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Thursday, December 31, 2020

Drum Suite - Art Blakey

 

Oscalypos

Drum Suite
Art Blakey and The Jazz Messengers
Photo: Arnold Newman
African Art Courtesy of Klejam Gallery
Columbia Records CL 1002
1957

From the back cover: Drum Suite

As preparations for a test run for the Drum Suite began, the air in Columbia's studios was filled with excitement. Jo Jones and Art Blakey moved over to their respective drums, Candido and Sabu picked up their bongos, Ray Bryant sat down at the piano and Oscar Pettiford got set with his bass and 'cello. Meanwhile Charles Wright sat down behind a set of drums with tympani on one side and a gong on the other. All of them had various smaller instruments near at hand. At the end of the test run, everyone sat down to listen to the playback, and that was it. No retakes were needed, except for vocal passages. It took the fellows a little longer to master the Swahili dialect. All the chanting was done by the percussionists. No arrangements were used.

Though the three pieces that comprise the Drum Suite are distinctly individual, there is a surprising amount of cohesion. Blakey's The Sacrifice begins with an authentic Swahili chant, derived from an ancient sacrificial ceremony. "The witch doctor tells of two who will be sacrificed to the crocodiles. The crowd echoes him, and the ceremony builds to a frenzied climax. The witch doctor announces the Mumba (death) of those sacrificed, and a celebration follows." Here is some of the most fantastic drumming ever captured on records. Every conceivable rhythm is used.

Next comes Ray Bryant's finely woven Cubano Chant. This easy-swinging piece, with its medieval modal colorings, is further evidence of the young composers-pianist's talents The hesitating rhythms and lovely melodic lines are all blended into a swinging beauty. After a chorus by Ray, the percussionists take over to offer an engaging section.

From the very beginning of Oscar Pettiford's Oscalypso it is evident that this is going to be wild. Starting with Oscar playing 'cello, the piece expands as Ray enters on piano, then Candido and Sabu on bongos, and gradually the rest of the percussion is added. The lyrical Oscar plays two choruses, Ray Bryant follows for two more, and the percussion takes over fo the kill. Here is all the rhythmical counterpoint and emotional sensitively one could ask for. After the percussion has taken the work to its climax, Pettifor returns to bring the suite to a close as he quietly strums the 'cello.

The Jazz Messengers

The other side of this record presents Art Blakey's Jazz Messengers in another example of their impressive dynamic readings. Their imaginative use of harmony and counterpoint gives their work a remarkable freshness, and Blakey has another chance to demonstrate his highly developed ability as accompanist as well as soloist.

Gigi Gryce's Nica's Tempo is another of the series of pieces dedicated to the Baroness Nica Koenigswarter. This 44-bar work seems to be of the type that fascinates the Messengers most, in that it lends itself to endless variation. A gifted newcomer, Bill Harman, is heard on trumpet, his brittle trumpet style adding fire to the driving approach of the Messengers. The ever searching Jackie McLean is heard on alto, offering his creative impression. In D's Dilemma, the group is heard in a more relaxed mood. Free swinging playing, as well as tasty ensemble and solo work, is heard here. The group returns to its customary hard-driving beat in the final selection, Bill Hardman's Just For Marty. The framework of this piece is ideal for the virtuoso performances the Messengers provide. – Cal Lampley

From Billboard - June 24, 1957: A hi-fi novelty packed with percussive power. Aside from the pure sound value, the disk demonstrates the wide range of emotional expression inherent in the drum and simple percussion instruments. As a bonus-though none is needed - there are echo chamber effects that come across most attractively on wide range equipment. The Jazz Messenger side is particularly noteworthy for drum virtuosity.

The Sacrifice
Cubano Chant
Oscalypso
Nica's Tempo
D's Dilemma
Just For Marty

The Red Garter - The Strugglers - The h'all Stars

 

When The Saints Go Marching In

The Red Garter
The Strugglers
The h'All Stars
Recorder & Edited by Reice Hamel
Cover By Don Stivers
Society Bear Records - San Francisco  M670

From the back cover: The Red Garter is a saloon-type bistro serving beer, peanuts, and soft drinks in the heart of the entertainment district by the Golden Gate. The club has the nostalgia of the bygone Barbary Coast Days in its decor and the frivolity and gayety of Old San Francisco in its music. The walls are covered with old gilt-framed pictures of turn-of-the-century calendar art (pre-pin-ups), Teddy Roosevelt, Champion Jim Thorpe, and on and on. The Nicholodeon features only the big names of Ruth Etting, Ted Lewis, Al Jolson and other stars of that era. The gaslights, the gingerbread trim, the old pictures, the nickelodeon and fly fans, and the authentic ladies out-house complete with crescent moon are integrated into a fine old-time decor featuring the pride of the club – a grand 1893 mahogany bar.

