This is where stuff that won't fit on the Shellac Shanty or AudiOddities blogs. Lounge, funk, or just stuff that I happen to like run through my addled brain. Eclectica forever!

Monday, May 29, 2006

A pair of 10 inch...records

While we're on the Hawaiian thing, I ran across a couple of "tourist-y" 10-inch records. I'll let you decide which of these are better than the other...

The first one, "...recorded on the beach at Waikiki..." (with the surf sounds between each song to prove it...) is Webley Edwards presents Hawaii Calls (with Al Keahola Perry). It is on a Capitol 10-inch disc, and the tunes are....passable, I suppose... nothing to write home about, but they would pass for suitable tourist-y rememberances, I suppose for the early 1950s...

Na Lei O Hawaii (Song of the Islands)
Ta-Hu-Wa-Hi-Wai (Hawaiian War Chant)
Lovely Hula Girl
Imi Au Ia Oe (King's Serenade)
Ke Kali Nei Au (Hawaiian Wedding Song)
The Hawaiian Cowboy
I'll See You In Hawaii
Aloha Oe (Hawaiian Farewell Song)

Comments: You'll note that the Hawaiian Cowboy is indeed the one written by Sol K. Bright. I need to get that version up on the Shellac Shanty. It's much better than this one. Overall, this one is a yawner. This whole ALBUM is a yawner. Bleh. Consider it as the MoodieToonz Clanker.

Now, then, we come to the SECOND 10-inch record on this post, one which has the potential to be MUCH worse than the Hawaii Calls thing. Released on Royale (a division of Record Corp. of America), which was another budget label like Pontiac, is this collection of Polynesian and Hawaiian Music, performed by Bernie Kaai & His Hawaiians. This was released in, I think, 1954, but the tracks sure sound like they may have come from 10-15 years earlier. Royale had a reputation for scouring the outtake bins of other labels and releasing stuff that the big boys would have dumped, usually from the shellac era. This is how the folks-at-home got a lot of music, cheaply. Most were drek-ords, but there were the exceptions, and this here 10-incher is one of them!

Polynesian Rhythm
Hula Lullabye
Steel Guitar Boogie
Kuuaina Aliha (My Beloved Homeland)
Halihi (Native Hula)
My Purple Lio (My Crazy Horse)
Lee Aloha (Flower of Love)
Aloha and Goodnight

Wow. I sure was surprised at this one. Granted it is pressed on some of the worst polystyrene one can imagine (hence the occasional click and pop, which I will re-master out later), and there are engineering faults a-plenty (levels all over the place), but if you suffer through the imperfections, you'll hear some very nice swinging Hawaiian music from the 40s in here, along with some very capable Hawaiian electric steel guitar.

Now watch, someone is gonna say that this was a bunch of guys in a studio in East Hackensack, New Jersey wearing floral shirts....

Listen anyways, I think it is worth it, and a little bit of mid 20th Century Hawaiian culture stuff never hurts, even if it is second-hand bargain label stuff from the thrift store bin.

Make Mine a Mai-Tai! Mahalo!

the Impaler

PS - Pics will be put up when I wrangle the digital camera away from the daughters...

Sunday, May 28, 2006

Tommy Garrett's 50 Gee-tarrzz

Ahh yes, another crap picture from my unsteady hand on the digicam. I really need a tripod, huh.

Anyways, tonight we have a Liberty Premier series LP of Tommy Garrett, specifically "The 50 Guitars of Tommy Garrett", doing some very nice latin-mexican flavored goodies.

Tommy Garrett was a guitar player (duh!) but he liked to get all these OTHER guitar players together and make albums like this one. He called (according to the sparse liner notes) Laurindo Almeida, Barney Kessel, Howard Roberts, Al Viola, Bob Bain, Tiny Timbrell, Bill Pitman, Jose Barroso, and "...many others whose exclusive contracts do not allow their names to be included..." to get in the studio for three days and produce this. Well, actually, Felix Slatkin produced this. Which is why it sounds so.... Slatkin-y I guess.

Liberty Premier series discs had the black printing on the gold labels, and were suppoed to be their 'audiophile' series of stereo LPs. I have yet to find a sonically bad one, and they're usually good for decent lounge music from the early 60s. You can usually find some good'uns at the thrift stores...

Here are the cuts, for your El Martini pleasure...

