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Vintage Video #1's: Rod Stewart Breaks From the Past With the Album "Atlantic Crossing" (1975)

by VVN Music

42 years ago today, Rod Stewart's sixth solo studio album, Atlantic Crossing, became his fourth straight number 1 album in the U.K.

Stewart had been a member of a band called The Dimensions, with Long John Baldry, and with Steampacket and the Jeff Beck Group before releasing his first album, An Old Raincoat Won't Ever Let You Down (aka The Rod Stewart Album) in 1969. He followed the next year with the debut album by his new group The Faces and Gasoline Alley which only went to 62 in the U.K. and 27 in the U.S.

It was his third solo album, 1971's Every Picture Tells a Story, that broke his career, going to the top in both Britain and America and giving him a major hit with "Maggie Mae". He followed with Never a Dull Moment (1972 / #2 U.S. / #1 U.K.), Smiler (1974 / #13 U.S. / #1 U.K.) and Atlantic Crossing (1975 / #9 U.S. / #1 U.K.).

Atlantic Crossing was a departure for Stewart as his first album on a new contract with Warner Brothers and his first without Faces bandmates Ronnie Wood and Ian McLagan. In their place, he brought in the Memphis Horns and three-quarters of Booker T. and the M.G.'s, giving him a heavier R&B sound.

The first single from the album, "Sailing", became a huge hit in the U.K. where it was number 1 for four weeks starting in September of 1975. In the U.S., it hardly made a dent, only going to 58 on the Hot 100.

He followed with a cover of the Isley Brothers' "This Old Heart of Mine" (#4 U.K / #83 U.S.) before moving on to his album A Night on the Town but, in early 1977, a third cut from Atlantic Crossing became a hit when "I Don't Want to Talk About It" was paired with his cover of Cat Steven's "The First Cut is the Deepest" for a double-A side single, going to number 1 in the U.K. and 21 & 46, respectively, in the U.S.

The top five albums in the U.K. on October 11, 1975:
  1. Atlantic Crossing - Rod Stewart
  2. Wish You Were Here - Pink Floyd
  3. All the Fun of the Fair - David Essex
  4. Greatest Hits - Cat Stevens
  5. Favourites - Peter and Lee