(1972 / 2003)

1. A Hit By Varese 4'51
2. All Is Well 3'44
3. Now That You've Gone 4'59
4. Dialogue
(Part One) 2'57
5. Dialogue
(Part Two) 4'12
6. While The City Sleeps 3'53
7. Saturday In The Park 3'54
8. State Of The Union 6'10
9. Goodbye 5'52
10. Alma Mater 3'47

Bonus Selection:

11. DIALOGUE (Live) 3'48

Recorded live at The AERIE CROWN THEATRE, Chicago (1972)

Total Time: 52:23

  • Robert Lamm - Keyboards, Vocals
  • Terry Kath - Guitar, Vocals
  • Peter Cetera - Bass, Vocals
  • Lee Loughnane - Trumpet, Percussion, Vocals
  • Danny Seraphine - Drums, Congas, Antique Bells
  • James Pankow - Trombone, Percussion
  • Walter Parazaider - Woodwinds, Percussion

    Produced by James William Guercio
    Engineered by Wayne Tarnowski
    Album Design: John Berg
    Woodcarving: Nick Fasciano
    Lettering: Beverly Scott

    Recorded & Mixed at COLUMBIA RECORDING STUDIOS, New York, NY (September 20-24, 27-29, 1971)


    DVD-Audio Credits:

    Surround Sound Remix Produced by John Kellogg

    Surround Sound Remix Engineered & Mixed by Paul Klingberg at
    Assistent Engineer: Cameron Marcarelli
    Mastered by Steve Hall at FUTUREDISC, Los Angeles, CA
    Authoring: Craig Anderson, Spencer Chrislu & David Dieckmann

    DVD-Audio Produced by Robin Hurley

    Executive Producer: Jeff Magid
    Art Direction: Maria Villar
    Design: Valerie Valera
    Additional Photo: Hugh Brown & MICHAELOCHSARCHIVES.COM
    Photo Research: Steven P. Gorman
    Screen Design: Andy Thomas for THOMAS & FRIENDS
    Screen Photos: Richard E. Aaron & Michael N. Marks
    Liner Notes Coordination: Tim Scanun
    Editorial Supervision: Cory Frye
    Project Assistance: Greg Allen, Ginger Dettman, April Milek, Ingrid K. Olson, Bob O'Neill, Steve Pokorny, Steve Woolard & Randy Perry

    The Producers of the Surround Sound Remix wish to thank KURZWEIL MUSIC SYSTEMS for the use of their KSP8 on this mix.

    Special Thanks:

    Emily Simon, Bob Emmer, Lynda Lou Bouch, Laurie Gorman, Malinda Ramirez, David Millman, Nina Avramides, Debbie Aronofski, Lisa Thomas & Steve Brumbach


    Howard Kaufman & Peter Schivarelli
    9200 Sunset Blvd., #530, Los Angeles, CA 90069

    Fan Information:

    CHICAGO Fan Club, CTA, P.O. Box 195, Landing, NJ 078S0

    Also, check out CHICAGO, now on DVD-Audio!

