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Saturday, January 4, 2014

Stereo Action Unlimited - Stereo Action

Jericho - Ray Martin and His Orchestra
Stereo Action Unlimited
RCA Victor LSA-2489
1961

I believe this "stereo action" features tracks cherry-picked from other albums in the series. The Ray Martin sample above is one of the standout tunes, although the set is good Atomic Age fare all the way through.

Flight Of The Bumble Bee - Ray Martin and His Orchestra
Did You Ever See A Dream Walking - Marty Gold and His Orchestra
Runnin' Wild - Dick Schory's Percussion and Brass Ensemble
And The Band Played On - Vic Schoen and His Orchestra
Dancing Tambourine - Leo Addeo and His Orchestra
Lonesome Road - The Chorus and Percussion of Keith Textor
Expresso - The Guitars Unlimited Plus 7
Kiss Of Fire - Bernie Green and His Orchestra
The 3rd Man Theme - Marty Gold and His Orchestra
Hernando's Hideaway - Dick Schory's Percussion and Brass Ensemble
Swanee River - Henri Rene and His Orchestra
Every Little Movement - Leo Addeo and His Orchestra
Jericho - Ray Martin and His Orchestra
Stompin' At The Savoy - Johnson Rag - Manny Albam and His Orchestra

Gypsy Moods - Bela Babai

Le Canari
Gypsy Moods
Bela Babai
King of the Gypsy Violin and his Orchestra
Epic LN 3363

From the back cover: Mr. Babai's interest in music, and in the violin particularly, was engendered when he was only four and was taken by his father to hear the great Joseph Szigeti in recital. The boy was so delighted that he begged his father for a violin, but at that age he could not manage a regular instrument, and his father procured a miniature instrument for him. With this beginning he practiced steadily and haunted the concert halls, listening to great artists and studying their techniques; this, in fact, was his only training. But by the time he was twelve, he was touring Europe as a prodigy, playing the haunting gypsy melodies he had learned. And he has continued his career in America. In this program, he presents a fascinating group of gypsy airs, some familiar, some new to most American ears.

Fly My Swallow
Waves Of The Lake
Hora in A Minor
When You See Me Day After Day
Waterfalls
Monte's Czardas
Le Canari
Ice Flowers Were Blooming When I Met You
Palm Road
My Darling Ann

Watch What Happens! - Ken & Beverly

Eleanor Rigby
Watch What Happens!
Ken & Beverly
World Pacific
A Division Of Liberty Records
WPS-21862

Not sure what happened to the artists after making this record. They did create a nice "lounge" sound, a blend of jazz and pop for this LP, which seemed to have been their aim (see below).

From the back cover: Ken (Jensen) and Beverly (Ryman) started their careers separately, but had one important element in common; the combination of talent and early formal training. Ken's musical career was launched in Klamath Falls, Oregom, where, under the guidance of his father, a music teacher, he became one of the finest young musicians in the country, In 1956, as a high school senior, he held the first-chair oboe position in the all-national high school orchestra. In college, Ken majored in music and the freedom of the college atmosphere nourished his interest in jazz; an interest that landed him in Los Angeles in 1961. He toured with various rock and jazz combos and big bands. While the one-nighters from coast-to-coast gave him valuable experience with the going and growing sounds of the times, and permitted relatively "surreptitious" experimentation with alto, baritone and oboe, they also confirmed a continually growing desire to develop a sound of his own. Ken met Beverly at a recording session in 1963, they dug each other's sound and started working together.

Beverly was a natural. She started singing at the age of six, and by the time she was eleven she was singing on the radio in Los Angeles. She would sing almost anything, almost anywhere, but it soon became apparent that her engaging warmth and infallible feeling for tempo and rhythm favored jazz and popular styling. She sang with the Van Nuys High School dance band and then spent the next few years singing whenever possible and "sitting-in" at various clubs around town, including the "Summit," where she sang with Cal Tjader. Then from that first fortuitous meeting till now, Ken and Beverly have been working together, building and blending their ideas and talents toward the happy marriage of sounds on this album.


Session personel: Ken Jensen - Alto and Oboe, Victor Feldman - Piano, Monty Budwig - Bass, Colin Bailey - Drums, Joe Pass - Guitar (Dennis Budimir and John Gurin).

The Face I Love
Theme From Harper
Who's Afraid
Scheherazade
A Man And A Woman
Captain Jack
Eleanor Rigby
Watch What Happens
You've Got Your Troubles
Nothing Left To Do Buy Follow You
You're Gonna Hear From Me
Holly Golightly

Thursday, January 2, 2014

Violetta Villas - O Milosci...