Entertainment takes place nightly at the Red Garter with the Struggles Banjo Band and 'Arry 'Iggin's Piccadilly h'All Stars playing the old tunes, featuring several banjos. Credit must be given, too, to the audience itself because their enthusiasm, joviality and singing contribute a great deal to the fun. A group of girls from Dominican College Class of '61, happened to drop in on the eve of this recording, and it is their voices that you hear belting out the lyrics the loudest. Every night is a different show at the Red Garter because the musicians rotate evenings and between bands. Since they are all professional men or students, they schedule their musical nights at least conflict with their vocational responsibilities. The following musicians are on this recording and vary from song to song. Banjos: Jack Dupen (civil engineer), 'Arry 'Iggins (professional musician & rugby player), Bill Wingfield (acoustical engineer), Bill Rutan (student S. F. State), Lee Valencia (piano builder), Joaquina Dupen (physical therapist). Piano: Griff Harries (grain broker), Warren Lubich (chemist), Bill Richards (grad. student U. of Cal). Bass: Dick Lammi (professional musician), Buzz Heffron (student S. F. State), Bob Lualhati (high school coach), Jerry Fredgren (insurance salesman), Drums: Bat Patterson (photographic equipment).

Side one of this disc was recorded at the Red Garter one Saturday evening when the club was going full blast with six musicians. Side two was recorded the next day with the crowed locked out.  "Erin's Sons Will Defend Her," Side 1, features the beguiling art of Lee Valencia on the Irish War Pipes. Notice the delightful wail in "Heartaches" on Side 2. This lovely noise is rendered by Jack Dupen on the musical carpenter's saw. The whistles that open and close side on are proudly effected by the bartenders as they tap the kegs of that tasty beverage made from hops. Bottoms up!

Waiting For The Robert E. Lee
It's A Sin To Tell A Lie
Somebody Stole Me Gal
Erin's Sons Will Defend Her
It's A Grand Old Flag
Waltzing Matilda
Bill Bailey Won't You Please Come Home
Battle Hymn Of The Republic
When The Saints Go Marching In
San Francisco
Colonel Boget
Carolina In The Morning
Deed I Do
China Nights (Shina No Yoru)
Heartaches
Never On Sunday
Ta Ra Ra Boom De Ay

Wednesday, December 30, 2020

Something Special For Young Lovers - The Ray Charles Singers

 

Quiet Nights

Something Special For Young Lovers
The Ray Charles Singers
Originated and Produced by Enoch Light
Associate Producers: Julie Klages & Robert Fine
Art Director: Charles E Murphy
Recording Chief: Fred Christe
Mastering: George Piros (Stereo) & John Johnson (Monaural)
Command Records RS 33-866
1964

This Could Be The Start Of Something
I Left My Heart In San Francisco
More
There! I've Said It Again
This Is All I Ask
Dominique
Helly, Dolly!
Quiet Nights
Love Me With All Your Heart
Charade
What Kind Of Fool Am I?
Sweet Little Mountain Bird

The Incomparable Connie Francis

 

The Loveliest Night Of The Year

The Incomparable Connie Francis
Director Of Engineering: Val Valentin
Cover Design: David Krieger
Metro Records M-603

From the back cover: The fabulous success of Connie Francis in many different phases of show business is due to a rare combination of ability, personality, showmanship and drive, plus a desire to satisfy her audiences wherever she performs.

In the 10 years since she made her first hit recording of Who's Sorry Now Connie Francis has sold over 35 million records, a figure that places her among the biggest recording artists of all time. Eight of her single records have sold more than a million copies each and she has had at least twice that many top-selling albums.

In 1961 Connie made her movie debut in the Joe Pasternak film, "Where The Boys Are." The picture was a box-office bonanza, helped no end by her smash recording of the title song from the movie. Most important, "Where The Boys Are" helped launch her on a new phase of her already star-studded career when her acting, as well as her singing, drew high praise from film critics. Since "Where The Boys Are," Connie has starred in other high-grossing films for MGM including "Follow The Boys" and "Looking For Love."

The same year that Miss Francis made her movie debut she started another career as a writer with her first book, "For Every Young Heart," published by Prentice-Hall. The book became a best-seller in hardcover and was followed up by a paperback edition that is still selling, six years later.

