Honkin' on Bobo

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Honkin' on Bobo
Aerosmith - Honkin' On Bobo.JPG
Studio album by Aerosmith
Released March 30, 2004 (2004-03-30)
Recorded 2003 at the Boneyard, the Bryer Patch, Pandora's Box
Length 43:57
Label Columbia
Producer Steven Tyler
Joe Perry
Jack Douglas
Marti Frederiksen
Aerosmith chronology
Just Push Play
Honkin' on Bobo
Music from Another Dimension!
Singles from Honkin' on Bobo
  1. "Baby, Please Don't Go"
    Released: 2004

Honkin' on Bobo is the 14th studio album by American rock band Aerosmith, released on March 30, 2004 by Columbia Records.[1]

The album includes 11 covers of blues songs from the 1950s and 1960s, with one new song, "The Grind". The album pays tribute to Aerosmith's earliest influences and showcases a rawer sound, reminiscent of their 1970s work, when compared to their more recent commercial efforts. Honkin' on Bobo was produced by Jack Douglas, who was Aerosmith's producer on a vast majority of their 1970s' output.

The album sold over 160,000 copies in its first week, reaching number five on the Billboard 200.[2] Honkin' on Bobo was certified gold by the Recording Industry Association of America on May 11, 2004.[3]


Honkin' On Bobo was recorded in Joe Perry's ranch near Boston, with the band only playing only when they were in a good mood, as according to Perry, "We wanted to do something we haven't done before and that excites us. That's what makes us want to do another record. Otherwise, we'd say, 'OK, we've done everything we can do, so why bother even going in again?’." The album title was suggested by Steven Tyler, who heard the phrase somewhere and the band found it funny.[4] Perry also stated during a radio interview that "We just know that it's a phrase that sounds... jazzish, nastyish, so it works for us."[5] It may also be a reference to the early 90s single, "Honk On Bobo", by Canadian country/bluegrass/folk music group, The Good Brothers.

Many tracks on the album feature harmonica work by Tyler, including Little Walter's "Temperature" which was played on an episode of the House of Blues Radio Hour which was about the harmonica.[6] A harmonica keychain was included with the limited edition version.[1]


Professional ratings
Aggregate scores
Source Rating
Metacritic 69/100[7]
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 3.5/5 stars[8]
Blender 3/5 stars[9]
Entertainment Weekly B−[10]
Rolling Stone 4/5 stars[11]
USA Today 3/4 stars[12]

Metacritic gave the album a score of 69 out of 100 based on 12 generally favorable reviews.[7] Stephen Thomas Erlewine of Allmusic said that the album is the best the band has done since Pump in 1989, and that it cannot be called a "blues" album because it is a rock album. He called the album a "surprise" in that, even though the album's artwork and title are bad, it marks a return to Aerosmith.[8] In his Blender magazine review of the album, Jon Pareles said that the band did their blues album different than most others because, instead of making "respectable" cover versions, they make quite unrespectable cover versions like "You Gotta Move". The album, to him, proves that Aerosmith can still rock.[9] Chris Willman of Entertainment Weekly felt that the album didn't live up to what it should be because it is too loud, but some songs on the album are good.[10]

David Fricke of Rolling Stone magazine wrote an article for the magazine comparing and contrasting Aerosmith's Honkin' on Bobo and Eric Clapton's Me and Mr. Johnson which also explored blues influences. He said that Clapton's album was mostly about pain, while Aerosmith's album was about sex and running away from lovers. He also considers Bobo to be a double-tribute album – one tribute to the original musicians and one tribute for 1960s blues-rock bands – and considers the album to be overdone, which is what Aerosmith is good at.[11]

Track listing


Side one
No. Title Writer(s) Length
1. "Road Runner" (Bo Diddley cover) Ellas McDaniel a.k.a. Bo Diddley 3:46
2. "Shame, Shame, Shame" (Originally sung by Smiley Lewis) Ruby Fisher, Kenyon Hopkins 2:15
3. "Eyesight to the Blind" (Sonny Boy Williamson II cover) Sonny Boy Williamson II 3:09
4. "Baby, Please Don't Go" (Big Joe Williams cover) Joe Williams 3:24
5. "Never Loved a Girl" (Aretha Franklin cover) Ronny Shannon 3:12
6. "Back Back Train" (Mississippi Fred McDowell cover) Fred McDowell 4:23
Side two
No. Title Writer(s) Length
7. "You Gotta Move" (Mississippi Fred McDowell cover) Rev. Gary Davis, Fred McDowell 5:30
8. "The Grind" Steven Tyler, Joe Perry, Marti Frederiksen 3:46
9. "I'm Ready" (Muddy Waters cover) Willie Dixon 4:13
10. "Temperature" (Little Walter cover) Joel Michael Cohen, Walter Jacobs 2:52
11. "Stop Messin' Around" (Fleetwood Mac cover) Clifford Adams, Peter Green 4:29
12. "Jesus is on the Main Line" (Mississippi Fred McDowell cover) (Traditional, arr. by F. McDowell) 2:51


Per liner notes[13]

  • Steven Tyler – lead vocals, harmonica, piano on "Never Loved a Girl", backing vocals on "Stop Messin' Around", percussion, production
  • Joe Perry – lead guitar, backing vocals, lead vocals on "Back Back Train" and "Stop Messin' Around", production
  • Brad Whitford – rhythm and lead guitar
  • Tom Hamilton – bass guitar
  • Joey Kramer – drums

