Review Revue: Richard Peterson’s First Album

As you might have noticed, the pictures I gathered on my most recent visit to the KEXP stacks were exclusively from the local section, and I feel like I’ve been learning a lot of our fair city’s history that simply living here for 12+ years has not been enough to absorb. Case in point: Somehow I’ve gotten this far in my life as a Seattleite without having heard of the musical phenomenon known as Richard Peterson. Peterson playing his trumpet on the street was a regular sight around sporting events in this city for decades, until he retired from busking just a few months ago to focus on playing the piano indoors. Not having witnessed Richard Peterson playing his trumpet outdoors, can I ever call myself a true Seattleite?

The charm of Peterson’s 1982 debut’s cover, including the artist’s hand-written notes on it (“TO RADIO STATION KCMU-FM FROM RICHARD PETERSON. PLEASE ‘AIR’ PLAY ME AT TIMES, THANK YOU!”), combined with the KCMU DJs’ unanimous adulation, just warmed the cockles of my heart. Now I have to go back to the station and listen to this thing, as I don’t know where else I can find a copy.

“An organically conceived masterpiece, unmarred by even one bad cut. Side 2 is a classic.”

“Incredible!”

“A trusting record. Play it!!”

“THE BEST ALBUM AT THE STATION. **** EVEN AUTOGRAPHED.”

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