    For information on other DVD-Audio releases that are now available, please visit

    The pop music business was changing in ths early '70s. Singer-songwriters {James Taylor, Paul Simon, Joni Mitchell, Carole King) were beginning to populate the charts. Disco was on the horizon and moving quickly to the foreground. And FM radio was surpassing the AM format to became the outlet of choice for pop single promotion.
    It was in short, a time in which any artist wanting a lasting career in pop had to take a close look at the changes taking place. CHICAGO were no exception. In late 1971 the band members had to figure out how to follow the huge and to some extent unexpected success of the four-LP Chicago At Carnegie Hall
    Megasuccess in the music industry comes only to the privileged few. And it's probably safe to say that even among those who manage to cruise to the crest of the charts, the majority have a relatively brief, shooting-star ride. When CHICAGO began work on what would eventually become Chicago V, their first four albums had already been certified gold. A string of singles - Make Me Smile, 25 Or 6 To 4, Does Anybody Really Know What Time It Is ?, Beginnings, Colour My World, Where Do We Go From Here and Listen - had solidly affirmed the band's amazing capacity to produce hit songs. A group that had once played alternate nights at the WHISKY A GO-GO on Los Angeles' Sunset Strip had become one of the world's biggest live performance draws. That's megasuccess by anyone's definition-megasuccess with longevity, as well, even though it had all taken place over the course of a few brief years.
    But megasuccess is sometimes accompanied by more bittersweet demands. Successful artists often speak of the ambivalence they feel when an album or a single tops the charts: joy over the accomplishment, juxtaposed by the weariness in knowing that the mountain has to be climbed again, and that anything short of those heights will seem like failure. All of these factors were at play, and all had their impact - some consciously, some subconsciously - upon the development of Chicago V.
    The most noticeable difference, in comparison to the first four long-players, is that it was released as a single disc. Did its shorter length reflect an awareness of the changes taking place in radio ?
    "We certainly had a sense of this tidal-wave shift in radio", says keyboardist-singer-songwriter Robert Lamm, "and we were also aware of a growing resistance to playing longer cuts".
    Actually more than a "resistance", according to woodwind player Walt Parazaider, one of the seven - with Lamm, trombonist James Pankow, trumpeter Lee Loughnane, guitarist Terry Kath, drummer Danny Seraphine, and bassist-vocalist Peter Cetera - members of that CHICAGO lineup.
    "There was a great deal of editing done by the radio stations themselves, basically the FM stations", explains Parazaider. "People were just editing tunes off the albums, and it was a hard thing to swallow, that something we created would just be chopped up like that by someone who had nothing to do with it".
    Parazaider is undoubtedly correct about the deejays who were a little too free with razor blades and editing blocks. But it's also worth noting that both Chicago II and III had their share of shorter tunes, and, conversely, as Lamm points out, V had some fairly lengthy cuts of its own.
    "I don't think that - other than "Saturday In The Park" and maybe "All Is Well" - that there's anything else on Chicago V that was either considered short enough or appropriate enough for radio", says Lamm. "A Hit By Varese", "Goodbye", "State Of The Union" - all those songs are still kind of in the mold of lengthy cuts".
    There was another factor present, however, one that may not have specifically impacted Chicago's individual players, but which very likely affected the thinking of producer James William Guercio.
    "What happened", says Loughnane, "was that the music business was changing too. Around that time, the record companies decided to pay only ten copyrights per record".
    This meant that the practice - employed not only by Guercio but also by many other producers - of assigning titles to individual movements and sections of a tune, thereby earning copyright payments for each, had become confined to a maximum of ten songs.
    "So that was the situation", continues Loughnane. "Radio stations were only going to play 3½ to 4 minutes, anyway. And if we extended the songs and tried to name the movements the way we did on the first three albums, it wasn't going to work. It was only going to be one song, no matter how long it was".
    The band members all agree that even had they been aware of such financial subtleties, they wouldn't have approached the record any differently. And the truth is that the group's hectic schedule, overflowing with busy touring, left little time for anyone to ponder the complexities of the music business.
    But the most important factor impacting the creation of Chicago V may have been the most fundamental problem of all: The tremendous output of material required for the first three albums - for II and III especially - had taken a creative toll on the songwriters. "We were getting by", says Lamm, "just by the skin of our teeth in coming up with material".
    This summation is nowhere apparent in what leaps from the resulting grooves (and the bits and bytes) of Chicago V, Lamm wrote seven of its ten songs, including the enormously popular "Saturday In The Park", which revealed a versatility that affirmed his growing musical maturity.
    "I'm very proud of the fifth album", Lamm says, "because I was more aware of my role as a songwriter. I was finally beginning to learn how to make space and arrange the songs for the band, how to cast the vocalist for each song. I was definitely aware of continuing to write for the CHICAGO sound and style, but to write more from the point of view of song forms, rather than just creating space for the soloists to play freely".
    Perhaps because the record represented such a key developmental point, the group players remember the process, the manner in which some of Chicago V's songs came into being, in considerable detail. "A Hit By Varese", for example, may seem a puzzling title to those unfamiliar with the cutting-edge 20th-century French composer Edgard Varese. But Lamm had a specific allusion in mind when he wrote the song.
    "I first heard about him through Frank Zappa, who made a reference to Varese on, I think, the "Freak Out !" album", he says. "This was before CHICAGO had even recorded. Terry Kath, Lee, and I were sharing an apartment in CHICAGO, and we had these huge Voice of the Theatre speaker systems set up in one of the rooms.
    "Terry decided to find out who this Varese guy was, so we went and got a couple of LPs of his music and just listened to them for hours. It really kind of set us free in terms of what was possible musically. And so what I was trying to say in "A Hit By Varese" was, 'Wouldn't it be great if music this free could actually be accepted on radio - not just by the programmers, but by the people listening ?".
    "Saturday In The Park" emerged differently, a literally impressionistic recollection of MANHATTAN's CENTRAL PARK. The area around Bethesda Fountain has always been a gathering place; back in the '60s and 70s it was a weekend destination point for street musicians, bicyclists, joggers, hippies, and dog-walkers. The air was filled with sounds of guitars, bongos, congas, and voices.
    "Robert and I were rooming together in New York at Che time", recalls Parazaider. "He came back on the Fourth of July after having been in the lyrics. So I wrote it al! out, and then I went right back to sleep".
    The satisfaction that Lamm and the others felt about the collection was a reflection of an overall feeling that Chicago V demonstrated their ability to sate pop music's mercantile demands without sacrificing their creative beliefs. That proof came in the form of millions of devoted and new fans, who kept the album at the top of the Pop chart for nine weeks and embraced "Saturday In The Park" - a gold single - as one of the new decade's most memorable songs.
    Chicago V firmly established the band as an ensemble with the maturity to ably navigate the thorny passages of the music business. It also represented a vital developmental stage in what would prove be a long and colorful musical life. Because, largely as a result of the many musical and commercial circumstances associated with the record, the individual members were obliged to face questions that plague most people in their late twenties and early thirties: "Who are we ?" "What do we want from our lives ?" "Where do we go from here ?"
    "This album", says Pankow, "helped me to understand that the learning process continues your whole life. You listen to the masters, and you think, Jeez, these guys really have it figured out. But I've talked to some of the legends, to some of the incredibly brilliant minds out there, and what I've realized is that they're still learning too. And the best ones are learning the most. It keeps you going, and I like that. Because you're looking for that mystic chord all your life, and therein lies the challenge".

    - Don Heckman