Monday, May 15, 2017

Cheap label country of the 1950s



And we mean cheap.  How cheap, you ask?  Record Pak-cheap, that's how cheap.  Plus, Tops-, Allegro-, and Variety-cheap.  These are the pop and country labels you ended up with if you weren't willing or able to spring for the name outfits and artists.  Cheap as cheap can be.  And lots of fun.

Most of these rips sound decent enough, with the exception of a couple tracks from the Record Pak 78, which I suspect was played with a Stone Age tonearm.  An extra-wide needle and heavier tracking force can only do so much for such a battered platter, but the tracks are great fun.  (Did I mention fun?)

From 78s (and a 45) from my collection.

Click here to hear: Cheap Label Country

FUN TRACK LIST

Salty Dog Rag--Steve Thompson (Record Pak 149)
Wild Side of Life--Same (Record Pak 149)
Easy on the Eyes--Rusty Gill (Record Pak 149)
The Gold Rush Is Over--Prairie Ramblers; v: Wally Moore (Record Pak 149)
I Walk the Line--No artists credited (Variety EPV-802)
Folsom Prison Blues--No artists credited (Variety EPV-802)
Honky Tonk Man--No artists credited (Variety EPV-802)
My Baby Left Me--Rusty Howard (George Jones), The Rhythm Rangers-- (Gilmar RX-124)
Hep Cat Baby--Rusty Howard, the Rhythm Rangers-- (Tops R244)
Courtin' in the Rain--Same
In the Jailhouse Now--Pat Patterson and the Texas Wranglers (Tops R255)
That's All Right--Same
Knee Deep in the Blues--Dave Burgess and the Toppers (Tops R302)
Singing the Blues--No artists credited (Allegro 1670)
I Walk the Line--No artists credited (Allegro 1670)

Lee

Wednesday, May 03, 2017

Whittemore and Lowe--"Pop Hits on Two Pianos," plus bonus tracks


The 1959 RCA Camden LP, Pop Hits on Two Pianos (above), reissues nine of the ten tracks from the 1946 Whittemore and Lowe 78 set Two Grand. which RCA had the duo pianists redo, under the same title, in 1956, possibly having decided it wasn't grand enough.  Anyway, the Camden LP omits The Continental, so I ripped it from my 78 copy and inserted it as a bonus track, because I'm like that.

Completing the Pop Hits on Two Pianos tracklist are three pop-concert mega-standards: Ritual Fire Dance, Malaguena, and Liebestraum, all featuring duo pianists Arthur and Jack without orchestra.

In addition, from shellac in my collection, we have two 1948 orchestra-less sides, plus two 1951 prepared-piano numbers that also qualify as "tape music," given the tape effects therein (quick splices, delay, possibly some speed manipulation), so you can't say without fear of rebuttal that I've scrimped on the Whittemore and Lowe.  By the way, Ernie was the person who brought the prepared piano sides to my attention a while back.  Thanks, Ernie.

Arthur and Jack were kind of a less flamboyant Ferrante and Teicher, and they were first.  Like F&T, they did light classics, pop standards, Broadway, and even country, but in a more laid-back way.

Click here to hear: Pop Hits on Two Pianos, plus bonus tracks

(With orchestra conducted by Russ Case, 1946)

In the Still of the Night
Lover
The Song Is You-Same
They Didn't Believe Me
Brazil
Falling in Love with Love
That Old Black Magic
The Continental (from 78 rpm)

(Without Orchestra; dates courtesy of Buster)

Ritual Fire Dance--December 18, 1947
Malaguena--January 31, 1947  
Liebestraum--September 20, 1946

(Bonus Tracks, from 78s)

Night and Day--RCA Victor Red Seal 10-1361 (1948)
Seldom the Sun (Alec Wilder)--RCA Victor Red Seal 10-1361 (1948)
Third Street Rhumba (Clifford Shaw)--RCA Victor 20-4404 (1951)
Begin the Beguine--RCA Victor 20-4404 (1951)


Lee

Friday, April 21, 2017

Society Favorites that are our favorites (Royale VLP 6042)






More adventures in cheap vinyl.  Today, the Royale label is making another appearance--Royale, you'll recall, belonged to Elliott Everett "Eli" Oberstein, whose labels were probably the cheapest of the cheap, though I hesitate to make a claim that cheap--I mean, that large.  As is not infrequently the case, the music here is quite decent--much better than the second-rate vinyl it was pressed on.  Best of the bunch are the marvelous pre-RCA and Columbia Percy Faith sides, which date from (I believe) 1946.

