This album was released when John was at the apex of his popularity, and the songs on this album served to continue his ride into the stratosphere. From the wry and yet poignant "I'd Rather Be A Cowboy" to the incredible smash hit "Farewell Andromeda", John Denver showcases his incredible talents here. Denver was instrumental in firmly fixing the younger generation's sights and sensibilities upon the outdoors in general and on environmental issues in particular, and he nearly single-handedly began the outdoor backpacking, hiking, and orienteering movements after popularizing the idea of a more close and intimate human relationship with mother nature. Therefore, more than a few of the young baby-boomers, like John, were more than ready for the kind of unconventional intimacy with nature he sang about so effortlessly and so elegantly. From "Zachary And Jennifer" to an evocative and almost ethereal "Rocky Mountain Suite'", Denver's songs soar in their description of the beauties of a simple and natural life and in being close to the "great wide-open'.
Denver also does an unusually good rendition of "Berkeley Woman", written by a friend but usually identified with Denver himself. He shows that even a sugary sweetheart like him can have some "colorful" thoughts about women. Indeed, the simple and well arranged acoustic blast of infectious energy and sweet simplicity that was John Denver is here in spades, whether it be in original songs like "Sweet Misery" or with covers of others' work, the kid who had adopted the majesty of Colorado for his setting and his inspiration sings simply, sentimentally, and superbly about the simple pleasures and undying verities of a homespun and simple life well lived. My special favorites here are "Berkeley Woman" and "I'd Rather be A Cowboy", and I always wondered why they weren't bigger hits for John. Hearing John sing in his youthful enthusiasm about what turns him on is still a rare treat. As with many of his albums, the message outlives the messenger. It has successfully weathered all the seasons since with its energy and beauty intact. I love this album, and I think you will too. Enjoy.