The number of performers who have successfully managed to be proficient in several areas of endeavor, simultaneously, can be counted on the fingers of one hand. Connie Francis' impact as a singer, night club and concert artist and movie actress is truly remarkable. Perhaps that is why she is called on of the great entertainers of the era.

The recordings contained in this album were previously released in the MGM albums entitled Looking For Love E/SE-4229; Follow The Boys E/SE-4123; Mala Femmena E/SE-4161; My Thanks To You E/SE-3776; A New Kind Of Connie E/SE-4253; More Italian Favorites E/SE-3871

Be My Love
Italian Lullaby
Try A Little Tenderness
When The Clock Strikes Midnight
My Man
Looking For Love
Funiculi Funicula
Tonight's My Night
The Loveliest Night Of The Year

Alpha Beta Presents Tijuana One More Time!

 

Don't Throw Bananas At Me

Alpha Beta Presents Tijuana
One More Time!
Alpha Beta First In Foods
A George Garabedian Production
Mark 56 Records
STEREO Vol. III

From the back cover: This album was recorded especially for our Alpha Beta customers. The most talented musicians in the record industry were employed for this record. Absolutely nothing was spared to make this stereo album the best in current songs, arrangements, performance and sound recording. This is in other words, just another way of trying to pass on to our good customers a very special value at a very low, low price.

Oh, by the way – there are two selections which were created just for this album. One is entitled, Yes Sir, That's My Alpha and Don't Throw Bananas At Me.

Casino Royale
Yer Sir, That's My Alpha!
Sound Of Music
Georgy Girl
Up-Up and Away (My Beautiful Balloon)
I Got Rhythm 
The More I See You
Somewhere My Love (Theme from Doctor Zhivago)
Born Free
Music To Watch Girls By
Don't Throw Bananas At Me

Live From Concord To London - Ernestine Anderson

 

Stormy Morning

Ernestine Anderson Live From Concord To London
Produced by Carl E. Jefferson, Concord Jazz, Inc.
Recording Engineer: Howard Kilgour
Remixed at Coast Recorders, San Francisco, CA
Composite Editing: Dennis Staats
Master at The Mastering Room, San Francisco, CA
Cover Photo: Jim Miller
Cover and Liner Photos: British Airways
Art Direction: DH Studio
Concord Jazz, Inc. CJ-54
1978

From the back cover: The places where Ernestine has been getting around since her sensational 1976 appearance at the Concord (Calif.) Jazz Festival include Japan, Sweden and London, England, where a portion of this album was recorded by Carl Jefferson, president of Concord Jazz, Inc. Then there were sellout crowds in her native Seattle, Wash., over the New Year holidays.

The first side of this, her second albums for Concord Jazz, stems from the memorable August 1, 1976 performance at the Concord Pavilion, where she was backed in the manner to which she deserves to be accustomed by pianist Hank Jones, bassist Ray Brown and drummer Jack Hanna, with the Bill Berry, L.A. Big Band coming in for "a taste" on the last track. The other side was recorded during an October 11, 1977 engagement at Ronnie Scott's famed London jazz club, with a strong British trio of pianist John Horler, bassist Jim Richardson and drummer Roger Sellers providing the accompaniment.

It doesn't matter that Ernestine received excellent support on both occasions. She's such a dominant performer in her sweet-swinging, infectious manner that she could upstage a 50-piece orchestra when she's grooving like she is on these two sides. – Gordon Raddue, Richmond (Calif) Independent-Gazette 

Don't Get Around Much Anymore
Days Of Wine And Roses
Stormy Monday
Am I Blue
That The A Train
My Romance
Ellington Medley
   Solitude
   I Got It Bad And That Ain't Good
   Do Nothin' Till You Hear From Me
   Take The A Train
Love For Sale

Tuesday, December 29, 2020

To Duke With Love - Art Farmer

 

It Don't Mean A Thing

To Duke With Love
Art Farmer
Executive Producer: Toshinari Koinuma
Engineer: Ben Taylor
Engineer Remix: Yoshihiro Suzuki
Producers: Yaso
Recorded March 5, 1975
Inner City Records IC 6014
1978 (Jacket Date)
1979 (Disc Label Date)

Personnel 

Art Farmer - Flugelhorn
Cedar Williams - Piano
Same Jones - Bass
Billy Higgins - Drums

In A Sentimental Mood
It Don't Mean A Thing
The Star Crossed Lovers
The Brown Skin Gal In The  Calico Gown
Lush Life
Love You Madly

Roman Holiday - Johnny Kay

 

Siciliani

Roman Holiday
Sing Along With Johnny Kay
Celebrity Records UT 177
A Division Of Premier Albums, Inc.

