Paul Kanter

I am considerably more affected by the death today of Paul Kanter than that of David Bowie.  Maybe it’s my age?  But the Jefferson Airplane LP’s crept in there so darned long ago that nearly everything sits on their shoulders, as far as I am concerned.

“Blows Against The Empire” has been a favorite LP ever since it’s initial release.  And for Jefferson Airplane, I’ll stick with “After Bathing At Baxter’s”; there is simply no way to overstate the importance of “ABAB” to me.  And, yes, I “Want Two Heads”!

I am getting tired of all the fawning over David Bowie, the constant repetition of people who worked with him “telling all” etc.  The guy died almost a month ago!

– Ron Kane, Los Angeles

45 List

Today is the day “Between The Buttons” by The Rolling Stones was first released (1967).

I went nuts at Record Surplus a few days ago. Those who know me well know that this is the kind of titles I like to find!

BAY CITY ROLLERS – WE CAN MAKE MUSIC, BELL UK 7″

BEE GEES – (OUR LOVE) DON’T THROW IT ALL AWAY, R.S.O. US 7″ EP promo

BENTON, BROOK – REVENGE, MERCURY UK 7″

CAGNEY, JAMES – YANKEE DOODLE BOY, U.A. UK 7″ W/PS

CAPTAIN SENSIBLE – GLAD IT’S ALL OVER, A&M UK 7″ W/PS

CAPTAIN SENSIBLE – THERE ARE MORE SNAKES THAN LADDERS, A&M UK 7″ W/PS

CARRACK, PAUL – WHEN YOU WALK IN THE ROOM, CHRYSALIS UK 7″ W/PS

CONWAY, RUSS – ROULETTE, EMI / COLUMBIA UK 7″

DAVIS JR., SAMMY – SHELTER OF YOUR ARMS, REPRISE US 7″ promo

DICKSON, BARBARA – PEOPLE GET READY, R.S.O. UK 7″

ELECTRIC LIGHT ORCHESTRA – LIVIN’ THING / FIRE ON HIGH, U.A. UK 7″

FAMILY – BURLESQUE / ROCKING R’S, REPRISE UK 7″ promo

GABRIEL, PETER – D.I.Y., ATLANTIC US 7″ promo

GALLERY – BIG CITY RUTH ANN, A&M UK 7″

HOMER AND JETHRO – HEY THERE, RCA US 7″ promo

HOT CHOCOLATE – IT STARTED WITH A KISS, RAK UK 7″ W/PS

HOT CHOCOLATE – CHANCES, RAK UK 7″ W/PS

JOHN, ELTON – GOODBYE YELLOW BRICK ROAD, DJM UK 7″

JONES, PAUL – I’VE BEEN A BAD, BAD BOY, HMV UK 7″ promo

KING, CAROLE – IT’S TOO LATE, A&M UK 7″

KINGPINS – SUMMER’S COME AND GONE, EMI / COLUMBIA UK 7″ promo

KOKOMO / PIANO & ORCHESTRA – ASIA MINOR, LONDON UK 7″

LANDSCAPE – EINSTEIN A GO-GO, RCA UK 7″

MACK, LONNIE – RINGS / FLORIDA, ELEKTRA UK 7″ promo

MANCINI, HENRY – LOVE THEME FROM ‘ROMEO & JULIET’, RCA DE 7″ W/PS

MARTIN, GEORGE – ALL QUIET ON THE MERSEY FRONT, PARLOPHONE UK 7″

MILK AND HONEY – HALLELUJAH, POLYDOR UK 7″

O’SULLIVAN, GILBERT – WHY, OH WHY, OH WHY, MAM DE 7″ W/PS

PALMER, ROBERT – I DIDN’T MEAN TO TURN YOU ON, ISLAND US 7″ W/PS

PARSONS PROJECT, ALAN – DON’T ANSWER ME, ARISTA US 7″ W/PS

POPEIL, LISA – POOR CONNECTION, SCOTTI BROS US 7″ promo

PRELUDE – NEVER BE ANYONE ELSE BUT YOU, PYE UK 7″ promo

RICHARD, CLIFF / YOUNG ONES – LIVING DOLL, WEA UK 7″ W/PS

SEARCHERS – AIN’T THAT JUST LIKE ME, PYE CAN 7”

SHOWADDYWADDY – BLUE MOON, ARISTA UK 7″

SKY – NIGHT SKY, EPIC UK 7″ W/PS

SLADE – LET THE GOOD TIMES ROLL, POLYDOR US 7″

SPANDAU BALLET – ONLY WHEN YOU LEAVE, CHRYSALIS UK 7″ W/PS

STEVENS, RAY – BUBBLE GUM THE BUBBLE DANCER, MERCURY US 7″ promo

STREETBAND – TOAST, LOGO UK 7″

TV – JETSONS MAIN TITLE, TVT US 7″ W/PS

Nick Mason

Happy birthday Nick Mason (drummer of The Pink Floyd) (1945).

