Thursday, September 29, 2016

Gonna Put You Down


Barry Wilson
and The Camelots

Gonna Put You Down

Dot 45-16462
March 1963

On this record, an article published by Billboard (in its April 20, 1963 issue) has the following details :

BUG ON WING IN N. ENGLAND

BOSTON - Out of a new dance known as the Bug has come a new record produced by the sales representative of highbrow music radio station WCRB, which will, of course, not air his record.

It grew out of a new twist dance popularized in this area by the trio of Barry Wilson, Bob Prunier and Mo Burnham.  Gene Kilham of WCRB produced the record, had it published by Famous Music Corporation, New York and sold to Dot.  "The Bug" is backed with "Gonna Put You Down."

The group was backed by four Framingham businessmen who were instrumental in getting the trio started on the dance in the Camelot Lounge in Framingham.  The dance is now spreading to other parts of the country and is popular in New England areas.
Barry Wilson led several local bands The Orchids, among others, and was the vocalist of The Lundon Fog (until 1973).

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Let's Stay Home


Alan Dean


Let's Stay Home

Panama Artists, Inc.
1959


Alan Dean
Morris Levy was his personal manager since 1951

Billboard, December 29, 1951


Alan Dean, born in East Ham, London in 1924, was voted the UK's most popular male singer in the Melody Maker 1949-50 popularity poll and retained that position until 1952.

By mid-1951 Alan realised that he had achieved all he could possibly achieve in Britain. He had kept in touch with pianist George Shearing, a colleague from his days with Frank Weir's band, and whose career had taken a great leap forward in America. Shearing advised Alan to "come on over". Then Barry Ulanov, the eminent music critic and editor of Metronome magazine, met Alan in London, heard him sing and gave him the same advice.

Encouraged by his support, but remaining cautious, Alan decided to 'test the water' on a short holiday in New York, but so quick and positive was the reaction there that he was unable to return to London until 1957. 

In the USA, there was records on London, Roost, MGM (1952-1956), Rama (1956-1957), Roulette (1957) and Panama (1959). 

Composer of "Let's Stay Home" is Denise Norwood (or Dennise Haas Norwood).  Se wrote among others "Garden Of Eden" (Joe Valino, Vik Records, 1956), Teenage Blues (Roc LaRue With The Three Pals, Rama Records, 1957),   and House Of Heartache  (Cathy Carr,  Fraternity  Records, 1957).
Dennise Norwood recorded herself a single for Glory Records in 1959 (Bring On The Rain b/w House Of Heartache) and a concept album titled " In The Skin With Me"  "an audio-musical with scenes and action in sound selections and story line" issued in 1962 on Dennise Records.  She died in 1999 in Florida.





Monday, September 26, 2016

Brigitte


The Barrons

Brigitte

KRCO 101
1959

Quite probably a Beaumont, Texas group.  Composers of the songs, Byrun Portor (?) and Doyle Coody, were possibly members of The Barrons.

Vocal with a Bo Diddley rhythm. This is by far their best track for my taste.  All their other songs are in a doo-woopish vein.  The KRCo single was leased (or sold) to Westminster Records, a budget record company and issued later that year in 1959 on their Whitehall subsidiary.

Also probably part of the Westminster deal were four songs issued later on Guest Star,  another budget label. 

Guest Star 1481 track list

 
On the 10-tracks album, apart the two "4 Seasons" songs, The Barrons are credited on eight songs.
But only four tracks are really by "our" Barrons.  The four other Barrons tracks are actually by The Crescendos, the Nasco recording artists (track 2, 3, 4 and 6).

KRCo (Ken Ritter Company) was owned by the nephew of the cowboy star Tex Ritter.  During his stint in the military, Ken Ritter worked in Armed Forces Radio, and upon returning to Beaumont affiliated with Broadcast Music, Inc. (BMI).   In 1956, he was granted the first music-publishing license here, and at the time it was among the earliest in the state.  In 1958, his first major success came when he co-produced the recording that took J.P. Big Bopper Richardson to national fame. With two novelty songs back to back, the Chantilly Lace side became a huge hit and sold in the millions.  He also discovered the talents of brothers Johnny and Edgar Winter of Beaumont and produced some of their early recordings.   Ken Ritter was elected mayor of Beaumont in 1970.