Volare
Mamma Mia Che Vo Sape
Diciten Cello Vuie
Funiculi Funicula
Serenade Of Roses
Siciliani
Lolita
That's Amore
La Canción D'Amors
Chiribiribin
Drigo Serenade
Toselli's Serenade

Big Band Beatles Bag - Lee Castle

 

The Fool On The Hill

Lee Castle & The Jimmy Dorsey Orchestra Play The Big Band Beatles Bag!
Arranger: "Bugs" Bower
Producer: Joe Abend
Engineer: Frank Abbey
Pickwick/33 SPC 3174

Personnel

Trumpets: Lee Castle, Johnny Amoroso, Dick Perry, Rusty Dedrick, John Frosk
Trombones: Harry DiVito, Blaise Turi
Saxophones: Carl Janelli, Dick Meldonian, Morty Lewis, Gene Allen
Drums: Gary Chester
Electric Bass: Walter Yost
Guitar: Gene Bertoncini, Carl Lynch
Piano: Sy Mann
Percussion: Shorty Allen

From the back cover: The Dorsey name has always been a synonym for tasteful good music for dancing or listening. Ever since the death of Tommy and Jimmy, Lee Castle (considered the third Dorsey son) has continued in the Dorsey tradition. It is in this tradition that Lee has maintained one of the finest dance bands in the musical world.

Elanor Rigby
Michelle
And I Love Her
Penny Lane
The Yellow Submarine
Yesterday
The Fool On The Hill
Ob-La-Di Ob-La-Da
Birthday
Hey, Jude

Monday, December 28, 2020

A Kiss And Other Love Songs - Mario Lanza

 

The Moon Was Yellow

A Kiss and Other Love Songs
Marios Lanza - Tenor
Orchestra conducted by Ray Sinatra
RCA Victor LM-1860 Red Seal
1954

From the back cover: Lanza's is a typical American story. He received a natural musical heritage from his Spanish mother and Italian father, an ex-six-day-bike-racer and disabled World War I veteran who worshipped Caruso and collected his records. Raised in South Philadelphia, the boy went in for football, boxing and weight-lifting during his school days.

But he was passionately fond of music, his interest in singing and grand opera going back to his early boyhood. At 10, he knew the plots and principal arias of 50 operas, and at 15, he could discuss the merits of even relatively obscure operatic works with connoisseurs. He used to sit by the hour outside a neighborhood record shop which played Caruso records over its public address system. These Caruso recordings, he says, were his great inspiration and first teacher. While still in his teens, he began singing lessons, earning the money to pay for them by working for his grandfather who had a trucking business. It was while using one of his grandfather's trucks, incidentally, that he got that first lucky break.

During World War II, Lanza did a tour of duty in the Army, and then was given an opportunity to sing in the special services production On The Beam. This led to an assignment with Moss Hart's Air Force show, Winged Victory, with which the young tenor remained until he was muster out in the summer of 1945. Back in civilian life, Lanza was offered a Red Seal recording contract by RCA Victor, together with $3000 to continue his studies. This was the first time in the company's history that a completely unknown singer had been given such a golden opportunity.

Lanza's first film, That Midnight Kiss, met with huge popular success when it was release. His second film, The Toast Of New Orleans, his RCA Victor recordings and extensive concert tours increased his fame and popularity before an ever widening public.

Higher and higher Lanza's star has soared, until his dream of an ideal, which has always been Caruso, has been transformed into reality on film, with his playing the role of the immortal tenor himself in MGM's movie of his life, The Great Caruso.

This was followed by the MGM technicolor production Because You're Mine and his recording of the sound track for The Student Prince. In each of his motion pictures the voice of Mario Lanza has been heard singing songs that made the best seller lists when they were released on phonograph records. In That Midnight Kiss it was Be My Love. From Because You're Mine the title song of the picture became a national best seller and his albums Toast Of New Orleans and The Student Prince have reached the top of the hit chart.

A Kiss
Begin The Beguine (from Jubilee)
Long Ago (from the Columbia film Cover Girl)
The Night Is Young And You're So Beautiful
My Heart Stood Still (from A Connecticut Yankee)
Sylvia
The Moon Was Yellow
Night And Day (from The Gay Divorcee)
My Romance (from Jumbo)
Siboney
The Thrill Is Gone
Valenica
Beautiful Love
Yesterdays
Besame Mucho
Without A Song

J Is For Jazz - J. J. Johnson

 

Solar

J Is For Jazz
The J. J. Johnson Quintet
Cover Photo: Dan Wynn
Columbia Records CL 935
1956

From the back cover: J. J. Johnson, considered by many to be the originator and leading exponent of the modern jazz trombone style, has until recently been the co-leader, with the extraordinary Kai Winding, of a quintet featuring tow trombones with rhythm section. Their work together on Columbia, with their quintet (CL 742) and with a trombone octet (CL 892), is one of the highlights of the Columbia Jazz catalog, but is also of a kind which has proven popular with the public at large. The same bids fair to be true with the groups they have just formed independently of one another.