Are you aware that “Fictitious Sports” by Nick Mason is a Robert Wyatt festival? For reasons unknown to me, the CD is also fairly difficult to find in 2016. Columbia Special Products put it out in the US long ago, but those all seem to be in people’s collections. It got issued in Japan, but those are hard to come by too. It also has some amazing Chris Spedding guitar work! Also present are Carla Bley, Michael Mantler and Gary Windo!

There was no reason at all to think that a Nick Mason LP would be my favorite Pink Floyd solo LP candidate (apart from Syd Barrett).

Not familiar with “Fictitious Sports”?

Oh, there’s also a US promo 12” of “Hot River” that’s on un-colored clear vinyl. Nice item!

The 2nd Nick Mason LP is good, too: “Profiles” credited with Rick Fenn, the guy who used to work for 10cc. Again, nothing in 10cc to indicate that this would be as good as it is. David Gilmour (the guitar and voice of Pink Floyd) actually sings a decent song on “Profiles”, “A Lie For A Lie”.

And “Profiles” from approx. 1984 would be the final Nick Mason LP, at present.

Pulsar

Happy birthday Corky Laing (Mountain) (1948).

Pulsar

I first became aware of Pulsar about 1976 or so. I worked at a hippie record store, and that’s how / why I heard them. Their debut LP is called “Pollen”. In 2016, I have a nice Japanese LP re-issue of it in my collection. Odd, the Japan LP looks to be based upon the British pressing of this French band’s LP! My CD of it looks to be a French CD in a Japanese paper sleeve.

Their masterpiece is called “The Strands Of The Future”; I have both a Japanese LP of it (original issue) and a British Decca LP of it, too. The Japanese LP is an original issue and has some lovely Leiji Matsumoto artwork contained therein. Released in 1977, it really has the hallmark sound of decent French progressive rock. You can almost smell it! My CD of it is an SHM-CD, state of the art for Japan.

For their 3rd LP, they changed labels to CBS France, though still dated 1977, the sound of this LP (“Halloween”) was decent, then. And for a long while, I thought that was that, for Pulsar. Nothing came out for over a decade!

Then along came an LP in 1989, “Gorlitz”. Looks to be the same folks. My original LP is on a time honored French re-issue label, Musea Records. It’s either 1988 or 1989 (both dates are on the LP). Despite it’s late 80’s release date, it sounds like the 1970’s! Never seen a CD on this title, either.

No, I didn’t find “Gorlitz” at the end of the 80’s, I only found this LP a few short years ago, languishing in a used LP bin for a good price, in the US (California, actually). I knew it existed, but had never seen a copy of it before!

801 / Phil Manzanera

Happy birthday Gary Tibbs (Adam & The Ants) (1958).

Phil Manzanera “801 Live” 2CD version

I recently obtained the 2CD version of “801 Live”; what I got came from Japan, so it’s done as a 2CD paper sleeve (kami sleeve) with a somewhat larger booklet. The UK edition has been a book-looking 2CD, a la the Quiet Sun 2CD set.

The 2nd disc is the 801 band rehearsing in a hall somewhere, with Brian Eno. The quality of Disc 2 is not fabulous, but it’s better than it not having been recorded! And it’s 12 tracks on Disc 1 (as opposed to the x tracks of the original LP) and 12 tracks on Disc 2. So, somewhat needless to say, it’s a pretty good version of “801 Live”.

A year ago or so, I got a few 801 Live albums on CD; as I recall the one with fewer tracks sounds real good.

I am a Phil Manzanera fan, I should add. Several of the Phil Manzanera CD’s from Japan have bonus tracks! The last studio album was good, too!

  1. Diamond Head
  2. Listen Now (801)
  3. K-Scope
  4. Primitive Guitars

The above 4 titles are all really necessary. They’ve all been re-mastered by Expression Records in England; I got Japanese ones of all of the above. The later paper sleeve (Kami sleeve) CD’ s have bonus tracks, as well. There was also an Expression CD I found that I never saw a Japanese one of: “Rare One” which has out-takes from the earlier albums.