Come Closer To Me
Be Mine Tonight
La Virgen de la Macarena
Besame Mucho
You Belong To My Heart
La Bamba
South of the Border

Oh, on the La Bamba cut, don't expect Ritchie Valens, it's a whole lot more like mariachi-without-horns. Like this LP. But it's nice.


Saturday, May 27, 2006

Buddy Rich at the Chez - 1966

In the batch of reel tapes I got was this album:

Yep, someone dumped this off in the middle of a bunch of very easy listening music tapes. Lady Domi asked that I post it, so I will honor her request, but I must tell you that this is STILL IN PRINT ON CD (albeit with extra tracks), and that if you like it you should go and buy it. I am VERY reluctant to post this after finding out that it still is in print... but to give you an idea of just how freakin' great Buddy was as both a drummer and a band-leader, I'll post it. BUT GO BUY THE CD IF YOU LIKE WHAT YOU HEAR!!

Buddy had just left a VERY high-paying gig with Harry James in 1966 and decided to go forth and form his own band. His initial backers pulled out because the charts weren't 'rock-y' enough (they basically STUNK), so Buddy got a couple of new writers and arrangers and proceeded to blow the doors off of any venue the band played. This band set the standard in 1966 for how to swing and swing hard. In the liner notes, Stan Kenton noted that he was skeptical of Buddy's new adventure, but was hooked after the first hearing.

So, here are the original tracks as found on LP (or on this source, a Pacific Jazz open reel tape)...

Basically Blues
Critic's Choice
My Man's Gone Now
Up Tight
Sister Sadie
More Soul
West Side Story Medley

As I stated earlier, go buy this damn thing, there are 8 extra cuts on the CD from the same performance at the Chez in Santa Monica, California, I have heard them and they kick just as much as these original 8 cuts do.

Saturday, May 20, 2006

The Wild World of Reel-to-Reel Tape

After the Tony Mottola LP, I found some VERY nice reel tapes at the ARC store. This is one of them, Les & Larry Elgart's "Warm & Sensual" album.

Just Friends
Goodbye Is A Lonely Word
I Got It Bad (And That Ain't Good)
Here's That Rainy Day
Bermuda Concerto
Ill Wind (You're Blowing Me No Good)
Harlem Nocturne
Soldier In The Rain

This was produced (mostly, with the exceotion of a couple of cuts) by the legendary Teo Macero on Columbia Stereo Tape, and it shows the smooth-as-silk values he used. I thought this was gonna be just-another-loungey-buncha-tones, but there's some real meat in here! Larry Elgart's Alto Sax, featured in most of the cuts, sails through the material quite nicely. A neat little surprise, even if it is more appropriate for Martini Time than The Swingin' & Stompin' Show....

And the cover... another topless lady with the "Come hither!" expression (don't worry, she covers herself.... sensuously...)...

So.... what else did I find at the ARC store...

Frank Chacksfield & His Orchestra! Ooo! Playing music from Meredith Wilson's "Here's Love"! Ooo! On London Stereo Tape! Ooo! Mastered by Ampex... eww.

Yes, folks, Ampex screwed this one up ROYALLY. The right channel is gloriously brilliant, but the left channel sounds like someone sprayed hairspray on the record head. I managed to remaster SOME of the top end back into it, but boy-howdy, I really want to find this on LP to see how bad Ampex screwed the pooch on this one.

Anyway, here are the cuts...
Here's Love
Look Little Girl
That Man Over There
My Wish
Expect Things To Happen
Dear Mister Santa Claus
Love, Come Take Me Again
The Big Clown Balloons
The Bugle
My State, My Kansas, My Home
Pine Cones and Holly Berries
You Don't Know
Adeste Fideles March

Yes, kids, it's a musical about the winter holiday season... but it's May! Consider this a bit of air-conditioning (it has been over 90 degrees the last few days here) for you.... no cover scan available on this one, sorry, but the mandatory female IS cute...

Sorry about the lousy pic, I'll post a better one when I can figure out this damn camera.

Enjoy the douple-play, and if you ask nice, I'll post the Buddy Rich tape I also got in this batch.


Thursday, May 18, 2006

Tony Mottola, lounge or jazz?