The J. J. Johnson Quintet makes one change in instrumentation, but it is an important one. In Kai's old spot, one find Bobby Jaspar, tenor saxophonist and flutist extraordinary. Bobby, while new to the American scene, is well known in Europe. As Belgium's leading jazzman, Bobby won critics' awards and public acclaim all over the continent for his fine contemporary-style playing. Now a permanent resident of the United State, this is his debut before the American public. His appearance in this album is by special arrangement with the company for which he records exclusively – Pathe-Marconi, subsidiary of Electrical and Mechanical Industries, Ltd.

As these recordings were made on the even of J. J.'s launching of his new Quintet, it was impossible to line up the same rhythm section for each session. The changes of personnel are as follows: for Angel Eyes, Overdrive, and Undecided, Hank Jones played piano and Percy Heath played bass. On Tumble Weeds, Solar, Never Let Me Go, and Cube Steak, Wilbur Little replaced Heath. The remaining tunes were made with Tommy Flanagan in place of Hank Jones. The drummer throughout was Elvin Jones, Hank's brother.

All arrangements in this set are by J. J. himself. As usual, he has chosen repertoire which is anything but overdone, and he has also written three originals.

Naptown U.S.A.
It Might As Well Be Spring
Tumbling Tumbleweeds
Angel Eyes
Solar
Overdrive
Undecided
Never Let Me Go
Chasin' The Bird
Cube Steak

Saturday, December 26, 2020

Five strings Hi-Fi - Sonny Osborne

 

Whitehouse Blues

5 String Hi-Fi
Sonny Osborne
Hollywood Records LPH 19

Sunny Mountain Chimes
Blue Waves
Gun Powder
Hand Me Down My Walking Cane
Jesse James
Suwannee
Silver Rainbow
Wildwood Flower
Auld Lange Syne
Banjo Boy Chimes
Raw Hide
Cumberland Gap
Train Forty Five
Whitehouse Blues

Greatest Hollywood Themes - Ed Sullivan

 

Exodus

Ed Sullivan's Stereo Library Of The World's Great Music
Greatest In Hollywood Themes
Greig McRitchie Orchestra
ESS 101

From the back cover: Foregoing the lush violin-laden treatment that is so often proper and persuasive for film music, McRitchie has created for his Exodus interpretation a more authentic instrumental group... one which gives a body unique musical life to the theme. Leaning heavily on percussive effects, McRitchie features a wide variety of Oriental instruments, including tambourines, cymbals and native drums. 

A graduate of the University of California and a student of Darius Milhaud, McRitchie's work has been featured by symphony orchestras, motion pictures, radio, and television. Now he brings to the record album field not only his vast experience but a vitally fresh creative approach. Listening to his unique renditions of these favorite selections isa memorable and exciting musical experience. – Ed Sullivan

Exodus
The Moon Is Blue
The Bells Of St. Mary's
I Wonder Who's Kissing Her Now
Spellbound
Slaughter On Tenth Avenue
The Merry Widow Waltz
The Third Man Theme
The Quiet Man Theme
The Last Time I Saw Paris

10-4 Good Buddy

 

10-4 Good Buddy
Written Narrated and Produced by Barry Leder and Allan Stagg
Music by Paddlefoot
Engineer" Gerald Stagg
Eezee Learn Records, Inc.
RCA Victor Special Products DVM1-0220
1978

Introduction
The 10 Signals – Definitions & Examples
The Phonetic Alphabet
Chatter, Handles and Channels
CB Slang – What It Means and How To Use It
Buying A CB Radio – Some Suggestions
Basic FCC Requirements For CB Users

Friday, December 25, 2020

Far Out Near In - Johnny Eaton

 

Lover Man

Far Out
Near In
Johnny Eaton and His Princetonians
Columbia Records CL 996
1957

Personnel

I've Got Plenty O' Nuttin'
Summertime
Swat The G-Man

Johnny Eaton - Piano 
Richard Lincoln - Vibes
Edward White - Bass
Allen Bergman - Drums