And he’s the guitarist of Roxy Music!

T. Rex

Happy birthday singer Edwin Starr (“War”) (1942) and singer – songwriter Richie Havens (1941).

I haven’t been in a real record store since David Bowie died. No, I don’t need to buy any David Bowie LP’s, as I already have originals of most of ‘em. But today, let’s remember Marc Bolan and T. Rex!

Oh, man! I was probably 13 or 14 years old when I walked into the hippie record store and heard “Electric Warrior” being played. As I recall, it wasn’t a $5.98 LP, it was a $4.98 LP, discounted to $3.98 – with a dollar off that, as it was a new release. So, a whole new avenue for $2.99? Sure!

I later met people who took Marc Bolan VERY seriously. I did read his schedule book, about how there were never marketing meetings etc.

The original U.K. “Electric Warrior” was a single sleeve, came with a poster & a custom innersleeve; the Japanese have lovingly re-created an original UK LP package, as a paper sleeve (kami sleeve) CD. I also remember being in a stupid record store (a Wherehouse?) and seeing an SA-CD of “Electric Warrior” for something like $19.99! I am mostly unconcerned with the 5.1 mix of this album, and YES – I do own a DVD-A of it for that purpose.

The people who take Marc Bolan way too seriously are kinda amusing. I mean, I think both “Electric Warrior” and “The Slider” are wonderful, but my opinion of T. Rex does not extend to “Tanx”, which I found to be a bit ‘anemic’. Never sat through any of the other later whole albums. I do like the “Great Hits” CD, it picks up whatever you might want from other than “Electric Warrior” and “The Slider”.

But I mean, really, Marc on Wax label stuff? Mark Bolan sneezed – and it was beautiful! Marc Bolan cleared his throat – and it was beautiful! C’mon, people!

Osanna

Today is the anniversary of Ozzy Osbourne biting the head off a dead bat (1982).

Many years before that August event, I was a youngster going into Los Angeles area record stores. I was also listening to KPFK-FM (90.7) after midnight; I was hearing all sorts of stuff! My friend (who doesn’t do FB) was beginning to play Italian bands, about 1972 or so. Holy progressive rock!

I was turned on to band from Italy called Osanna, which is literally what is chanted elsewhere: (“Hosanna! Hosanna!”) – at least that’s what I’ve always understood. And, yes, it is religious music!

Their debut album was called “L’Uomo” ( = “The Man”); can’t find a date anywhere on the jacket, LP or label, but my wild guess is 1971. They look like Italian hippies, have face paint and they rock & roll reasonably! I never got a CD of this album, but I probably should pick one up next time I’m in Tokyo, where they are ‘popular’.

A gentleman (my aforementioned friend) was beginning to play a track off of their 2nd LP, “Milano Calibro 9”, which I understand is an Italian gangster film soundtrack. I recently got the honor of re-buying this title as a Japanese SHM-CD (Super High Materials), it’s short, but sweet – this isn’t a very long album! The original Fonit Italy LP had a very textured cover. We weren’t in Kansas anymore, Dorothy!

This is a real band, and they sort of sound like King Crimson or Van Der Graaf Generator!

“Palepoli” is their 3rd album and a powerful masterpiece it is! I not only have an SHM-CD of it, my SHM-CD is a paper sleeve (kami sleeve)! The CD I have is from 2004, and AFAIK is the newest mastering of it. In the booklet liner notes, they freely mention some of their contemporaries: Premiata Forneria Marconi, Focus, New Trolls, Banco Del Mutuo Sorrorso, Il Balletto Di Bronzo, Latte E Miele, Le Orme most of whom were riding on the backs of King Crimson, Jethro Tull, Gentle Giant, VDGG etc.

Recently, Warner Japan got the rights to the Fonit / Cetra catalogue, so they are busily re-issuing Italian progressive rock albums, the last of which today I got was their 4th album, “Landscape Of Life”. This is likely the least of the 4 Osanna albums, at the time, but I am ready to listen to it with renewed vigor!

Big Brother & The Holding Company

Happy birthday Janis Joplin (Big Brother & The Holding Company) (1943) and singer – songwriter Robert Palmer (1949).

