The Doobie Brothers, The Warner Bros Years 1971 - 1983 - album review

Download: Listen to the Music; Long Train Runnin’; Black Water; What a Fool Believes

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The Independent Culture

The Seventies was a time of widespread reinvention, as bands regrouped to tackle swiftly changing priorities.

And although it wasn’t as remarkable as Fleetwood Mac’s, there’s still something impressive about The Doobie Brothers’ change. Initially a folk-rock unit with sweet harmonies, jangly guitars and the occasional winning tune – “Listen to the Music” and “Long Train Running” are two of the era’s more uplifting guilty pleasures – they drafted in Steely Dan alumni steel guitarist Jeff “Skunk” Baxter and vocalist Michael McDonald, metamorphosing into an even more successful blue-eyed-soul band.

With McDonald’s hits “It Keeps You Runnin’” and “What a Fool Believes”, they exemplified the yacht-rock zeitgeist that resulted from blending West Coast pop with disco; and had the decency to call it a day before becoming too tiresome.