King Of The Blues


Al Berry
and The Furness Bros.

King Of The Blues
w &  m Max Dickman & Marilyn Israel

Melmar 115
1957

Only "featured" on the previous record on the same label — Furness Brothers Featuring Al Berry — Al Berry is promoted here as the main artist.  He was a member of the New Furness Brothers at least until the early sixties.

Businessman and songwriter Max Dickman started the Melmar label in Broomall, Pennsylvania, named after his son, Melvin, and his wife, Marilyn.  The first three releases on the label were by Bonnie Davis & The Piccadilly Pipers [See Marv Goldberg's website HERE)
 

Sunday, September 25, 2016

Two Cats & A Mouse


Mickey Mandolin

Saunders, Jim Jon Music ASCAP

Arr. & conducted by Frank Hunter

Sabena Records S-1/2
1960
also issued as by Mickey Moreno

The flip, "Open Your Heart" was also issued on the Coed Records' subsidiary Companion label later in 1960. Song can be heard on YouTube.




Vincent James LaSpada  1920-1990


This is Vincent LaSpada, who recorded and sang with the big bands of the '40s as Jimmy Saunders
Jimmy Saunders, also known as Sonny Saunders and for a time as Marco Polo, sang with the bands of Harry James, Eddie Duchin, Ray Bloch, Sonny Kendis and Charlie Spivak. He co-wrote "Peach Tree Street" with Frank Sinatra and recorded such hits as "There Must Be a Way," "Santa Lucia," "You Belomg to My Heart," "I Love You for Sentimental Reasons" and "You Are Too Beautiful." He also was a featured vocalist on the "Lucky Strike Hit Parade" show.

The son of Philip Laspada, who ran a bakery at 9th and Cross streets, Jimmy was one of the first of a long line of pop singers to come out of the rich musical turf of South Philadelphia. He started singing on the street corner with the guys and quickly made a name for himself once he started entering amateur contests on stages of the Alhambra, the Earle and the Broadway theaters.

He won a contract with radio station WIP and starred on one of the few live shows originating in Philadelphia at the time. In 1942 he joined the Harry James orchestra, and it was James who changed his stage name from "Sonny" to ''Jimmy" Saunders.
As Vince La Spada, Jimmy Saunders, Sonny Sanders or Marco Polo, he recorded since the early forties for Columbia (Harry James orchestra), V Disc (Charlie Spivak Orch.), Rainbow, Hi Tone, Signature, Coral, Dragon, Mohawk, Laurie, Companion, Cameo and Music Factory. He signed a contract to Chess Records in 1956 but I'm not sure if the Chicago label issued anything.



Thursday, September 22, 2016

Thirteen Men


Meg Myles
with Harry Geller
and his Orchestra

Thirteen Men
(Dickie Thompson,Fisher Music ASCAP)

Liberty 55038

1956


To the best of my knowledge,this is the very first recorded female version of "Thirteen Women", before Dinah Shore [1958] and before Ann-Margret [1962].  


The song was first recorded by its composer, guitarist Dickie Thompson :
"Thirteen Women and Only One Man" — it sounded like a good idea to Dickie Thompson when he wrote the song in the early 1950s.

"The lines went something like, 'I had two gals every morning serving me breakfast in bed/I'm telling you, Jack, one rubbed my back while the other one rubbed my head,'  But the idea proved too salacious for the early rock 'n' roll generation — or perhaps their parents.  Disc jockeys played Thompson's song [Herald Records 424, 1954) for a couple of weeks, then decided it was too risqué and pulled it off the air.

Music producers didn't give up on it, though. The song was rewritten for Bill Haley and His Comets. The rock-'n'-rollers recorded "Thirteen Women" as their A-side — "Rock Around the Clock" was on the B-side.