The Lamp Is Low
Quite Early One Morning

All the above, plus John Solum, Flute and Mel Kaplan, Oboe

Georgia On My Mind
Love Man
Just Wedging

Johnny Eaton - Piano
Herbert Mann - Flute
Bob Price - Vibes
Simon DeMuth - Bass
Charles Spies, Jr. - Drums

From the back cover: Johnny Eaton is an intrepid musical theorist, and all of the Princetonians are classically-based musicians – which brings me to a characteristic I find common to most "chamber jazz" groups. When you se phrases like "Progressive Workshop" or "Modern Experimental" or other euphemisms which avoid the word "jazz," you can lay even money that the groups so described are occasionally going to get self-consciously studious or sententious. But this is another mistake the Princetonians don't make – they wear their learning lightly. They never sacrifice the indispensable swinging feeling of jazz in pushing their off-beat ideas to their logical conclusions. As he title "Far Out, Near In" indicates, Johnny and the boys often go pretty far out to find what they need – all the way to Satie, Milhaud and Schoenberg – but they always bring it back in near enough to jumping to call it jazz without having to get semantic.

The instrumental line-up of the Princetonians is a unusual as everything else about them. The way the oboe and flute trace their thin, supple line through the floating aura created by piano, vibes, bass and drum is something like the technique of Chinese painting. At least, it's like nothing you ever heard before. Herbie Mann, who is probably the best-known name here, is runner-up for flute in this year's All-Star Metronome Jazz Poll. The rest of the boys are so far out of this world that polls haven't reached there yet. – Anatole Broyard

From Billboard - June 12, 1957: Veering to the soft, well-mannered sound and techniques associated with MJQ, Chico Hamilton, etc., group has its fluid moments but, for the most part, tends to be overly concerned with the creation of effects for its own sake. Good soloing by flutist H. Mann and vibist Bob Prince lend an earthiness this act could have used in much larger quantities. For he desperately "far-out" crowd.

Georgia On My Mind
Lover Man
Just Wedging
The Lamp Is Low
I've Got Plenty O' Nuttin'
Summertime
Swat The G-Man
Quite Early One Morning

Midnight Dance Party - Al Caiola

 

When I Grow Too Old To Dream

Midnight Dance Party
Al Caiola And His Magnificent Seven
Produced by Nick Perito
Arrangements by Al Caiola
Liner Notes by Norman Wesier
United Artists UAL 3228
1962

From Billboard - July 28, 1962: The dancing beat provided by Al Caiola's group is well-nigh irresistible. Such standards as "Four Leaf Clover," "Irish Eyes Are Smiling," "San Antonio Rose" and "Oh Marie" are treated in a semi-Dixieland style to which Caiola's electric guitar lends a striking touch. Top recommendation for dancing parties.

Four Leaf Clover
Oh, Marie
The Music Goes Round And Round
Simple Melody
Maybe
When I Grow Too Old To Dream
Children's Marching Song
Everywhere You Go
Heart Of My Heart
San Antonio Rose
Irish Eyes Are Smiling
Farewell Blues


Thursday, December 24, 2020

Carnival Of The Animals & Divertissement - Felix Slatkin

 

Carnival Of The Animals

Saint-Saens
Carnival Of The Animals
IBert
Divertissement
Felix Slatkin conducting The Concert Arts Orchestra
Capitol Records P8270
1954

From the back cover: Felix Slatkin displays superb musicianship in two roles: as a performer, he is first violinist of the famed Hollywood String Quartet and concertmaster of the Twentieth Century-Fox Orchestra; as a conductor, he directs fine performances by the Concert Arts Orchestra, featuring such excellent soloists as those heard on this record – Elanor Aller, cello; Arthur Gleghorn, flute; and Victor Aller and Harry Sukman, piano.

Carnival Of The Animals
Introduction and Royal March Of The Lions
Hens And Cocks
Wild Jackasses
Tortoises
The Elephant
Kangaroos
Aquarium
Persons With Long Ears
The Cuckoo In The Forrest
Aviary
Pianists
Fossils
The Swan
Finale

Divertissement 
Introduction 
Cortege
Nocturne
Valse
Parade
Finale

Go... Go... Go!!! - The Astronauts

 

Go Go Go

Go... Go... Go!!!
The Astronauts
Produced by Al Schmitt
Recorded in RCA Victor's Music Center of the World, Hollywood, California
Recording Engineer: Dick Bogert and Dave Hassinger
Cover Photo by Don Carlson
RCA Victor LPM-3307
1965

From the back cover: Two years ago I flew to Boulder, Colorado, to look at a group of young performers who had been highly recommended by Ward Terry, the RCA distributor in that area.

