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Saturday, August 15, 2015

Memories Are Made of These - Ira Wright

Dark Eyes
Memories Are Made Of These
Ira Wright Orchestra and Singers
Rondo-lette SA 166

Graphically pleasing jacket art credited to Burt Portnoy. The disc features an annoying budget set scraped off the bottom of the stock music barrel to include only two tracks that feature "singers"… meaning one big band male vocalist who works hard to mimic Al Jolson.

Dark Eyes
Anvil Chorus
Spanish Serenade
Blue Tango
After The Ball
Swanee
Yankee Doodle
King Cotton
O Susanna
Because You're Too

Soul Flutes: Trust In Me

Trust In Me
Soul Flutes: Trust In Me
Arranged By Don Sebesky
Produced by Creed Taylor
Recorded at Van Gelder Studios, February 21,22; March 13, 18, 1968
A&M Records A&M SP-3009

Herbie Hancock - Piano, Organ and Harpsichord
Eric Gale and Herbie Hancock - Finger Piano
Ron Carter - Bass
Gardy Tate - Drums
Eric Gale and Bucky Pizzarelli - Guitar
Ray Barretto - Percussion
Henry Watts - Vibes and Marimba
Joel Kaye, George Marge, Romeo Penque and Stan Webb - Soul Flutes

Try A Little Tenderness
Trust In Me
In The Wee Small Hours
Scarborough Fair
Bachianas Brasileiras #5
Cigarettes & Coffee
Pu Po
Early Autumn
Day-O
Buckaroo

35 Guitar Favorites

Theme To A Theme
35 Guitar Favorites
Premier PS-9032

This is the first album I acquired, begging my Mom to buy it for me when we were grocery shopping at our small town supermarket, Big Bear. I couldn't have been more than 13 years old. Up until I found this LP, yet again just yesterday, I could only remember the cover image. I can not remember if I was impressed by the contents which are tracks cobbled together from any source that Premier could find them, including a number of Flamenco tracks along with songs I have heard on a number of budget pressings. There are so many short tracks jammed together that there are no "track bans" on the disc.

Thursday, August 13, 2015

Let's Cha Cha With Tito Puente

Vibe Guajira
Let's Cha Cha With Tito Puente
And His Orchestra
RCA LPM-1392
1957

From Billboard - January 5, 1957: Another sock cha cha album by Puente. The package spotlights 11 danceable, generally unfamiliar selections – all featuring a great beat and attractive instrumentation. Cover – a sensuous photo of a tigerish blonde in the mist of a cha-cha is an eye-catcher.

From the back cover: Tito Puente is a native New Yorker, despite the name which suggests that he was born and bred close to the geographical heart of the Cuban popular dance. Actually he was named Ernest, after his father, just thirty-one years ago last April. Gifted with a strong musical feeling and fascinated by show business, Tito began his career in his teens as an exhibition dancer. He was on his way toward making his mark in the supper club field until he accidentally tore a group of tendons in one ankle, which made it impossible to continue professional dancing. He turned to making music to which other people could dance.

Within a remarkable brief space of time, Tito learned to play piano, mastered the alto saxophone, vibraphone (featured in many of his arrangements), bongo and timbales, an assortment of instruments which made him a key sideman with many dance bands. Following a hitch in the Navy during World War II, Tito spent the next few years in leading bands like those of Noro Morales and Pupi Camp. In his spare time he studied arranging, and soaked up as much information as possible on the practical problems of leading a band; he used schools as the Copacabana, El Morocco and the Stork Club for his texts on technique of satisfying club-owners as well as paying customers simultaneously – no easy feat!

Tito carefully organized a band and made his bid for fame at the end of the 1940s. For a while things were rough. He managed a booking here and there, living of his capital, until he managed finally to audition for the Palladium Ballrooms in New York City, one of the learning dance centers in the country. Since his success there, he has appeared on radio and TV, in night clubs and even on the concrete stage. Puente has appeared in such varied spots as Carnegie Hall and Birdland! Part of his policy has been to build a band with as broad a musical repertoire as possible while keeping in the basic Latin-American framework; his orchestra can change pace in a flash, switching from a mambo to a samba to a waltz, from a for trot to a merengue with equal ease. – Edwin Miller


Lindo Cha Cha
Vibe Guajira
Let's Cha Cha
It's The Bururu
Ki-Ku-Ki_Kan
Habanero
Just For You
Cha Cha Fiesta
Cha Charugao
You Are An Angel
Guaririambo
Cubarama

Monday, August 10, 2015

French Pastry - Eddie Barclay

The Touch
French Pastry
Eddie Barclay And His Orchestra
Mercury Records MG 20265
1957

From Billboard - October 28, 1957: Cover depicting French maid carrying a tray of tasty treats all good enough to eat, hold forth promise. Inside, Barclay's ork lives up to the billing in a series of light mood tunes, mostly with a gentle, but noticeable enough, beat for dancing as well as listening. Sound is particularly good.

Richard Hayman on the harmonica?

Hernando's Hideaway
Merry-Go-Round
Mardrid, Madrid
The Touch
Samba Fantastico
The Kissing Dance
Le Riffifi
Love For Sale
Stranger In Paradise
Sweet Bolero
Three Coins In The Fountain
Love Theme From "La Strada"