The Haley version is an atomic fantasy song about a working guy dreaming of being the only man to survive an H-bomb attack.  Audiences and radio stations found the hit a vast improvement. Nuclear annihilation, it seemed, was an acceptable reason to have multiple lady friends.

The change in lyrics didn't seem to faze Thompson, though. The musician received residual checks for decades even though most performers recorded the H-bomb version. 
Meg Myles

Meg Myles was a popular model and pin-up of the 1950s.

As noted by  the Billboard reviewer of her Mercury album from 1962 cut at New York's Living Room :
Miss Myles is a young lady of limited vocal talent but she's abundantly endowed otherwise, a fact which helps fans overlook her vocal limitations.
And Steve Allen had teasingly noted in 1957 : 
She's appeared on my TV shows several times and I've noticed that our crew, a pretty casual group - not easily impressed - always pays strict attention when she's out there, standing with her feet slightly apart, her head tilted a little to one side.  There's no doubt about it - Meg is one singer who's fun to look at.  (Steve Allen, notes to Liberty LP Just Meg and Me, 1957)
For your desert island enjoyment, here is a selection* of 13 covers, 5 female, 6 male and two instrumentals :
1 - Dinah Shore - Thirteen Men
2 - Ann-Margaret - Thirteen Men.
3 - Girlicious - Thirteen Men
4 - Jane Wiedlin  - Thirteen Men
5 - Melina Soochan - Thirteen Men

6 - Dickie Thompson - Thirteen Women
7 - The Renegades - Thirteen Women
8 - Chance Halladay - Thirteen Women
9 - Danny Gatton - Thirteen Women.
10 - Darrel Higham - Thirteen Women
11 - The Fuzztones - Thirteen Women

12 - Tommy Oliver - Thirteen Women
13 - Electromaniacs - Thirteen Women

Not included are the versions by Bill Haley, Col Buckley & The  In-Crowd (Australia), Marty Rhone And His Soul Agents (Australia), Eddy Mitchell (in french), The Heroes, Rock-A-Dials, Big Bad Voodoo Daddy,  The Flaming Sideburns, Christina Aguilera,  Cub Koda, Dixie Gunworks,  Vidar Busk & His True Believers,  The Breeze Kings,  Dagmars, Pete Turland, Quinn Lemley,  Michael Feinstein, Rockin' The Joint and  Gina Haley  (daughter of Bill).... and probably some more...




* for pw see comment

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

British Rock


Jack Urbont
Dean Lyon Almquist
with the Urbont Orchestra

British Rock
Comedy with music

Jabont Music ASCAP

Bojak 235

New York City, unknown date



Jack Urbont's work spans the realms of theatre, film, radio, and television. Growing up observing his father's work on Broadway and in broadcasting, he would later act on Broadway (Decision, Showboat), produce (All in Love, Juno and the Paycock) and compose (Livin' the Life, All In Love).   Selected film credits include the themes to Iron Man I & II, Supercops, and the scores to Mission: Impossible, Mannix, Singles, and Young Doctors in Love.

Jack Urbont started his television career by writing lyrics and music for Shari Lewis. Following this, he composed themes and lyrics for The Guiding Light, One Life to Live, and General Hospital, which has been heard on television for decades. Additional credits include music for All My Children, That 70 s Show, Winter Olympics, Howie Mandel, and award-winning talk shows such as Oprah, Rosie, and Regis & Kathy Lee.

His themes to the original TV representations of Iron Man, Captain America, Hulk, Submariner, and Thor have also endured (currently three new movies are being made using his music for these Marvel Superheroes). Jack Urbont received an Emmy for Lorne Greene's New Wilderness.

Also worth of a mention, Jack Urbont wrote "High Rise",  sung by an uncredited Rhetta Hughes.
theme song of a porn film from the early 70s,  considered by a classic of the era along with Deep Throat and The Devil in Miss Jones.

P.S. : This label is also an interesting addition to this post in a new category : the hole as a letter!


Monday, September 12, 2016

These Spurs

 
Gene Goza

These Spurs
(Are Made For Ridin')

Back Beat 572
1966
Recorded in Houston, with the backing of the Johnny and Edgar Winter’s Band.