As a Artist & Repertoire producer, I spent a good deal of my time flying to one place or another on similar "scouting" trips and I usually come home empty-handed, having seen "just another act." With all due respect to Ward Terry, I had no premonition that this trip would be different.

Then, when I stepped off the plane and saw my "hosts," I was immediately impressed... in fact, "stunned" would be closer to the truth. Five young men and Alaskan Huskie pup (the size of a pony) literally swept me off my feet into a waiting car. The boys – Bob Demmon, Rich Fifield, Jim Gallagher, Stormy Patterson and Dennis Lindsey – were fresh, funny and totally uninhibited. The pup was a tail-wagging charmer, obviously staved for affection, who proceeded to kiss me every time I tried to get a word in the conversation.

I was driven to Bob's home, where a steak cookout had been planned in my honor. (I later found out it was the kind of affair where everyone brings his own steak and they all chipped in to buy mine.) By the time the food was served, the boys not only had me eating their steak, but eating out of their hands as well. To say that they had "won me over" is an understatement, for I had never met five more likable, personable, extremely amusing young men. "Just watch them turn out to be a bomb on stage," I said to myself as we drove to the Tulagi club where they were appearing. I was given a ringside seat, the boys went backstage, the house lights were turned out... and in total darkness the SOUND began. I can honestly report that the mishmash of flat notes, off-key guitar playing and screeching bedlam that filled my ears was the most awful noise I ever heard in my life. I actually put my head down in my hands for fear I'd have to look them in the eyes when the lights came up. Then suddenly the lights did come on, the boys took one look at the expression on my face and they broke up. To them it was hilarious to "put on" a big company A&R man and have him fall for it. To me it was astonishing that an unknown group who obviously wanted a recording contract would have that kind of nerve!

But then, as the boys settled into the groove and began to play, sing and perform for real, I could understand where they got their nerve. They were GREAT and they knew it, in the way that only confident, seasoned performers usually know it.

Needless to say, RCA Victor signed them to a recording contract. Their first album, Surfin' With The Astronauts, became a national best seller, as did their second, third and fourth. And, as reflected in the traveling-fast-and-far name of the group, the Astronaut's popularity is not limited to the West or to the United States. They had the number-one selling single and the number-one selling album in Japan for ten weeks. Wherever they've appeared here or abroad – at the major universities, on tour with the Dave Clark Five, in the Orient – they have been a sensational hit.

From that first meeting in the airport to this, their fifth album, I've found working with the Astronauts has been nothing but pure pleasure. This time we've really let the boys show off their versatility, as the majority of the songs in Go... Go... Go! were written by member of the group. I think this is the Astronaut's finest album to date, and I sincerely hope you enjoy listening to it as much as I enjoyed producing it. – Al Schmitt, A&R Producer

Hey Sugarfoot
My Sin Is My Pride
I'm A Fool
Little Lover
Quiet Village
You Gotta Let Me Go
Almost Grown
Love Goes On
Can't You See I Do
Go Go Go
Touch
Out Of Sight, Out Of Mind

Star Trek - The Crier In Emptiness

 

The Crier In Emptiness

Star Trek
Three Exciting New - Complete Stories
Power Records 8158 (2 cover variations)
1975

Passage To Moauv
The Crier In Emptiness
In Vino Veritas

Wednesday, December 23, 2020

Eva Styl

 

ΣΤΑ ΣΑΛΩΝΑ

Eva Styl
Photos: G. Petropoulos
Liberty LP-111

From the back cover: Stop any man – or, for that matter, any woman – who is on familiar terms with America's Greek artists, and ask him of her, to kindly name the one outstanding singing talent currently on the scene – and quickly, without hesitation the answer will be "Eva".

Eva? Yes, Eva: of the compelling face. Big-eyed, sensual lipped, intense Eva Styl, whose voice, soaring in an exultant hymn to Hellas, has been fascinatingly the recently arrived newcomers to the United States from Greece, as well as the young Americans who only view of Greece is that which is achieved through the eyes of nostalgic parents.

Tuesday, December 22, 2020

So Good - Don And The Goodtimes

 

My Color Song

So Good
Don And The Goodtimes
Produced by Jack Nitzsche
*Produced by Jack Nitzsche and Stu Phillips
**Produced by Jerry Fuller
Arranged by Jack Nitzsche and Stu Phillips
Cover Design: Michael Mendel
Epic Records LN 24311
1967

From the back cover: Li'l Don Galliucci, 19, was a child prodigy on piano and organ and is considered by The Goodtimes to be the best musician in the bunch (any bunch). In carving the album, his fingers also had opportunity to caress harpsichords, clavichords and other intriguing instruments.

