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Saturday, August 6, 2011

Computer Music - Michael McNabb

Computer Music
Michael McNabb
Arch Records S-1800

This album is available on CD so I will not be posting a sample.

1983 is way past the vintage of record that I normally collect. But the simplistic title, Computer Music caught my eye. Many early electronic albums have similar straight forward titles. I'm not an expert on electronic music, but this album seems to pay homage to those earlier electronic albums that I have collected. The music is mysterious and it doesn't have that cheap synth sound that I hear in later electronic work. Sure... there a touch of that period synth... but only just.

The joy of the piece is the great musical storytelling. The sound is rich and full and arranged in such a way as to be almost hypnotic.

Terrific stuff!

Music Now!

Music Now!
Custom Fidelity Company

An obscure private press avant-garde LP from members of the faculty of composers of the College-Conservatory of Music of the University of Cincinnati.

Titles and artists include: Morphosis - Electronic Music For Dance by Paul Martin Palombo, Variants II for Viola and Piano by Paul Cooper, A Game of Circles For Clarinet, Piano and Celeste by Scott Huston, String Quintet (1969) by Ellsworth Milburn and Idioms for Violin, Clarinet and French Horn by Scott Huston.

Paul Martin Palombo founded and directed the electronic music studio at the Cincinnati Conservatory (1969 - 78). Morphosis is the only "electronic" piece.

A Hawaiian Party - Bob Kames At The Organ

Hawaiian War Chant
A Hawaiian Party
Bob Kames At The Organ
King Records 696

Kames is credited with developing and popularizing a tune that is best known as The Chicken Dance.

Read about Kames on his wiki page.

Hawaiian Holiday By Kaiwaza

Voodoo Moon
Hibiscus Blossom
Hawaiian Holiday By Kaiwaza
Wyncote SW-9006

Hawaiian Holiday
Beyond The Reef
Bird Of Paradise
Sea Breeze
Hibiscus Blossom
Song Of The Islands
Voodoo Moon
Hawaiian Wedding Song
Lilac And Spanish Moss

More Drums On Fire

More Drums On Fire!
World Pacific Records WP-1261

Available from online vendors so I will not be posting a sample.

Drummers include Sonny Payne, Mel Lewis, Benny Barth, Armando Peraza, Ray Mosca with Freddie Gambrell, The Mastersounds, Zoot Sims and Russ Freeman.

Artistry In Rhythm
I'm Going To Like It Here
Triste Brushes
Clap Hands, Here Comes Charlie

The Now Sounds Of Today

The World Is Beautiful - Mark Banks
Sweet Sue - Minnie Shields
Memories - Veronica Flemming
The Now Sounds Of Today
Columbine Records CRH-250

Song poem album featuring Kay Weaver, Sonny Cash and Kate Markowitz.

Friday, August 5, 2011

The Prisoner

The Prisoner
Bam-Caruso Records KIRI 066

Here's a bit of a rare release (more so in the states). I think the album was a UK only release.

Some, if not all of the tracks are available for purchase/download (or at least the few I searched for on Amazon). So I will not be posting a sample.

The album plays more like a soundtrack. The tracks are numerous and short. The producers tried to arrange the tracks as they appeared in the series, noting that some tracks were juxtaposed to help "preserve a musical balance".

If you are too young to remember The Prisoner, I would recommend watching it on DVD. The show was a unique and groovy blend of science fiction, fantasy, spy/secret agent and 60s counterculture.

The Wonders Of Sex

How To Teach Children The Wonders Of Sex
Hiltz Publishing Co. - Cincinnati, Ohio
Queen City Album

Sounds Of Spain - Nino de Granada and his Flamenco Troupe

Mezquita Cordobes
Exciting Percussion & Guitars
Sounds Of Spain
Nino de Granada and his Flamenco Troupe
International Awards Series AK-159

This is a fine and obscure Flamenco album produced on a budget label.

Dance To The Best Of Bostic

Smoke Rings (Stereo)

Dance To The Best Of Bostic
Cover: Courtesy of Jantizen, Inc.
King Records 500 & 500 STEREO

From the back cover: Besides being recognized as a top alto sax stylist in the music world... Earl is an arranger of note and a composer. His first arrangement was made while in school by humming the parts of the individual instruments and writing them to form a style he thought might appeal to the public. He was right! Even at an early age, Bostic knew the desires and feelings of the dancing public.

Many of his recorded hits have been original compositions... and, for others he has turned old tunes as "Let Me Off Uptown", "The Major And The Minor", "Brooklyn Boogie", which have all become recording success played by name bands.

His education in music came from playing with great orchestra such as: Don Redmon, Cab Calloway and Lionel Hampton – to name a few. His arranging prowess came to light when he turned out successful music for Louis Prima, Lionel Hampton and Jack Teagarden. Other appreciation of technique developed when he played with such greats as Red Allen, J. C. Higginbotham, Sid Catlett, Teddy Wilson and Lionel Hampton.

