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4.7 out of 5 stars39
4.7 out of 5 stars
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on 30 January 2004
If you are considering buying a Doobies album for the first time, this is undoubtedly THE ONE. Don't mess around with those ubiquitous 'Best of' collections that are out there. Go for the continuity of this marvellous studio album.
Probably the single biggest testament to this recording is that so many of the songs thereon remain in the Doobies live set to this day. Natural Thing, Long Train Runnin, China Grove, Dark Eyed Cajun Woman, Clear as the Driven Snow, Without You and South City Midnight Lady are all regulars in their shows. When you consider how many studio albums the Doobs have made, this is an amazing statistic.
It would be easy to write about the virtues of Long Train Runnin and China Grove as they are great (and very well know songs) and you have probably heard them many times.
No, the real reason for buying this album are other gems such as the absolutely amazing 'Clear as the Driven Snow' and the wonderful 'Natural Thing'. The mix of country and rock is irresistable. Then you have a pair of lovely ballads (South City Midnight Lady and Dark Eyed Cajum Woman) which are beautiful in their own right. Then there's a pair of rockers (Without You and Evil Woman) which rock as hard as any songs you can think of.
The only other Doobies album which comes close to this one in my opinion is the wonderful 'Stampede' (with the amazing Neal's Fandango and 'Sweet Maxine') although the live set 'Rocking Down the Highway" (The Wildlife Concert) is well worth having too (on video or CD).
One last thing, if ever the Doobie Brothers are playing live close to you....GO. Don' make excuse, just GO. They are probably one of the best live acts out there.
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on 28 November 2000
I bought this album after hearing long train running and I have been playing it constantly since. Initially, I was more than a little unsure about purchasing it has I had only heard, aside fron long train running the later/blander stuff with M.MacDonald and had always associated them with soft rock. Thus when I bought it I was very plesantly supprised to find a rock band playing great rock music. As well as long train running you also get China Grove another great rock song. the band aslo show their versitality by playing country flavored material like Dark eyed cajun woman9 nff title I know). All in all an excelent album
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on 2 March 2010
Frankly, it has never been exactly cool to be a Doobies fan in the UK. Their music has always veered towards "America on the road" - something that has never really translated well to the UK.

But I don't care about fads and fashion (you should see the shirt I'm wearing for proof) - this album is still in my top 10 of all time. It was probably the third or fourth vinyl lp I bought as a spotty fourteen year old. That vinyl copy is still in my collection - although has been surpassed by this brilliant Japanese CD remaster with such an accurate and musical sound. But this album is not about my personal nostalgia of my teenage years - it stands up as the Doobies best, but also an early insight into Americana. Some of the acoustic songs are superb, and actually way ahead of their time as this was recorded in 1973. To say this sits alongside something like "The Band's" second album is not an inaccurate comparison - its that good.

Of course, when someone mentions TCAM we all think of the hit singles - Long Train Runnin', China Grove etc, and fantastic as those songs are - I have always felt the heart of this album are the acoustic numbers. That was the Pat Simmons influence from his folk finger picking days before he met Tommy Johnstone. South City Midnight Lady, Natural Thing and Clear As the Driven Snow are all beautifully picked songs that would grace any modern folk album. This was way ahead of anything the Eagles did a year later (snore, snore). And of course the Doobs could rock out big time. Without You and Evil Woman and pretty heavy (man!) but still retain the melody and harmony that made the Doobs famous.

