I Love 1972: My Top 40 Albums of 1972

i love the seventies_1972

Without a doubt, 1972 was a great year for music. I could not believe the sheer number of great artists who released some of their definitive work that year. Stevie Wonder dropped not just one but TWO classics that year. Two of my favorite bands power pop bands of all time made their debuts in 1972. One, Cleveland’s Raspberries had success in the form of a Top 5 single, “Go All the Way,” while the other, Big Star, languished in anonymity until the mid-Eighties, when alternative bands began discovering their greatness, becoming one of the most influential cult bands of all-time, this side of the Velvet Underground.

Besides that, soul music was experiencing a peak year in 1972, as albums by Al Green, The O’Jays and The Isley Brothers had mainstream success, while soundtrack albums to “Blaxploitation” movies such as Shaft, Superfly and Troubled Man all became big hits, as did a reggae soundtrack compilation of artists such as Jimmy Cliff on The Harder They Fall was successful. And, rock music had a rich year with The Rolling Stones, Alice Cooper and Steely Dan led the way, while David Bowie brought Glam Rock across the pond with Ziggy Stardust. And, those albums were just the tip of the iceberg.

So, let’s get the countdown going!

4.25 Big_Star_-1_Record

  1. Big Star – #1 Record
  2. The Rolling Stones – Exile on Main Street
  3. Various Artists – Nuggets: Original Artyfacts from the First Psychedelic Era, 1965-1968
  4. Alice Cooper – School’s Out
  5. Raspberries – Raspberries
  6. Todd Rundgren – Something/Anything?
  7. Jimmy Cliff and Others – The Harder They Come OST
  8. Steely Dan – Can’t Buy a Thrill
  9. David Bowie – The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders from Mars
  10. Van Morrison – Saint Dominic’s Preview
  11. Elton John – Honky Chateau
  12. Raspberries – Fresh
  13. Randy Newman – Sail Away
  14. Stevie Wonder – Talking Book
  15. Al Green – Let’s Stay Together
  16. Stevie Wonder – Music of My Mind
  17. Marvin Gaye – Trouble Man
  18. Paul Simon – Paul Simon
  19. Neil Young – Harvest
  20. The Band – Rock of Ages
  21. Curtis Mayfield – Superfly
  22. Nick Drake – Pink Moon
  23. The J. Geils Band – “Live” Full House
  24. The O’Jays – Back Stabbers
  25. Eagles – Eagles
  26. Roxy Music – Roxy Music
  27. Lou Reed – Transformer
  28. Rex – The Slider
  29. War – The World Is a Ghetto
  30. Slade – Slayed?
  31. The Isley Brothers – Brother, Brother, Brother
  32. Jackson Browne – Jackson Browne [aka Saturate Before Using]
  33. The Allman Brothers Band – Eat a Peach
  34. America – America
  35. Chicago – Chicago V
  36. Deep Purple – Machine Head
  37. The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band – Will the Circle Be Unbroken
  38. Mott the Hoople – All the Young Dudes
  39. Focus – Focus III
  40. Doobie Brothers – Toulouse Street

4.25 Nuggets4.25 War - The World Is a Ghetto

Now, THAT is a classic lineup of great albums. In my book, anytime you have Stevie, Marvin, Big Star, Raspberries, David Bowie, Alice Cooper, War, Chicago, Deep Purple, The Stones and the rest in the same countdown, it HAS to be a great year. And, many of the albums from 1972 have stood the test of time.

Pacer logo evolution

Finally, tonight is the pivotal game five between my over-achieving Indiana Pacers’ game against the incomparable LeBron James and the rest of the Cleveland Cavaliers in the first round of the NBA Play-Offs. If the Pacers have a chance to win this series, they must beat the Cavs tonight. Must See TV for Me…heeheehee! (My apologies! Again…)

Author: ifmyalbumscouldtalk

I am just a long-time music fan who used to be a high school science teacher and a varsity coach of several high school athletic teams. Before that, I worked as a medical technologist at three hospitals in their labs, mainly as a microbiologist. I am retired/disabled (Failed Back Surgery Syndrome), and this is my attempt to remain a human. Additionally, I am a serious vinyl aficionado, with a CD addiction and a love of reading about rock history. Finally, I am a fan of Prince, Cheap Trick, Tom Petty, R.E.M., Hall & Oates, Springsteen, Paul Weller & his bands and Power Pop music.

2 thoughts on “I Love 1972: My Top 40 Albums of 1972”

  1. Great year for music! I think you mean T. Rex, not “Rex” 🙂 Puzzled by the omission of Thick as Brick, Octopus, Close to the Edge and Foxtrot. If you liked Fragile in 1971, why not Close to the Edge in 1972? (Hat’s off to the Pacers — if they can eliminate some of the forced outside shots, they will be even better.)


    1. I limit my yearly lists to my 40 favorite albums. Sometimes, we will agree, and other times, we will not. Personally, I am not a big fan of prog rock, so my lists will be on the skimpy on those types of albums. I am not indicting your tastes in music by any means. These albums are my favorites.


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