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Saturday, February 20, 2010

All-Time Favorites - Tops All-Star Orchestra

All-Time Favorites
Tops All-Star Orchestra
Jackets fabricated by Globe Albums, New York, N.Y.
Tops L1514

How High The Moon
Lisbon Antigua
Melody Of Love
Blue Tango
Poor People Of Paris
Time On My Hands
Penthouse Serenade
April In Portugal

Friday, February 19, 2010

Upper St. Clair High School

Where Is The Love
The Best Of Friends
Sweet Caroline

Upper St. Clair High School
This One's For You
Grubb Associates Recording
1976 - 77

Fantastica Music From Outer Space - Russ Garcia

Music From Outer Space
Arranged by Russ Garcia
Electronic Effects: Ted Keep
Producer: Simon Jackson
Cover Design: Garrett Howard
Liberty LRP 3084

Fantastica is a wonderful blend of science fiction movie sounds effects and soundtrack styled orchestration.

Of course, you can't please everyone. A critic at the time of release, Ralph Gleason didn't care for this project saying that it was "More like the soundtrack of a horror movie than anything else".

Garcia creates an outer-space journey for the listener by blending one track magically into the next so that you can sit back, close your eyes and float effortlessly through the set!

From Billboard - March 31, 1958: A fine mood set by the orkster. The selections all have outer space titles and are nicely orchestrated with well-controlled instrumental gimmicks. Tempos are nicely varied. A good set for jocks and one that can enjoy good sales.

Music From Outer Space
Russ Garcia
Liberty LST 7005

Sound effects on this stereo release travel from channel to channel to help make for an even spacier  trip through space! Awesome!

Into Space
Nova (Exploding Star)
Lost Souls Of Saturn
Monsters Of Jupiter
Water Creatures Of Astra
Red Sand Of Mars
Goofy Peepl Of Phobos
Volcanoes Of Mercury
Birth Of A Planet
Frozen Neptune
Moon Rise

Hawaii Honeymoon - The Waikikis

Sugar Moon
Hawaii Honeymoon
The Waikikis
Photo Courtesy Of American Airlines
Knapp Records
KAPP KL-1432

Hawaii Honeymoon
Remember Boa-Boa
The 3rd Man Theme
Song Of The Islands
Road To Waikiki
When The Saints Go Marching To Hawaii
The Shadows
Carnival In Honolulu
Sugar Moon
Happy Hawaii

Martin Denny - Forbidden Island

Forbidden Island

The Exotic Sounds Of Martin Denny
Forbidden Island
Producer: Si Waronker
Engineers: Bob Land and Ted Keep
Cover Illustration and Design: Pate/Francis
Cover Photograph: Garrett-Howard
Liberty Records LRP 3081 & LST 7001

Liberty released this set in multiple printings featuring a number of front and back jacket designs. One design (with two rear jacket layouts) for the mono press (top image) and, apparently, two designs for the stereo release.

The stereo cover (bottom image) is printed on foil which was an expensive process requiring an extra run through the press, first to print a white ink base which laid the foundation for the subsequent four color run.

From the back cover: Who makes the sounds that have captured the imagination of Hawaii and the world? ...Martin Denny – Leader, composer, and gifted arranger; piano and celeste; originator of "exotica" music. August Colon - Latin instruments, special effects, bird calls; a "banging bongo-er." Julius Wechter - Only 22 years old, brilliant on the vibes; also marimbas, xylophone; doubles on percussion instruments. Harvey Ragsdale - Toured with Stan Wilson, who rates him tops on string bass. Big round time and unexcelled moving line.

To enrich this album of "Forbidden Island," Denny called on four guest specialists... Lew Panio - Percussion; Will Brady - Flute and musette; Bud Lee - Guitar and Japanese Samisen; Mike Garcia - Conga drum.

Port Au Prince
Little China Doll
Bali Hai
Narcissus Queen
Goony Birds
Sim Sim
March Of The Siamese Children
Forbidden Island

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Joe Bushkin "I Get A Kick Out Of Porter"

I Get A Kick Out Of You

I Get A Kick Out Of You
Joe Bushkin
Cover Photography: Gleb Derujinsky
Design: Bob Cato
Cole Porter Photography: Richard Avedon
Notes: Gilbert Millstien of The New York Times
Capitol ST 1030

From the back cover: The jet plane pictured on the cover of this album, "I Get A Kick Out Of Cole Porter," is the Grumman Navy Cougar (F9F-8T), and the man standing on its cockpit, prepared, like the slender sky chaser, for imminent ascent – is Joe Bushkin, the pianist, composer and arranger. Minutes afterward, he was airborne tens of thousands of feet at a speed exceeding that of sound. There is nothing tangential in the selection of such a photograph for such an album. For Buskin, jet flight synthesizes the meaning of the music of Cole Porter, a selection of whose songs he was, at the time, getting ready to record. That meaning of Porter's remarkable, continuing contemporaneity; his immediacy, as urgent today as decades ago; his melodic and lyric insights, as acute and free of anachronism as they were before rocketry became a commonplace, psychoanalysis a parlor game and sophistication the property of the majority. What moved Bushkin is probably best expressed in a lyric of one of the songs he recorded, "Just One Of Those Things": "It was just one of those nights, /Just one of those fabulous flights... A trip to the moon on gossamer wings.../ Just one of those things."