I'm in the process of uploading the first side of the Tony Mottola Project 3 LP entitled "Warm, Wild, and Wonderful", produced by Enoch Light, recorded in 1968. I can't really put a shot of the cover here, because it is almost softcore porn (as if other lounge LPs of the late 50s weren't??)... but I'll describe it: a young vixen with a blonde afro and yellow eyes with a sarong not-quite-covering her.... hmmmm... breastal appendages? Something that Star Trek could not have gotten away with in 1967? The cover art is signed by a Hilary Knight, the lady is holding an acoustic guitar, and is kneeling next to a leopard. Fun, huh. But not as funa s the actual cover! Lounge-o-philes, you may know this one, and if you do, I see those smiles!

Anyway, here are the cuts, it is a nifty LP, very jazz-like, and this may be what evolved into early Smooth Jazz.

Side 1:
This Guy's In Love With You
"Hey, after this martini, would you like to come up to my pad and see my etchings?"
Do You Know The Way To San Jose
A very lounge-y treatment of the Dionne Warwick hit, even with the vocal background adding 'effect'... the finger cymbals are a nice little touch... mellow horns too. Boom chick a boom chick chick CHAAAA...
Dream A Little Dream Of Me
I absolutely LOVE the treament that Tony gave this, from the Twinkle Twinkle opening to the lazy swing rendition of a Gus Kahn tune, revitalized by Cass Elloitt.
With A Little Help
The vocals are interesting adds to this rather standard standard... sure isn't Joe Cocker-ish at all!
Scarborough Fair
Patchouuuuuuliiiiiiii... a lounge madrigal!
Watch What Happens
A nice mellow guitar intro leads into an almost-samba, worthy of a cool drink on a tropical beach somewhere... mellow-ness...

Side 2:
By The Time I Get To Phoenix
Your typical easy-listening, MoR format stuff... but it'll work at 3 in the morning on US 93 between Wickenburg and Wikieup (two forgettable towns in Arizona between Phoenix and Las Vegas)...
Kites Are Fun
Why nobody has picked this up for a music bed for a summertime car commercial, I dunno... visions of young, carefree people in their cute little compact convertible, picnics on the green, la la lalala la...
Cry Me A River
This cut is one of the best, most soulful versions of Julie London's hit (besides Julie's own version) that I have EVER heard. Nothing gets in the way (too much) of TOny stretching this one out. THIS is DEFINATELY good cocktail jazz.
Goin' Out Of My Head
Okay, we're back to the Lounge cheese here now... have some fondue.
Love In Every Room
Muzak! Muzak! Muzak! A sitar (played by Bucky Pizzarelli!) and a lounge groove that BEGS an acid jazz remix!
I Found Love
It's just so darn HAPPY!!! But it manages to swing just enough to leave the insulin on the shelf.

So far, my favorites are "Dream A Little Dream Of Me" and "Cry Me A River"... definately somewhere between lounge and smooth jazz (and something you would have heard on the 'Beautiful Music' FM radio station in 1968...). And, yes, you DO hear Dick Hyman doing keyboard chores in a few of the cuts.

Pass the olives, gorgeous!


Wednesday, May 17, 2006

Infringing on Vintage MY(P)HAE?

Well, I decided to take a break from the 78s and do a few 45s for this blog. At the risk of infringing on Lee's MY(P)WHAE, I dug out three 45s, each with its' own attraction...

The first one is from a local Minneapolis, Minnesota record company, SOMA Records. It has a bunch of Minnesota boys called The Underbeats, covering a classic soul/doo-wop song, Book Of Love. Yes, it's the song originally made famous by the Monotones. And, it's an interesting cover, if I don't say so myself. I like finding stuff like this at the thrift store, all banged and boogered up... one cleans it off, one throws it on the turntable, one does the CoolEdit voodoo (that he do so WELL), and one gets rewarded... well, MOST of the time anyway.

The B-side isn't too badly done either... Darling Lorraine is a bit more, how shall I say it, Wonder-bread-ish? It still has that nice pop feel to it, and I think it might be a nice little B-side... which, of course, it is.

Next up, I found this in the same pile as the Underbeats 45... it is The Reflections on a local Detroit, Michigan label, Golden World, doing (Just Like) Romeo & Juliet. Okay, I think, this is a cover, right? WRONG! I think this one is the REAL DEAL! Holey moley! It's GOOD too! If anyone knows if this is the real deal and not a cover, PLEASE let me know! Comments are welcome! I'll have to go dig through Goldmine magazine to see if Golden World was the original producer of this song.

