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Saturday, December 8, 2012

Gold Record - Jerry King

I Love Paris
Gold Record
Jerry King And His Orchestra
Diplomat 2225

Even though the cover is cheesecake gold, this album may look like a budget LP to be left behind in the discount bin. However, there are a few space age vinyl nuggets to be mined including the sample above.

Love Walked In
Wish You Were Here
You, You, You
Young At Heart
Walking My Baby Back Home
I'm Yours
No Other Love
I Love Paris
P.S. I Love You
How Do You Speak To An Angel

Famous Film Favorites - Musical Comedy Songs - Bettie Page Cover

Famous Film Favorites
Russ Case And His Orchestra
Rondo-lette Record Corporation 874

That is the fabulous Bettie Page gracing the cover.

I had trouble finding this catalog number online. The number doesn't fit into any of the available numbered series that I can find. Anyway, from what I can tell this is a late 50s release. In 1959 Page converted to evangelical Christianity and went on to work for Billy Graham.

The music is very straight-laced orchestrated stuff. I found that one of the tracks, Stradivarius, may have come from Case's album Gypsy Moods, 1955.
You're The Top
The Best Musical Comedy Songs
The Broadway Singers And Orchestra
Halo 50245

I don't "improve" my cover scans so that you can best example of the original cover that I can provide. So, as you can see in this instance, this Halo cover is the better example of the image if you were looking for a copy.

Much of the music is off-the-shelf broadway type stuff. I'm not sure what Halo meant by "comedy"...

Friday, December 7, 2012

The Magic Islands Revisited - Axel Stordahl

Return To The Magic Islands
The Magic Islands Revisited
Axel Stordahl
Decca Records DL 79096

This is an industrial strength effort by Decca to cash in on period exotic music trends. The gate-fold jacket, very expensive to produce, features a die-cut cover (the window through which you see the model's face). That whiz-bang is follow by a lushly printed 10 page full color insert that is bound to the cover.

The music plays through, to my ear, as a mixed bag of various period styles. The presentation is pleasant for the most part, but some elements, at moments, may seem out of place. The sample comes from the first part of side two (tracks tend to blend together).

Return To Paradise
E Naughty Mai Nei
Paradise
The Hukilau Song
My Tani
Forevermore
Return To The Magic Islands
Frangipani Blossom
I Will Always Love You
Song Of Old Tahiti
The Bamboo Is Bending
Farewell

Lush, Latin & Lovely - Tony Mottola

Sunny
Lush, Latin & Lovely
Tony Mottola
Enoch Light Presents Mottola Espagnol!
Total Sound Stereo Project 3
PR5020SD
1967

Cover art by Hilary Knight.

This is an outstanding Mottola album. Mottola is in excellent form as he plays through this bouncy light pop set of "Latin" accented standards.

The engineering is amazing... as the bass line in the example above demonstrates.

Can't Take My Eyes Off Of You
Free Again
The Girl Next Door
A Man And A Woman
Sunny
The Flower Road

Somethin' Stupid
I Will Wait For You
Lush And Lovely
How Insensitive
I Cover The Waterfront
Guantanamera

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Tony Mottola Joins The Guitar Underground

Tony Mottola Joins The Guitar Underground
Enoch Light Presents
Producer: Enoch Light
Arrangements: Tony Mottola
Project 3 Total Sound Stereo
PR/50353SD
1969

This one is available online for purchase/download so I will not be posting a sample. Sorry!

From the back cover: It's all here. The sounds, the styles, the songs that mean Today. Wrapped in one gorgeous package. The new, different instrumental sound that identifies the fabulous "Guitar Underground." The world-famous artistry of Tony Mottola. And the songs that make that excitement in today's music.

I can't say that Tony explored the "guitar underground" before he recorded this album. This is one of those albums a teen might have bought in the hopes that he/she was going to experience something more... well... more "today". However, the vibe is a nice extension of the Command Record/Enoch Light's 60s light pop sound. And there are a number of groovy tracks on album to enjoy including the last track found on the B side titled Guitar Underground.

For a wild Mottla track, check out Guitar U.S.A.

Explorer - A Totally New Electronic Musical Instrument In Recording

Mr. Bach Meets Batman
Explorer
A Totally New Electronic Musical Instrument In Recording
Tom Hazleton and Gene Ciszek
1967

Here we have a fun promotional LP created by Rocky Mount Instruments (Subsidiary of Allen Organ Company) to help market The Explorer II.

From the back cover: Explorer II is a new musical instrument weighing approximately 85 lbs. While this instrument physically resembles some of the so-called combo organs which have appeared on the market in recent years, it is really not an organ. When a key is depressed, electronic circuits are actuated in the manner of an electronic organ. However, when you hear Explorer perform, you will know that it is a different "breed of cat".

