Blondie: Deborah Harry (vocals); Chris Stein (guitar, bass, vibraphone); James Destri (piano, organ, synthesizer, background vocals); Frank Infante (bass, background vocals); Clem Burke (drums, background vocals).
Additional personnel: Howard Kaylan, Mark Volman (vocals); Jimmie Haskill (arranger); Wa Wa Watson (guitar); Tom Scott (saxophone); Steve Goldstein (piano, synthesizer); Ray Brown (bass); Scott Lesser, Ollie Brown, Emil Richards, Alex Acuna (percussion); B-Girls (background vocals).
Producer: Mike Chapman.
Reissue producer: Kevin Flaherty.
Recorded at United Western Studio, Hollywood, California in December 1980. Originally released on Chrysalis (1290). Includes liner notes by Mike Chapman.
All tracks have been digitally remastered using 24-bit technology.
Blondie's penultimate album before their breakup, 1981's AUTOAMERICAN is a fine collection of diverse, slickly-produced pop songs, featuring the all-pervasive "Rapture." It's difficult to explain just how omnipresent this song was on Top 40 radio in 1981--only Kim Carnes' "Bette Davis Eyes" and the "Stars on 45" medley had more airplay--or how enormous its cultural impact.
Before "Rapture," rap was little known outside of New York City's outer boroughs, but Debbie Harry's rap, namechecking scene legends Fab Five Freddy and Grandmaster Flash (alongside '60s film auteur Francois Truffaut, for the downtown hipsters), brought the style worldwide. The rap was so groundbreaking that it's easy to forget that the first three minutes of the song, where Harry coos luxuriantly over a slinky bass groove, is some of Blondie's best work, as is the rest of the album.