From Billboard - March 23, 1959: Bushkin steps out in front of a sizable complement of brass and woodwinds to take the lively solos on this collection of Cole Porter evergreens. Some of the best are here, like "Night And Day," "I Get A Kick Out Of You," "Begin The Beguine," etc., and they are all essayed with a danceable beat. Stereo is good but in this case it's the repertoire that's the drawing card. Smart background set also could draw air spins.

I Get A Kick Out Of You
I've Got You Under My Skin
Night And Day
Begin The Beguine 
Get Out Of Town
In The Still Of The Night
So In Love
Love For Sale
Let's Do It
Where Have You Been
What Is This Thing Called Love?
Just One Of Those Things

Johnny Pineapples & His Orch.

Hawaiian Holiday With Johnny Pineapple & His Orchestra
Pickwick International - 1960

I can not find any information on the original Johnny Pineapple.

Close Encounters Of The Third Kind - The Now Sound Orchestra

Close Encounters Of The Third Kind
The Now Sound Orchestra Presents Music From
Close Encounters Of The Third Kind, Star Wars, 2001 A Space Odyssey
Peter Pan Records (8205) 1977

Here we have another mystery LP with no information to be found even though the record label is Peter Pan (a reasonably well known company that made audio products for children).

The music is a curious blend of natural sounding orchestrated instruments, synth instruments and fun noises arranged a somewhat classical style to mimic the actual soundtrack. At some point each track shoots off into SPACE to visit Planet DISCO!

I didn't expect much from this project but found myself enjoying this record despite my the disco...

Also, in case you were wondering, like I was, what the giant thing stuck on top of the space ship is? I guess no one at Peter Pan understood what the thing was either, so they added a note to the back cover to let us know that it is a "solar sail".

Cha Cha Fiesta - Fred Denise

Jivin' Cha Cha
Cha Cha Fiesta
Fred Denise Orchestra
Palace (Buckingham Records)

Great cover!

I can find no information on Fred Denise.

The Enchanted Woods

The Enchanted Woods
Dennis Farnon and His Orchestra
RCA - 1958

2/12/11 Update (From another collector/researcher. Thanks Pat!)

I've been researching a project by Chet Atkins recorded in 1958 -- "Chet Atkins in Hollywood." Dennis was the orchestra leader and arranger for that album. In doing my research (for a writing project), I located Dennis -- still composing and arranging, and living in the Netherlands, at age 87!! It has been amazing to talk to him about that era of music and recording. Besides being an orchestra leader and RCA artist at the time, he was also the west coast pop album A&R director for the label. The bulk of Dennis's composition work is not mainstream pop -- his most notable work was soundtracks for cartoons. He did all the soundtracks for the Mr Magoo film and tv series, and a lot of the incidental sound fx (orchestral sounds) for Rocky & Bullwinkle. He also scored for movies. He's an amazing guy.

Baldwin Organ And Bongos Bongos Bongos

Baldwin Organ And Bongos Bongos Bongos
Doctored For Super Sound
Audio Fidelity - 1960

Here's a space age pop organ album with Eddie Osborn at the keyboard and Bob Rosengarden on the bongos. I love the cover with the hypo. I wonder what the doctor was injecting Eddie with?

I found precious little into online about Osborn and less about this album.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010


Until We Meet Again
Dick Hyman at the Lowrey Organ
Command Records - 1963

This cover design is signed by the artist (printed as part of the cover): Charles E. Murphy

Hyman's sound, on this project, could be a little more far out (in "electrodynamic" space) for my tastes.


Morton Gould
RCA - 1957 (liner notes) - 1960 Billboard's "Reviews of The Week's LP'S"

Even though Gould is well known, I couldn't find much info on this particular Gould "exotica" project.

I love the jacket art.

The music consists of lush instrumentals that attempt to seduce you into the "garden".

Very nice... but the chick in the sparkly getup is the better seducer!

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Lenny Dee - Dee Most!

Let Me Call You Sweet Heart
Lenny Dee
Dee - Most!
Decca Records -

Lenny Dee made a PILE of recordings. This offering is listed fourth on the stack of many projects on his discography found on wikipedia.

Call It Love - The Gunter Kallmann Chorus

Somethin' Stupid
Call It Love
The Gunter Kallmann Chorus
4 Corners Of The World
Producer & Musical Director: Hans Bertram
Associate Producer: Betty Reinman
Arrangements by W. Twardy
Kapp Record
A Polydor Recording
This Is My Song
Somethin' Stupid
Portrait Of My Love
Release Me
Now I Know
Love Me Forever
Paint Yourself A Rainbow
My Cup Runneth Over
They Told Me
Two For The Road

Sounds In Space

Sounds In Space
RCA Victor - 1958

Terrific atomic age artwork on this RCA project that was produced to demonstrate the audio dynamics of new fangled stereo players.