Not to take away from any historical importance that organ collectors may embrace, this album features substandard engineering and a collection of light pop tunes presented in a cheesy lounge fashion due to the limitations of the organ/drum duo and, frankly, the thin stabbing sound of the Explorer. Unintended as it may be, the results still make for a great collectible lounge album.

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Hawaiian Holiday - Dick Contino

Quite Village
Hawaiian Holiday
Dick Contino
Mercury Records MG 20753
1963

This is a very good light space age pop album released to take advantage of period exotic music trends. Apparently David Carroll, Mercury Recording Director, arranged the songs. Carroll was an excellent arranger who recorded a number of excellent space age albums. Check out Percussion In Hi-Fi.

For another Contino sample (and great cover art) check out: An Accordion In Paris.

Love Song From Mutiny On The Bounty
Sweet Leilani
Diamond Head
Hawaiian War Chant
Blue Hawaii
Farewell
The Hukilau Song
Hawaiian Wedding Song
Tropical
My Little Grass Shack
Quiet Village
Aloha Oe

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Just Some Of Those Songs Mrs. Robinson - King Richard's Fluegel Knights

Scarborough Fair
Young Girl
Just some Of Those Songs Mrs. Robinson
King Richard's Fluegel Kights
Music Director Dick Behrke
Produced By Bob Tompson
MTA Records MTS 5011
1968

Here's another King Richard (Dick Behrke) album issued the year after his MTA release - Something Super!

This is another fine brass based light pop effort featuring unique arrangements and very good engineering.

The jacket is an elaborate gate fold featuring an obscure visual play on, what looks to me, period soundtrack album design which strikes me as not such great marketing for this terrific collection of tunes.

Like To Get To Know You
By The Time I Get To Phoenix
San Jose
Scarborough Fair
Turnabout
Something Classic
Young Girl
Trains, Boats And Planes
Gentle On My Mind
I Will
Mrs. Robinson

Jivin' The Vibes - Lionel Hampton

Jivin' The Vibes
Lionel Hampton And His Orchestra
RCA Camden CAL-402
1957

Tracks are found online for purchase/download, so I won't be posting an example here.

From the back cover: "I'll (Hampton) tell you where the beat comes from," he told an interviewer several years ago. "Ever heard a revival meeting? Vibrations goes around and gets into everybody. In Little Rock, Arkansas – I went to one. There was a trumpet, a tambourine and a piano. The pastor of the church, he danced all around the congregation. Started at 8:30 and at 10:30 everybody was going in unison and then – I was dancing with 'em. "On the stage it's all spiritual too. You feel that beat in your soul and the audience – just like a looking glass. The audience has to reflect that beat."

This is a collection of Hampton recordings from 1937 - 1939.

Side one

I Know That You Know
Drum Stomp
Muskrat Ramble
Baby, Won't You Please Come Home
Piano Stomp
Jivin' The Vibes

Side two

High Society
It Don't Mean A Thing
Shoe Shiners Drag
I'm In The Mood For Swing
The Object Of My Affections
Buzzin' 'Round With The Bee

Dance Tempo Cha Cha Cha - Manuel Rivera

Woke Up This Morning
Dance Tempo Cha Cha Cha
Manuel Rivera And His Orchestra
Crown Records CLP 5138
1959

Great cover and peppy Latin tracks.

Esperanza
Marcheta
Shine On Harvest Moon
Ida
Chop Sticks
You Know I Love You
The Girl In My Dreams
Woke Up This Morning
Cherry Pie
Eddie My Love

Charly - Ravi Shankar

Charly Theme
Charly
Music By Ravi Shankar
World Pacific/Liberty
WPS-21454
1968

From the jacket notes: There are many creative, imaginative and experienced composers in Hollywood. I (Ralph Nelson - Director and Producer) was determined that "Charly" needed a unique sound for this unique motion picture. Before the surge of publicity which made the musician Ravi Shankar the idol of the avant-garde, I played his "Variations On A Theme From Pather Panchali," film I had admired. The sounds were melodic, but more, they were haunting; they had the quality and inspiration which I believe essential to the scoring of my picture. Ravi Shankar was my man.

Nice listen which plays through, not so much like an avant grade work, but not like your standard sound track. The listen is more like an engaging concept album.

Main Title
Charly Theme
Scenic Tour
Improvisation On Charly Theme – The Man – Triumph In The Bakery
Termoil
Reprise
Love Montage
Variations On Love Theme
Self Pursuit
Love Theme Transformation
Charly Theme And Resolution