Born in Vivian, Louisiana, on April 9, 1937, Gene Goza was the son of Ralph and Juanita (Cook) Goza.

Gene was a singer and an entertainer  He performed with the Charlie Pruitt Show [Beaumont, Texas] and was an Elvis impersonator.   With his group, Jo, Gene and Company, he enjoyed entertaining senior citizens.   For his contribution to the local music and entertainment field, he received a star on the Walk of Fame in Vidor.

Gene was a fun loving, colorful character who brought laughter and smiles because his own was so contagious.  He had a handsome face but a rubber-like face that he could turn into the worlds ugliest, a fun loving gimmick.  

In 2012, after fifty-one years on the same job with Firestone Polymers in Orange, he died before reaching his fifty-five years goal.  He was a survivor after tragedies : his first wife was killed in a wreck, his daughter Misty murdered.


Donald Eugene "Gene" Goza Sr.
1937 - 2012


Sunday, September 11, 2016

Playgirl


J. Walker And The Pedestrians
featuring Little Willie Woolfolk

Playgirl

 J & W 900
1966

When I started to do some research and first googling the band name, I was thinking it would be a rather easy research.  I was wrong.  In the sixties alone, they were at least three or four bands named J. Walker and the Pedestrians or Jay Walker and the Pedestrians [on Amy, Pine Hills and Meteor] and none seems to be the same band!  The one on Meteor (Upstate New York) in 1967 perhaps (but has a female lead vocalist named Dawn Wilson) ?

Mastered and pressed in Nashville, Tenn.  So these Pedestrians were probably somewhere from "the South"


Saturday, September 10, 2016

The Crawl


The Rel-Yea's

The Crawl —Vocal, Jimmie Bolado     :    

Tu-Ber-Cu-Lucas And The Sinus Blues —Vocal, Jimm Bissett

Kaye 103*
1963

San Antonio, Texas teen combo.  This is their last record (or one of their last?) on their own Kaye label after two singles on Wildcat (1960) and two on Kaye (1963).

"The Crawl" is a cover of the Ray Victorian**-penned song first recorded by Guitar Jr. (Goldband Records, 1958).  And "Tu-Ber-Cu-Lucas" is indeed the Huey Smith hit recorded on Ace Records (1959)

* see comment
**aka Ray Vict of "We Gonna Bop Stop" Rock fame


From left to right : Jim Frizzell, Jimmi Bolado, Eddie Guererro and Jimmy Bissett


Thursday, September 8, 2016

I'm A Grimmie Baby



Mike Harris
and the Hi-Tides
 
I'm So Proud
b/w
I'm A Grimmie Baby

both wr. Ken Jenkins and Art Monday;
Kesa Music Co. (BMI)

1963

Mike Harris was a close friend (and associate) of guitarist (and small studio owner) Bob Summers, that the sum of my knowledge gathered from the internet. .. that's not much.

Discography

60 Zuma 102 - Divine / Just A Memory
63 Krimmie 024 - I'm So Proud / I'm A Grimmie Baby
63 Doré 678 - Any News About Debbie /  Eternity    
64 Liberty 55744 - Come Along With Me / We Never Knew
65 Sidewalk 2 -  Sugar Toots / Good Guys
66 Sidewalk 905 -  Everybody Has Their Day / Dry Bones
Penned by Mike Harris

61 Surfer's Lament (The Lively Ones, Del-Fi)
61 Cryin' Guitar (The Lively Ones, Del-Fi)
63 Young and Lonely (Bob Summers, Challenge)
64 Follow The Rainbow (Terry Stafford, Crusader)
65 Gemini (In Orbit) (Bob Summers, Challenge)
65 In The  Beginning (The Parfays, Fontana)
67 Gonna Give You Back Your Diamond Ring  (The Sloppy's, Sidewalk)

Note : The BMI database also lists "Center Feature In The Playmore Magazine", a song recorded by Gracie Dee on the Nashville Blaze label in 1968. I believe that Mike Harris is a different man, a Canadian artist, as was also Gracie Dee.