Its now over 35 years since I heard TCAM. I still play the album regularly. Its like an old friend, but it never bores. Why? Because the songs are so good - the ain't a mediocre one amongst them. So if you want an album that sums up a Brit's view of the America of the Californian highways & byways - then this is THE ONE to get. Forget the Eagles. Oh - and make it the Japanese remaster - the sound and packaging is top notch - including the old "tree lined driveway" motif of the early Warner Brothers albums.
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on 25 July 2004
I stumbled accross the Doobie Brothers almost accidentally, but by buying this album made one of my shrewdest ever purchases. Essentially the Doobie Brothers are what would seem to be an obscure mix of rock, blues, country and gospel, yet although this album showcases all of those influences, it presents a more rock orientated Doobies. Every song is simply a classic, lingering long in the memory. The opener "Natural Thing" has a definite soul tinge, but is a fantastic song. "Long Train Runnin'" and "China Grove" are both classic songs and both perenial favourites with bar bands everywhere. However my personal favourite tracks are the ballad "Dark Eyed Cajun Woman," the awesome rocker "Without You" and the gospel/country/rock track "Ukiah."
Overall "The Captain and Me" is one album which should feature in every true music fan's collection. No matter what genere of music you believe you like, buy this album, you will not regret it. This is simply classic rock and in my opinion one of the greatest albums in rock history. Ignore the compilations available, this album has all the Doobie Brothers material you would ever want.
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on 18 September 2007
Generally regarded as the best of the Tom Johnston era albums (or the best, period, depending how you feel about Mr McDonald). 'The Captain & Me' shows the Doobies at their most versatile. The original CD issues of all the Doobie Brothers albums were notorious for their flat, lifeless sound. Not any more: These meticulously prepared Japanese editions are a feast for the eyes and ears - the attention to detail is astounding. It's been long overdue but well worth the wait. Doobie fans should aquire without delay.
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on 9 June 2010
For those who thought that the 70's began with Led Zeppelin and ended with the BeeGees are only really telling half the story. I thought I knew the classic albums of this brilliant and innovative decade but I was wrong. I knew a little about the Doobie Brothers and their smash hits 'Listen To The Music' and 'Long Train Running' but I wasn't prepared to be blown away by this album... it's all here! A venture into heavy rock, funk, blues, folk and country, blended perfectly together. For those of you who know Michael McDonald as the Doobie Brothers frontman I ask you to listen to their pre-McDonald work. Tom Johnston's and Patrick Simmons' vocals work perfectly together and take turns to sing lead vocals, more often Johnston taking the more upbeat numbers and Simmons the ballads and folkier tracks. Their complimentary vocal styles are not dissimilar to Supertramp's Hodgson and Davies.

For anyone who hasn't heard the Doobie Brothers, start here and move on to 'What Once Were Vices Are Now Habits'. For those who think they know the Doobie Brothers and haven't got this gem, you're missing out on their masterpiece.
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on 14 June 2008
First had this on vinyl when it came out in 1973. I loved it for the great songs, and the fantastic production (courtesy of Ted Templeman). Now have it on CD and it sounds just as fresh.

Each track seems to jump out at you. Loads of ringing acoustic guitars, rocking electric solos that stay well this side of over-indulgence,very sympathetic use of the synthesiser (and you don't read that statement very often!), and great harmonies . Ideal for those sunny days when you just want to open the windows, turn the hi-fi up, and have 40-odd minutes of fun, and maybe play a little air geetar!!

Stand-out tracks for me? Apart from the hits, I love "Without You" and "Ukiah". And "South City Midnight Lady", may sound like the sloppiest song title, but don't let that put you off, it's a classic. And I wish that "Busted Down Around O'Connelly Corners" lasted longer than it takes to read out the title!

But that old cliche is actually true in relation to this album ~ Not a weak track.

Great cover too - Buy with confidence!!
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on 28 April 2003
This year celebrates TCAM's 30th anniversary. It still remains as fresh as it did when I first heard it played, all those years ago. Back then you couldn't get away from the album's music. At the time the big thing was pub music. The mark of a great album or music was if the plethora of bands that were around covered the music, either in part or in total: 'Long Train Runnin' and 'China Grove'must have been covered by almost all of the decent ones, certainly where I lived. So the Doobies were in your face all the time; no complaints from me! The music's a great mixture of good solid rock, soft rock, country influences and ballads. As an old rocker my personal favourites are'China Grove', 'Without You' and 'Evil Woman'. The album is far and away the best they did as a unit; nothing else came close, unfortunately, but then, maybe you can't improve on perfection!
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on 5 October 2009
Its very difficult to make a statement my favourite album but this is it.It annoys me that the Michael McDonald era is in some peoples eyes the Doobie Bros but the Tom Johnston and Pat Simmons era is the real Doobies.This album has it all. The riff on China Grove is IMHO the "catchiest". South City midnight lady is such a soft peacful easy song that just melts you away after the song which no doubt has one of the greatest drum breaks, "Without you". Clear driven snow is so different but sums up the versatility of the band that you'll wonder why you'd missed this album.Get it and see them live.If you excuse the pun this would be the most "Natural Thing" you've ever done!!
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on 28 July 2013
I started playing this record seriously loud at dances more than 35 years ago.

Listening to the CD now, albeit at a softer volume, it certainly retains its
magic and ability to energize. The Doobies could play in many musical styles
and this was a huge part of their appeal.

They were inundated over the years with virtuosity from members that had
technical skill, musicality and many could sing too. Maybe too many, since
singing opportunities were too few for some.

While I like the era with Michael McDonald on keyboards and vocals, this CD
showcases some of the Doobie Brothers best earlier work. While the tracks are
few, each stands alone to provide a memorable musical experience. I highly
recommend anyone interested in Folk / Rock music to purchase this.
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