Born October 31 in Portland, Oregon, Don has brown hair and eyes, a love-me kind of smile, and the firm belief that he is 9' 7" ("but I photograph shorter," says he). He is the group's musical arranger, spark plug, spearhead, and presently leads in the fan letter sweepstakes.

He's an avid reader (including cereal cartoon at the breakfast table), lifts weights to keep muscles on his slender frame, assembles model cars, loves to study people and many set an Olympic Dating Record this year.

Ron (Buzz) Overman, 21, is the first up every morning, regardless of how late the bedtime. He's the Goodtime visionary, who approaches every group project with dedication, devotion and a sense of destiny. "The Buzzard," through his songwriting, is a prime creative force. On stage, smiling, stepping and strumming the bass guitar, singing lead vocal or la-la-la-ing in the background, his mere presence commands an audience to enjoy.

Buzz is 5' 10", weighs 158, has blue eyes and dark brown hair. He's a movie buff and would score high on any film trivia quiz, has a long-standing hope to one day date Carol Lynley, loves corn on the cob and watermelon, and wouldn't dream of missing "Star Trek." His birthday is January 7.

Bobby Holden, 20, organized Don and The Goodtimes with Li'l Don, after both had spent time with other Portland bands, and it is he who injects much of the mirth into the gourds live-action proceedings. Bobby is both the Goodtimes' drummer and built-in sense of humor.

He can find something funny about anything and, as an alternative, will invent funny. He can announce a miss-mash of noise as his latest composition, give a complex definition for a word of his own invention, and have the audience believing.

Bobby, whose birthday is April 16, is 5' 10", has blonde hair and blue eyes, and an appetite that is at constant odds with his current diet. He's a fresh fruit fanatic, particularly oranges and apples, enjoys hunting, fishing and mechanical drawing, and hopes to one day own his own cattle ranch.

Jeff Hawks, 20, sings shakes a tambourine and creates new dance steps and astonishing combinations of gyrations. And he sprinkles his performances with jokes, imitations (Marlon Brando and Wolfman Jack being his current favorites), and the "Goodtimes Hi-Sign," which he invented. It requires one to put hand under chin, palm downward, and wiggle the fingers like five berserk worms.

The darkly handsome Jeff, whose large, loving, brooding brown eyes can be hypnotic, has proven a fan favorite since stepping onstage to replace a Goodtime retired by illness. His warmth, appreciation and eagerness to please are three reasons why that's so.

Jeff, raised in Alameda, California, is 6', has black hair and tips the scales at 150 pounds. He devours steaks, digs football, writes short stories and songs, and can spend hours on end in a photo darkroom. His birthday is August 31.

Joey Newman, 19, is beginning to tire of being mistaken for Peter No-one, although his resemblance to Herman is in the uncanny category. It goes with having blonde hair, blue eyes, and one of the biggest, brightest, toothiest smiles ever unlipped off the planet Krypton.

There is no mistaking, however, that his way with lead guitar give the Goodtimes' music its get-up-and-go quality. And his vocalizing is important to the distinctive Goodtimes blend.

Joey, 5' 11", was born August 29 in Seattle, Washington, and was playing with another Pacific Northwest band when invited to enlist with The Goodtimes. He's a sharp with a pool cue as with the guitar and used to win trophies in a go-cart racing league; enjoys movies and baseball games; hopes to meet Paul Newman (who is no relation, just a favorite); wants to see the world. – Bob Levinson

From Billboard - July 22, 1967: Don and the Goodtimes have a top sales attraction in their first album for Epic including their hit single, "I Could Be So Good To  You," this 11-selection pressing offers upbeat numbers like "Gimme Some Lovin'," "With A Girl Like You," and "And It's So Good." "My Color Book" is a good slower number with today's sound.

I Could Be So Good To You
The Music Box
*I Could Never Be
*Gimme Some Lovin'
**If You Love Her, Cherish Her And Such
With A Girl Like You
*My Color Song
And It's So Good
Sweet, Sweet Mama
* Good Day Sunshine

Barbie And Her Friends

 

Barbie And Her Friends


Barbie And Her Friends
Produced by John Braden
Kid Stuff Records
Phono Picture Disk
Limited Edition KPD 6003
1981

Barbie And Her Friends
It All Comes Back
To You
You've Got A Friend
Handle With Care
How Can I Thank You
Barbie And Her Friends