Deep Purple
Smoke Rings
What No Pearls
Jungle Drums
I Can't Give You Anything But Love
Seven Steps
I'm Gettin' Sentimental Over You
Don't You Do It
Steamwhistle Jump

Thursday, August 4, 2011

The Blues - Clyde McCoy

Tear It Down
The Blues
Clyde McCoy
Mercury MG 20110

Obscure album as I can't find another image of the cover online. McCoy isn't obscure however. He was a member of the McCoy family (Hatfield-McCoy). He co-founded Down Beat magazine and developed a signature "wah-wah" sound in the late 1920s that was replicated for the electric guitar with the introduction of the Vox Clyde McCoy Wah-Wah Pedal.

Read more about McCoy on his wiki page.

This album was reissued on Mercury's budget label, Wing and featured different cover art.

Love Letters In Latin - Buddy Milton Quartet

Orchids In The Moonlight
Love Letters In Latin
Buddy Milton Quartet
Vocalion VL 3661

Obscure budget Latin recording featuring an equally obscure artist. In 1947 Milton was playing the Terrace Room, Hotel Statler in Detroit.

In 1950 the quartet was playing the Jean Goldkette's Fantasia formerly the Latin Quarter, a theater in Detroit that was having fanancial issues. The American Guild of Variety Artists and The American Federation of Musicians had to step in and "protect" Milton who was playing a low-budget ice show there.

Reed Sherman

Get Out Of Town
Reed Sherman
Charleville 1001

Obscure record and vocalist. Sherman has four film acting roles to his credit on IMDb. He played Lt. French in the 1956 movie Comanche.

His next credit would be for a 1969 Z grade voodoo movie titled Big Daddy. A movie only mentioned online by title.

The arrangements and engineering are pretty good on this set as are Sherman's vocals.

I Want To Be Happy Cha Cha's - Enoch Light And The Light Brigade

Sweet And Gentle
I Want To Be Happy Cha Cha's
Enoch Light And The Light Brigade
Cover Painting (G.A. 222 S.D.): Robert Stanley
World's Most Exciting New Recordings In Authentic Cha Cha Rhythms
Grand Award G.A. 222 S.D

I Want To Be Happy Cha Cha's
Grand Award G.A. 33-388

I Want To Be Happy Cha Cha
Tremendo Cha Cha
Tea For Two Cha Cha
Yes Sir, That's My Baby Cha Cha
The Sheik Cha Cha
Chiquita Cha Cha
Sweet And Gentle
Cara Mia Cha Cha
How High The Moon Cha Cha

Barefoot In The Park - Neal Hefti

Blues For Paul
Barefoot In The Park
Neal Hefti
Dot Records DLP 25803

If anyone had his finger on the pulse of mid-60s light pop it was Neal Hefti. He created several great space age albums including, Batman and Hefti In Gotham City. Both of those albums are available on CD. This one isn't.

As a soundtrack for a more conventionally themed film your will hear conventional sounding tracks on this LP. But there is still plenty of the cool space age Hefti to hold your interest. Light and playful stuff.

Hawaii - Frank Chacksfield And His Orchestra

Coco Hut

Frank Chacksfield And His Orchestra
Producer: Tony D'Amato
Engineer: Arthur Lilley
Phase 4 Stereo
London Records SP 44087

Hawaiian War Chant
Maori Farewell Song
Red Sails
On The Beach At Waikiki
Sweet Leilani
Bali Ha'i
Hawaiian Wedding Song
Coco Hut
Blue Hawaii
My Little Grass Shack
Moon Of Manakoora
Aloha, Oe!

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Belly Dance - Edward Mekjian And His Ensemble

Undzee Ullah
Belly Dance
Music From The Middle East
Edward Mekjian And His Ensemble
Fiesta FLPS 1649

An album featuring the same title/artist was listed in an a Fiesta ad found in the November, 10 1973 issue of Billboard.

A somewhat obscure album/artist featuring good and energetic folk music.

Monday, August 1, 2011

Martin Denny In Person

Volga Boatmen
Martin Denny In Person
Recorded Live At Duke Kahanamoku's In Honolulu
Liberty Records LST 7224

I have one other live Denny album, Hawaii Goes A Go - Go, Liberty LPR-3445, 1967. The engineering on that album leaves a lot to be desired. The sound on this LP is outstanding by comparison. This record really puts you right in front of the band.

The vibe of the set is more jazz than exotica. 

