Album credits used to be simple: who played what, who produced which cuts, who took the cover photo. No longer. As demonstrated by the reams of names on Paula Abdul's Spellbound, pop stars now take up inordinate amounts of space on their albums listing anyone who has helped them in their careers, from childhood buddies to any company that ever lent them a guitar. For proof, we offer the following recent bursts of appreciation:
The Kentucky HeadHunters
Total Thanks: 468 (including 120 family and friends, plus the "United States Armed Forces")
Instrument Companies and Stores Thanked: 24
Acronyms Thanked: VH-1, TNN, ACM, ASCAP, BMI, CMA, AMOA, CMT, KBA, FFA, NARAS
Times God Is Thanked: 1 ("We feel this is a God-driven project and we'd like to thank our driver.")
Requisite Mysterious Mention: ''Special thanks to American Indian Tribes''
The Reality of My Surroundings
Total Thanks: 313
Times God Is Thanked: 5 although in one case the Supreme Being gets lower billing than funk-trash bands Jane's Addiction and the Red Hot Chili Peppers
Requisite Mysterious Mentions: Actors John Cusack and Tim Robbins and the ''loyal order of water buffalo''
Total Thanks: 282
Musical Instrument Company Logos Reproduced in Credits: 7
Times God Is Thanked: 0
Requisite Mysterious Mentions: Actress Christina Applegate and ''all the dudes at Oak Park & Oaklawn Harley-Davidson''
Total Thanks: 153
Outside Corporations Cited: L.A. Gear, MTV, VH-1, Diet Coke
Celebrities/Musicians Thanked: Gene Kelly (''How exciting it has been, getting to know you!''), Elton John, Prince (''You are truly a legend'')
Uses of the Phrase ''I Love You'': 26
Requisite Mysterious Mention: ''Woog: You are the King Chili-Cheese Geek!''