Found this curious EP in a charity shop today for 50p. I was first attracted to the amusing sleeve photo of the three men brandishing tiny Zulu shields and sticks! It seems that the 3 Petersen Brothers are from one of the oldest theatrical families in South Africa and are really brothers. They have appeared constantly in every major town and city in South Africa the sleeve notes say. They have enjoyed a highly succesful season in London where they appeared on TV and on the radio. Accompanying them on this record is Nico Carstens and his Orchestra which sounds like three people to me! Released in the 60's I imagine on the Columbia label and record made in Southern Rhodesia which is now Zimbabwe.
Side one of Frank's 10" LP "Medium Play" from 1990 on the In Tape label.
"Frank Sidebottom: Nothing more than Chris Sievey wearing a paper maché head. He was created by Sievey as the Freshies' number one fan (well, The Freshies' only fan), and managed to get a career out of being the band's only fan. Ironic that the Freshies' fan would be more famous than the Freshies themselves.
Frank once sold a video by mail-order called "Frank's Home Movie Video". He reportedly recorded a personalised intro on each video ordered, and coloured all the sleeves in by hand!
He had many songs released, although all of them are near impossible to get hold of. For example, he released a couple of "Timperley" EPs, where all the tracks contained, er, "Timperley" (it was where he lived, or something). Yes: all of them. Every single one. Other famous releases included "Frank Sings The Magic Of Freddie Mercury and Queen", and the 12" version called "Frank Sings The Magic Of Freddie Mercury And Queen And Kylie Minogue (you know; her off 'Neighbours')". The most memorable tracks being "Frank Gordon" (a version of "Flash Gordon"), and "I Am The Champion" (a version of "We Are The Champions"). He also released a single entitled "Panic by The Sidebottoms", containing no less than nine different mixes of the same song (one of which was the "Demon Axx Warriors from Oblivion Mix"). And John Kettley wasn't the only BBC weatherman to have a song written about him, as Ian McCaskill's name was put to Frank's imaginatively-titled "Ian McCaskill". And we haven't even mentioned "Best of the Answering Machine", "6 All-time Great Footballing Chants (including 'Nil-Nil', 'Wemberley', and 'There's Only One Referee')" or "Frank checks into Auntie Edie's", yet. Or the album "B******s To Christmas"."
Whilst I'm in the mood for uploadling these old 78's I might as well include this oddity which I've had for 30 years or more. It's a BBC soundtrack disc made of metal with a plastic coating. It plays at 78 and is very scratched so apologies for the crackles and pops. The handwritten label suggests it was made for inclusion in the radio series "Journey Into Space" that was popular in the 50's but why this song? I have another version of "When It's Night Time In Italy , It's Wednesday Over Here" by the Everly Brothers. Bing Crosby apparently recorded a version but I've never heard it. I assume its an old music hall song. I will delve further into the internet and see what I find.
The missing link between be-bop and ska is kwela township jazz from South Africa. This rare LP on the 77 Records label was released in 1971 and features ex-pat South Africans living in London.
The sleeve notes say -
"Kwela is the popular dance music of the South African townships. It is the folk music of urban South Africa, and has developed from tribal origins with the growth of the townships themselves. The tunes can be heard sung or whistled all over the African townships by adults and children, and there is no festive occasion or Saturday night gathering where this unique swinging music does not play an integral part. In the early '50's at the time of the first "African Jazz" shows, Kwela was recorded and imported from South Africa for the first time by people like Zakes Nkosi, Spokes Mashiyane and Lemmy Special, the penny whistle virtuoso. It is the music that made Miriam Makeba famous; the "Black Panther" from South africa who has sung with Harry Belafonet's Band and is known throughout America and Europe for her famous "click-song". Gwigwi's Band is composed of four South africans who have settled in London. Gwigwi Mrwebi himself comes from Johannesburg and has been playing kwela on his alto-sax fro many years. He first came to the U.K. with the pit-band of the musical "King Kong", and was later joined by his wife, son and daughter. The other alto-sax is played by Dudu Pukwanana from Port Elizabeth, who also arranged the songs. He is a very talented jazz muscician and came to London in a modern jazz group, the Blue Notes led by Chris McGregor from Cape Town. It is Chris who plays the piano on this record. The tenor-saxophonist, Ronnie Beer from Cape Town, was also a member of the Blue Notes. They are accommpanied by Coleridge Goode from Jamaica on bass, and Laurie Allen from London on drums."
Max Miller sings and "tells a few" on a compilation LP called "The World Of Music Hall" on the Decca label. Originally recorded in 1935. The Lp was relaeased in 1970.