Let's Belly Dance With Gus Vali

Caravan #9
Let's Belly Dance With Gus Vali
Produced by Gus Vali & George Young
Orchestra Arranged and Conducted by Gus Vali
Recorded at The Record Plant, New York
Sound Engineer: Carmine Rubino
P.I. Records, Inc. PI-LPS-93

Gus Vali - Flute & Clarinet
George Mgrdichian - Ord
Mohammed El Akkard - Kunun
Haskel Obadia - Violin
Ali Hafid - Dumbek
Sauren Baronin - Zins
Chet Amsterdam - Bass
Bill Lavorgna - Drums
Joseph Castelion - Utility Percussion

From the back cover: Despite his B.A. in Flute from Manhattan College and an M.A. in musical education Gus Vali is still able to retain the true folk quality of Middle Eastern music. His great talent in this area undoubtedly has been influenced by his heritage.

His parents were born on the shores of the Sea of Marmara in Asia Minor of Greek stock. Although born and raised in New York, Gus Vali developed a great love for the music of Greece and of the Middle East to which he has mastered his craft in a variety of musical areas. As a youngster he was a featured performer on clarinet, saxophone and flute with the great bands of Artie Shaw, Johnny Long and Jan August. He has played with his own society orchestra whose success was built on their ability to play the rhythms and melodies of the dance music of the world.

Pharonic Dance
Ya Jamalik
The Speechless Animal
Caravan #9
El Gazalle
Ya Raitni Ma Hawitez
Al Jazayer
Ya Reim Wadi Thaqif
Caravan #5

Hits Of '69 - The Ray Bloch Singers

Everyday People
Abraham Martin And John
Hits Of '69
The Ray Bloch Singers
Ambassador S98077

Today I feature another incredible Ray Bloch album. You might also want to check out the fantastic Bloch album I've posted titled Hair.

It's hard to describe to describe Ray Bloch's work so I'll let copy from the back cover do the work:

1969 was a super year... Everything that happened was smashing or stirring or shattering... The clothes were groovier, the dances wilder, and the parties were out of sight. A new president took office and a man actually stepped and jumped and danced on the moon... ON THE MOON. Through it all, around it and in it, was the music of the times. The hit songs of 1969 ran as wide a spectrum as the events of that banner year, and the hit songs collected by the Ray Bloch Singers in this album run the entire spectrum of the hits. The cream is here, and smoothly done.

I don't think says it all... but will have to do... as I'm speechless.

Sunday, July 31, 2011

Sentimental Serenade - Jerry Murad's Fabulous Harmonicats

Ebb Tide
Sentimental Serenade
Jerry Murad's Fabulous Harmonicats
Columbia CS 8557

From Murad's wiki page: Jerry Murad's Harmonicats were an American harmonica-based group. Originally they were named The Harmonica Madcaps and the group consisted of Jerry Murad (chromatic lead harmonica), Bob Hadamik (bass harmonica), Pete Pedersen (chromatic), and Al Fiore, (chord harmonica). They reformed later as a trio with Murad, Fiore, and bass harmonica player Don Les. Pederson and Gail Wallace remained contributors to the group throughout its existence, working on arrangements and occasionally recording. Their 1947 recording of "Peg O' My Heart" (Mercury Records - originally Vitacoustic Records catalog number 1) brought them to public attention and sold over one million copies by 1950, reaching #1 on the U.S. Billboard chart.[1] Other charted hits included "Hair of Gold, Eyes of Blue," of which their version reached #22, and "Cherry Pink and Apple Blossom White".

Guitars For Lovers Only - Harold Bradley

Moon Mist
Guitars For Lovers Only
Harold Bradley
Columbia CL 2456

Billboard Magazine gave this album a "Special Merit Pick". Meaning they thought the album could be commercially successful.

Harold Bradley recorded three albums including this one. He is better known for having worked as a session musician for names like Patsy Cline, Willie Nelson, Roy Orbison and Elvis Presley.

Read more on Bradley's wiki page.

Big Hits From Columbia Pictures

Big Hits From Columbia Pictures
Hollywood Grand Studio Orchestra
Arranged And Conducted By John T. Williams
Goldentone 9632S

Nice cover on this Goldentone budget album. Pictured are Kim Novak and Rita Hayworth.

There are some cool tunes on the album. Williams scored soundtracks for a pile of well known films including Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sun and a number of Harry Potter films.

I spent some time trying to link Novak, Hayworth and Williams with Brazil, the sample I've posted and or together somehow working on a film. In other words... how these three people and Columbia pictures all tie together... there is no clue on the jacket.

Brown Rain - Victor Brady

It's A Grand World Outside
Brown Rain
Victor Brady
Polydor 24-4036

Steel drum fit for The Atomic Attic.

As luck would have it, this album I found today, turns out to be a fairly rare or at least obscure psych album featuring steel drummer and vocalist Victor Brady. Listening to the record is like taking an Apocalypse Now Lysergic Acid Calypso Holiday.

Or, from the back cover: The sounds open up the sky you see. And Brown Rain falls down soaking the earth with shining metal hallucinodreams.

Once, many moons ago, the albums appears to have been released on CD. But today both vinyl and CD copies seem to be almost non-existant.

Crazy stuff!