STEVE ALLEN

STEVE ALLEN – “HOW TO THINK” (196?)

Looking back at my days as a little kid, I was a record nerd even back then. My parents always had installed in my room a turntable, and would buy me piles of kids’ records for me to listen to at any time. Lots of Hanna-Barbera and Disney records, along with random other storytelling titles, blared through my speakers, but in addition to keeping me entertained, my mom and dad also occasionally realized that the record player could be an educational tool as well, and the title I most remember from my childhood being played over and over again in my room was Steve Allen’s “How To Think”: a guided tour through the different sections of the brain, and how they function. In addition, over the course of the album Allen lays down a series of Rules On How To Think, which, even to my adult ears, are pretty sound (how can you argue with stuff like “Use words carefully,” or “Look for the evidence”?)

What makes this album really special, though, are Allen’s original song compositions liberally sprinkled throughout. Whether it’s just a quaint little piece of incidental piano work, or a full-on number in the samba style all about the cerebellum, Allen’s music makes this a great trip, even for the most fucky of jaded fucks.

Steve Allen – “How To Think” LP (ZIP file)

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719 Responses to STEVE ALLEN

  1. Mr Fab says:

    This looks amazing, thanks. I never had kiddie records. I just borrowed by hippie big sister’s Beatles and Wings albums. I didn’t even really know there was such a thing as children’s music til years later.

    Steve Allen was very active in secular and skeptic circles, no doubt partly because his son joined some wacky cult and was hardly seen again.

  2. Stiev says:

    I had a massive download orgy from your site these days and want to thank you for all the fine stuff and let me say, that I highly appreciate your efforts!
    Please keep on doing such fine work!
    Stiev

  3. Phill says:

    This is pretty good. The reference to Mantan Moreland was kind of odd, though.

  4. Dio says:

    They probably don’t realise that this man is at the pinnacle of evolution, giving interest back to the people. Sending Energy out, loud and clear! Any avid fans of U2 cover there eyes. Today was the first time I heard Bono sing without wanting to throw myself from the window, he was alright in his younger years. So you can start a revolution, I got inspired man, you draw a great shadow when you’ve captured every breath of the Beefheart, or unleashed the tones of Byrne in his full live style. Cheers buddy!

  5. john stauffer says:

    Just wish this stuff was around when I was young, about 65 years ago. I found this around 1969-70 at Two Guys near Lancaster, PA. To this day, it is still my favorite recording, with strong compitition from “The Big Bopper’s” Greatest Hits!
    I met lots of adults who could benefit from learning and using these 9 rules, including myself!

  6. Bruce Day says:

    Crap! My daughter came home for a few days visit and while perusing her old kiddie albums asked If I’d put this one in her mp3 player. After a couple of hours cleaning 30 year old jelly from the vinyl, digitizing, normalizing, and declicking, I go to the web to find the date of issue only to find your rip already here and better. Funny there is no copyright date on the label or the cover and I see you had to guess.
    Seriously, good job and I hope you won’t mind your copy going on her Sansa Fuze.
    Thanks,
    BED

  7. joel says:

    This is so great that you did this! I listened to this probably more than any other album growing up as I went to sleep every night, and it’s stuck with me TOTALLY (the thalamus does/a marvelous thing/it sees objects move/and it hears bells ring)

    It’s great that you posted it because my old record is so scratched I can’t even convert it when it’s time for my kids to play it, but now I won’t have to worry about re-finding it! thank you!!!

  8. Chrissie says:

    This is so fabulous!! I was trying to fall asleep last night and had “The thalamus does a marvelous thing…” going through my head, and I though I must track down that childhood record whose songs have stayed with me for nearly 30 years.

    I teach psychology, so I’m going to have to find a way to use this in class… Thanks for the memories!

  9. mary sata- from Japan says:

    I had ‘how to think’ too. My sister and I both still know the songs by heart from our childhood with the record player in the 70s. My mom just sent me a cd for my kids that she had made from the album she still had lying around….Listening to it now I love it just as much. There are a few things that date it a bit but not enough to make it as hard to find as it is…..