Rock Ballad

Album: Just A Story From America (1977)
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Songfacts®:

  • "Rock Ballad" is Elliott Murphy's paean to the slow ballads he grew up listening to. In an interview with Songfacts, he specifically mentioned "Try A Little Tenderness" by Otis Redding and "Theme From A Summer Place" by Percy Faith.

    "These rock ballads would transport me to a place of teenage romanticism that I only wish I could return to today," Murphy said.
  • New York Dolls frontman David Johansen loved the song but didn't like the title. Murphy agreed with him on the title, but he also couldn't think of anything else, so it remained "Rock Ballad."
  • Despite the generic title, "Rock Ballad" has some beautiful lyrics. Lines like "You could hear crystal stars as they'd glisten" and "we all kept our cool like a hustler shoots pool" are anything but generic.

    In his interview for the Murphy documentary The Second Act of Elliot Murphy, Bruce Springsteen mentioned this song as being one of Murphy's best.

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