Vintage easy listening which can't be beat--that is, unless it was more competently mastered, and on better vinyl, but that's why you have me--to restore this stuff.  This ten-inch LP dates from... who knows when?  It has a copyright date of 1952, but I wouldn't trust that.

Society Favorites (That Are Our Favorites).  For the socialites and non-socialites among us.

Click here to hear:  Society Favorites

Body and Soul--Stevens Orchestra
Sweet and Lovely--Nat Brandwynne and Orchestra
Dancing in the Dark--Percy Faith and Orchestra
You and the Night and the Music--The Twilight Three
I Cover the Waterfront--Stevens Orchestra
I Guess I'll Have to Change My Plans--Chauncey Gray and Orchestra
That Old Black Magic--Percy Faith and Orchestra
The Continental--Jerry Wald and Orchestra

Society Favorites (That Are Our Favorites)--Royale VLP 6042 (10")

Lee

Monday, April 17, 2017

Kostelanetz, to date

While I'm wigging out over my Impala's unreliable AUX function, here are the links to all of my active Andre Kostelanetz posts:

Kosty Speaks! The Voice Behind the BatonKosty Speaks

Ten-inch Kosty: Kostelanetz Strings:  K. Strings

Kosty for Saturday: KFS

Exotic Music (1946): EM

Andre Kostelanetz, 1934-1946: AK, 1934-1946



Lee

In 2017, auxiliary jacks are super-duper cutting-edge high-tech ultra-technology of the future

In case you didn't know that.  Some would argue that auxiliary (AUX) jacks are 1930s technology, but we have a 2017 Chevy Impala with a state of the art entertainment console/module/something, and the AUX function doesn't work.  It's that simple.  It doesn't work.

Simple logic tells us that, if an AUX function doesn't work on a state of the art, super-duper, ultra-modern, latest-technology entertainment console, then it must be, at the very least, emergent technology.

At any rate, it was working yesterday.  The console "detected" my AUX device (a Panasonic portable CD player plugged into the AUX jack), and I was able to play CDs and stuff, and everything was great.  Today, no device was detected.  No sound.  Everything was as I had left it, but no detected device, no sound.  None.  Nada.  Zilch.  Nicht.  Zero.

So I plugged, unplugged, turned the car off and on again, tested the Panasonic player in the house (it's working fine), then counted to ten to keep from smashing something in anger.

Worked yesterday but not today.  Who to ask for help?  Well, given the fact that the folks at the dealership, including a tech, are less familiar with the console/module/something menu that I am (picture a tech poking around, with no idea what he's looking for because Chevrolet forgot to inform anyone what they were planning to do with the 2017 Impala command center console thingie), going back to the dealership would likely be an exercise in, "Hm.  We don't know what's happening," only it would take 20 minutes to get to that revelation, and meanwhile everyone would act like they knew what they were doing.  And there's no number to call.

And imagine if there was a help center.  Person on phone (heavy foreign accent): "Do you have the device plugged in?"  Only, of course, it would come out, "Do you haf dee (inaudible) plag een?"

Here I sit, defeated by the auxiliary function.  Back in 1955, Bev, who is going on 83, used an AUX jack to listen to her record player through her radio.  In 2017, I can't use an AUX jack to play my Panasonic through my super-duper, state of the art, emergent-technology entertainment audio console/module/whatever.

1955=plug player into AUX, sit back and enjoy the sound.  2017=No device detected.

Progress.

UPDATE: Working again.  But... for how long?  (Ominous music, fade)

UPDATE, PART 2: Continuing to work.  It's messing with me!

Lee