I was probably hipped to Big Brother by either my oldest sister or my late brother. Strange hippie music from San Francisco! Exotic music! Electric music! As a youngster, I did, in fact, notice Janis Joplin – though I now see I couldn’t have possibly have noticed the subtext of what was going on (the drugs, her death etc.) “Cheap Thrills” was a lot of fun! John Simon produced a good album! Yeah, OK, some of it was ‘live’ and not their best work; it passed for what was ‘big fun’ once upon a time!

The Robert Crumb artwork on the cover also drew me in – comics! As a youth, my parents took me to San Francisco several times, usually staying at the Jack Tar Hotel (at Geary & Van Ness). There was a record store out Geary (towards the ocean) that had imported LP’s by Big Brother; I bought a UK CBS LP of “Cheap Thrills” that does not fold out at that store. Never seen it since then!

The debut LP on Mainstream Records was also amusing. However it didn’t make any sense for a hippie band from San Francisco to be signed to a label in the Midwest; they only usually released jazz & blues records! But the Big Brother debut LP was amusing; a rock band out of context, making the best LP they could – I suppose.

Something must’ve been “up”, as “Kozmic Blues” didn’t register with me when it was a new release; it’s not a Big Brother LP! It’s a Janis Joplin LP. These many years later, I guess I could tell (without knowing) that nobody in that band was having much fun. The drugs? Probably. I simply didn’t dig it.

Her final album “Pearl” was released posthumously, in early 1971. It was a better album than “Kozmic Blues”, probably due to Paul Rothchild producing it. Despite the fact that he was likely nearly as interested in drugs as she was!

Big Brother’s label, Columbia Records, put out 2 x LP’s by Big Brother without Janis Joplin and a 2LP set of live recordings of Janis Joplin. And the book has been closed on ‘em for quite a while; there is at least 1 x CD of Big Brother live with Janis Joplin that got released, them playing a ballroom somewhere in San Francisco.

Magazine – “Real Life” (LP)

Happy birthday Elmore James (1918)!

MAGAZINE – “Real Life” (Virgin UK LP)

It was long ago, so forgive me if I can’t remember the order of events…I definitely had the LP for “Real Life” before the 2nd album came out. Why try the first LP by Magazine?

It is straightforward progressive rock cloaked in the clothing of the new wave. Had no real idea who they were. One suspected Dave Formula’s name wasn’t really David Formula, so we all wondered what progressive rock band he had been in. None of the other names were familiar, apart from Mr. Howard Trafford having been in The Buzzcocks previously – though that was not a determining factor in my decision to take on this band, a new wave band at that!

Recorded March / April 1978 on the Virgin Mobile and at Abbey Road.

The doors of the new wave had already been kicked in by XTC, previous to Magazine. And who was this ‘Linder’ that designed the cover? We knew almost nothing about them, their friends etc. This type of new wave music was not particularly happening in Los Angeles – or anywhere else in America.

1979 creeped around and Magazine played @ The Whisky A-Go-Go, for their 2nd album “Secondhand Daylight”; by this time I had a Japanese pressing of “Real Life” and Mr. Formula & Howard duly signed my obi. But back to “Real Life”…

It likely wasn’t obvious that this was an LP of 1978 progressive rock, but I am reasonably certain that’s what this LP is. Even had to get out the dictionary for this LP! What’s a “Tulpa” anyway? First I got a Virgin UK CD of “Real Life”, then eventually a Japanese Virgin (via JVC) paper sleeve CD of it (essentially meaningless without also obtaining an illusive “Secondhand Daylight” paper sleeve CD). And later on, found an LP re-issue of “Real Life” on Vinilissimo Records (issued under license of EMI Spain) – yet with a Virgin label, and presently 180g.

Perhaps I will tire of this LP when I reach the age of 65 or 70. But for now, it still sounds ‘fine’/’mighty’ etc.

Thanks for the music, Howard, Barry, Dave, Martin & John. John died, unfortunately. Barry made several very good solo records. Howard carried on as ‘Luxuria’, but that’s another story!

The Smothers Brothers

Happy birthday to EZ singer Jack Jones (1938).

Probably because I could easily see them on TV, and my older brother had all of their LP’s – I got into The Smothers Brothers towards the end of the 1960’s. Yes, the TV show they had hosted some otherworldly amazing artists, such as The Who!

And I got to see them live in Las Vegas in 2002!

As it became time for me to find all of their records, I remembered something my late brother once told me: “Some Smothers Brothers LP’s have more songs than others” – huh? What? But he was right!