Port, W Ktorym Niema Mew
Violetta Villas
O Milosci...
Melodia LPM 1031
1969

I purchased this one for the graphically bold cover art. The album was apparently imported in the U.S. by the Melodia Record Co. based in Chicago, IL.

Villas, is nicknamed according to her Wiki page, as "the voice of the atomic age". Her biographical information is an interesting read.

The track titles are as seen on the cover, four extended tracks to fill a side. All of the songs feature a low key, or "torch singer" lounge vibe.

Go Latin With Loss - Joe Loss

Nicola
Go Latin With Loss
Joe Loss And His Orchestra
His Master's Voice
EMI Records Limited
CSD1523
1964

Mild pop approach that was, according to the back cover, originally released in 1961.

Front cover photo: Laird and Lorraine, the World Latin-American Champions

From the back cover: So, in response to many requests, Joe Loss presents his new Latin-American album – comprising all the accepted Latin steps in the ballroom, plus several bonus tracks.

The back cover photo is not Loss, but a featured vocalist on three tracks, Ross McManus.

Guitar Tango
Ole Guapa
Roberta
Quanto Caliente El Sol
Sucu Sucu
Parakeet
Madrid
El Adorno
Walking
Nicola
La Bamba

The Windmills Of Your Mind - Michel LeGrand

Souvenirs (from La Piscine)
The Windmills Of Your Mind
Music Composed and Conducted by Michel LeGrand
Original Motion Picture Theme from The Thomas Crown Affair and Others
United Artists Records
UAS 6715

Setting standards for "soundtrack/mood" in the late 60s. Nice collection of tracks assembled by UA for this LeGrand album.

From the back cover: On April 14, 1969 the National Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences presented Michel LeGrand with one of the most sought after and highly cherished symbols of achievement there is – a diminutive golden gentleman named "Oscar." The reason LeGrand now possesses "Oscar" is a beautiful, soaring ballad called "The Windmills Of Your Mind" which the Academy named "Best Song" of 1968. "Windmills" is the main theme from "The Thomas Crown Affair" for which LeGrand was also nominated for "Best Original Score (Not A Musical)." And just to prove the ultra-talented Mr. LeGrand had not placed all his eggs in one basket he garnered a third nomination in the category "Best Score For A Musical," for the acclaimed "Young Girls of Rochefort."

This album will show you exactly why Michel LeGrand was so much in presence at the 41st Annual Academy Awards. …Michel LeGrand is hard at work – the 42nd Annual Academy Awards takes place in mid-April, 1970.


The Windmills Of Your Mind
Theme De La Piscine
Theme Du Concerto
Jazz Theme From Play Dirty
A Man's Castle
His Eyes, Her Eyes
Chanson De Maxence
Ask Yourself Why
Souvenirs
Chanson D'un Jour D'ete

Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Love Of Life - Gene Bua

Girl
Love Of Life
Gene Bua
Heritage Record HTS-35,004

From the notes: VISION: The empty blur if a T.V. screen at mid-day. The dial is moved lazily to C.B.S. Flash! An angry young prince explodes into your life. At one moment he rages wild and untamed; the next he has the warmth of the sun; and his dark eyes reflect all the understanding of a prophet.

This vital young man is Gene Bua and he was discovered as Bill Prentiss on the C.B.S. day-time serial "Love Of Life".


Love Me Tender
Suzanne
If I Were A Carpenter
Goodbye My Old Gal
When Love Slips Away
I've Gotta Be Me
Girl
Dona, Dona
How Small We Are, How Little We Know
I'm Gonna Make You Love Me
Love Of Life

Como esta - Johnny Kay

Temptation
Como esta
Promenade Debuts
Johnny Kay
Promenade 2110

From the back cover: Johnny Kay – Here is a talent that is rare indeed in voice so young. Johnny, twenty-six years of age, but evidently a vintage year, interprets these songs – old and new – with warmth and vigor seldom experienced.

Here is another Johnny Kay album: The Spirit Of Italy
Catch A Falling Star
Prisoner Of Love
When You Were Sweet
Temptation
You'll Never Walk Alone
Round And Round
I'm Always Chasing Rainbows
Because
I'll Be Seeing You

The Groovy Side - The Lennon Sisters

Ode To Billy Joe
On The Groovy Side
The Lennon Sisters
Produced by Snuff Garrett
Arranged by Al Capps
Ranwood R8004

The arrangements don't make it all the way across the street to the groovy side.

Ode To Billy Joe is featured above because the track is the one song that, refreshingly, allows for a solo vocal over the expected chorus approach. The Sister isn't credited for her effort. The song is also found on a Lennon Pickwick release: Breaking Up Is Hard To Do

Also released on the DOT label.

