Horses (album)

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Horses is the debut album by American musician Patti Smith, released in 1975 on Arista Records. The record was a key factor and major influence on the New York punk rock scene.

A member of the Mercer Arts Center crowd and a friend of Richard Hell, Patti Smith came to CBGB for the first time to see The Neon Boys perform. A veteran of independent theater and performance poetry, Smith was developing an intellectual, feminist take on rock 'n' roll when she released Horses.[citation needed]

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Inspiration

At the time she recorded Horses, Patti Smith and her band were favorites in the New York club scene along with Blondie and The Ramones.[citation needed] The former's influence can be best heard in the track "Gloria", a radical retake on the Them garage rock classic. "Birdland"'s music, in particular, owed more to the jazz music which Smith's mother enjoyed than to the influence of punk. When recording this song, which was improvised by the band in Electric Lady Studios, Smith has said she imagined the spirit of Hendrix watching her. The lyrics of "Birdland" are based upon A Book of Dreams, a 1973 memoir of Wilhelm Reich by his son Peter. Several of the album's songs—"Redondo Beach", "Free Money", "Kimberly"—were inspired by moments with members of Smith's family, while others—"Break It Up", "Elegie"—were written about her idols. "Land" was already a live favorite and featured the first verse of Chris Kenner's "Land of a Thousand Dances" and contains a tribute to her long-time idol Arthur Rimbaud."[1] Guest musicians included Tom Verlaine of Television and Allen Lanier of Blue Öyster Cult.

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