The debut album seems to match up, as does the second through the 6th album; for “Mom Always Liked You Best” mono LP has 13 tracks, stereo LP only has 11 tracks. I wonder how that happened?

The Smothers Brothers are not the first artist you think of, regarding 45’s, but I found some of those too!

My 2016 Smothers Brothers collection:

AESOP’S FABLES                                                                                          MERCURY US       SR 60989      LP

1964 15 TRKS stereo LP

AESOP’S FABLES mono                                                                               MERCURY US       MG 20989     LP

1964 15 TRKS mono LP

 

BEST OF, THE – SIBLING REVELRY                                                           RHINO US              R2 75235       CD

1998 18 TRKS stereo CD collection, US comedy

 

CURB YOUR TONGUE, KNAVE!                                                                  LAUGH.COM US  LGH 1125      CD

2002 8 TRKS stereo CD US comedy

CURB YOUR TONGUE, KNAVE!                                                                  MERCURY US       SR 60862      LP

1963 8 TRKS stereo LP comedy

CURB YOUR TONGUE, KNAVE! mono                                                      MERCURY US       MG 20862     LP

1963 8 TRKS mono LP comedy

 

GOLDEN HITS Vol. 2                                                                                     MERCURY US       MG 21089     LP

1966 8 TRKS mono LP comedy

GOLDEN HITS Vol. 2 (UK)                                                                            MERCURY UK       20099MCL    LP

1966 8 TRKS mono LP comedy

 

IT MUST HAVE BEEN SOMETHING I SAID!                                              MERCURY US       SR 60904      LP

1964 11 TRKS stereo LP

IT MUST HAVE BEEN SOMETHING I SAID! mono                                  MERCURY US       MG 20904     LP

1964 11 TRKS mono LP comedy

 

MOM ALWAYS LIKED YOU BEST!                                                              MERCURY US       SR 61051      LP

1965 11 TRKS stereo LP comedy

MOM ALWAYS LIKED YOU BEST! mono                                                   MERCURY US       MG 21051     LP

1965 13 TRKS mono LP comedy

 

PLAY IT STRAIGHT                                                                                         MERCURY US       MG 21064     LP

1966 13 TRKS mono LP

 

SLITHERY DEE / COO-COO, THE (EP) promo                                         MERCURY US       72323             7″

1964? 4 TRKS no pic sleeve, promo

 

SMOTHERS BROTHERS COMEDY HOUR                                                MERCURY US       SR 61193      LP

1967? 12 TRKS stereo LP comedy

 

SMOTHERS BROTHERS COMEDY HOUR (EP)                                       MERCURY US       DJ 104           7″

1968 7 TRKS no pic sleeve, promo-only

 

SONGS AND COMEDY OF, THE – AT THE PURPLE ONION                 MERCURY US       SR 60611      LP

1962 9 TRKS stereo LP comedy

SONGS AND COMEDY OF, THE – AT THE PURPLE ONION mono     MERCURY US       MG 20611     LP

1962 9 TRKS mono LP comedy

 

STELLA’S GOT A NEW DRESS / WHERE THE LILAC GROWS            MERCURY US       C-7082           7″

1964 2 TRKS no pic sleeve, plays 33 /13

 

THINK ETHNIC!                                                                                               MERCURY US       SR 60777      LP

1963 11 TRKS stereo LP comedy

THINK ETHNIC! mono                                                                                   MERCURY US       MG 20777     LP

1963 11 TRKS mono LP comedy

 

TOUR DE FARCE – AMERICAN HISTORY (13) mono                             MERCURY US       MG 20948     LP

1964 13 TRKS mono LP

TOUR DE FARCE – AMERICAN HISTORY (14)                                         MERCURY US       SR 60948      LP

1964 14 TRKS stereo LP comedy

TOUR DE FARCE – AMERICAN HISTORY (14) mono                             MERCURY US       MG 20948     LP

1964 14 TRKS mono LP comedy

 

TOY SONG, THE / LITTLE SACKA SUGAR                                                MERCURY US       72519             7″

1966? 2 TRKS no pic sleeve, promo

 

TWO SIDES OF, THE                                                                                     MERCURY US       SR 60675      LP

1962 12 TRKS stereo LP comedy

TWO SIDES OF, THE mono                                                                          MERCURY US       MG 20675     LP

1962 12 TRKS mono LP comedy

 

YOU GO THISAWAY / JENNY BROWN                                                       MERCURY US       72182             7″

1965? 2 TRKS no pic sleeve