Additional musicians




Chart (2004) Peak
Australian Top 100 Albums[14] 59
Austrian Top 75 Albums[15] 22
Belgium (Wallonia) 100 Albums[16] 44
Canadian Albums Chart[17] 5
Finnish Top 40 Albums[18] 35
French Top 200 Albums[19] 52
German Albums Chart[20] 32
Irish Top 75 Albums[21] 60
Japanese Top 30 Albums[22] 6
Netherlands Top 100 Albums[23] 64
Swedish Top 60 Albums[24] 38
Swiss Top 100 Albums[25] 17
UK Albums Chart[26] 28
US Billboard 200[27] 5
US Blues Albums[28] 1


Year Title Peak chart positions
U.S. Rock
U.S. Main
2004 "Baby, Please Don't Go" 7
"—" denotes releases that did not chart


Organization Level Date
RIAJ - Japan Gold[37] April 10, 2004
RIAA - USA Gold May 11, 2004


  1. ^ a b Stephen Thomas Erlewine. "Honkin' on Bobo - Aerosmith : Overview". Allmusic. United States: Rovi Corporation. Retrieved November 30, 2010.
  2. ^ "Aerosmith Bask in the Blues". Retrieved May 24, 2014.
  3. ^ "RIAA Gold & Platinum Search Results". RIAA. Archived from the original on September 8, 2012. Retrieved November 30, 2010.
  5. ^ Aerosmith - Making of Honkin' On Bobo Pt. 1 on YouTube
  6. ^ [1] Archived October 1, 2011, at the Wayback Machine.
  7. ^ a b "Honkin' On Bobo Reviews, Ratings, Credits, and More at Metacritic". Metacritic. Retrieved May 15, 2012.
  8. ^ a b Stephen Thomas Erlewine. "Review : Honkin' on Bobo". Allmusic. United States: Rovi Corporation. Retrieved November 30, 2010.
  9. ^ a b Pareles, Jon. "Review : Honkin' on Bobo". Blender.com. United States: Alpha Media Group. Retrieved November 30, 2010. [dead link]
  10. ^ a b Willman, Chris (April 2, 2004). "Review : Honkin' on Bobo". Entertainment Weekly.com.
  11. ^ a b Fricke, David (April 15, 2004). "Review : Honkin' on Bobo". Rolling Stone.
  12. ^ Edna Gundersen (March 29, 2004). "Clapton, Aerosmith dabble in the blues". USA Today. Gannett Company.
  13. ^ a b Honkin' On Bobo (Media notes). Aerosmith. United States: Columbia Records. 2004. CK 87025.
  14. ^ "The ARIA Report (Issue 737)" (PDF). Australian Recording Industry Association. Pandora Archive. p. 5. Retrieved August 8, 2011.
  15. ^ "Aerosmith – Honkin' on Bobo (Album)". Austrian Charts (in German). Hung Medien. Archived from the original (ASP) on November 8, 2012. Retrieved August 8, 2011.
  16. ^ "Aerosmith – Honkin' on Bobo (Album)" (ASP). Ultratop (in French). Hung Medien. Retrieved August 8, 2011.
  17. ^ "Aerosmith Album & Song Chart History: Canadian Albums". Billboard. Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved August 8, 2011.
  18. ^ "Aerosmith – Honkin' on Bobo (Album)". Finnish Charts. Hung Medien. Archived from the original (ASP) on November 9, 2012. Retrieved August 8, 2011.
  19. ^ "Aerosmith – Honkin' on Bobo (Album)" (ASP). Les Charts (in French). Hung Medien. Retrieved August 8, 2011.
  20. ^ "Chartverfolgung / AEROSMITH / Longplay". Music Line (in German). Media Control Charts. Archived from the original on 2012-08-16. Retrieved August 8, 2011.
  21. ^ "Top 75 Artist Album, Week Ending April 1, 2004" (JSP). GfK Chart-Track. Retrieved August 8, 2011.
  22. ^ 2004年04月第2週の邦楽アルバムランキング情報 (PHP). Oricon Style (in Japanese). Retrieved August 8, 2011.
  23. ^ "Aerosmith – Honkin' on Bobo (Album)". Dutch Charts (in Dutch). Hung Medien. Archived from the original (ASP) on November 6, 2012. Retrieved August 8, 2011.
  24. ^ "Aerosmith – Honkin' on Bobo (Album)" (ASP). Swedish Charts. Hung Medien. Retrieved August 8, 2011.
  25. ^ "Aerosmith – Honkin' on Bobo". Swiss Charts. Hung Medien. Archived from the original (ASP) on November 14, 2012. Retrieved August 8, 2011.
  26. ^ "Chart Archive: Top 40 Official UK Albums Archive – April 10th, 2004". The Official Charts Company. Archived from the original on February 4, 2013. Retrieved August 8, 2011.
  27. ^ "Aerosmith Album & Song Chart History: Billboard 200". Billboard. Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved August 8, 2011.
  28. ^ "Aerosmith Album & Song Chart History: Blues Albums". Billboard. Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved August 8, 2011.
  29. ^ a b c "Aerosmith - Awards". AllMusic. Retrieved 2012-06-26.
  30. ^ Australian peaks Archived 2015-12-02 at the Wayback Machine.
  31. ^ Austrian peaks Archived 2015-04-02 at the Wayback Machine.
  32. ^ Canadian peaks
  33. ^ German peaks
  34. ^ Dutch peaks
  35. ^ Swiss peaks Archived 2016-01-07 at the Wayback Machine.
  36. ^ Roberts, David (2006). British Hit Singles & Albums (19th ed.). London: Guinness World Records Limited. p. 157. ISBN 1-904994-10-5.
  37. ^ ゴールド等認定作品一覧 2004年3月. RIAJ (in Japanese). 2004-04-10. Retrieved 2010-11-13.

External links

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