Produced by Mike Harris

65 Stan Lee Black On Almo Int'l 222 (co-prod. Stafford, arr. Bob Summers)


Saturday, September 3, 2016

He's The Law



Conny & The Bellhops
He's The Law

Artisan World Recordings AW 0001

Led by Conny (Edgar M. Conrad III), lead vocalist and saxophone player, this Pittsburg, Kansas group was the first real rock 'n' roll band in the region.  Formed in 1958, original members, in addition to Conrad, were Russell Pryer, rhythm guitar, Carl Sipes on keyboard, Tommy Schockley, lead guitar, and Clarence Sharp, drums. 

Three of their recordings are listed  at the Rockin' Country Style website. (on Damon Records and R Records)
 
This Artisan World release is unlisted.  Probably recorded in Memphis (their first 45s were recorded at the Sun Studios by Stan Kesler) as Beckie Publishing Co is the song publisher here.

The 'Beckie' publishing house, named after Sam Phillips' first wife Rebecca 'Beckie' Phillips was owned by Gene Lucchesi, a Memphis businessman and also perhaps partly by Stan Kesler.  Gene Lucchesi recruited Stan Kesler in 1962 and formed Pen Records.  It's on the first Pen release by The Skylighters that the Beckie (Becky) publisher was first in print (I think), hence, a probable 1962 date for this Artisan World release? Or later?



Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Lovesick Blues




Marvin Short

Lovesick Blues

Little Dixie Records

1980?

From Keota, Oklahoma, the youngest of four, Marvin was raised on a steady diet of country and rock ‘n’ roll music. His dad worked for a US Army munitions plant that was a 6-hour drive away, but performed on nights and weekends with his Country/Western band, Ken Short and the Drifters.My Daddy made sure to call it Country AND Western,” Marvin said. As Marvin’s singing talent became more obvious, his dad put Marvin on the stage and let him front the band more and more.

By the time Marvin was 10 years old, his dad got him gigs on morning TV shows in Tulsa and Oklahoma City and introduced him to the recording studio where he cut his first track on a record. At the age of 12, he won several honors including “Under 16 Male Vocalist Award” and the “Under 16 Male Instrumentalist” from the Oklahoma Opry Association.

As a teenager, Marvin hit the road with Johnny Long, playing Country/Western music throughout the region. Then he played in Top-40 Country bands at nightclubs and on the Louisiana Hayride, a country music show broadcast from Shreveport, Louisiana.

Making Branson, Missouri his home since 1991, Marvin Short is still performing.  Since 2013, he performs hits of the ‘50s ‘60s and ‘70s in his show ‘Rock N Roll Dreams’ at Encore Theater Sedona in the Village of Oak Creek Outlet Mall, located at 6615 Hwy. 179, Sedona.




You’ve never seen hair like Marvin’s.
Long and pulled up into a very, very high pompadour.
On any show day, he uses a whole can of hairspray to keep it up that way



Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Let me entertain you


Modern Music Center
413 N Parkerson
Crowley, LA 70526


This was the location of J D Miller's recording studio, where all the great swamp blues music from the likes of Slim Harpo, Lightnin' Slim, Lazy Lester and Katie Webster were produced.

The Entertainers (Jenny Lee and Joe) were there in the mid-seventies, recording a cover of Pistol Packin' Mama.  According to some local legend, the song was actually issued on the local Pelican Records label.  Needless to say, unless some family member leave me a comment, Jenny Lee and Joe will stay in the dark for the eternity...

Sunday, August 21, 2016

The Great Red Rat


The Pery Mates
The Great Red Rat

Ca-Jo 210
1961


I haven't be able to find much info about this record or the artist(s).  The singer and songwriter full name is John G. Croff who later recorded an album in the Edgewood Studios (Washington, D.C.) in 1966 on the same Ca-Jo label : "A Fallen Star / Ballad of America The Revolution" (Ca-Jo 211)

On that album he was backed by Al's Dynamics, probably the same band who had a single on Ideal Records in Pittsburgh, Penn.