"Max Miller (November 21, 1894 - May 7, 1963), the "Cheeky Chappie", was a 1930s English music hall comedian famous for his daringly risqué (for the period) repertoire (see Censorship) and gaudy suits. Born in Brighton as Thomas Henry Sargent, Max became notorious for his double entendre based humour, which at the time saw him banned from the BBC on more than one occasion. His jokes were written in two notebooks, one white notebook for 'clean' humour, and a blue one for 'adult' jokes. He was known for his outlandish outfits, which generally included patterned plus fours and matching long jacket (a look which has clearly influenced the stage outfits of modern comedian Roy 'Chubby' Brown), with a trilby hat and kipper tie. He was also a popular singer of comedy songs, his most famous being Mary From the Dairy, which was also his signature tune. He also appeared in several films. A statue was erected to Miller in his home town of Brighton on 1 May 2005 by Roy Hudd, George Melly, June Whitfield and Norman Wisdom. Interestingly, Hudd appeared as his hero in the Big Finish Productions Doctor Who audio play Pier Pressure in 2006."
I have picked up so many Fats Waller CD's and LP's over the years and they are all fantastic. He really could have a whole blog to himself he was so prolific. Lots still available on cheap compilations so go out and find them.
"Thomas "Fats" Waller is one of the more important of the modern pianist-composers. Born in New York on May 21, 1904, the son of a minister, "Fats" played the organ and sang in the choir of the Abyssinian Baptist Church in Harlem, where his father preached until he was fifteen years old. Shortly after, the lure of the stage beckoned him to the interesting field of the Harlem cabaret, and he remained in that gay section of the city until 1924, occasionally doubling as a theatre organist and as a. piano-roll artist for the Q-R-S Company.
Some of "Fats' " other accomplishments include vaudeville appearances with the famous blues singer, Bessie Smith, soon after which he wrote the music to the show "Keep Shufflin'". In 1930, he composed the score for "Hot Chocolates," the hit song of which was "Ain't Misbehavin," and when this production closed, he subsequently appeared in leading supper clubs in London, Paris, Berlin and Vienna.
In 1932, he joined the artist staff of WLW at Cincinnati, where he instituted the famous "Fats" Waller Rhythm Club, which created millions of Waller fans throughout the country.
Mr. Waller is currently considered Victor's best record seller. He has been a feature in RKO films and at the time of this writing is in Hollywood for the filming of "King of Burlesque," a 20th Century--Fox production in which he will have an important role.
"Fats" is generally known as "Radio's Harmful Little Armful," and for many years studied under Godowsky in Vienna and Carl Bohn in New York."
Another chance to see Archie's Flash animation of "Gotta Wee" - a song by Manchester trio Dear Eskiimo who became The Ting Tings rather more successfully recently. I think this came out about 3 or 4 years ago. Archie was asked to choose from several demos that were sent to the Cornerhouse in Manchester for the annual young film makers festival "Underexposed" back in 2004 by local bands. This track stood out from all the rest. Archie was only 12 at the time.
A Nigerian Juju LP on Decca from the 60's I imagine found at Brick Lane flea market many years ago. The five tracks on side one are as follows - Eni mi ko sen'nia - Toba ndara f'oko aya ni - Toba rije f'omo ni keji - Ojo ikehin - E huwa rere.
"Considered by many to be the "father of juju" for his many innovations, Isaiah Kehinde Dairo was born in Kwara State, Nigeria, in 1931. One story has it that his lifelong love of music stemmed from a drum that his father, a carpenter, made for him in his youth and that accompanied him wherever he went. In early adulthood, Dairo tried earning a living as a barber, a construction worker, and a cloth merchant, among other jobs. Dairo sat in with early juju bands at night, led by musical pioneers Ojoge Daniel and Oladele Oro. In the mid-'50s he formed his own group, the ten-member Morning Star Orchestra, which gained fame later as the Blue Spots.
Though highlife was the most popular form of band music in West Africa at the time, Dairo and his band released a long succession of influential singles that, by the end of the Nigerian Civil War in 1970, helped establish juju as the premier Nigerian sound. Dairo changed the tenor of juju by introducing the accordion and talking drums to the orchestra and singing in a variety of regional dialects, which widened the rural appeal of the music. When his appeal began to wane at the end of the 70s, he gave up performing, turning first to managing clubs and a hotel in Lagos, then to a ministry in the Cherubim and Seraphim church movement. In 1990 he recorded his first album in 15 years with a re-formed Blue Spots band."
A 10" Lp on Capital found on Brick Lane flea market some years ago without it's sleeve sadly but plays very well.
"A popular entertainer who recorded frequently for Capitol during 1944-1950, Julia Lee's double-entendre songs and rocking piano made her a major attraction in Kansas City. She played piano and sang in her brother George E. Lee's Orchestra during 1920-1934, recording with him in 1927 and 1929 (including "If I Could Be With You One Hour Tonight") and cutting two titles of her own in 1929 ("He's Tall, He's Dark and He's Handsome" and "Won't You Come Over to My House"). Lee worked regularly as a single in Kansas City after her brother's band broke up."
Side one featured here with songs like "King Size Papa" and "Snatch and Grab It" to name but two.