Trust Us" (8:09)
  4. "Son Of Mirror Man- Mere Man" (5:20)

Side Two

  1. "On Tomorrow" (3:27)
  2. "Beatle Bones 'n' Smokin' Stones" (3:18)
  3. "Gimme Dat Harp Boy" (5:05)
  4. "Kandy Korn" (5:06)

Personnel

  • Don Van Vliet - vocals, harmonica
  • Alex St. Clair - guitar
  • Jerry Handley - bass guitar
  • John French - drums
  • Jeff Cotton - guitar

"You gotta trope us!!":

  • Alice Allusion: "Beatle Bones 'N' Smokin' Stones"
    Caterpillars and Cheshire cats.
  • Alliterative Title: "Ah Feel Like Ahcid", "Kandy Korn", "Beatle Bones and Smokin' Stones".
  • Blues: Like most of Beefheart's albums it starts off with blues music, but then it changes into bizarre territories.
  • Creator Thumbprint: Vliet was said to have enjoyed candy a lot, which led to the writing of "Kandy Korn".
  • Continuity Nod:
    • The second track of this album is called "Safe As Milk", reference Beefheart's debut album Safe as Milk.
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    • Near the end of "Trust Us", Beefheart's Son House imitation from the first track "Ah Feel Like Ahcid" reappears again, and near the end of the album, he comes back a final time saying: "I ain't blue no more, it's like heaven I said, I said."
  • Design Student's Orgasm: The album cover, designed in the shape of a letter.
  • Epic Rocking: The 8:09 "Trust Us".
  • Face on the Cover: The band are seen in the form of stamps.
  • Fat Comic Relief: "Gimme Dat Harp Boy"
    Gimme dat harp boy, ain't no fat man's toy.
  • Food Songs Are Funny: "Kandy Korn".
  • I Am X, Son of Y: "Son Of Mirror Man".
  • In the Style of...: The album cover is done in the style of a letter, with the band members appearing in the form of stamps.
  • It's Personal: Strictly!
  • Mercy Kill: "Trust Us"
    Let the dying die and let the lying lie
  • Mundane Made Awesome: "Kandy Korn", a song about the sweetcorn Kandy Korn.
  • New Sound Album: Compared to Beefheart's debut album the overall sound is much more spacy and trippy in line with the Psychedelic Rock sound that was very popular near the end of the sixties.
  • Non-Appearing Title: The album title doesn't appear in any of the lyrics.
  • Packaged as Other Medium: The album cover is designed to look like a letter.
  • The Parody: "Beatle Bones 'N' Smokin' Stones" is a parody of Strawberry Fields Forever by The Beatles from Magical Mystery Tour. John Lennon, a fan of Safe as Milk, heard this song and wasn't amused.
  • Power of Trust: "Trust Us".
    You gotta trust us
    When you need a friend
  • Real Life Writes the Plot: "Gimme Dat Harp Boy" was inspired by Beefheart and his band attending a Canned Heat concert and Beefheart getting so frustrated at the performance that he yelled: "Gimme that harp, boy!"
  • Record Producer: Bob Krasnow.
  • Shout-Out:
    • The album starts with Beefheart imitating blues musician Son House and directly quoting lines from his signature song "Death Letter Blues".
    • "Beatle Bones 'n' Smokin' Stones" references The Beatles, more specifically "Strawberry Fields Forever", and The Rolling Stones. It also refers to caterpillars and Cheshire cats, a wink to Alice in Wonderland.
    • The Fall covered "Strictly Personal" in 1996.
  • Spell My Name with an "S": "Kandy Korn" instead of "candy corn".
  • Stock Sound Effects: Near the end of "Ah Feel Like Ahcid" heart beats can be heard.
  • Take That!: "Beatle Bones N' Smokin' Stones" was said to have been written in reaction to The Beatles' "Strawberry Fields Forever" and "A Day In The Life", because Beefheart didn't like the line "I'd love to turn you on" as he thought it was vulgar of them to say it in a song.
  • Word Salad Lyrics: It's a Captain Beefheart album, folks!

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