The B-side is a great tune as well... Can't You Tell By The Look In My Eyes. Neat harmonies, nice arrangement, good 60s doo-wop.

I also noticed that this disc was pressed at a Columbia pressing plant (hence the Columbia-style matrix numbering)...

Now for a REAL Columbia 45... I don't know why I grabbed this one off the pile, but I'm glad I did! Duke's New Sound Band sounds like it was supposed to be a clone of The New Vaudeville Band maybe... at least on this cut, originally written by Buffy St. Marie, entitled Don't Call Me Honey When Your Mother's Around. Holy acid flashbacks, Batman! This is a VERY cute little pop thingie, probably warehoused by Columbia when the fad of tunes like "Winchester Cathedral" went poof. That lasted all of what, 15 minutes?

(sarcasm mode off now because I LIKE "Winchester Cathedral"!)

The B-side, Where Did I Go Bad is a bit more 'pedestrian', but it still is a nice little pop number. Isn't it neat when you can look back 35 years and say "Gee, that was a nice record, how come it didn't get any airplay?" Well, it gets unearthed, right here on MoodieTunez, just for your musical enjoyment!

Right now, I'm working up some Tony Mottola stuff from the 60s, recorded on Enoch Light's Project 3 label, which I'll have for you in a few days, but in the meantime, have a nice stroll down the almost-top-40 Memory Lane!

Friday, May 05, 2006

The Other Side of I Want To Live!

Here's the second side of the LP... sorry that no scans are done yet, hopefully this weekend.

Trio Convicted
Trip To Corona
Peg's Visit
Gas Chamber Unveiling
Nightmare Sequence
Preparations for Execution
Letter Writing Sequence
The Last Mile
Death Scene
End Title

Tuesday, May 02, 2006

I Want To Live!

Heh, time for some new stuff... well not quite NEW, mind you, it's from 1959, but relatively new for me, since it was in one of the more recent thrift-store acquisitions... It's a United Artists stereo LP of Johnny Mandel's Great Jazz Score For "I Want To Live!"

OK, so I have never heard of it either.

It starred Susan Hayward, or so the front of the jacket says, but what's on the BACK is MUCH more interesting. Here's the Personnel list...

Jack Sheldon - Trumpet
Al Porcino - Trumpet
Ed Leddy - Trumpet
Frank Rosolino - Trombone
Milt Bernhart - Trombone
Dave Wells - Trombone, Bass Trumpet
Vince De Rosa - French Horn
Sinclair Lott - French Horn
John Cave - French Horn
Dick Parisi - French Horn
Harry Klee - Piccolo, flute
Abe Most - Clarinet
Joe Maini - Sax, Bass Clarinet
Bill Holman - Sax, Clarinet
Marty Berman - Bass clarinet, contra-bassoon
Chuck Gentry - Bass Sax, Contra-bass clarinet
Red Mitchell - String Bass
Pete Jolly - Piano
Al Hendricksen - Guitar
Shelly Manne - Percussion
Larry Bunker - Percussion
Mel Lewis - Percussion
Milt Holland - Percussion
Mike Pacheco - Percussion
Kathryn Jule - Harp
Johnny Mandel - Arrangements

Johnny Mandel's Great Jazz Score for "I Want To Live" UAS-5005

WOW! Now THAT'S almost a who's who of San Francisco& Los Angeles scene players! To expound the 'percussion' listing, the liner notes sayeth:
Shelly Manne - standard drums
Larry Bunker - rhythm logs, cowbells, claves
Mel Lewis - scratcher, cowbells
Milt Holland - chromatic drums, cowbells, Chinese and Burmese gongs
Mike Pacheco - bongos, congas

sounds like the list of players on "The Intro and the Outro" by the Bonzo Dog Band...

Mel Lewis on scratcher.... sigh.....

ANYWAYS, here's the first side, if there's any interest, I'll post the second side in a few days, after I encode it.

Main Theme
Poker Game
San Diego Party
Henry Leaves
Barbara Surrenders

This is some real nice stuff, and well recorded too. I've not seen this on CD anywhere, so relish in an 'unearthed' remaster of some jazz that was, I believe, consigned to the dustbins... unless someone else found this and made a few bucks off of the re-release... oh, heck, enjoy it anyways! Whee!