Goin' Out Of My Head
Till
Sunny
Never My Love
I Love
Up, Up And Away
I Will Wait For You
Prisoner Of Love
Gypsy, What Can I Do
Ode To Billy Joe
Count Me In

Margie Singleton

Tears Don't Look Good
It's Such A Pretty World
Margie Singleton Sings Country Music With Soul
Ashley Records - Nashville, Tennesse
ASHELY A3003

Arrangements by Don Tweedy, produced by Leon Ashley and Don Tweedy
Recorded at RCA Victor and Columbia recording studios, Nashville, Tennesse

From the back cover: This is Margie's second album. No one ever thought she would be able to improve on the first one. It was great! But, being the fine singer she is, she did, and I think you'll agree. We've watched her improve since her start in the entertainment world several years ago in her hometown of Shreveport, Louisiana. Not only is she a great singer… she is also a great songwriter… as you can see from six of the songs in this album written in collaboration with her husband producer, Leon Ashley.

Singleton released a record on the Pickwick label: Margie Singleton

Sounds Of Alaska - Frank Brink

Anchorage
Sounds Of Alaska
Produced and Narrated by Frank Brink

I picked this up for the bold graphic cover, but there are also some interesting snippets of audio from a few folks who were living in Alaska in a time just before it became the 49th state in 1959.

Monday, December 30, 2013

The Soundtronic Guitar Of Vincent Bell

Auburn
The Soundtronic Guitar Of Vincent Bell
Produced By Monte Bruce
Cover Designed By Walter Rich
Independent Record Company
LLP 8012

For some reason, this fine Bell album seems to be very obscure compared to his other solo LPs. From the cover design, the release year looks to be about 1961 or '62.

In addition to his solo efforts, Bell was a busy session guitarist. Known for innovation and invention Bell most likely created all of the effects and hardware needed make them as heard on this project.

Very much "soundtronic"!

From the back cover: Instrumental-arranger Vincent Bell is assisted by Buddy Brower, Piano – Bob Alexander, Drums – and Joe Andre, Bass. "They work WITH me" say Vincent Bell; "they fit-in completely with whatever I am doing."
Sentimental Journey
The Faint
Sunny Boy
Stompin' At The Savoy
Auburn
Echoes Of Spain
Caravan
I'll Remember April
Travelin' Guitar
Darn That Dream
Malaguenia

Un Brindis Por Chiapas - Tete Cuevas

Un Brindis Por Chiapas
Un Brindis Por Chiapas
Tete Cuevas Al Piano
Y Conjunto Ron Bonampak
Exitos
Columbia Discos De Mexico
EX 2047
1958(?)

I was pleased to stumbled across this vintage album featuring the above colorful and fun cover on one of my thrift shop stops here in Northern Kentucky.

Let me just say that I can't read the copy, but there are probably some Cuecas history tidbits on the back cover. I was able to find one or two albums made by Cuevas (other than this press) online and a few YT videos. The albums and videos hint that she may have been reasonably active, at least in Mexico, for a period of time. Still, she is an obscure artist (from what I can tell), so I'll make an exception here and post the entire album.

The LP is a curious, "lounge" affair, featuring slightly quirky arrangements, a sound blend that you just don't hear in American lounge from the period. It's subtle… but if you listen to a lot of period mood/lounge, you'll noticed curious blend of period instruments and sound trends.

Eastside Corridor - The Symphony Jazz Ensemble

Side 2 featuring Eastside Corridor & Concertino For Percussion And Strings
Eastside Corridor
The Symphony Jazz Ensemble
Red Mark Records
QCA Records (Queen City Records) - Cincinnati, Ohio
1978

From the back cover: Frank Proto recalls the happy informal origins of the Symphony Jazz Ensemble: "The Cincinnati Symphony was on a tour around the world, and a few of us who were playing a little jazz would go into clubs and jam with the local musicians. A reporter who was traveling with us sent a story back that appeared in a home town paper. About a we later we arrived in some place like Okinawa, and the word had spread; they had everything all prepared for us and we wound up playing with a local band."

"The whole thing began snowballing and by the time we got back home it was easy to start a group, which we called the Symphony Jazz Quintet. The only original players left now are Paul Piller and myself. Bill Platt, the featured soloist on Concertino for Percussion and Strings, is principal percussionist with the Symphony.


Frank Brown - Trumpet and Trombone, Mike Andres - Saxophones and Flutes, Paul Piller - Trombone, Larry Dickerson - Saxophones and Clarinets, Frank Vincent - Piano and Electric Piano, Frank Proto - Bass and Electric Bass (Proto is also credited with producing the album), Jim Seward, Drums and Congas and Bill Platt - Percussion

The name Frank Vincent sounded familiar to me. I believe that I blogged a Vincent "lounge" private press that you can check out on Appearing In The Motel Lounge.