Andrew Gold left a significant musical legacy when he died in 2011 — his own work as well as collaborations with and contributions for Linda Ronstadt, Art Garfunkel, Cher, Trisha Yearwood and scores more. There’s also the TV theme songs for The Golden Girls and Mad About You and, more recently, “Spooky Scary Skeletons,” which became the soundtrack for a TikTok viral dance craze.
But Gold also left behind a batch of unreleased recordings, 16 of which are collected on Something New: Unreleased Gold, whose rocking title track is premiering exclusively below.
The project was helmed by Gold’s widow Leslie Kogan, who during the past nine years has been digging through “hundreds and hundreds of songs” on DAT, computer hard drives, multi-track tapes and other media. In sonic spelunking Kogan discovered a collection dubbed 1973 Demos, which contained unreleased recordings that were done while he was still part of Ronstadt’s band and preceded Gold’s self-titled 1975 debut album.
“We figured these probably got him his record deal,” says Kogan, who put Something New together with Omnivore Records co-founder Brad Rosenberger, a “huge” Gold fan who saw him perform twice at the Roxy in Los Angeles. “A few landed on his first album in different form, and as he went on to do other things, different record deals and wrote so many more songs after this, along the way he probably forgot about some of these tracks. So it was very exciting when Brad wanted to do this.”
The ’73 sessions were produced by Chuck Plotkin (Bruce Springsteen, Bob Dylan, the Cowsills) and recorded both solo and with a band of some of his regular musical cohorts in L.A. “He was so young, in his early twenties, when he did these songs,” Kogan notes. “It really shows his magnificent songwriting ability so early on, and also the influence of the Beatles, which you can hear throughout his career. These songs are so happy and wonderful. He was so full of music that there was no question he was going to have this illustrious effect on musical history.”
Gold, who suffered a fatal heart attack in June of 2011 at the age of 59, hit the Billboard 200 with his first three solo albums, released between 1975-78, and had a Billboard Hot 100 top 10 hit with “Lonely Boy” in 1977. He also produced recordings by Celine Dion and Vince Gill and formed the band Bryndle with Karla Bonoff, Wendy Waldman and Kenny Edwards.
Something New — due out April 24 with liner notes by Peter Asher, and a gold (of course) vinyl edition coming out for Record Store Day in June — is the first of several posthumous projects Kogan has planned from Gold’s estate. There are more unreleased recordings as well as “many, many unfinished songs — from just a lyric to a track with some melody” — that she may farm out to other artists to finish. A documentary is in its early stages, as is a stage musical that Kogan calls “a mother-son story.” An upcoming European box set is due later this year, encompassing Gold’s first four albums with bonus tracks along with an unreleased concert from an opening stint for Ronstadt.
“I feel his presence all the time,” Kogan says. “This was (Gold’s) greatest love, so, yes, I think he would be really overjoyed his music is living on, and I’m going to make sure it does.”